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The Digital Main Street Project seeks to help small, main street businesses across Ontario improve their adoption of technologies to better promote themselves online, sell online and even run back-office processes online.

For Hamilton businesses, the City of Hamilton, Hamilton Business Centre – in partnership with the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce – will be assisting eligible businesses within the 13 Business Improvement Areas (BIAs).

Every business that wants to participate in the grant must first take an online assessment of their current technology use. Based on the assessment, the business will then develop a Digital Transformation Plan based on a template that will be provided which will detail their goals and what technologies they need to achieve those goals.

To help put the plan into action, the business can then apply for a one-time grant of $2,500 to help with the costs of adopting the required technology.

The Digital Main Street Transformation Plan application (grant application) deadline is 11:59pm on Tuesday, December 31st, 2019.

Visit digital Main Street

Upcoming Events:

  1. Digital Main Street Application Work Session/Open House
    Monday, December 9th at 1-5pm
    This session provides eligible individuals applying for the Digital Main Street grant the opportunity to work on their grant application (Digital Transformation Plan) with assistance from DMS staff, have their application reviewed on-site, as well as assistance with submitting their application, if the application is complete and additional resources are available.
    *Interested do not need to attend the full four hours.
    Register here:

* Registration is required for all sessions.

All sessions will be held at the Hamilton Business Centre in City Hall (71 Main Street West, 1st floor).

Who is eligible for the Digital Transformation Grant?

A Digital Transformation Grant is open to participants who meet the following requirements:

  • Must be a main street business that:
    • Pays commercial property tax (needs to be commercially assessed) – businesses working from a dedicated co-working space or an office within an existing business that can provide a rental or lease agreement will be considered. Home-based businesses are not eligible.
    • Has 1-99 employees.
    • Is within a BIA or located within a defined central business district or downtown by a municipality’s OP / ZBL.
    • Must be registered and/or incorporated.
    • Must be a for-profit business structure (not-for-profits, charities and franchises are not eligible).
  • Owned by someone 18 years of age or older at the time of application.
  • Owned by someone who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.
  • Owned by an Ontario resident or operating a business in Ontario.
  • Has completed the Digital Transformation Assessment.
  • Has completed the Digital Transformation for Main Street training program.
  • Has developed a Digital Transformation Plan.

For additional eligibility details, click here to review the Digital Transformation Grant FAQs.

If you are interested in learning more about the Digital Main Street project and Digital Transformation Grant, connect with the Hamilton Business Centre or Hamilton Chamber of Commerce to set-up a meeting with their Digital Service Squad!

Each partner has squad members who are digital technology specialists available to deliver one-on-one assistance to small, main street businesses. The squads will provide assessments, consulting and advice to small, main street businesses on how they can adopt digital technologies to help them promote, sell and manage their businesses more effectively.

This service is provided FREE of charge to all participating businesses.

For businesses in the following BIAs, please connect with the Hamilton Business Centre Coodinator at

  1. Ancaster BIA
  2. Barton Village BIA
  3. Concession Street BIA
  4. Downtown Dundas BIA
  5. Locke Street BIA
  6. Waterdown BIA
  7. Stoney Creek BIA

For businesses in the following BIAs, please connect with the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce Coodinator at

  1. Downtown Hamilton BIA
  2. International Village BIA
  3. King Street West BIA
  4. Ottawa Street BIA
  5. Westdale BIA
  6. Main Street Esplanade

Unsure what BIA your business resides in, visit the Business Improvement Areas page to find out now. OR, you are encouraged to connect with the Hamilton Business Centre at for further guidance.

The Digital Main Street Program is funded by the Province of Ontario in partnership with the Ontario BIA Association. For more program details and to apply, please visit

Please Note: 

The role of the Hamilton Business Centre and Hamilton Chamber of Commerce for this program is to promote the program and assist interested businesses to identify resources to aid them with their online presence and/or digital technology use. We do not have any control or say in who is awarded the grant.

  1. OBIAA is responsible for receiving and reviewing all grant applications. There is a dedicated grant administrator that an application is emailed to once completed.
  2. The average timeline for submissions to be reviewed is 4-6 weeks. We are not notified of Hamilton businesses who submit their grant application or are awarded the grant.
  3. If an applicant is approved, they will be directly contacted by OBIAA via email.
  4. If an applicant wants to follow-up regarding their application, they are to follow-up directly to the grant administrator (same email that they sent their original application –

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