Have you been toying with the idea of starting your own business, but don’t know where to begin? Do you have an existing business you are looking to scale-up, or maybe just have some general business-related questions or concerns?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, your next stop should be Grow Guelph! 

Launched in 2013 as Guelph’s Business Retention and Expansion Program (BRE), Grow Guelph can help you with any business-related challenges you might be facing. 

Grow Guelph is made up of 12 business support and service organizations, including Innovation Guelph, and is continuously developing and improving the programs and services offered to support the retention and growth of local businesses.   

The program makes it easy for you to find the business services you need, connecting you to co-ops, training internships, apprenticeships, marketing and networking opportunities, and available space in the region.   

“The majority of Guelph’s economic growth comes from established businesses operating in our community. Targeting programming that supports these local enterprises helps to maintain and grow a strong resilient community,” Grow Guelph Co-chair, Christine Chapman said. “Coordinating that support through Grow Guelph allows us to be more efficient with the resources being offered and provides better clarity for businesses to find the services they need.”  

One of the ways they accomplish this is through conducting interview surveys within the business community.  

According to Chapman, the new website was a direct outcome of these surveys, as they revealed that local businesses “wanted a centralized location to access business service information available in Guelph, specific to the day-to-day issues that they face,” such as workforce development and funding.  

“The previous Grow Guelph webpage listed the region’s services and support organizations but was not user-friendly. The new website functions in a way that connects businesses right away with the proper local support agencies that are ready to help. 

“The purpose of this new website was to lay out some of the key business service organizations that could help in each stage of business growth,” she said. It even provides a brief description about each organization.”  

Still have unanswered questions?  

You are encouraged to contact Grow Guelph if you have any general business-related questions or concerns.   

“Grow Guelph aims to help Guelph-based businesses with any and all issues. If a Grow Guelph partner can’t directly help with a request, they will seek out a solution and/or connect the business to someone that can help them,” she said. “While Grow Guelph is made up of 12 partner organizations, they do not stop at those organizations – there is a larger resource network that Grow Guelph accesses and we can facilitate that connection.  

“The business landscape is constantly evolving and as it does, so does Grow Guelph. If we can’t help now but we’re noticing trends, we will adjust to ensure all Guelph-based businesses receive the level of support necessary to succeed,” she said.