Ottawa Restaurateur Amir Rahim Uses Online Loan to Grow Local Bistro

 New York, N.Y., and Toronto, Canada, February 8, 2018 – – OnDeck® (NYSE: ONDK), the leader in online lending to small business, today announced that Grounded Kitchen & Coffeehouse, owned by Amir Rahim, has been selected as the OnDeck Small Business of the Month for February, 2018. The Ottawa-based restaurant is the first small business in Canada to earn the OnDeck spotlight award.

Grounded is a thriving bistro in Ottawa’s Centretown district, with a fully-licensed kitchen and a unique coffee bar.  Owner Amir Rahim was raised in the Ottawa restaurant industry and as a young man, he had dreamed of opening his own place.  In 2010, the dream was set in motion when Amir leased a vacant space at 100 Gloucester Street in Ottawa.  With the help of family and friends, Grounded was built from mainly recycled and refurbished materials – making the décor a perfect fit for the made-from-scratch cuisine of the restaurant.

Amir recalls being nervous those first few days, watching as potential customers stopped by to see what Grounded had to offer.  It didn’t take long however for business to pick up and for the restaurant to evolve.  Since opening, Grounded has undergone multiple expansions and renovations to keep up with growing demand in the rapidly changing restaurant industry.

Although steady growth is every entrepreneur’s dream, growing pains can sometimes have a negative impact on cash flow.  In 2015, Amir saw a significant increase in catering orders and requests for private parties at Grounded.  This posed a crucial challenge, as these requests typically involve not only upfront financial investment, but also wait times for payment.  Amir’s “take everything, never say no” philosophy was becoming difficult to manage when he received a letter from OnDeck in the mail.  Amir went online to learn more and was immediately impressed by how straightforward and easy it was to apply for and receive a loan from OnDeck.

The OnDeck loan helped Amir to quickly cover day-to-day expenses like payroll, taxes and supplier costs, as well as rentals and products needed to execute large catering orders and events.  The extra cash also enabled him to serve an increasing number of customers while managing the day-to-day operations at Grounded.

Today, Grounded Kitchen & Coffeehouse is firmly entrenched as one of Ottawa’s “hotspots” for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Amir’s approach to food includes sourcing local ingredients that emphasize Ottawa’s diverse community. It has proven to be a winning formula as Grounded has grown to more than double its original size, while adding a seasonal street-side terrace for dining. Some eight years after opening, Amir Rahim is living his dream as an innovator and pioneer of Ottawa’s thriving food scene. For more information on Grounded Kitchen & Coffeehouse, visit their website at:

“Amir is a dynamic restaurateur who worked tirelessly to create one of Ottawa’s favorite restaurants. He is exactly the type of passionate entrepreneur that we set out to help when we launched OnDeck’s Canadian operations in 2014,” said Andrea Gellert, Chief Revenue Officer, OnDeck. “Launching and growing a small business requires dedication, hard work and capital.  Amir pulled all those things together to make his dream come true and now, Ottawa residents are the beneficiaries of delectable dining at Grounded.”

Since entering the Canadian online small business lending market in 2014, OnDeck has provided more than CAD$160 million in capital to small businesses in Canada. Overall, OnDeck is the leading online small business lender with more than USD$8 billion in capital provided to more than 80,000 customers in 700 different industries across the United States, Canada and Australia.

The Small Business Spotlight series from OnDeck is designed to reinforce the vital importance of small business owners. Every month, OnDeck spotlights the achievements of its small business customers and how they are thriving as a result of receiving capital from OnDeck. To learn more, visit:


About OnDeck

OnDeck (NYSE: ONDK) is the leader in online small business lending. Since 2007, the company has powered Main Street’s growth through advanced lending technology and a constant dedication to customer service. OnDeck’s proprietary credit scoring system – the OnDeck Score® – leverages advanced analytics, enabling OnDeck to make real-time lending decisions and deliver capital to small businesses in as little as 24 hours. OnDeck offers business owners a complete financing solution, including the online lending industry’s widest range of term loans and lines of credit. To date, the company has deployed over USD$8 billion to more than 80,000 customers in 700 different industries across the United States, Canada and Australia. For more information, please visit

Jim Larkin
P: 203-526-7457

Amar Ahluwalia
OnDeck Canada
P: 416-876-9441


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