Digital Main Street Grant helps Owen Sound businesses

A Digital Main Street Grant of almost $29,000. will help small businesses in Owen Sound adapt to changing technology.

Digital Service Squads of trained specialists will meet with small businesses, at no cost, to help them improve their online presence.

Trained specialist will help business put together a Google My Business profile, enhance their social media presence and support basic website and e-commerce set-up.

The team will also help businesses through the application process for a $2,500. Digital Transformation Grant.

The Digital Main Street Ontario program started in 2018, and was recently extended with $42.5 million from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) and $7.45 million from the Ontario Ministry for Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade (MEDJCT).  The program is aimed at helping businesses pivot their operations to include online business models, regain lost revenue and become more resilient and competitive as the economy recovers.

“We are excited for the opportunity this presents to our business community and grateful to the OBIAA and FedDev Ontario for their commitment to helping Owen Sound grow and retain local businesses in our downtown core,” explained  Owen Sound Mayor Ian Boddy.

“Ontario’s small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and the keystone of our economic recovery. That is why we have invested in Digital Main Street to help these enterprises adapt to doing business in a digital world, and take advantage of the record number of people shopping online. Congratulations to Owen Sound on the launch of your Digital Service Squad. The work you’re doing with small businesses in your community will help keep our main streets vibrant, support good, local jobs and help our economy come back strong,” said The Honorable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

“The COVID-19 pandemic hit Ontario’s main streets hard, so Digital Main Street is needed more than ever. We know that businesses that participated in Digital Main Street last year were better able to cope when the pandemic hit, and we’re excited that FedDev Ontario are providing the funding to extend this important program to help businesses in communities like Owen Sound,”added  Kay Matthews, Executive Director of OBIAA.