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When you buy local, your money stays within city limits. And during times of economic change, for businesses small-to-large, this is a welcome message.

In November 2019, the City of Calgary launched the #BuylocalYYC campaign, encouraging shoppers to choose local vendors for all their needs, as well as local businesses to purchase goods and services from one another. The campaign coincided with Small Business Week, Tourism Calgary’s #LoveYYC Day and the start of the busy holiday shopping season – a time local businesses often count on for a boost.

“Buy local – it sounds simple. But the truth is, it makes a real difference to Calgary’s businesses, resulting in an even more vibrant city,” says Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi.  “This matters in retail, it matters in food, drink, and entertainment, but it also matters in a business-to-business setting. If a business can find the inventory and supplies it needs from within our city, that ‘buy local’ effect can lift up even more job creators right here, which benefits all Calgarians.”

Things got off to a great start, with more than 3,600 posts encouraging #BuylocalYYC, and more than one million views of the message on social media in just the first month of the campaign.

#BuylocalYYC ad#BuylocalYYC ad#BuylocalYYC ad

#BuylocalYYC is part of a broader strategy, Calgary’s Comeback, aimed at promoting the benefits of Calgary for investment, expansion, and job growth. Along with the campaign, the City is working on a number of initiatives, including recent changes to make the business licensing process easier and more affordable for businesses, as well as the creation of the Living Labs program to allow companies and researchers to test ideas and products on City of Calgary property. 

Calgary's small businesses account for 95 per cent of all businesses in the city, and act as a driving force within Calgary's business community. In 2018, there were 171,758 businesses in Calgary.

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