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Taking our Dream Business Program to Rural Communities in Eastern Ontario

(Harrowsmith, Renfrew, and Prescott, ON)– Three Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDCs) have teamed up to make a successful business support program available to people in Eastern Ontario, giving aspiring entrepreneurs free access to a new kind of support, guidance, and mentorship they need to start and grow businesses in our communities.

Frontenac Business Services, Grenville CFDC, and Renfrew County CFDC have teamed up to bring the Mashup Lab Virtual Business Incubator to their regions. The Mashup Lab Virtual Business Incubator is a hands-on process that allows aspiring entrepreneurs, as well as existing businesses looking to grow in a new direction, to understand their business model and their next steps to validate the viability of their business idea. Delivered 100% online once a week over 6-weeks, Mashup Lab will work with a group of up to 15 entrepreneurs from Grenville, Frontenac and Renfrew Counties, giving participants access to peer-to-peer support, as well as 1-on-1 coaching from other experienced entrepreneurs that can provide advice and guidance grounded in their personal experience.

“In just the last 36 months, we’ve helped aspiring entrepreneurs start and grow well over 200 businesses in over 180 communities throughout rural Canada & rural America, and that number continues to grow every month,” shares Andrew Button, Founder & CEO of Mashup Lab. “We’ve discovered that there is a deep well of untapped entrepreneurial talent sitting ‘on the sidelines’ in every rural region we’ve launched our Virtual Business Incubator, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to be working with three economic development leaders in this region to make this opportunity available in Eastern Ontario for the first time.”

“This program is a great first step for individuals to make their dream business a reality,” says Cyndy Phillips, Executive Director of Renfrew County CFDC. To those thinking of applying, Katie Nolan, Executive Director of Grenville CFDC, shares: “For people in our region who are ready to explore whether entrepreneurship is the right path for them, this is the perfect place to start.” Anne Prichard, Executive Director of Frontenac Business Services, adds: “We are so excited for this partnership which allows us to offer this opportunity to support creative innovation in our communities.”

The Mashup Lab Virtual Business Incubator is 100% free for participants and takes place during an evening timeslot. Applications for the program are now being accepted through the website https://mashuplab.ca/easternontario/ . Space is limited, so those interested in taking advantage of this opportunity are encouraged apply early.

About Mashup Lab

Mashup Lab (www.mashuplab.ca), based in Wileville, Nova Scotia, is focused on unleashing untapped entrepreneurial potential in rural places. Over the past 36-months, Mashup Lab has put over 370 people through its Virtual Business Incubator, helping entrepreneurs in more than 180 communities throughout rural Canada and rural America launch over 220 active and growing businesses.

About Community Futures Development Corporations

We are community-based, provincially incorporated not-for-profit organizations run by dedicated, experiences staff, and governed by local volunteers. We provide expert guidance to business owners, communities and social enterprises. Along with 60 other Community Futures Development Corporations in rural Ontario, we receive operational funding from the Government of Canada through FedDev Ontario in Southern Ontario and FedNor in Northern Ontario. For the last 30+ years, Community Futures Development Corporations have been supporting jobs, businesses and innovation in their communities, creating opportunities for rural people to live and work in the places they love.

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