Key Canadian Small Business Statistics and Facts Every Entrepreneur Should Know
Did you know that small businesses account for nearly half of all private sector jobs in Canada? In fact, in 2021, small employer businesses made up 98.1% of all businesses in this country, employing 10.3 million people. That's a lot of entrepreneurs!
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some key small business statistics in Canada. We'll break them down by demographics, age group, and industry. So whether you're thinking about starting your own business or you're just curious about the state of Canadian small businesses, read on!
Canadian Small Business Stats for 2023 - Editor’s Choice
- In December 2017, more than half of all Canadian small employer businesses were based in Quebec and Ontario.
- In 2018, 1,079,000 women in Canada were self-employed.
- In 2016, immigrants made up 33% of all business owners in Canada who had paid staff.
- In 2018, female company owners in Canada made 58% less than their male counterparts.
- In 2021, medium-sized businesses employed 3.4 million individuals in Canada.
General Small Business Statistics and Facts
When speaking of small businesses, we’re referring to companies with fewer than 100 employees. In Canada, small businesses make up the great majority of all employer firms.
Here are some general statistics about small businesses in Canada:
In 2021, medium-sized businesses employed 3.4 million individuals in Canada.
According to data collected by StatCan, in 2021, 3.4 million Canadians were employed by medium-sized businesses. That made up 21.1% of the total labour force. At the same time, large businesses employed 2.4 million individuals, or 15.1% of the workforce.
This survey on large, medium-sized, and small businesses in Canada was conducted from the beginning of January to early February 2022.
98.2% of all Canadian businesses had fewer than 100 employees in 2013.
The vast majority of businesses in Canada are considered small. In 2013, 98.2% of all Canadian businesses had fewer than 100 skilled employees. This number has likely stayed relatively steady over the past few years.
Interestingly, while large businesses make up a smaller percentage of total businesses in Canada, they account for a significant portion of employment. In 2013, large businesses (those with 500 or more skilled employees) made up only 0.1% of all Canadian businesses but employed 15.1% of Canadians.
So, while small businesses are the backbone of the Canadian economy, it's worth noting that large businesses also play an important role.
7.7 million people in Canada were employed by small enterprises as of 2020.
According to small business statistics and facts in Canada, in 2020, small enterprises employed over two-thirds of the total private labour force in Canada. In total, 67.7% of people in all private sector employment in Canada were employed by small enterprises. This includes both self-employed people and those working for small businesses.
On the other hand, 2.3 million individuals worked for medium-sized enterprises, while large enterprises employed 1.3 million individuals. So, even though large enterprises make up a tiny portion of all businesses in Canada, they still employ a significant number of people.
Small to medium-sized firms produced 1.2 million new jobs from 2003 to 2017.
Based on Canadian small business stats, from 2003 to 2017, small and medium-sized firms were responsible for creating the vast majority of new jobs. In total, these firms produced 85.3% of all new jobs in the private sector during this period.
And as of December 2019, there were 1.22 million small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Canada. This shows that SMEs are a major force in the economy and continue to create jobs and drive economic growth.
In December 2017, more than half of all Canadian small employer businesses were based in Quebec and Ontario.
As of December 2017, the majority of Canadian small employer businesses were located in Quebec and Ontario. That’s not surprising, considering the fact that these provinces are among the best places to live in Canada thanks to their low crime and unemployment rates.
As per small business stats in Canada, these two Canadian provinces accounted for over half of all small employer businesses in Canada.
The next most common locations for small employer businesses were British Columbia, with 179,517 small businesses, and Nova Scotia, with 28,874 small businesses. However, if we're talking about the total number of businesses compared to the population, Alberta and Prince Edward Island had the highest ratio.
In 2018, small firms were responsible for 37.5% of the private sector's contribution to Canada’s GDP.
Based on data from 2018, small firms were responsible for a significant portion of the private sector's contribution to Canada’s GDP. To be precise, these firms accounted for 37.5% of the private sector's contribution to Canada’s gross domestic product.
In contrast, medium-sized businesses accounted for only 14.4%, while large businesses contributed 48.0% of the private sector's GDP. These numbers show that, while large businesses may get most of the attention, small business owners in Canada still make a significant contribution to economic development.
42% of small businesses in Canada were owned by baby boomers in 2019.
In 2019, baby boomers were the most likely of all age groups to own a business in Canada. More specifically, 42% of small businesses were owned by this demographic.
On the other hand, millennials owned 24% of all small businesses in Canada. This shows that, even though baby boomers are still the dominant group, millennials are quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with in the world of small business ownership.
In 2020, 43% of all Canada's exports of goods came from SMEs.
In 2020, Canadian small businesses accounted for a significant portion of Canada's exports of goods. To be precise, 43% of all exports of goods came from small businesses. This is especially impressive considering that the total value of goods exported from Canada in 2020 was $471.9 billion.
Manufacturing accounted for 58.7% of all exports. This was followed by wholesale trade, which accounted for 12.6%, and the management of companies and enterprises at 12%.
In 2020, small businesses with fewer than 50 employees made up 37% of businesses in British Columbia.
(Government of British Columbia)
In BC in 2020, small businesses employing fewer than 50 employees made up 37% of all businesses, while self-employed operators without paid help made up 61% of businesses. Finally, companies with 50 or more employees made up only 2% of all businesses.
In terms of industry, the top industries for small businesses in BC were professional and business services with 23.2%; construction with 12.9%; and health and social services with 9.9%.
In 2018, female company owners in Canada made 58% less than their male counterparts on average.
Female company owners in Canada make 58% less than their male counterparts. Based on research conducted by PayPal Canada and Barraza & Associates from January 26 to February 27, 2018, female company owners in Canada make, on average, 58% less than their male counterparts.
The study also shows that, on average, women-owned businesses earn $68,000 less per year than businesses owned by men.
This is mainly because women are more likely to start businesses in sectors that are traditionally undervalued, such as childcare and home-based businesses. Additionally, women are more likely to take on part-time or freelance work to accommodate child-rearing responsibilities.
In 2018, 1,079,000 women in Canada were self-employed.
In 2018, there were 1,079,000 self-employed women in Canada. They accounted for 37% of all self-employed workers in the country.
Additionally, more than 50% (635,000) of those women ran sole proprietorships with no workers, while only 39% of self-employed men were in the same situation. Overall, the number of self-employed people in Canada has been on the rise in recent years. This is likely due to the increasing popularity of entrepreneurship and the gig economy.
98% of all businesses in British Columbia in 2010 were small businesses.
In 2010, small businesses made up 98% of all businesses in BC. To be exact, 391,700 small businesses were operating in this province, employing over a million workers.
More than half of these small businesses were run by self-employed individuals with no employees.
During 2020, around 31% of Canadian enterprises saw a decline in sales of 30% or more.
The pandemic has been tough on businesses all over the world, and the Canadian small business industry is no exception. According to a recent study by Statista, around 31% of Canadian enterprises saw a decline in sales of 30% or more during 2020. Small businesses suffered the most, but that didn't last too long, as the Canadian government implemented a series of measures to support them.
Around 54% of businesses included in this survey confirmed that they were approved for or have already received the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA). This government program provides interest-free loans of up to $60,000 for small businesses and not-for-profits.
In 2016, immigrants made up 33% of all business owners in Canada who had paid staff.
In 2016, immigrants made up 33% of all business owners in Canada who had paid staff.
This shows that they had and still have a significant impact on and involvement in the economy.
According to those business stats for Canada, there were over 600,000 self-employed immigrants across Canada at the time, and more than 260,000 of them had paid employees.
There are many programs and initiatives in place to help immigrants start and grow their businesses in Canada. For example, the Start-up Visa Program offers various benefits to those who want to start a business in this country but don't know how to get going.
Immigrants made up 56% of all business owners in truck transportation in 2016.
Truck transportation is the industry in which immigrants had the biggest impact in 2016, as they made up 56% of all business owners. They also had a significant presence in the grocery store industry (53%), computer systems design and services (51%), and the restaurant industry (50%).
Overall, these statistics offer further proof of the significant contribution immigrants make to the Canadian economy, especially when it comes to small businesses.
Women owned and operated 13.5% of all sole small businesses in 2013.
Small business statistics on female entrepreneurship from 2013 show that female business owners represented 13.5% of all sole proprietorships in Canada. On the contrary, men owned and operated 53.8 of all sole proprietorships.
When it comes to medium-sized businesses, this gap was even bigger, as only 4% of them were owned and operated by women in 2013, whereas 66% were owned and operated by men.
By the end of 2020, there were approximately 741,000 people working for businesses with one to four employees.
The number of people employed by small businesses in Canada is constantly increasing. In fact, by the end of 2020, there were approximately 741,000 people working for businesses with one to four employees. In this period, the number of people employed by businesses with five to nine employees was 236,000.
Small businesses remain a vital part of the Canadian economy; they provide jobs for millions of Canadians and contribute to the country's overall economic growth. Statistics show that microenterprises are growing at a faster rate than large companies, and they are more likely to innovate and succeed in today's competitive marketplace.
There are many challenges that small businesses face, but with the proper support, they can overcome these challenges and thrive. The Canadian government offers several programs and services to support Canadian small business jobs.
If you're thinking about starting a small business, be sure to do your research and take advantage of all the resources that are available to you.
What qualifies as a small business in Canada?
By definition, a small business is an enterprise with fewer than 100 employees. Businesses with 100 to 499 paid employees are considered medium-sized businesses, and those with 500 or more are large enterprises.
What are the most common types of businesses in Canada?
The most common type of business in Canada are sole proprietorships. Many small businesses start as sole proprietorships and eventually incorporate as their business grows. Sole proprietorships are the most flexible of all business structures and are relatively easy and inexpensive to set up.
How much money do I need to start a business in Canada?
The amount of money you need to start a business in Canada will depend on the type of business you want to start, as well as its size and scope. However, in general, you’ll need between $5,000 and $10,000 to cover the costs of setting up a small business.
What are the four typical sources of capital small businesses typically use?
According to Forbes, there are four typical sources of capital for small businesses: revenue, grants, debt, and equity.
If you look at the small business statistics for Canada, you will see that revenue is the most common source of capital for small businesses, as it is the money that the business generates from its operations. Also, there are many government grants available for small businesses in Canada. These can be used to help with start-up costs or to finance specific projects.
Debt is another common source of capital for small businesses. This can be in the form of loans from banks or other financial institutions, or lines of credit, and it must be repaid with interest.
Finally, equity is when small business owners invest their own money into their business. This can be in the form of personal savings or can come from selling assets.
Albert Einstein is said to have identified compound interest as mankind’s greatest invention. That story’s probably apocryphal, but it conveys a deep truth about the power of fiscal policy to change the world along with our daily lives. Civilization became possible only when Sumerians of the Bronze Age invented money. Today, economic issues influence every aspect of daily life. My job at Fortunly is an opportunity to analyze government policies and banking practices, sharing the results of my research in articles that can help you make better, smarter decisions for yourself and your family.
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