Windsor Launches New ‘Concierge’ Investment Support Program for Eligible Investors
The City of Windsor has launched a new Investment Support Program [ISP] for eligible investors. By including stakeholders from a number of departments and external organizations, the program helps guide strategic investment projects through all aspects of the city approval process. In doing so, the City is putting on its white gloves and rolling out the red carpet for potential investors. It’s akin to a couple getting married and hiring a wedding coordinator who becomes the couple’s single point of contact for the numerous components of their wedding day.
“We’ve seen a significant improvement in our local economy over the past two years. This program builds on that success and provides a first-class concierge service to investors,” said Mayor Drew Dilkens. “The program provides a single point of contact, establishes a feedback loop for investors, and enhances Windsor’s ability to expand and retain business.”
The objective of the ISP is to work proactively with strategic projects. An investment is categorized as “strategic” based on its economic significance for Windsor. Examples of projects that may be eligible for the ISP may include developments that generate knowledge-based jobs, office orientated/industrial business parks, and major redevelopments of existing vacant properties.
The intent of the program is to navigate potential investors through municipal requirements on a first-come first-served approach. The ISP is intended to be initiated to facilitate the investment of strategic projects that comply with Provincial and municipal standards.
To be eligible for ISP, strategic projects must meet one or more of the following characteristics:
- creates or retains a minimum of 50 jobs within the manufacturing sector or creates more than 20 jobs or retains a minimum of 30 jobs within any other targeted sector(s).
- Is a major tourism investment expected to draw a minimum annual attendance of 100,000 visitors;
- is uniquely complex with multiple priorities and stakeholders; and,
- adds to the diversification of the local economy by developing a targeted sector identified by the City.
The city’s economic development officer, currently Matthew Johnson, is assigned to each strategic investment and works proactively with other departments and external agencies to guide projects through the municipal process. This includes, but is not limited to planning approvals, construction permits, licensing requirements, utilities, technology requirements, tax and free estimations, etc. There will also be participation by the senior levels of government for issues within their area of responsibility.
Joining the Mayor for this launch was Matthew Johnson, Economic Development Officer for the City of Windsor; the City’s Senior Management team made up of the Department Heads; Helga Reidel, CEO of Enwin Utilities; Stephen MacKenzie (CEO) and Rakesh Naidu (COO) from the Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation.
Asked if this type of concierge service for potential investors is being done by other cities in the Province, the Mayor responded, “I’m not sure if it is, but it is certainly being undertaken by many US jurisdictions, a number of whom are in the Great Lakes region – cities and states with whom we are in direct competition for potential investments.”
Interested investors are encouraged to visit the City’s website to learn more.
Feature photo: Back Row is Rakesh Naidu – Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation (Chief Operations Officer). Front Row: Matthew Johnson –The City of Windsor – (Economic Development Officer); Mayor Drew Dilkens; Stephen MacKenzie – Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation (CEO). Photo by Joe McParland – Biz X magazine
To view the Mayor’s full announcement from today, click on the YouTube clip below.
Photo and video by Joe McParland – Biz X magazine