Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Connect Grant: building sustainability for two businesses with one grant
We know our Downtown Winnipeg BIZ members need support to make it through this challenging time. To help, Downtown Winnipeg BIZ is excited to announce a new grant in the form of a services program designed to help businesses build capacity and sustain the second wave of COVID-19.
Downtown Winnipeg has plenty of experts – many of them the best in their fields. The new Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Connect Grant will connect member businesses that need support with downtown businesses who can provide it.
How it works:
Applicants will select a service area where they need to build capacity or adapt their business to help generate revenue or manage other challenges that COVID-19 has presented. Once approved, applicants will be connected with a member business expert who can provide the service they need. Some examples of services the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Connect Grant covers include business and strategy development, marketing, website support, online sales platform development, HR and staffing solutions, legal services and IT support.
The grant is designed to build sustainability for the recipient while also supporting the member business who provides the service. Simply put, it supports two downtown businesses with one grant.
Because we are committed to an inclusive program, 20% of the grants will be allocated for BIPOC-owned (Black, Indigenous, person of colour-owned) businesses and 20% of the grants will be allocated for businesses owned by women.
For a summary of this information, download the info sheet.
How to Apply
If you prefer to fill out the PDF form, applications can be submitted by:
- In person at our office (426 Portage Avenue, M-F 8:30 a.m – 4:30 p.m.)
Downtown Winnipeg BIZ
426 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg, MB R3C 0C9
- If you’re located downtown, we can arrange for a pickup by one of our Downtown Ambassadors. To schedule a pickup, please call 204.958.7233 M-F between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.
Businesses that are eligible meet the following criteria:
- The principal place of business must be within the Downtown Winnipeg Business Improvement Zone (BIZ) and the business must pay a Downtown Winnipeg BIZ levy. (Please check your business address to make sure it is within the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ limits).
- The business has less than 50 employees.
- The business has experienced a decline in net revenues or hardship as a result of COVID-19.
- The business is independent or locally owned (franchises are included).
- Owner(s) have not prepared the business for closure or dissolution following March 2020. For example:
- Announced a permanent closure to their employees or customers
- Held a closing-out sale
- Listed their business for sale
- Businesses must complete reporting during and following use of funds (ex. invoice submission, revenue, follow up survey).
- Businesses must have the ability to share the impact of this grant for Downtown Winnipeg BIZ marketing and promotional purposes.
The following organizations are not eligible (as the program is only open to Downtown Winnipeg BIZ levy-paying members):
- Non-profit organizations
- Churches or religious organizations
- Government agencies or offices
- Residential projects
Applications will be reviewed and selected based on the following considerations:
- Alignment with the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ mission: We promote, care and advocate for a vibrant and inclusive downtown where business thrives and people are drawn to work, live, shop and explore.
- Ability to demonstrate a connection between the service selected and ability to sustain business operations.
- Contribution to the long term sustainability of downtown:
- ability to generate increased revenue
- maintain/increase jobs