Owner Camp is limited to 35 people, and is offered  by invitation only.
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Owner Camp 012 Montréal

May 11-14, 2016
Hotel 10
Montréal, Québec, Canada
$3299 for new attendees
$2999 for alumni

Just Announced

Basecamp's Jason Fried is joining us in Montréal

Jason Fried

Jason Fried

The man behind Chicago-based Basecamp (formerly 37signals), Inc. contributor, author, and entrepreneur Jason Fried will be joining us for Owner Camp 012. He'll be sharing his wisdom of running his company over the years, which started as a web design services agency and evolved into the software firm it is today. He'll be offering advice and giving us an exclusive overview of Basecamp 3—discussing how it was designed & built from the ground up to manage your business. 

Welcome to the Cultural Capital of Canada

We've had Owner Camps in 11 inspiring locations in the United States. Montréal marks the first time we've expanded our footprint in another country. This French-speaking city (the second largest in the world) is considered the cultural capital of Canada, and is a cosmopolitan celebration of Québécois style. It's a city all about the fine touches; the old city, the art galleries and the quartiers. Nestled at the crossroads of a series of diverse neighbourhoods, Hotel 10 is where we'll be headquartered for our stay.

These Owner Camp contributors help make Owner Camp possible:

Our Agenda

We structure every Owner Camp so that you have the perfect blend of structure and free time. This isn't an un-conference. That term stinks. You're not just hanging out without a plan, fending for yourself, hoping to make connections. We devote meaningful amounts of time to discuss issues that are important to you as a digital studio/agency owner, with structure. But we don't get started early in the morning, and we don't like to be stuck in a hotel meeting room for too long either, especially when you're amongst such amazing surroundings.

Wednesday, MAY 11

  • By 3:00 PM : Arrive at Hotel 10, Montreal, Quebec
  • 5:00-7:00 PM : Opening Reception | Espace Godin
  • 7:30-10:00 PM : Group Dinners | Various Restaurants

thursday, may 12

  • 11:00 AM : Opening and Introductions | Espace Godin
  • 1:00-2:00 PM: Lunch | Salon Arthur
  • 2:00-4:00 PM : Sessions | Espace Godin
  • 4:00-4:15 PM : Break | Salon Arthur
  • 4:15-6:00 PM : Sessions | Espace Godin
  • 6:30-7:30 PM : Cocktail Hour | Le Bar a 20
  • 8:00-10:30 PM : Group Dinners | Various Restaurants

Friday, May 13

  • 11:00 AM-1:00 PM : Sessions | Espace Godin
  • 1:00-2:00 PM: Lunch | Salon Arthur
  • 2:00-4:00 PM : Sessions | Espace Godin
  • 4:00-4:15 PM : Break | Salon Arthur
  • 4:20-6:00 PM : Breakout Sessions | Salle Executive/Salle Jardin
  • 6:30-7:30 PM : Cocktail Hour | Le Bar a 20
  • 8:00-10:30 PM : Group Dinners | Various Restaurants

Saturday, May 14

  • Morning : Rest and relax or join us for some morning activities
  • 2:00-4:00 PM : Sessions | Espace Godin
  • 4:00-4:15 PM : Break | TBD
  • 4:20-5:15 PM : Breakout Sessions | Salle Executive/Salle Jardin
  • 5:20-6:00 PM : Sessions | Espace Godin
  • 7:00-11:00 PM : Closing Dinner | Sponsored by Media Temple

Getting to Montreal

Planning Your Travel

If you are traveling from anywhere in the United States or Canada, you should have no problem making it same day to our reception at 5PM on Wednesday, May 11th. Montréal is served directly by most major hub airports, so you should be able to get there in one stop or less. Book your round-trip ticket to Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport in Montréal (YUL), which is the city's only major commercial airport.

Going home, plan your departure from Montréal for Sunday, May 15th.

Don't forget that you will need a valid passport to enter and exit Canada. While clearing customs in and out of Montréal is pretty civilized, make sure to add at least 30 minutes on top of your expected travel time (Secret tip: while customs officials may start a conversation in French, all of them do speak English).

Getting to Hotel 10

Once you've cleared customs, you'll now have to get yourself over to the hotel which is about 12 miles/20 km from the airport. From the airport, you'll have the following options to get into the city:

  • Taxi: Rates to the hotel should be a $40 flat fee, but confirm it before you begin your trip since Hotel 10 is on the edge of downtown
  • Limousine: Rates to the hotel should be a $50 or $65 flat fee, but again, confirm it before you begin your trip
  • Public Transit: You can also take the 747 Express bus for $10, which will leave you within a 10 minute walk to the hotel and give you 24 hour access to the whole public transit system

While Uber is widely used throughout Montréal, we recommend not getting one to come to get you or to take you to the airport. The taxi industry and unions are currently in an aggressive battle with Uber and its drivers. Welcome to Montréal (Secret tip: All Taxi drivers are required by law to accept credit card although many of them will find interesting ways to try and get around it. Feel free to call them on it).

If you have a bit of time before our reception at 5pm, take the opportunity explore the city. Central Montréal is very safe and quite walkable, and Hotel 10 puts you within a 10 minute walk to Old Montréal, Downtown, Quartier Des Spectacles, Le Plateau and Mont Royal. Just make sure to give yourself enough time to get back to meet your new friends!

Your Hosts and Moderators

Greg Hoy & Carl Smith at Digital PM Summit 2015

Greg Hoy & Carl Smith at Digital PM Summit 2015

Your hosts and moderators for Owner Camp 012 are Greg Hoy and Carl Smith, partners of the Bureau of Digital.

This time around, you will also have a special Canadian co-host, Montréal native Warren Wilansky, a long time veteran of Owner Camp.

Warren Wilansky

Warren Wilansky

Greg, Carl & Warren will serve as your hosts, emcees, and discussion moderators throughout your time, and each have significant digital agency experience themselves; Greg as Principal of Happy Cog, Carl as the Founder of nGen Works and QCat, and Warren as the Founder of Plank.


Watch our Owner Camp Video


What is Owner Camp?

Transformational Retreats for Digital Studio Owners

Running a digital agency is tough. Like many of us, you probably didn’t study business management in school, and you sure as hell don’t have an MBA. Truth be told, you probably consider yourself a designer, developer, or strategist who is now inexplicably running a business.

How did that happen?

Now, you spend your time in the jungle (often without a machete) closing deals, managing payroll, and struggling with whether or not to grow the thing—all the while searching for the magic bullet that’ll make things a cinch.

Until a couple of years ago, the only opportunity you had to commiserate about the dirty details of running your shop was yelling in someone's ear over the deafening din of a conference happy hour. Wouldn't it be nice just to get away for a few days to recharge your batteries and talk to your peers? Your real peers?

You're not alone. That's why we created Owner Camp.

Owner Camp 004, Captiva Island, FL

Owner Camp 004, Captiva Island, FL

Amazingly Open & Honest

Discussions are open, honest, and frank, and everyone participates. Everyone! Owner Camp is not about a single person standing in the front of a room, presenting while you scribble notes. Owner Camp is a series of moderated, candid conversations. There are no elephants in the room, because we shoot them dead, together.

Owner Camp 007 in Denver

Owner Camp 007 in Denver

One of the things you'll quickly discover at Owner Camp is that no matter how unique you think your experiences are, there are several people who have gone through the exact same situations. Comparing notes about how each of you dealt with these situations is truly eye opening.

No one at Owner Camp is there to tell you what to do or how to do it, but we guarantee you'll walk away with perspectives that will allow you to make more informed decisions.


Our attendees determine the discussion topics at each Owner Camp. We start with a wide range of ideas and whittle them down to the most popular. Discussion topics from previous Owner Camp events include:

  • Business Development
  • Company culture
  • Differentiation
  • Financial metrics
  • Growth
  • Legal/contracts
  • Strategic planning
  • Tools & processes
  • Working with teams


Perhaps the best thing about Owner Camp is that our attendees are from diverse backgrounds and industry niches, offering perspectives well outside of your immediate circle of influence.

During the event, we’ll begin to forge lasting relationships that eventually serve as an ongoing support system. You'll retain access to this dialog long after the event. Owner Camp offers an ongoing forum where you can regular maintain contact and provide advice, trade stories, and share successes well after you part ways.

Owner Camp 003 at the Boulders, Scottsdale, AZ

Owner Camp 003 at the Boulders, Scottsdale, AZ

Each Owner Camp class will be augmented with subject matter experts and consultants who provide business advice you can immediately act upon.

As if that wasn't enough, we’ll truly have a great time together. Laughter is the best medicine, and we’ll all be buzzing from the dose Owner Camp dishes out.

Who has attended Owner Camp?

Check out our ever-increasing list of participating organizations.

What are people saying about Owner Camp?

Lots. Check out our testimonials.