Volume 94, Issue 78

Friday, February 9, 2001


NEWS

Candidates on the defensive at forum

Global students focus at King's

Concordia SU wants paper brass out

New low-cost banking program touted as entrepreneru-friendly

Enviro-team says we're in for trouble

The Tribal Council does some forecasting

Financialese not making language richer

His Royal Mintiness

New low-cost banking program touted as entrepreneru-friendly

By Hisham Safieddine
Gazette Staff

The London small business community has a new partner which could potentially change the way small and home businesses conduct e-commerce and e-banking in the future.

The Bizsmart program has opened its doors to the London community, said chief executive officer Robert Paterson, who added he was optimistic this service will create opportunities for London entrepreneurs.

"Our mission is to give [entrepreneurs] a chance to expand their business at minimum cost and get the best-value services they need to run it," he said.

Bizsmart offers its members a variety of banking services and confirmed guaranteed low prices and discounts on products purchased from designated stores across Canada, he added.

The Western graduate also pointed out the benefits students can enjoy as members. "Bizsmart can help students starting a small business set up business accounts with no required initial deposits," he said.

"They can also save money on new equipment and use our free knowledge centre service to search for all sorts of information relevant to managing a small business."

Paterson said he encouraged students to take advantage of their academic environment to discuss exciting ideas they have with fellow students and faculty members.

Patty Hall, an account manager for small businesses at The Royal Bank of Canada, said she found the idea of a no-fee banking service quite appealing. "Offering a no-fee banking service will contribute to the growth of the small business sector. If it proves to be viable, I believe it will not be long before other banks and financial institutions follow suit," she said.

Ken Hardy, a professor at The Richard Ivey School of Business, said he agreed the idea of a no-fee banking service seemed attractive.

"Fixed fees are a major irritant to small businesses and eliminating them is an offer entrepreneurs can hardly refuse," he said. "Prospective clients should be cautious, however, of any clauses included in the sign-up package which might not work to their advantage."


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