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Meridian and Niagara College Support Local Entrepreneurs

2017-01-04 7:30:00 AM
January 04, 2017 (Niagara, Ontario) – Niagara’s entrepreneurs will have their chance to pitch their business ideas to win money and prizes that will help get their enterprise off the ground in a series of Niagara’s own pitch competitions.

This year, Meridian, Ontario’s largest credit union, has partnered with Niagara College and the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC) to support these local entrepreneurs.

Competitors have a chance to win a $10,000 cash prize from Meridian Credit Union, and a basket of business services worth more than $30,000 to get their initiative started.

Previous winners included Techboomers, a website that helps older adults get to grips with technology and social media, and Dustguards, a local firm specializing in dust control solutions for construction and renovation.

“Coming back home to Niagara and creating TechBoomers has made our recent string of successes even more rewarding to me,” said Steve Black, Founder & CEO of TechBoomers. “I wanted to show others that tech start-ups can flourish here just as easily as they would in Toronto or Waterloo, and that Niagara College have provided us with a great local pool of talented grads which we’re now able to hire from.”

The Meridian Ignite! series, includes Niagara College’s Pitch Perfect competition, the Startup Weekend event and the GNCC’s Ignite pitch competition.

Quotes:
 “We’re proud to support innovation and entrepreneurship close to home in Niagara. This pitch competition series is the perfect fit with Meridian’s programs of support for small businesses. Meridian is proud to partner with the GNCC and Niagara College to grow the next generation of entrepreneurs across Niagara.”
-- Wade Stayzer, VP, Sales and Service, Meridian Credit Union

“Niagara College not only trains the entrepreneurs of the future, but supports them as they develop their ideas into enterprises. This series is a great showcase for the new ideas and fresh approaches we’ve always encouraged and nurtured.”
-- Vivian Kinnaird, Dean of Business, Hospitality and Environment, Niagara College

“These events will bring forward the best local innovators and entrepreneurs. I’m always amazed by the ideas that are pitched at these events and I look forward to the 2017 competition. We’re enormously grateful to our partners at Meridian and Niagara College for their work supporting local innovation and entrepreneurship. That sort of support is what makes Niagara’s such a great business community.”
-- Mishka Balsom, President & CEO, Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce
 
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With over 70 years of banking history, Meridian is Ontario’s largest credit union, helping to grow the lives of its more than a quarter of a million Members, including over 23,000 business Members. Meridian has $14 billion in assets under management and delivers a full range of financial services online, by phone, by mobile and through a network of 86 branches across Ontario, and commercial banking services in 11 locations. Meridian Members also have access to THE EXCHANGE®Network, with more than 3,300 no-fee ABM’s across Canada and 500,000 ABM’s in the United States. For more information, please visit: meridiancu.ca.
 
Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma, bachelor degree and advance level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Continuing Education courses. Area of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, business, applied health and community safety, all supported by unique learning enterprises and community partnerships. Visit: www.niagaracollege.ca
 
The Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce is the champion for the Niagara business community. With almost 1,600 members representing 50,000 employees, it is the largest business organization in Niagara and the third largest Chamber in Ontario. The Chamber Accreditation Council of Canada has recognized the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce with its highest level of distinction. For more information, please visit: gncc.ca