Downtown Winnipeg BIZ launches new grant program to help struggling small businesses

December 18, 2020 Winnipeg, MB

Downtown Winnipeg BIZ is launching the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Connect Grant to help small businesses build capacity and sustain the second wave of COVID-19.

The new Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Connect Grant will connect downtown businesses that need support with other downtown businesses who can provide it. The program 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.

“We know downtown businesses need more support to make it through this challenging time,” said Kate Fenske, CEO of Downtown Winnipeg BIZ, “The Connect Grant gives small business owners access to services and advice they might not be able to get on their own. We hope this will have a lasting impact that helps businesses generate revenue not just in the immediate future, but for months to come.”

Applicants can choose from a list of services provided by Downtown Winnipeg BIZ partner businesses, who are experts in their fields. The grant will fund services in the following areas:

  • Marketing/advertising/branding/graphic design
  • Web services, including adding an online selling platform to an existing website
  • Finance/accounting
  • HR, including staffing solutions and strategies
  • Legal services
  • IT support
  • Business strategy

The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ is committed to an inclusive program and 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.

Applications are now open and downtown businesses with less than 50 employees can apply through the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s website. Applications will be accepted until all of the funds are allocated. The grants will be awarded to eligible applicants on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Connect Grant program includes $50,000 of funding that will help build capacity for at least 20 small businesses. The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ will expand the scope of the program if additional funding becomes available.

This is the second grant program the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ has offered to its member businesses through the pandemic. In August, the micro-grant program provided $1,000 grants to 51 downtown businesses.

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MEDIA INQUIRIES Pamela Hardman, Director of Marketing, Engagement and Communications
Cell: 204-806-2506
Email: pamela@downtownwinnipegbiz.com