The latest news, events and client highlights from the WindsorEssex Small Business Centre.
Small Business Client Spotlight
Ocean Bottom Soap Company_s retail shop in Tecusmeh
Riding the wave: Ocean Bottom Soap Company 25 years in the making

Ocean Bottom Soap Company opened its Tecumseh storefront just last November, but the natural skincare company has existed in different forms for 25 years.

Located at 152 Lesperance Rd., Ocean Bottom was initially started by owner Charmaine Gillis in her Almont, Mich. kitchen as Iron Kettle Soap Company. She started making handmade soap to clear up her skin and to move away from traditional skincare products that contain sulfates and other chemicals.

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Clients in the News
Robbie_s Gourmet Sausage Co.

Robbie's Gourmet Sausage Co. was started by Rob Bornais and his increasing interest in sausage. He said it began as a hobby 10 years ago, evolved into a passion and then broke into an absolute obsession.

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While Windsor remains the unemployment capital of Canada, youth are finding their own way to create jobs and make opportunities for themselves and others.

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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.

Friday, April 1 - 9-10 a.m.

Tuesday, April 5 - 10-11 a.m. (Essex)

Monday, April 11 - 10-11 a.m. (Leamington)

Monday, April 18 - 3-4 p.m. 

Thursday, April 21 - 5-6 p.m. 

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 people aged 18-29 with the resources and knowledge needed to start and grow their own 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 the following workshops.

Don't qualify for Starter Company? The classes are free  and open to the public. 

Human Resources
Thursday, March 31 - 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Business Law Basics
Thursday, April 7 - 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

The next Starter Company program intake is in May. Apply online today!
Advance online registration required for all events.
Past Events
high school information fair
Engaging students at Community Connections Information Fair

The Small Business Centre spent the day providing entrepreneurship information to over 500 high school students at the Community Connections Information Fair March 8 at The WFCU Centre. The event was hosted by New Beginnings.
Special Announcements
Michael Difazio Reclaim Artistry expands with $5,000 grant

Starter Company is not just for startups! Michael Difazio launched his small business, Michael Difazio Reclaim Artistry, in 2013. He has since expanded the reclaimed wood business from his mother's garage to a 3,000 square-foot work and retail space in Windsor's Ford City neighbourhood. Orders are pouring in, and he is looking to further grow the business with the help of training and a $5,000 expansion grant through the Small Business Centre's Starter Company program.

Visit our website to find out how Starter Company can help you launch or expand your small business.
Starter Company awards $5,000 to Reliable Renting

Khoa Tran, owner of Reliable Renting, successfully completed the Starter Company program and received $5,000 for his online website that connects landlords with prospective tenants.

Starter Company awards $5,000 to Gryphon Homes

Gryphon Homes owner, Matthew Andrews, will use his $5,000 Starter Company grant toward his rent-to-own real estate investing company.
WindsorEssex Small Business Centre | 519-253-6900 | Email  | Website