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Date Posted
July 19, 2022

The Grey County Business Enterprise Centre has received a $147,000 Digital Main Street (DMS) grant to operate a Digital Service Squad (DSS) program. This two-year program provides small business owners with the tools and support needed to digitally transform their businesses.

The DSS program brings trained digital specialists to brick-and-mortar small businesses, at no cost, to help them grow and manage their operations through technology. Eligible businesses will work with the DSS to complete an online assessment and training modules designed to build their digital knowledge and skills. One-on-one DSS assistance includes support for basic website setup, Google Business Profiles, 360⁰ photos, social media presence, and more. Squad members are also trained to assist qualified small businesses develop a Digital Transformation Plan and apply for a further Digital Transformation Grant.

“The Digital Service Squad program is a great addition to the services offered at the Business Enterprise Centre,” says Selwyn Hicks, Grey County Warden. “We’re delighted to have Digital Main Street on board to help us provide access to digital tools and support small businesses in our community.”

“Small businesses are innovative and entrepreneurial, but often lack the resources to respond to change, be resilient, yet flexible,” says Kay Matthews, Executive Director, Ontario Business Improvement Area Association (OBIAA). “OBIAA is delighted to work once again alongside the Digital Main Street team and is thrilled to support Grey County’s squad. The Digital Main Street program’s resources, grants, training, and Digital Service Squad assistance provide the means for more small businesses in communities across Grey County to adopt innovative ways, create new revenue streams, expand their markets, and face the future with optimism and confidence.”

Grant funding will allow the DSS program to operate for two years. Grey County businesses with a brick-and-mortar location will be able to apply for DSS assistance starting in September. Applications will be available through the Grey County Business Enterprise Centre. Grey County’s DSS serves the following municipalities: Owen Sound, Hanover, Southgate, Chatsworth, Georgian Bluffs, Grey Highlands, and West Grey. Meaford and Town of the Blue Mountains fall under the South Georgian Bay Business Enterprise Centre DSS. 

For more information about the Digital Main Street program in Grey County, contact the Grey County Business Enterprise Centre at bec@grey.ca or 519-371-3232.

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About the Grey County Business Enterprise Centre

The Grey County Business Enterprise Centre provides entrepreneurs across Grey County with the information, tools, and guidance needed to successfully start, expand and grow their small businesses. The BEC provides training, consultations, networking events and business resources, as well as administering several small business grants and funding programs. The BEC is pleased to assist with bringing Digital Main Street programming to the region.

About the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association

OBIAA is the network that represents unique and vibrant BIAs across Ontario. The Association supports and advocates on behalf of its members through the building and nurturing of strong relationships and partnerships. OBIAA is a leader in the development and sharing of information, tools, resources and best practices, and is the ONE voice on common issues.

About Digital Main Street

Digital Main Street is a program that helps main street businesses achieve digital transformation. The program is built around an online learning platform, structured training programs, and our Digital Service Squad, a team of street-level team members who help main street businesses grow and manage their operations through technology.

Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, Mastercard, Shopify, Microsoft, Facebook, Intuit QuickBooks, Square, and Lightspeed. The program is delivered Pan Canada in support of small business thanks to the support of all three levels of government. digitalmainstreet.ca.

For media inquiries contact Linnea Catalan, Business Enterprise Coordinator at bec@grey.ca or 519-371-3232.

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