BusinessTO News is a weekly newsletter that focuses on available resources and supports to help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on Toronto businesses. Learn about the current health situation, service changes, as well as resources to support reopening and economic support at toronto.ca/covid19.
Small business relief fund extended and new applications for grants now open
The federal government announced that it is contributing $12 million to the Canada United Small Business Relief Fund created by RBC. The fund grants up to $5,000 to local businesses in communities across the country to offset the expenses of reopening safely or adopting digital technologies to move businesses online. With the federal government contribution, the application period for grants has been extended. Learn more about grant eligibility and apply online.
Partnership with Ritual to support local businesses with free delivery
Mayor John Tory announced that more than 1,000 local businesses that have enrolled inOpen For Business—the City of Toronto’s collaboration with Ritual and DoorDash—will receive free delivery from now until November 8. The Ritual ONE app was launched this spring to help local businesses across Toronto increase their commission-free online sales. All flat fee delivery charges will be waived during this two-week period to encourage customers to order directly from local businesses. The program is available to any Toronto business that wants to access commission-free pickup and delivery. Learn more and enroll.
Executive Committee approves new winter patio recommendations to help restaurants
Mayor Tory’s Executive Committee voted unanimously last week to move forward with new recommendations to help restaurants and businesses during the winter months of the COVID-19 pandemic. The recommendations, to be considered by City Council this week, will extend the CaféTO program to allow for the installation of curbside and frontage cafés from November 16, 2020 to April 14, 2021. Businesses are reminded to consult the CaféTO page for guidance on the use of portable heaters and tents/structures.
Government of Ontario to release 2020 provincial budget on November 5
The Ontario government will release its 2020 Budget on Thursday, November 5. Along with measures to protect the health and safety of Ontarians during the COVID-19 pandemic, the budget will focus on providing much-needed supports to families, workers, and employers, and laying the foundation for economic renewal and recovery.
Continued support for Toronto’s restaurants
Destination Toronto’s popular dining website, ToGoToronto.com, is back listing more than 600 Toronto restaurants that are open for safe takeout or delivery. Restaurant operators can register to add their restaurant to the site for free.
Business Community News
SheEO initiative offers funds to women-led companies
The SheEO social entrepreneurship initiative aims to fund as many women-led companies as possible this year. Their support model brings together “Activators” who contribute to a fund that provides loans at zero percent interest to women-led ventures. Get involved as anActivator or apply to become a SheEO Venture. Application deadline is November 2.
Online listing platform helps local businesses promote France-related products and services
A free online listing platform is helping local businesses promote and sell products and services with a connection to France. Launched by members of Toronto’s French Community in partnership with the Consulate General of France in Toronto, the #FranceisON platform allows businesses and community organizations to promote everything from French pastries to online French language classes. Participants can add a special offer that will run from November 14 to December 18.
Updated COVID-prevention guidance for malls and shopping centres
Toronto Public Health last week updated its COVID-prevention guidance for malls and shopping centres, based on new direction from the provincial government. Up-to-date news on the current COVID-19 situation in Toronto as well as business resources and guidelines are available at toronto.ca/COVID19.
Businesses supporting the community
HelloFresh Canada, in coordination with the Toronto Office of Partnerships, donated over $50,000 in meal kits — nearly 5,000 meals — to vulnerable residents in Toronto through 23 community-based programs. The ongoing pandemic has led to a rise in food insecurity, particularly for vulnerable residents. Learn how you can help at DonateTO.
Site Design and Planning for a New Era of Live Events (Free) – Watch On Demand
Guidelines for Mandatory Mask Usage in Enclosed Public Places (Free) – Watch On Demand
Ask an Accountant – Applying for Government COVID-19 Support Programs (Free) – Watch On Demand
Helping SMBs Build Business Resilience with Agility (Free)
Monday, October 26, 2 – 3 p.m. – Register
Safeguarding Your Business from Cyber Threats (Free)
Tuesday, October 27, 4 – 5 p.m. – Register
Learn How to Take Your Business to the Next Level with Digital Main Street’s ShopHERE Powered by Google – Scarborough Business Association Cyber Breakfast
Wednesday, October 28, 9:15 – 10 a.m. – Register
Advocating for Yourself (Free)
Friday, October 30, 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. – Register