The latest news, events and client highlights from the WindsorEssex Small Business Centre.
Small Business Spotlight
Small Biz Expo flyer

October marks the start of Small Business Month, a time to recognize the enormous contributions Windsor-Essex entrepreneurs and small business owners make towards growing our local economy and building the communities in which we shop, live and work.  

According to Statistics Canada's Canadian Business Patterns (2016) there are over 28,000 businesses operating in Windsor-Essex which employ fewer than 10 employees. Although these business may appear small in size, they pack a big punch. When you consider how many small businesses surround you in your everyday, it is impressive to think about the amount of time, commitment and labor these hard working individuals contribute to make their businesses both come to life and stay competitive.



This is your last opportunity to register  to be a vendor at the WindsorEssex Small Business Centre's 3rd annual Small Biz Expo! Last year's Small Biz Expo saw 300+ attendees and over 50 local vendors, entrepreneurs, and Small Business Centre clients participate and display their products and services - and this year, we're making room for more! See a list of participating vendors, and reserve your space online by this Friday, October 6!

The expo showcases locally-made, independent products and services from across the region, and is your opportunity to expose your business to your potential clients. Everything you need to know about the expo and becoming a vendor can be found on our website

For further information, please contact:
Natasha Marar
Tel: 519-997-2922

 Business & Client News

Michael Langley, Chairman of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), presents awards to Sabrina DeMarco, Executive Director of the Small Business Centre, and Natasha Marar, Business Advisor of the Small Business Centre. Natasha was also a Presenter & Panelist during the IEDC Conference which took place in Toronto from September 18-20. The Small Business Centre took home GOLD for its newsletter, and SILVER for its website. Well done Small Business Centre team!
WindsorEssex Small Business Centre Wins Gold for Newsletter

TORONTO, ON (Sept. 19, 2017)  The WindsorEssex Small Business Centre won a Gold Excellence in Economic Development Award for its Small Business E-Newsletter, a project in the category of Newsletter/Newspaper of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).
The WindsorEssex Small Business Centre publishes a monthly e-newsletter capturing the latest news, events and business spotlights; distributed to clients, stakeholders and community. The e-newsletter builds brand awareness and expertise; while promoting and celebrating local and independent business. Readers receive a collection of news articles, program updates, event listings and positive regional small business stories. The highlight of each edition is the small business spotlight which profiles a unique business as the cover and features the person behind the scenes; their competitive advantage and personal perspective. This helps to celebrate and promote client businesses, serves as a source of inspiration and validates the Centre's mission. 

WindsorEssex Small Business Centre Wins Silver for Website

TORONTO, ON (Sept. 19, 2017) - The WindsorEssex Small Business Centre won a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award for its Small Business Website, a project in the category of General Purpose Website of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).
As a department of the WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation, the Small Business Centre in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Growth provides entrepreneurs with the support necessary to start and grow successful businesses. The website is the premier one-stop site for starting a business in the Windsor-Essex region. The website is a hub of information directing users through rules/regulations, financial incentives, writing a business proposal, import/export, marketing, taxation, hiring, and more. It is an important strategic marketing tool demonstrating the Centre's mandate and services and works to educate and foster the development of entrepreneurship. 

Windsor-Essex Named Best Location For Investment
Maureen Revait | Blackburn News

An international publication has named Windsor-Essex as one of the top ten best locations in Canada for investment.
Site Selection Magazine published the list this week that also includes Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Ottawa. 
The WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation also received a Canada's Best Award from the publication.

Upcoming Events
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 access to small business training & workshops.

Start working with an advisor today.

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 .
Special Announcements

Music has been an important part of the Windsor-Essex landscape for over 150 years, and it continues to play a crucial role in the development of our region. The WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation and the WindsorEssex Small Business Centre recognize the need to develop our music ecosystem and foster growth in our growing arts community.

In early 2017, the Windsor-Essex Music Advisory Council (WEMAC) was formed, bringing together representatives from every facet of the local music economy. Council members are dedicated to representing Music in Windsor-Essex. Pooling resources and knowledge to create unique initiatives aimed at elevating the local music ecosystem.

PLUG IN TO MUSIC WINDSOR-ESSEX  is an event focused on showcasing local resources designed to help music business thrive in our region.
  • Hear about funding, grants, business planning and cross-border opportunities for local artists and businesses.
  • Network with other musicians, producers, songwriters, venue owners and more!
  • Meet regional representatives on the Music Advisory Council and have your voice heard by the team working hard to make our region a truly music friendly place to live, work, play, and create!

Food and refreshments will be available!



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 .

The objective of the  #OUTForBusiness Program is to empower LGBTQ Youth Entrepreneurs, 18-39 years old, by providing them with financial support and tailored guidance to help them establish or grow their own businesses. The annual, one year program is built on four pillars:
  • Networking
  • Access to Funding
  • Building Business Skills
  • Mentoring
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 system? 
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! You will learn to:
  • Create efficiencies in your business
  • Use financial data to make wise business decisions
  • Keep on top of paperwork, bookkeeping, and compliance
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 such as Allegra, Image 360, Vistaprint, Staples, Blab! Media, Hawkins & Co. Accounting and Lacasse Printing Company.
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