News Releases

City of Hamilton issuing Temporary Business Licenses for entrepreneurs to test market

HAMILTON, ON - May 11, 2016 - The City of Hamilton today announced a new licensing option for businesses wishing to test the market ‎on a temporary basis before becoming fully licensed.

The City's Licensing Section is piloting a Temporary Business License as a unique tool that allows businesses to participate in the "pop-up" model of setting up a shop short-term, to increase name recognition and assess the viability of their business longer term, with minimal risk.

The concept was presented in an information report to the City’s Open For Business Sub-Committee (PDF, 245 KB) on May 5, 2016.

"The Temporary Business License fits with the City's philosophy of being Open For Business," says Planning and Economic Development General Manager, Jason Thorne‎. "This is another innovative new tool to promote and entice businesses to come to Hamilton. It also encourages entrepreneurs already here to take the leap and start a business.”

With a temporary license, the City’s Licensing Division is introducing streamlined criteria to ensure public health and safety, as well as proper zoning.

“An emerging business-owner will not have to face the lengthier process of getting established with a full business license. They can essentially go to market and test their business concept more quickly,” says Director of Licensing, Ken Leendertse.

"As a nonprofit dedicated to attracting and advancing young professionals in the city, Hamilton HIVE is encouraged by this new program, which will remove barriers for emerging and established young entrepreneurs to establish their own businesses locally,” says Alyssa Lai, Chair, Hamilton HIVE. “In the long run, this approach will further support young professionals and their investments in the city's growing economy."

The proposed Temporary Business License will be granted to businesses to open for a one-month period.

It is the intention of City staff to include this new concept, after it has been sufficiently piloted, as part of the Business Licensing By-law rewrite coming in 2017. Staff will consider recommending it as a permanent program. View more information on upcoming public meetings.

For more information on obtaining a Temporary Business License, contact the City of Hamilton’s Licensing and Permits Office:
Phone: 905-546-2782 and select option 3
Email: licensing@hamilton.ca