Tiffin, Ohio — The Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership (TSEP) announced this week that it is launching its new Seneca Fortune 500 initiative, with the intention of doubling its business outreach to connect with an unprecedented 500 businesses or more in Tiffin and rural Seneca County in 2021. Calls will begin by the end of this month.
There are about 1400 business establishments located in Tiffin and rural Seneca County, and TSEP typically interacts with about 250 businesses every year.
The goal of the Seneca Fortune 500 initiative is to connect with more businesses, see how they are doing, and then quickly assess if those businesses can take advantage of any of the available local, state or federal economic development programs that could support their growth. If any potential resources are identified, a TSEP team member will either assist them in accessing the resource directly or connect them to a resource partner.
Resources include various financing, grants, and tax break programs. They include free organizations, services, and initiatives that provide technical assistance in small business growth, workforce development, operational improvement, and sales and marketing.
Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz said he is excited about the announcement, “We know that existing businesses drive the local economy. Although we are an economic development leader in our region and in the country, I’m thrilled to see we plan on taking our outreach to new heights.”
Seneca County Commission President Mike Kerschner echoed the sentiment, saying, “We love that this new initiative will touch more small rural Seneca County businesses than ever before. Every business matters, and we want no business left behind.”
Through of a $33,000 Business Outreach Grant obtained by Seneca County Job & Family Services at the end of last year, TSEP will be able to bring on Chris Frakas and Nick Curtl as temporary additional outreach specialists to assist in the ambitious effort. Frakas, a northwest Ohio native, and Curl have been doing business development and relationship marketing with COACT Associates in Toledo and will lend their expertise and experience to help talk with local businesses, acting as an extension of the TSEP team.
In Downtown Tiffin, Director of Downtown Revitalization Amy Reinhart and the Main Street Business Enhancement Committee, chaired by local realtor Bill Jones, will again be reaching out to more than 100 downtown businesses. Other TSEP staff will be reaching directly to businesses they know and work with, and strategic partners such as the Seneca Regional Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Services will also play a key role the effort.
Chamber Executive Director Bryce Riggs strongly supports the initiative, “Resources is one of the Chamber’s four key areas of activity, and we want to bring as many resources as we can to help support the growth of our members. The Seneca Fortune 500 a great example of innovation and partnership.”
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