Happy Small Business Week from BMO

    -   BMO steps up with a minimum $1 billion shot in the arm for
    -   Small business survivors will emerge from the recession stronger than

TORONTO, Oct. 19 /CNW/ - As Small Business Week kicks off across Canada today, BMO Financial Group noted that this year's celebration will take on special meaning for most small businesses as the economic recovery takes hold.

A recent study from BMO Economics found that not only will the great majority of Canada's small businesses survive the recession, but as the recovery continues, many will be stronger than ever.

To support Canada's entrepreneurs as they emerge from the recession, BMO Bank of Montreal is showing it is open for Canadian business by announcing it is making a minimum of $1 billion available to lend to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME) across Canada.

"We're open for Canadian businesses - throughout the business cycle," said Gail Cocker, BMO's Senior Vice-President, Commercial Banking. "Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of our economy. BMO has been there for small business customers consistently - in good times and in challenging times."

"Whether it's for money to invest or a better way to manage their cash flow or to figure out their succession plan, small and medium-sized business owners need a good banker - someone who listens, understands their unique needs and can advise them on the best solutions for their business," said Ms. Cocker. "Come and talk to us today."

As well, BMO Bank of Montreal has launched BMO Business Essentials - three banking solutions specially designed to take the complexity out of banking decisions, by offering clear and customizable choices to three key business segments:

    -   BMO Retail Essentials for new business Start-Ups and small business
        owners in the Sales and Service industries
    -   BMO Professional Essentials for owners of professional firms with
        more demanding cash flow needs and growing transaction processing
    -   BMO e-Smart Essentials for Mid Market business owners who want to
        save on capital and labour expenses by handling transactions online.

The complete report from BMO Economics, Canada's Small Business Juggernaut, can be found at www.bmocm.com/economics.


For further information: For further information: Media Contacts: Peter Scott, Toronto, PeterE.Scott@bmo.com, (416) 867-3996; Ronald Monet, Montreal, ronald.monet@bmo.com, (514) 877-1873; Laurie Grant, Vancouver, laurie.grant@bmo.com, (604) 665-7596; Internet: www.bmo.com

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