Tina Bromley of Tiny Greens has won the Win This Space entrepreneurial competition organized by the Peterborough Downtown Business Improvement Area (DBIA). The announcement was made last night (February 16) at the finale event at The Venue in downtown Peterborough.
Tiny Greens beat four other finalists to win a free 12-month lease of a downtown storefront along with thousands of dollars in additional prizes.
Working out of her own home for the past two years, Tina Bromley has been growing microgreens — young plants harvested just after the first leaves develop — and offering them as countertop gardens, year round. She has been selling them at the Peterborough and Lakefield Farmers’ Markets. as well as supplying local restaurants and caterers.
The plants are still growing in the soil when you buy them, so you can harvest as needed for a fresh addition to salads, sandwiches, and smoothies (the nutritious plants are also popular as a garnish). In February 2016, kawarthaNOW featured Bromley’s unique business.
As a result of winning the Win This Space competition, Tiny Greens will be creating a microgreenery and healthy hub in downtown Peterborough: an urban farm-to-table environment where people can buy local microgreens, vegetables, herbs as well as other foods from local farmers. Tiny Greens will also include education and workshops as well as sales of supplies and products for growing indoor and vertical gardens.
“We’re excited to announce that Tiny Greens is going to open in downtown Peterborough,” says DBIA Executive Director Terry Guiel. “Tina brings a lot of enthusiasm, determination, and a strong business plan. We look forward to working with her as she gets the keys to her new space on April 1.”
VIDEO: Tiny Greens’ “Win This Space” entry
Bromley was also surprised with a previously unannounced prize: a one-year membership in the Women’s Business Network of Peterborough (WBN). All five Win This Space finalists were local businesswomen.
As well as monthly opportunities to network with 160 other local businesswomen, Bromley’s WBN membership gives her access to professional development opportunities, dynamic keynote speakers, a business profile on the WBN website, monthly newsletter advertising, marketing opportunities including a trade show, and more.
“We believe that a free WBN membership for the winning businesswoman was a perfect complement to this year’s Win this Space community initiative,” says WBN president Mary McGee. “WBN is confident that Tina Bromley will find tremendous value in her membership with our organization.”
The Win This Space competition was announced in October 2016 as an intiative to boost economic development, stimulate new downtown storefront businesses, and create jobs and received entries from 41 entrepreneurs. In January, 11 judges narrowed the field to 10 semi-finalists, who then took three mandatory workshops on business plans, marketing, and financial forecasting. After the semi-finalists delivered their business plans and live presentations on February 13, judges selected five finalists.
The Peterborough DBIA partnered with Peterborough Economic Development, StartUP Peterborough, and Community Futures Peterborough for the Win This Space competition, which has also been sponsored by dozens of local businesses (including kawarthaNOW).