Growth in the province’s small business sector remained strong through the fourth quarter of 2016 as outlined in B.C.’s Small Business Quarterly Report released today.
During the last three months of 2016, new business incorporations increased 10.8% and business bankruptcies declined 27.7%, which is among the lowest recorded in recent years. Additionally, the number of small businesses in B.C. in December 2016, excluding people who were self-employed, was 188,057, up 1.9% from a year earlier.
This latest edition of the Small Business Quarterly examines small businesses in B.C.’s tech sector, noting 9,905 businesses, of which 96% are small businesses, are tech-related according to the latest statistics available from 2015.
The Small Business Quarterly also reports that B.C.’s tech sector employs more people than mining, oil and gas, and forestry combined and accounts for 4.9% of the province’s workforce. High tech, defined by BC Stats as technology at the cutting edge and usually associated with strong economic growth and advanced technological development, created $26.3 billion in revenue and contributed 7% of B.C.’s GDP to the provincial economy in 2015. B.C.’s tech sector is the third largest high tech workforce in Canada behind Ontario and Quebec.
The Small Business Quarterly is a publication created by BC Stats. Each quarterly issue takes an in-depth look at one particular small business area, for example women entrepreneurs were featured in the third quarter edition. The report also gives a general update on the state of the overall sector through that quarter.
The #BCTECH Strategy is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan to support the growth of British Columbia’s vibrant technology sector and strengthen B.C.’s diverse innovation economy. The multi-year strategy includes a $100-million BC Tech Fund and initiatives to increase talent development and market access for tech companies that will drive innovation and productivity throughout the province.
Coralee Oakes, Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction –
“B.C.’s tech sector remains strong and continues to create jobs, build vibrant communities and grow the provincial economy. Budget 2016 supports tech growth by lowering the small business tax rate, increasing the venture tax credit program and investing $40 million in broadband internet service for rural communities to help ensure this sector can continue to thrive.”
Amrik Virk, Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens' Services –
“Small, local businesses and innovative startups make up a huge part of B.C.’s vibrant and diverse technology sector. We want to build on their success so they can scale up, which is why the renewed #BCTECH Strategy will continue to fund programs that help technology companies grow, like the Venture Acceleration Program, and invest in growing the number of tech grads so companies have access to the talented workers they need.”
- B.C.’s high technology sector generated approximately 7% of the province’s GDP in 2015, placing it in the same realm as industries such as manufacturing and health care.
- British Columbia’s high technology sector employment surpassed 100,000 for the first time in 2015, reaching 101,780.
- The average weekly earnings of high tech employees was $1,590 in 2015, compared to $910 for the average worker in B.C.
- Small businesses make up 98% of all business in B.C. and employ over one million people.
- Small businesses provide 55% of all private-sector jobs in British Columbia, the second highest rate in the country.
- B.C. outperforms all other provinces in venture capital investment per capita, with $450 million invested in 2015.
- Wages and salaries in the tech sector hit a new high for the fifth consecutive year, climbing 4.5% to over $8.4 billion.
Small Business Quarterly: http://www.bcstats.gov.bc.ca/Files/c8cc152c-0452-499e-995a-72c9d987e5c1/SmallBusinessQuarterlyQ32016.pdf
Small business on BC Stats: http://www.bcstats.gov.bc.ca/StatisticsBySubject/BusinessIndustry/SmallBusiness.aspx
High tech on BC Stats: http://www.bcstats.gov.bc.ca/StatisticsBySubject/BusinessIndustry/HighTechnology.aspx
Small business in B.C.: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/employment-business/business/small-business
#BCTECH Strategy: www.bctechstrategy.ca