British Columbia Tech Sector a Leader in Canada

British Columbia Tech Sector a Leader in Canada

December 21, 2018 Posted by Noor Subeh

British Columbia’s tech sector is the fastest-growing sector in Canada – leading the nation in GDP growth and job creation. It is also a top provincial performer, with more than 10,200 companies employing over 106,000 people.
The recent 2018 KPMG British Columbia Technology Report Card highlights British Columbia as a clear Canadian tech leader, giving the province an ‘A’ rating. Recognized as an international leader across many fields of technology, B.C. is home to a number of high tech clusters, including: software design, information and communications technology (ICT), animation, film, gaming, life sciences, cleantech, AR/VR and more. The KPMG study has also shown that tech sector revenues have grown 7.3% every year from 2011 to 2016 and employment has increased 24% since 2006. While known as a mecca for startups, the province’s tech sector has also matured: the number of medium-sized companies employing 20-49 employees grew by 19% compared to just two years ago.
Another recent report released by CBRE Canada ranks Victoria among the top cities for Canadian tech talent. Ranked 10th in the 2018 Scoring Canadian Tech Talent Report, Victoria now joins Vancouver, which is ranked fourth. The report ranks Canadian cities according to their competitive advantages and appeal to tech-talent workers and tech employers. VIATEC’s Economic Impact of the Technology Sector in Greater Victoria study also highlighted that the tech sector in Greater Victoria experienced significant growth over the past decade, with industry revenues increasing more than fourfold from $1 billion in 2004 to $4 billion in 2017. The tech sector in Greater Victoria has a total economic impact of $5 billion—a 30% increase from 2013—and employs 16,775 people.
Growth in the tech sector has been happening across various regions in British Columbia. The University of British Columbia (UBC) recently opened a new Innovation Hub in downtown Kelowna to facilitate collaboration with industry and the broader community and open up new pathways to innovation in the region. The 2018 Economic Impact of the Okanagan Tech Sector confirms that the Okanagan is a booming hub for tech and innovation with 693 technology businesses operating in the region. This represents a 24% increase from 2013.
Recognizing the current success and future growth potential for tech in British Columbia, the provincial government has put its weight behind the sector, investing in the development of future talent, and supporting research and innovation. The Crown agency, Innovate BC, was created to advance commercialization by providing B.C. entrepreneurs business development support at all stages of company growth. To help B.C. companies recruit and retain international talent when local skilled workers are unavailable, the Province has extended and enhanced the Provincial Nominee Program tech pilot.
The tech sector is a major driver of innovation and continues to be a source of economic growth here in British Columbia. British Columbia’s prime location as a gateway to Asia provides tech companies with new growth markets and opportunities to compete on a global scale. Learn more about British Columbia’s tech sector and other key sectors by following us @BCTradeInvest or contacting the Trade and Investment Representative nearest to you.


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