Wawa’s Goose Nest Market goes digital as a part of DMS Lab program

by Digital Main Street   |   March 29, 2021   |   Share this:  

In partnership with the Wawa BIA and the Economic Development Corporation of Wawa, Digital Main Street is pleased to announce that Wawa small businesses and artisans will soon be able to sell their wares online as part of the Digital Main Street Lab program. Launching April 14th, eatshoplive.ca will act as a digital version of the Goose Nest market, while also serving as a directory and marketplace for Wawa main street businesses and a variety of home based businesses. Within the central Wawa shopping hub, the site will allow businesses to preserve their autonomy by linking directly to their new or existing websites. Funding for the Digital Main Street Lab is made available in part by the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. 

It is no surprise that after two extended lock downs, many businesses have had to broaden their operations to include a robust online presence. Allowing residents to easily support their favorite local business or vendors online, will be instrumental in supplementing recovery efforts. This program is further supported by the Digital Service Squad, who is assisting with individual online store development and Wawa’s collective digital presence 

Our government is determined to help small businesses come through this pandemic stronger than before,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade Ontario. “We are pleased to support the Digital Main Street initiative that is working with partners such as the Wawa BIA and the Economic Development Corporation of Wawa to help small businesses reach new markets and expand their customer base.” 

“Ontario’s small businesses are the heart of our communities, and they play a critical role in sustaining our economy,” said Prabmeet Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction. “Eatshoplive.ca will allow more people to explore the great foods and products that Wawa small businesses and artisans have to offer. Through Digital Main Street, we are helping small businesses succeed by growing their digital footprint. 

The EDC is excited to have the opportunity through the DMS program to pilot this innovative platform that has the power to change the food and retail shopping experience for locals, tourists, and transient travellers in Wawa. The site will serve to make Wawa’s businesses more accessible and visible while creating a direct channel to regional customers and a larger market, through online marketing and product sales,” says Shah Ashraf Mohamed, Economic Development Director at the Economic Development Corporation of Wawa. 

With an initial goal of supporting at least 35 Wawa businesses and artisans, the site is set to launch before March 31, 2021. The Digital Main Street Lab aims to fund pilot projects that help businesses explore new ways to connect with their customers.  

About Digital Main Street 

Digital Main Street (DMS) is a jointly funded provincial and federal initiative designed to assist small businesses in establishing an online presence or maximizing the impact of their existing digital footprint. The program is built around an online learning platform, structured training programs, and our Digital Service Squad, a team of street-level team members who help main street businesses grow and manage their operations through technology.  

Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association on Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, Mastercard, Shopify, Microsoft, Facebook, Intuit QuickBooks, Square, and Yellow Pages. The joint investment from FedDev Ontario and the Government of Ontario brought together the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas, Communitech, Invest Ottawa, and the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association to expand the Digital Main Street Platform in order to support more businesses to go digital as a response to the impacts of COVID-19. 

About the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) 

The Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) is a non-profit umbrella organization working with the 85 Business Improvement Areas within the City of Toronto, who in turn represent more than 90,000 business and property owners 

About the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade   

The Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade supports a strong economy that can provide jobs, opportunities and prosperity for all Ontarians. The ministry offers a range of programs, services and tools to help small and medium-sized businesses innovate and compete in today’s changing global economy by connecting them to new markets and consumers to support economic recovery and growth across the province. 

About Economic Development Corporation of Wawa 

The Economic Development Corporation of Wawa is a catalyst organization focused on creating an ideal local environment for growth, leading to the prosperity of Wawa, now and into our collective future. The EDC is generously funded by the Municipality of Wawa and works collaboratively with the Municipality, local industry partners, community organizations, educational institutions, the Federal and Provincial Government and other key stakeholders to address the most pressing issues through a solution and innovation oriented lens. 

About Wawa BIA 

The Wawa BIA holds monthly meetings to discuss and complete tasks that encourage economic strength and visual appeal along Broadway Avenue and Mission Road. We represent all businesses that participate in the BIA and provide support in beautification, advertising, and marketing. 

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