The latest news, events and client highlights from the WindsorEssex Small Business Centre.

Small Business Spotlight
Fattoush dressing

Cedar Valley Selections Grows Retail Production in New Storefront

From farmer's markets to a storefront café and production facility - one Lakeshore, Ontario business is gearing up to bring its Mediterranean food products to the masses.

Since 2016, family-owned Cedar Valley Selections has been selling its homemade, Arabic, fattoush salad dressing in Windsor-Essex. Tossed with romaine lettuce, fresh vegetables, and crispy pita chips, this tangy dressing is used in fattoush salad often featured at many of the area's Arabic eateries. But it's a product whipped up by home cooks - often without a set recipe - and is rarely seen packaged on retail shelves.

The idea to bottle the homemade dressing came to then 16-year-old Lakeshore student, Ameen Fadel, in 2015. Ameen's guidance counsellor at Belle River District High School encouraged him to participate in the school's Student Ventures entrepreneurship program, where he received business training from the Small Business Centre, and $3,000 to start his own business through the program.

 NewBusinessOnTheBlockNew Business on the Block
Each month, the WindsorEssex Small Business Centre will  
highlight  clients that have recently opened their business.

If you have started your small business recently (less than 6 months ago), or have recently moved your home-based business to a storefront, let us share your new venture with our audience of 4,000+ people!

Email SBC for more information.
 BizClientNewsBusiness & Client News
Photo: Dan Janisse | Windsor Star
Windsor Tech Startup Expects 3D Furniture Imaging to Take Off
Sharon Hill | Windsor Star

Edwin Padilla was shopping online for a light fixture and figured there must be a better way to visualize it than looking up the dimensions online and struggling with a tape measure in his foyer.

The former commercial pilot thought of augmented technology used in flight simulators and wanted to transfer that technology to help people see what a new couch would look like in their home.

Photo: Bread Meats Bread | Instagram
Windsor's Motor Burger, Bread Meats Bread Join Detroit Shipping Co. Food Hall
Tom Perkins | Detroit Metro Times

Gourmet burger purveyor Motor Burger and sandwich shop Bread Meats Bread will round out the restaurant lineup at the highly anticipated Detroit Shipping Company shipping container development.

The entertainment venue, food hall, and beer garden is taking shape on Peterboro Street in Cass Corridor, and is expected to open sometime this spring. When it's completed, 21 repurposed shipping containers will compose the roughly 12,000-square-foot space.

Motor Burger and Bread Meats Bread joins Brujo's Tacos and Tapas, Coop, Bangkok 96, and nitrogen ice cream and coffee maker, Minus 320.

Photo: Nick Brancaccio |
Windsor Star
Local Company Hones in on Cutting Edge App Technology
Dave Battagello | Windsor Star

A Windsor-based technology company believes it is on the cutting edge of giving small companies, municipalities and non-profit organizations the ability to communicate and conduct business without the use of traditional apps.

Inspire Hub Technologies has developed what's called progressive web app technology - a replacement for a traditional app.

It is downloaded through a URL instead of an app store and takes up a fraction of space on any device, compared to a regular app.

Starter Company Plus Recipients

Congratulations to The Pin Up Girls and Cemento Concrete - Canada, they are the latest recipients of the Starter Company Plus grant.

The Pin Up Girls are a travelling hair styling company specializing in bridal and special event hairstyling. With a group of highly-trained professional stylists you are guaranteed a creative and beautiful look as well as a great experience.

Cemento Concrete specializes in volume and customized concrete cladding products.  Utilizing the latest in technology, Cemento continuously strives to develop new and exciting products that redefine what is possible with concrete, for now and the future.


Articles for SuccessArticlesForSuccess
How a Bank Looks at Your Business
Business Development Bank of Canada

As an entrepreneur, you want your company to prosper and grow. But to reach your full potential, you will likely need to find financing for your business.

Understanding how a bank thinks about your business will help you feel more confident and improve your chances of getting a business loan.

Bankers need to assess whether your project is a good risk and whether you will be able to repay your loan. Their risk evaluation will determine whether you can get a loan, but also what the interest rate and conditions will be.

Photo: Futurpreneur
PR 101: How to Work with Influencers to Promote Your Brand
Megan te Boekhorst | Futurpreneur

Influencer marketing has exploded in popularity in recent years, and for good reason.

Working with online influencers is a valuable way to improve brand awareness, improve your SEO, increase customer trust in your brand and strengthen the online engagement with your social media channels.

But as social media constantly evolves, it can be difficult for new business owners to know where to start. To help, here are the key things you need to know in order to work with influencers to promote your brand.

In Case You Missed ItICYMI

January 18, in Leamington, the Small Business Centre in partnership with Workforce WindsorEssex, the Business Resource Centre of Essex County, and the Unemployment Assessment Centre hosted a Lunch & Learn on Recruitment & Retention for small businesses.  It covered methods of recruitment, a case study on wages, how to support and invest in employees - among a few topics.
Upcoming EventsUpcomingEvents
Advance, online registration required for all events.
Please check our calendar for more upcoming events.

Basics of Starting a
Small Business


Do you have an idea and want to start your own  small  business, but you aren't sure where to start? Attend one of these FREE seminars to find out information about:
  • How to register your business
  • Business structure
  • Government support programs
  • Other available services and programs
You will receive a FREE Start-up Package and step-by-step guidance.


Basics of Writing a
Business Plan


A good business plan is your road map to success!  A business plan is also required when applying for any type of small business financing.  Attend one of these FREE seminars to learn how to develop a business plan that will work for you!  This session will cover:
  • Required elements of a business plan
  • Breaking down a business plan into manageable pieces
  • Where to gather relevant information for a business plan
  • How to professionally arrange your ideas and research
  • What to do with the plan when it's completed


Starter Company

This Government of Ontario program provides entrepreneurs with the resources and knowledge needed in order to start and grow their own small business. The program includes one-on-one guidance from the Small Business Centre, mentoring with local professionals, funding of up to $5,000, and FREE small business training & workshops.

Don't wait! Start working with an advisor today.   Learn more & apply online .

The  Small Business Centre also holds similiar workshops throughout the year. Keep an eye on our newsletter, social media, and  calendar for upcoming events.



The WindsorEssex Small Business Centre is proud to continue to offer workshops, seminars, training, and other events that are relevant to new entrepreneurs and seasoned business owners alike.  In the situation where we may have missed an event in our newsletter, stay up-to-date by following us on   Facebook  or visiting our  website .

TechBoost Program

The TechBoost Program supports the growth and development of small businesses in Windsor-Essex by providing affordable training in information technology tools and products for business.

We understand that running a small business is a 24/7 type of job, so spending time trying to choose the right technology solution or learning how to use a new kind of software for your company can be daunting. We want to help.

Hackforge is offering a series of 10 different workshops in Windsor, Essex, Amherstburg and Lakeshore in 2018 that touch on various topics related to implementing technology into your small business. This includes tools for marketing, organization, finance, sales and productivity.

Upcoming Workshops

Please join us for some of our FREE pilot workshops taking place in February. 

Office Automation with Google Apps - Monday, February 5, at 7 p.m.
Getting Started with Mailchimp - Wednesday, February 7, at 6 p.m.
Ranking 101: The Fundamentals of a Good SEO Strategy - Tuesday, February 6, at 6 p.m.

Funded By:

In Partnership With:
Financial Bootcamp: Know Your Numbers

Thursday, February 8
9:00am to 4:00pm
3475 Wheelton Drive, Windsor

Featuring: Jules Hawkins, CPA, CA, President Hawkins & Co. Accounting Inc.

The WindsorEssex Small Business Centre, in collaboration with Hawkins & Co. Accounting Inc., brings you an ALL-DAY* financial workshop!

When entrepreneurs start their small businesses, there are plenty of steps and factors that are necessary for things to go right - and sometimes an entrepreneur may not notice those steps or factors until they happen, or until something doesn't quite work out. There's also the concern of how much money to charge for services or products in order to make money and be a profitable and sustainable business. A considerable factor in determining business success or failure is how well a business's finances are understood.

*Lunch & refreshments will be provided
*"Know Your Numbers" all-day workshop is a prerequisite to the scaleUP Financial program, and has an associated fee of $50, which is part and parcel to the program. Learn more about the program on our website:

Partner EventsPartnerEvents

EPICentre Windsor

Thursday, February 15, 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
DIY Patents: Should You File Your Own Patent Application?

Wednesday, February 21, 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Blogging 101 - The Do's & Don'ts of Content Marketing

Saturday, February 24, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Mini Maker Faire

Monday, February 26, 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Startup Mashup @ St. Clair College

BizLaunch (Webinars)

Thursday, February 8, 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
How to Use Offline and Online Networking to Grow Your Business

Tuesday February 20, 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
How to Create a Website that Really Works
Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce

Thursday, February 8, 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Emerging Leaders - Micro Networking

Wednesday, February 21, 5:00 p.m. to 6:45 p.m.
After Business @ WFCU Centre with
Windsor Express

AIM Social Media Marketing

Monday, February 12, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Facebook 101

Saturday, February 24, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Social Media Marketing for Businesses Course
US Tax Reform is Here: How Will It Impact You

Join the Chambers for an informative seminar with  a panel of KPMG experts.

Friday, February 9, 2018

7:30 am -  10:00 am with the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber @ the Caboto Club, OR
11: 30 am - 1:30 pm with the Leamington Chamber @ the Roma Club

President Trump's $1.5 billion tax plan became a reality on December 20, 2017 with the biggest changes to United States tax law in over 30 years.

In order to maintain our Canadian competitive position, Canadian companies doing business in the US need to explore the key changes announced and the impact of this tax reform on their business.

KPMG panelists will speak on the legislation fundamentally impacting how Canadian businesses expand into the United States, do business in the US and repatriate profits.

The reform legislation will also affect individuals who file US returns and have investments in Canadian companies.

What choices do you need to consider in order to help you and your business not only survive these reforms but also continue to thrive?

Taxes for Artists

Arts Council Windsor & Region's Art.WORK professional development workshops support artists in building skill sets to further their creative careers.

Workshops are $10 for ACWR members and $15 for non-members, and $20 for membership + workshop.

Thursday, February 28, 2017 @ 7pm - 9pm 

Taxes for Artists

Join the Arts Council Windsor and Region and Chartered Professional Accountant Stephen Lutvak for our March Art.WORK Professional Development workshop on Tax Preparation for Artists.

This workshop will cover a wide range of topics to assist artists through this years tax preparations. Whether you are employed, self-employed or registered as a small business, this workshop is an opportunity for you to check your facts, ask questions and share experiences as it relates to the business of art.


Businesses For Lease
Businesses For Sale

Regularly Scheduled ProgrammingRSP
Does this sound familiar?
You're unsure of how your business is doing, or how to measure the success of your business? Worried about what taxes you have to file and pay? Working with a shoebox of receipts or a painful accounting syst em? 
We have a solution.

scaleUP Financial is a program that equips entrepreneurs with the resources to tackle their small business bookkeeping. Participants will learn financial management strategies and receive hands-on training to use Xero, a fast-growing cloud-based accounting platform. Xero is perfect for startups and growing businesses of all industries, and scaleUP entrepreneurs receive a one-year discounted Xero subscription!

Join the Small Business Centre's Business Advantage program

The Small Business Centre now offers three levels of membership exclusively to its clients through its Business Advantage Program. Entrepreneurs can access existing programs, training and services, as well as discounts for SBC events and a number of perks from local companies offering support to small businesses. 

Clients who sign up for a GROW membership can take advantage of discounted services and products from local partner businesses.

Are you LGBTQ, 18-39 years old, and want to start or grow your own business?
- or -
Are you an established LGBTQ or allied business leader and want to help mentor up-and-coming businesses in our community?

The Canadian Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (CGLCC), with support from the Province of Ontario through the Ontario150 program, and in collaboration with partners across the province, launched the Ontario LGBTQ Youth Entrepreneur Program -  #OUTForBusiness - at the 5th Annual LGBT Summit of the Americas in Toronto .

Small Business & Entrepreneurship in Windsor-Essex, ON Canada

Since 1992, the Small Business Centre (SBC) has provided thousands of entrepreneurs with the training and support necessary to start and grow successful businesses. SBC is a one-stop source - providing guidance and professional advice from concept, through start-up and early growth stages of business.

WindsorEssex Small Business Centre | 519-253-6900 | Email  | Website