Science & Technology

Entrepreneurial aspirations in Canada hit four-year high

The coronacrisis has taken a toll on many Canadian small businesses over the last year

Canada business

Entrepreneurial aspirations in Canada hit four-year high. Source:

According to RBC Small Business Poll, over half (55%) of Canadians polled said they have thought about owning a business. Moreover, among the business owners who were polled, nearly a quarter (24%) said they started their business during the pandemic.

Canadian entrepreneurs have faced a myriad of challenges over the last 15 months, and it’s made for some devastating headlines. But we’re also hearing countless stories of entrepreneurs who are finding ways to turn these challenges into new opportunities for growth and change. The entrepreneurial spirit is stronger than ever and business ownership is increasingly being seen as a viable career path for many Canadians in light of the opportunities created by the pandemic. As the economy re-opens, their success will be critical in driving job creation and employment, and accelerating our economic recovery and growth
Don Ludlow, Vice-President of Small Business, Partnerships & Strategy, RBC

Regionally, entrepreneurial aspirations were highest in Ontario (63%), Alberta (62%) and British Columbia (59%).

In fact, 7 in 10 aspiring entrepreneurs – those who have thought about owning a business but have yet to own one – perceive business ownership as an option that offers more control over their career than traditional employment. Perhaps it is this sense of control that has led 4 in 10 to say the pandemic has made them more likely to want to start a business.

Even as the challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic continue, Canadians overall remain hopeful about the prospect of entrepreneurship, with more than half (58%) polled agreeing that COVID-19 has created new opportunities for small businesses.

This could be attributed to the fact that one-third of Canadians (33%) surveyed witnessed new businesses starting up during the pandemic, particularly among millennials (48%) and Gen Z (53%).

We’ve reported that Royal Bank of Canada introduced new initiative for Black entrepreneurs.


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