The Okanagan technology sector has been growing over the past few years and a recent study
puts the extent of this growth into perspective. A new study commissioned by Accelerate Okanagan
in conjunction with the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission
(COEDC) shows that the Okanagan region's technology sector is booming.
The Okanagan tech sector has witnessed a year-over-year economic growth of 15% since 2013 and is now estimated to contribute $1.67 billion to the region's economy.
This is Accelerate Okanagan’s third survey to gauge economic impact, highlight growth and celebrate success since 2015. Okanagan tech companies were invited to participate in an online survey that gathered information about business structures, revenues and expenditures, work force composition and the benefits and challenges of operating their tech company.
The results showed that there are now 693 technology businesses operating in the Okanagan, representing a 9.5% increase from 2015 and 24% increase since the 2013 study. Those companies include home-grown success stories like BananaTag
and Yeti Farm,
and employ a total of 12,474 workers--a growth of 64% since 2015 and 90% since 2013. Additionally, the study showed that Okanagan's tech workforce is becoming younger, with 55% of workers under the age of 35.
While the 2018 Economic Impact of the Okanagan Tech Sector confirms that the Okanagan is a booming hub for tech and innovation, exciting news doesn’t stop there for this thriving B.C. region. The University of British Columbia (UBC) recently opened a new Innovation Hub
in downtown Kelowna. Located in the city's Innovation Centre
, this facility provides a venue for the UBC community to interact with the region’s innovation network. This will further support entrepreneurial learning and collaboration with industry and the broader community to generate local, national and global impact. It is hoped that the UBC Innovation Hub will open up new pathways to innovation in the region and beyond.
British Columbia’s tax and business climate provides incentives to technology companies, enabling them to meet their growth potential. The Province of British Columbia is committed to growing and strengthening the tech sector, and has been engaging with tech businesses and organizations in advance of the 2019 launch of a new tech strategy. The current #BCTECH Strategy
focuses on three key pillars: access to capital for promising companies, talent development and market access for British Columbia-based companies. To learn more about what is happening in the Okanagan and across B.C., follow us @BCTradeInvest
or contact the Trade and Investment Representative
nearest to you.