Ontario’s Business Retention + Expansion (BR+E) program received international recognition as an award winner for an innovative, effective and exemplary BR+E Program at the most recent Business Retention + Expansion International Conference (BREI), held in San Antonio, Texas on May 25th, 2016. This award recognizes Ontario’s achievements on a global scale. The provincial program was also a runner-up in the BR+E Project/Program Impact award category.
BREI is the leading professional association for BR+E, a fundamental strategy for economic sustainability and growth. They represent professionals in the economic development field from across the globe who educate, train, and promote best practices for increasing economic activity and growth in both urban and rural areas.
In 1998, the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs introduced the BR+E program (survey, database, manual, promotion and training resources) for use by rural communities. Since then, more than 230 BR+E projects that surveyed over 8,000 businesses have taken place across Ontario.
Ontario’s BR+E program is a structured action-oriented and community-based approach to business and economic development. The program includes a main retention survey that has been designed with questions that are applicable to all businesses. The program has gone through several revisions, changes and reviews over its existence to create efficiencies and to ensure that best practices are being implemented into the process.
The program is one of a suite of Economic Development programs delivered by OMAFRA’s Regional Economic Development Branch. For more information on Ontario’s BR+E program, please contact your local advisor here.