The monthly newsletter for Norfolk's business community
The monthly newsletter for Norfolk's business community
July 2022
Welcome to the new Norfolk County Business Bulletin, the monthly newsletter for Norfolk's business community! You'll receive all the latest news and updates from Norfolk's Economic Development team, delivered straight to your inbox. Let us know what you think at

County Updates

Attention: Norfolk-based entrepreneurs

Are you  looking to start and grow a scalable eCommerce business? Join Alex Brown, founder of the eCommerce Rockstars Accelerator Program, along with 20 industry thought leaders, for a 12-week business accelerator program that will provide you with the essential knowledge, tools, tactical training, and strategic planning needed to start and grow your online business. The best part? There is no cost to Norfolk-based entrepreneurs

The program runs from Aug. 9 – Oct. 25, 2022 

This project is delivered in partnership with Venture Norfolk and is funded in part by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

Apply Here

Upload your summer event on the Visit Norfolk App

The summer season is here, get your upcoming events listed on Visit Norfolk Mobile App today. For help getting your business or events listed on the App, please call ext 1264 or email us today.

2022 is the Year of the Garden

Norfolk County has proclaimed 2022 as the Year of the Garden

We still want to hear your ideas on ways that you or your organization can celebrate the Year of The Garden (over the summer and into the fall. Store windows decorated in a garden theme, speakers on garden-related topics, and agriculture events – all great ideas that we want to promote through Norfolk Tourism’s social channels.

To learn more, or share your ideas for how you plan to celebrate, check out Norfolk’s Year of the Garden webpage.

The Digital Main Street Digital Transformation Grant is Back! 

The intake window for the Digital Transformation Grant is now opened and is once again accepting applications. The program is administered on a first come first serve basis so please contact our DSS members for assistance on how to apply. For more information, click here.

Family Hosts Still Wanted for Ukrainian Newcomers  

Do you have a basement apartment, an in-law suite, half-side of house, extra room for accommodation?

Are you able to volunteer as a host family to provide temporary accommodation for Ukrainians coming to Norfolk County to work?  If yes, please Economic Development Supervisor Chris Garwood at 519-426-5870 ext. 1264 or via email.

The Economic Development Department would like to express our gratitude to all businesses and partners that contributed to making the bus tour a success:
Venture Norfolk, the Norfolk Fruit Growers Association, Picards Peanuts, The Cider Keg, Burning Kiln Winery, YMCA Immigrant Settlement Services, Joseph Brant Learning Centre, Fanshawe Career Services, Unilever Simcoe, Titan Trailers, and the Waterford Ukrainian Church. 

To see more, check out the video below:

Community Improvement Plan (CIP) Program

Funds are still available under the municipal CIP Grant Program

If you have a property that needs upgrade and improvement you may qualify for a CIP grant. 

The program is a 50/50 matching fund program that can be used for Façade improvement, accessibility upgrades, and more. 

More information on the CIP program can be found here

Assistance for Businesses

Government Funding Opportunities 

Southwestern Ontario Development Fund

The program supports companies, particularly SMEs, to grow, improve productivity, invest in innovation and skills development, pursue new markets, create sustainable jobs, and generate broad positive regional impacts.

Next intake window - July 12th - Aug. 25th
Eligibility Checklist due – Aug. 11, 2022 
Notification date - Nov. 23, 2022
Additional information here

Farm CreditCanada (FCC) Free Webinar

Farm transition is a rewarding journey with lots of twists and turns – and while it differs for everyone, there are foundational pieces that can help you along the path. The topic “Is your farm transition-ready? How to plan and prepare” will be presented by FCC Business Advisors and guest experts on July 12. You can register for the event here

Up to $3000 for students to operate a business during the summer! Each student must be returning to school after the summer. This program includes free business training from experienced advisors and mentorship from local business leaders.
More information here.

Northumberland Community Futures Development Corporation (NCFDC)
NCFDC has just launched thriveFORWARD to accelerate investment ininnovation across southern Ontario for clean, inclusive growth. This is non-repayable performance-based funding of $25,000 available for Startups (matching) and $100,000 for SMEs (reimbursing 50 percent of eligible and approved costs). Applications are received for both streams on a continuous open intake until the program is fully subscribed. Additional information can be found here.

Rapid Response for Business Development (RRBD) Initiative

The Grand River Agricultural Society (GRAS) has announced the launch of the RapidResponse for Business Development (RRBD) Initiative.  The GRASRRBD Initiative will provide up to $10,000 to support Ontario-based, agriculture, agri-food,agri-products, and clean-tech businesses as they work with established business connections to advance market opportunities and secure sales for their innovative products, processes, or technologies. 
Program guidelines and how to apply can be found here.

FoodShift Program– Call for Applications Starting July 27th
FoodShift invites organizations based in Ontario operating in the food and beverage processing sector to lead clean technology adoption projects.
This program provides non-repayable funding for net-zero technology adoption ($1.5 million) to food and beverage processors to subsidize the cost of adopting and integrating new, clean technologies into their operations. Successful program recipients will be selected through an open call for applications and will be awarded up to $50,000 in project-based matching funding. 
For more visit the Bioenterprise website

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters Ontario Skills Development Program

The Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) provides free training for manufacturing employees and affordable peer-to-peer mentoring. CME programs are designed exclusively for the needs of the manufacturing workplace. Find out how to register here 

Free training programs include: 
Find out how to register for these programs on the CME website
  • Lean 101
  • Women in ManufacturingLeadership Development Program
  • Health and Safety Workshops

Community & Business Feature

Downtown Simcoe Friday Night Market

Shopping, entertainment, fine cuisine…Downtown Simcoe has become the Hit Strip in Norfolk County every Friday in until Sept. 2. You won’t want to miss a single Friday this summer.   

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