Am I better off buying a Franchise or starting a new company?

Dec 01, 2019

Deciding on this depends on your personality type as well as the amount of capital that you have available. If money is no object and you’re looking to begin a business in a market where there is an established franchise, then purchasing a license to open a franchised company can be a very reasonable path. Franchising can help lower risk of failure but also offers lower returns because your margins and costs (including royalties) are all out of your control. If you however don’t have a lot of capital, it may be better to start small and work out all the kinks and problems before resigning from your day job. This will allow you to build more capital while at the same time reducing the risk of failure.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please contact the DUKE Law team.

In partnership with Osgoode Law School we provide free legal information to the DUKE Heights BIA community and beyond. Whether you are a start-up, a small business owner or an entrepreneur, DUKE Law can be your first-hand resource in finding answers and clarifications to the legal aspects of any business query.

Disclaimer: DUKE Law service is available to be accessed only for free legal information and it cannot be substituted for legal advice from a trained legal professional.

DUKE Heights Business Breakfasts

Dec 01, 2019

DUKE Heights BIA is launching a series of FREE business breakfasts and networking events in the new year. Each event will include an information sharing session from business professionals and experts who will share ways in which you are able accelerate the success of your business.

What can you expect?

An interactive business presentation related to business BY Businesspeople + discussion about the topic of the event

Hands-on insights and ideas that you can immediately apply to your business

Networking – Connect with other businesspeople and build long lasting relationships

Freshly served breakfast – Your time is valuable. So, let’s kill two birds with one stone. Join us for breakfast while learning how to boost your business.

If you are interested in attending, please make sure to let us know at, so we can keep you updated.

Can your business benefit from six months of free marketing?



October 01, 2019

If your business is within the Duke Heights BIA, and offers existing products or services directly to consumers, you may be eligible to apply for 6 months of FREE marketing and promotion.
The Duke Heights BIA has partnered with mobile marketing company GetintheLoop to offer 15 businesses the opportunity to reach thousands of new customers in a landmark pilot project aimed at boosting marketing, sales and awareness of some of the great businesses we have in the area.

The GetintheLoop platform allows businesses to create and post their products or services on their fast-growing mobile marketing platform, which will automatically expose your business to over 10 000 active consumers in the region, and over 500 000 through partner networks.

If you are interested in taking advantage of this limited offer to boost your business, Contact the Duke Heights BIA at or complete the application form on our website. Applications will close on 25 October 2019 or as soon as 15 qualifying businesses have been selected.

GetintheLoop form submission


First there was 311, then 211 and now…there’s DUKE ask

duke-askMay 01, 2019

In the four years since DUKE Heights BIA started, we have played a role in helping most of the 2,500 businesses that reside in our community. During that time businesses have asked us questions ranging from ‘how do I find and keep local talent’ to ‘how can I make an effective business logo’. To help answer these questions, we partnered with York University’s Experiential Education branch to get the help of a team (or should I say a village) of students trained to help improve local economic outcomes in the community. The DUKE Heights member businesses, charities, not-for-profits, community collectives and startups can ask a general business question by sending our team an email to-

DUKE Heights is offering this new service free of charge in order to help businesses in the area grow and succeed in our BIA. So, when an Internet search just isn’t enough, DUKE ask is here to make the process of finding the information businesses are looking for as seamless as possible. Go ahead and ask your business question at

Small Business Help: The Small Business Tax Deduction- Does Your Business Qualify?

Small Business Deductions Canada

Small Business Deductions Canada

Running a small business is hard. If you own or manage one in Canada, amidst all the challenges you face everyday, you also know the value of information that would make your business lose or gain, specially during this tax return season. Are you taking advantage of the federal Small Business Deduction (SBD) that you could be writing off against your business income?

For the tax years ending after 2016, the Small Business Deduction (SBD) remains at the 2016 level of 17.5 per cent but under some proposed changes, the SBD will increase to 18 per cent effective January 1, 2018, and to 19 per cent effective January 1, 2019. These changes will result in a reduction in the small business tax rate from 11 per cent to 10 per cent for 2018, as a first step toward lowering it to 9 per cent in 2019. The small business tax rate applies to the first $500,000 of active business income. Consult Chapter 4 of the T4012 – T2 Corporation Income Tax Guide for further details.

To qualify for SBD, a corporation must be classified as a Canadian-controlled private corporation (CCPC) by meeting specific conditions according to Chapter 1 of the T4012 – T2 Corporation Income Tax Guide. The complete Guide is available on the CRA website in HTML and PDF formats.

This intended reduction is expected to provide a small business with up to $7,500 in federal tax savings per year.

Mandatory Employment Standards Poster

To help ensure that employers understand their obligations and that employees know their rights, the Minister of Labour has prepared and published an Employment Standards Poster entitled “Employment Standards in Ontario”. The Ministry has mandated that employers have to post the most recent version (7.0) of the Employment Standards Poster in the workplace where it is likely to come to the attention of employees.

This poster describes important rights and requirements under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) and must be posted in the workplace where it is likely that employees will see it. Employers are also required to give every employee a copy of the poster.

For more details on the poster requirements along with download and printing options, please visit the Ontario Ministry of Labour website.

Source: Ontario Ministry of Labour website

BIA Free Employment Law Seminars

This New Year brought about the first set of changes to Employment Law, courtesy of the “Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act.” This act is taking form in a series of changes over the course of two years and is redefining employment for Ontarians. There are over 70 changes that will take effect over the next two years, which employers will have to familiarize themselves to make sure that they are operating according to the new laws. As a result, DUKE Heights BIA partnered with Seneca College to organize a series of FREE seminars on the new changes to Employment Law for small to medium sized businesses. The first seminar took place in December, followed by two seminars in January with over 60 businesses and participants from our BIA. Free breakfast and parking was provided to all attendees.

If you were unable to participate in our seminars and had questions about the new changes to Employment Standards Act, Labor Relations Act or how the new laws effect your specific industry, you can still access the presentation and additional resources from the link below and contact our office by email or phone (416) 739-1621. Visit us on  and for more photos and information.


If you require more assistance, we can forward your inquiry to Viki Scott, the principal consultant of the Human Resources consulting firm presenting the seminar, Scott & Associates Inc.

Free Wifi @Keele Street and Finch Avenue West

Free Wi-Fi @Keele Street and Finch Avenue West

We are excited to announce that DUKE Heights BIA is now offering free Wi-Fi on the corner of Keele Street and Finch Avenue West!

Making use of our free Wi-Fi is easy. When you are in the Keele Street and Finch Avenue West corner, simply look at your available Wi-Fi networks to find the one named “Duke Heights BIA Guest.” Once you have found the network, provide us with a few simple details and you will be ready to use our free WiFi!
This pilot project will be available for the next 6-months and we are looking to expand the service throughout our BIA in the next two years. We hope to benefit businesses by providing a service on our behalf for customers to enjoy. As one of the second largest BIA’s, with over 34,000 people visiting our area every workday, our free Wi-Fi is a way to keep you connected on the go!

If you have any feedback on the service, email us at

The Mayor’s Economic Update Breakfast

On Tuesday September 13th, more than 250 people were gathered at Teknion Furniture Headquarters to hear Mayor John Tory give his Economic Update. The theme of Mayor Tory’s  update was the importance of the manufacturing industry in the economy of the GTA.
The manufacturing industry in Toronto has been responsible for the creation 1300 new jobs  in the GTA in over the past 5 years.

Thank you to everyone who came out to this event, to Teknion for hosting the event and to Mayor Tory for focusing on the manufacturing industry in DUKE Heights!

Neighborhood Freight Forum

On April 27th 2017, the DUKE Heights BIA partnered with the Pembina Institute to launch the Neighborhood Freight Forum (NFF). The NFF brought together local business representatives and other local stakeholders to improve goods movement in our BIA.

With the support of experts and while engaging with City of Toronto staff, NFF members worked together to identify local goods movement issues and to come up with on-the-ground solutions to address them. With these solutions we hope to reduce costs for businesses and operators and reduce local greenhouse gas emissions all while increasing the attractiveness of the DUKE Heights BIA as a place to work and play.

The NFF will continue over the next 3 years with more meetings to work out and implement solutions to gridlock in the DUKE Heights BIA. If you are interested in participating in the next NFF please contact us at