Digital Main Street arrives in downtown Barrie via $40,000 grant

A $40,000 grant from the Ontario government’s Digital Main Street program will fund a Digital Service Squad to help downtown small businesses learn and adopt digital tools and processes.
Through the City’s Small Business Centre, trained specialists in Digital Service Squad will visit businesses in Barrie’s city centre to provide free training and advisory services on digital sales and marketing strategies and tools. Nearly 500 independently-owned businesses on Dunlop St, Bayfield St, Essa Rd, and the downtown Barrie district are eligible to receive training. The squad will operate from August to March 2020.
“This program is an important step in building a strong future for Barrie’s independent businesses and further enhancing our creative corridor and growing city centre,” said Karen Dubeau, Director of the City’s Creative Economy Department.
“Barrie’s Digital Service Squad will help connect new residents, tourists, and consumers around the world directly with our small local businesses, creating a dynamic and vibrant downtown.”   
A program jointly funded by Ontario and delivered by the Ontario BIA Association, Digital Main Street helps downtown small businesses adopt new technologies from e-commerce and social media to back-office systems such as payroll and inventory. Digital Main Street also offers 2,000 grants of $2,500 each to qualifying small businesses across Ontario to help them adopt new digital technologies. For more information visit digitalmainstreet.ca.
Barrie’s squad is a collaboration between the City and the Small Business Centre, in partnership with the Downtown Barrie Business Association (BIA), Georgian College, Sandbox Centre, and Barrie Public Library. Businesses will be introduced to Barrie’s Digital Service Squad over the coming weeks. For more information, contact the Small Business Centre at 705-720-2445 or smallbusiness@barrie.ca.

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