To be consistent with Statistics Canada, SME’s are defined as having less than 500 employees and with annual revenues of less than $50 million. According to the estimated population in the survey completed by SME Financing Data Initiative, Survey on Financing of Small and Medium Enterprises, 2007, small businesses (those fewer than 100 employees) represented the vast majority (99.5%) of SMEs in Canada in 2007. Ontario represents approximately 37% of all SME’s in Canada or 592,000 SMEs in 2007.
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Demographic trends are summarized as:
- On average, 17 per cent of all Canadian entrepreneurs indicate “obtain financing” as an obstacle to growth
- In 2007, 13 per cent of SMEs applied for new or additional financing from a lending institution for business reasons and 87 per cent of applications were approved.
- Nearly 85 per cent of SMEs operated in the service sector, with the remainder being goods-producing businesses
- Women are entering the business world in ever-greater numbers with 47 per cent in 2007 (as reported by the Key Small Business Financing Statistics, Dec 2009)
- 58 per cent of owners of SMEs are over 50 years old (as reported by the Survey on Financing of Small and Medium Enterprises 2007)
- 22 per cent of Canadian entrepreneurs will be retiring between 2004 and 2010, followed by an additional 29 per cent by 2020 (according to the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce study)
- The portion of Canadians who are visible minorities was 16.2 per cent in 2006 and according to Statistics Canada will be between 19-23 per cent of the Canadian population by 2017.
- Among innovative SMEs (i.e. R&D investments surpasses 20% of total investments), 58 per cent were majority or partly owned by women and 14 per cent by visible minorities.
- Among exporting SMEs, 49 per cent were partly or entirely owned by women.
- 28 per cent of all Canadian entrepreneurs have less than 10 years experience.
For the complete report on SME Financing Data, download the results – Government Report on Key Business Financing Statistics.
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