Google Canada Surprises Small Business Vendors at the Distillery Winter Village with $10,000 each

Google employee making a presentation in The Distillery District

Google Canada

Release Date

Wednesday, November 16, 2022


Today, Google Canada surprised 22 Canadian small businesses participating in the Distillery Winter Village with a gift of $10,000 each, towards their booth rental fees and other costs during the busy holiday market. The unsuspecting entrepreneurs received the exciting news just in time for the opening day of the Distillery Winter Village which starts on November 17, 2022.

"Small businesses mean so much to all of us here in Canada - not only are they the economic engine of the country, but oftentimes they are the heart and soul of their communities," said Natasha Walji, Managing Director, Google. "It's no secret that the past few years have been tough for everyone, especially small businesses, so we hope that this takes a little bit of stress off the businesses during the busy holiday season."

Known as one of the country's most magical holiday shopping and dining experiences, the Distillery Winter Village provides an opportunity for Canadian small businesses to sell gifts, food and drinks to festival goers. This year, the market is open from November 17, 2022 to December 31, 2022.

"The Distillery Winter Market is a must-attend holiday staple because of the picturesque setting and our amazing vendors who offer top quality products," said Rik Ocvirk, Vice President, Distillery Events. "As someone who works directly with a number of small businesses, I can tell you that every small business has a story and $10,000 at this time of year means so much to each and every one of them. We at the Distillery provide the magical atmosphere to our shoppers, but this year Google really stepped it up and brought the magical feelings to our vendors as well." 

"This support from Google will provide small business vendors at the market with a little bit of relief as they enter one of their busiest moments of the year," says John Kiru, Executive Director, Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA). "This support will allow small businesses to focus on what matters the most – selling their products to the over a million people that attend the Distillery Winter Village each year."

Google Canada launched "A Little Help from Google" at the Distillery Winter Village as part of its larger nationwide initiative to help small businesses reach holiday shoppers. Other programs this holiday season include:

  • Google's Holiday Hub, which features free tools, resources, and recommendations for small businesses to capture holiday demand. On the hub, businesses will find out how to stand out on Google Search and Maps with a free Business Profile, how to show their live store inventory with Pointy, and how to promote products across Google with free product listings. The holiday hub is available in English and French.
  • Digital Main Street's ShopHERE powered by Google program, which helps small businesses set up an e-commerce website for free, and provides consultation to small businesses looking to digitize their offerings to sell online. To date, over 40,000 Canadian businesses have signed up for the program.

To purchase Distillery Winter Village tickets, learn about event hours and find more information, visit

Be sure to follow our journey! @GoogleCanada, #ALittleHelpFromGoogle, @distilleryTO, #DistilleryWinterVillage

About Google Canada
Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful. As a global technology leader, Google's innovations in web search and advertising have made its website a top internet property and its brand one of the most recognized in the world. Google Canada has offices in Waterloo, Toronto, Montreal, and Ottawa with employees working on teams across Engineering, AI Research, Sales and Marketing.

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