Media Release: University of Windsor EPICentre, WEtech Alliance and Small Business Centre partner up to help Small Businesses Struggling Amid COVID 19 Pandemic
Monday, April 13, 2020
For Immediate Release
Tuesday, April 13th, 2020
In collaboration with WEtech Alliance and the Windsor Essex Small Business Centre, the University of Windsor Entrepreneurship, Practice and Innovation Centre (EPICentre) is proud to announce the launch of the EPIC Nimble Program, funded by FedDev Ontario under the Community Economic Development and Diversification stream program. The EPIC Nimble Program is open to any existing for-profit business in the Windsor-Essex Region currently facing challenges due to the COVID 19 pandemic. The EPIC Nimble program will support businesses looking to adopt technology to either create new revenue streams or to pivot to a new business model in order to achieve sustainability and stay competitive in the fast-changing marketplace.
“With the rapid pace of the COVID 19 pandemic, many small businesses weren’t financially prepared for the economic hit” said Wen Teoh, Director of the EPICentre. “This program aims to assist these businesses not only by providing them with additional funding but also mentorship, expert advice and tech development with our community partners”.
The EPIC Nimble program invites founders of small businesses in operation for a minimum of two years to propose an innovative idea to help their businesses achieve sustainability or to gain competitive advantage in the marketplace by adopting new technology. In turn, successful applicants will receive program benefits valued at over $6,000.
“COVID-19 has been an unexpected catalyst of tech adoption across many sectors including small business. EPIC Nimble Program will not only help support local entrepreneurs but introduce them to the many benefits that come with emerging technologies” said Yvonne Pilon, President and CEO, WEtech Alliance. “We have spent the last decade building strong relationships with the regional, provincial and national tech communities and we hope to leverage these relationships to better position our local companies.”
In addition to access to programs and services through the partners, successful participants of the EPIC Nimble Program will receive up to $4,000 in grant funding that must be used towards the proposed project including tech development, marketing and legal costs.
“Just as Coronavirus has forced disruptions in the way we live and work, businesses are also forced to pivot and look at doing things in different ways; adopting new business models, new technologies and proposing new kinds of solutions in order to stay relevant in today’s competitive business environment. Entrepreneurs play a vital role in driving the Windsor-Essex economy and we are pleased to support this initiative designed to fuel their continued business innovation and growth” said Sabrina DeMarco, Executive Director, Small Business Centre, WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation.
Applications for the program are officially open, interested participants must submit their applications by April 30th to be considered for the EPIC Nimble Program. Successful applicants will be notified by May 11th, 2020 and will have until November 30th, 2020 to complete their proposed project.
“Our goal during this pandemic is to collaborate with community partners, combining our knowledge and the tools we have to help sustain the small businesses that are the backbone of the Windsor-Essex community” said Teoh.
For more information on the EPIC Nimble program, please visit our website: http://www.epicentreuwindsor.ca/epic-nimble-program/