Canadians are also being called upon to nominate Local Legends in their communities
RICHMOND HILL, ON, Nov. 4, 2021 /CNW/ - Today, Mazda Canada Inc. announced its commitment to support the rebuilding of small businesses across Canada that have been significantly affected by the COVID-19 lockdowns. Together with their Retail partners and Scotiabank, Mazda will provide support to make Canadian small businesses top of mind for the holiday season, including up to $1 million* in financial grants from Mazda to help them and their employees get back on their feet.
Among the hardest hit by the pandemic, thousands of small businesses have struggled to stay open, with many closing their doors permanently. A recent Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) report says the burden for small businesses continues to mount, estimating the average business owes close to $177,000 due to pandemic related causes.1 With a deep history of helping communities – dating back to Mazda's heritage and their role in the rebuild of Hiroshima – Mazda saw an opportunity to help support businesses and restore community spirit across Canada.
Capitol Theatre Announced as a Local Legend Recipient
To kick off the program, Mazda is selecting three beloved community Legends to help revive this fall. The first small business to receive support from Mazda is Port Hope's iconic Capitol Theatre, a mainstay in Northumberland County for more than 90 years. Surviving a multitude of setbacks during its lifespan, COVID-19 became another obstacle, with the theatre having to close its doors for months, losing revenue and threatening the livelihood of many performance groups and employees. Mazda's financial support will play a crucial role in assisting the theatre's re-emergence this season.
"The Capitol plays a central role in the cultural, artistic and economic life of our community. The pandemic has threatened the viability of the arts and cultural sector as well as the financial stability of the artists and tradespeople that serve as the foundation of what we do. Recovery is still a long way away for us all," said Erin Peirce, Managing Director of the Capitol Theatre, "but these funds are essential to the survival of our institution and the community it serves, the artistic experiences we share and the memories we create."
The two other recipients will be revealed by December.
Canadians Can Nominate their Own Local Legends
Mazda Canada is also calling on Canadians to nominate small businesses that are Local Legends in their own communities that they want to see supported. Whether it's a favourite restaurant, bookstore, gallery or gym, Canadians can submit their nominations by heading to https://bit.ly/3wpzPrz, and Mazda will select up to three additional businesses across the country to support. Nominations will be open until November 18, 2021.
A History of Building Back
Mazda's resilient spirit is rooted in the heritage of Hiroshima, their founding home in Japan. Following the bombing in 1945, Toyo Kogyo – as Mazda was then called – immediately began distributing medical supplies, setting up consultation centres around the city to help families reunite, and even went so far as to house the local government and national broadcasters at its manufacturing plant. The courage and grit shown by the Hiroshima people, which underpinned the successful rebuilding of their city, continues to inspire Mazda's actions here in Canada.
"Mazda strongly believes that organizations have a responsibility to give back to the communities in which it does business, something that's been engrained in our brand history for the past century. Not only do we consider this initiative a responsibility, but it is a privilege to support the small businesses that make up the pillars of our communities. We have a deep appreciation for all the hardships businesses have weathered during recent times, and this is our commitment to helping them rebuild, in whatever small way we can," said David Klan, President and CEO of Mazda Canada.
Why Support Local – Fast Facts from 2021 Scotiabank's Small Business Trend Report
- Small and medium-sized enterprises account for 90% of the private sector employment and more than 99% of Canadian business establishments.
- Since April 2020, 75% of net job gains have occurred at firms with fewer than 100 employees.
- 1 in 4 SMEs are led by newcomers to Canada
- 12% of companies with 20–99 employees plan to make investments in renewable energy or implement energy efficiency measures
To learn more about the Local Legends campaign and how you can support your favourite small business, visit http://mazda.ca/en/mazdalocallegends/.
*Exact dollar amount dependant upon Mazda Canada dealership participation; total contribution will be up to $1 million.
SOURCE Mazda Canada Inc.