EY Ranks Canada Top 5 for Entrepreneurship in Spite of Funding, Education Struggles

Less than two weeks after Startup Genome ranked three Canadian cities as the top 20 most active startup scenes in the world, Ernst and Young announced today that the country has placed in the top 5 countries for entrepreneurship in the G20.

But the EY G20 Entrepreneurship Barometer 2013 wasn’t all good news, as Canada continues to struggle with a number of barriers. For example, the survey of more than 1,500 entrepreneurs found that 73 per cent of Canadian entrepreneurs still struggle to access funding.

“That may be strong relative to much of the G20, but the picture is very mixed,” said Colleen McMorrow, EY partner and leader of the Canadian Entrepreneur of the Year™ Program, in a press release. “The ratio of private equity activity to GDP in Canada is now higher than in any other G20 nation, except Australia. So private equity and venture capital are improving, but bank financing remains a challenge.”

Though the lending environment has slowed down worldwide, with 70 per cent of entrepreneurs struggling to find capital across the G20, many Canadians are still optimistic.

“While there’s no denying access to funding remains a barrier to growth, 45 per cent of entrepreneurs in Canada say it has improved, compared to only 35 per cent across the G20 as a whole,” said Charles-Antoine St-Jean, an EY partner and leader of government and public sector services, in the same press release. “Canada’s government has been highly supportive of entrepreneurs, providing regulatory and tax regimes that have enabled start-ups and growing companies to flourish.”

The EY G20 Entrepreneurship Barometer 2013 ranks countries based on five pillars of entrepreneurship, including access to funding, entrepreneurship culture, tax and regulation, education and training, and coordinated support.

The study found that the cost of starting a business in Canada is among the lowest in the G20, with lesser labour costs, better access to funding, and fewer hours spent on tax affairs. Though Canada scored below average on education and training, the country scored relatively high when it came to the teaching of entrepreneurial skills in schools and universities, but lost points for informal training, such as mentorship programs.

Canada sits in the top five countries for entrepreneurship along with the United Stated, the United Kingdom, South Korea, and Australia.

EY (ERNST & YOUNG) - Canada named Top 5 for Entrepreneurship


Jared Lindzon

Jared Lindzon is a freelance journalist born and raised in the city of Toronto. Specializing in small business, tech, and careers, Jared’s work is regularly featured in the Toronto Star, the Globe & Mail and the National Post, among others.

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