Small business forum to showcase digital tools, mentoring

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The City of Toronto’s 16th annual Small Business Forum will illustrate on October 25 how creative ideas and mentoring can help transform small businesses into larger enterprises.

“Small business is the most creative and dynamic sector of our economy,” said Councillor Michael Thompson (Ward 37 Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic Development Committee. “The mentoring and networking ideas highlighted by this forum offer small businesses the vital tools they need to increase their chances for success.”

The all-day forum will feature keynote presentations by Canadian entrepreneurs Diana Goodwin, Jeremy Potvin and Devon Brooks, along with a mentoring panel and 12 breakout sessions.

Diana Goodwin

• Diana Goodwin is founder and CEO of AquaMobile, an on-demand at-home and condo swim school with 1,500 instructors across Canada and in 25 states across the United States.

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• Jeremy Potvin is the founder of World of Angus, a media and lifestyle e-commerce brand in the pet market. Potvin also mentors with the Founders Institute.

• Devon Brooks of Vancouver is the co-founder of Blo Blow Dry Bar. Blo is the world’s first and largest franchise chain of blow-dry bars (hair salons specializing in “blowouts”), with more than 70 locations in the U.S., Canada and the Philippines. Brooks, who serves on Futurpreneur Canada’s board of directors, will also be part of the forum’s panel discussing the importance of mentors for start-ups.

Digital Main Street

The forum will also feature a panel discussion on the Digital Main Street business support platform and will have multiple breakout sessions on effective digital tools and strategies. More than 80 exhibitors will showcase their services for small businesses.

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The annual forum, which is attended by more than 2,500 people each year, gives attendees from existing and new businesses alike the opportunity to network and learn from business community peers, including successful entrepreneurs, investors, lending institutions, sector experts and government program providers.

The forum will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre’s South Building, Level 800 (exhibit halls F and G). Admission to the forum is free but advance registration is required. For information and to register, visit Interested participants can also follow @enterpriseTO and #SBFTO.

The Small Business Forum is produced by the City of Toronto through Enterprise Toronto. Throughout the year Enterprise Toronto provides services tailored to meet the needs of Toronto’s entrepreneurs and small businesses, helping them to achieve their full potential so they grow to create jobs and contribute to Toronto’s prosperity. Enterprise Toronto is a service provided by the City’s Economic Development and Culture division.

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The commitment to building a strong community for small businesses in Toronto is supported by valued sponsors and partners including TD Bank Group, Yellow Pages, Microsoft, Vistaprint and TruShield Insurance. – CINEWS

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