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Southwestern Ontario Black Business Network launch

August 16, 2022—Hamilton, ON

Black entrepreneurs are a vital contributor to Canada’s economy and our nation’s rich culture, though they are often faced with barriers to success. The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of these contributions and is proud to support projects that provide Black entrepreneurs with support and contribute to building a strong, inclusive and equitable future for all Canadians.

Today, the Honourable Helena Jaczek, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), announced a non-repayable investment of over $1.9 million for Empowerment Squared. Empowerment Squared is a not-for-profit organization that empowers newcomer, racialized and marginalized communities in Canada through mentorship, access to post-secondary education, professional skills development, entrepreneurship, sports and recreation in the greater Hamilton and Windsor areas.

With this investment, through the Black Entrepreneurship Program (BEP) Ecosystem Fund, Empowerment Squared will create the Southwestern Ontario Black Business Network. This consortium of partners will provide Black entrepreneurs in the Hamilton and Windsor areas with advisory services, mentorship, entrepreneurial training and networking opportunities to help them succeed.

Today’s investment will support the creation of 80 new jobs and 275 Black entrepreneurs and reinforces the Government of Canada’s commitment to removing barriers to success and celebrating the positive economic impacts of Black entrepreneurs in Canada

WETechAlliance is one of seventeen Regional Innovation Centres, funded by the Province of Ontario, serving the Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent regions. We provide entrepreneurs with business services, training, perks, mentorship and strategic connections to help bring new ideas to market, scale to the next level and build a dynamic culture and a community of innovation. WETechAlliance has served as the catalyst for technology and innovation in the Windsor-Essex + Chatham-Kent regions since 2011.

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