Now in its 16th year, ProMontreal Entrepreneurs (PME) is a social business model created to help young Jewish entrepreneurs build and strengthen their business roots in Montreal. The program provides guidance and support on how to launch a start-up, and helps established businesses through a mentorship program and coaching. Co-founded by Stephen Bronfman and Jimmy Alexander, they are both still actively involved with helping young entrepreneurs achieve their goals and aspirations of starting a business. Through the PME fund, aspiring entrepreneurs between the ages of 18-40 can access start-up capital of up to $50,000 and to date, PME has helped launch 67 new business, created approximately 450 jobs with a combined approximate revenue of $35 million..
We recently caught up with Michael Moszberg, CEO and co-founder of Praktice Health, a health and wellness app designed for businesses. Michael received PME funding in 2014 and since then has been on a mission to help “improve team building, and create healthy employees.” He shares some very valuable insight based on his experience and offers advice on where Montreal entrepreneurs can find the help that best fits their needs.
Q: What sparked the idea to start Praktice Health?
A: Through Praktice Health we started to talk to HR managers about corporate wellness activities. What we discovered was that HR managers were looking for variety and modern solutions, nothing was available to them. We went around to see what the most engaging activity possible was. The real problem was that there was low engagement in wellness activities. There were no alternatives for HR managers to put in a wellness activity.
Q: How were you able to differentiate yourself from other fitness programs and apps offered?
A: There is a lot available for consumers but there is nothing available for businesses. A lot of the features that businesses need is the planning, the communications, the administration, the analytics, the surveys, the photos. It also needs to be private and secure. When you get bigger businesses they want more analytics based on department. Nothing like that is available to the corporate environment. What is available is expensive, 12-month corporate agreements. These are programs that take up the entire wellness budget. Then you have consumer apps that are not private secure, or have HR features.
Q: What’s your opinion about being an entrepreneur in Montreal?
A: I believe that Montreal is a fantastic place to start and build a company. Because of the low wages, talent, and tax credit. To start a company in Montreal is fantastic. It’s hard to sell into the Montreal market though. For example, In Israel you have lots of resources for start-ups, but you don’t see many companies that are going to sell in Israel. Montreal is a fantastic place to build, but plan to sell globally.
Q: How has PME helped you and your business?
A: PME truly does support the entrepreneur. They really do invest time and effort in every single one of the companies to succeed. This is some great practical advice from someone who started their business in Montreal. Montreal has some great resources available to you. You have to know which ones are right for you at your current stage of business development.
ProMontreal Entrepreneurs program offers a number of distinct services to support the young entrepreneur. To learn more, visit http://www.promontrealentrepreneurs.org/