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Waterloo EDC Blog

Innovation District in Waterloo

Waterloo highlighted in Site Selection Magazine’s Canadian rankings

Posted by Waterloo EDC on September 22, 2020

Once again, Site Selection Magazine’s ranking of the best Canadian locations lists Ontario as the top province for FDI and highlights Waterloo as the number one up-and-coming market.

Why did Ontario top the list of provinces?

Home to the Toronto-Waterloo Corridor, Ontario has a skilled workforce and “climate of innovation” that contribute to a rapidly advancing technology sector.

Ontario’s workforce is also employed by multinationals at a higher rate than any other province, particularly in the manufacturing sector, where 39.8% of all jobs were at foreign multinationals this year. Ontario’s manufacturing industry has proven incredibly resilient and innovative during the COVID-19 pandemic, pivoting to produce huge volumes of personal protective equipment (PPE).

The Site Selection report also addressed Canada’s immigration policies that help companies smoothly and easily acquire top talent. Our national programs can help tech companies bring top international talent to Canada in as little as two weeks – a huge advantage amid America’s H-1B crisis.

The second and third place provinces were Alberta and British Columbia, respectively.

In Site Selection’s unranked list of Canada’s Best Locations, Waterloo is highlighted as Canada’s top up-and-coming market based on CBRE’s recent North American tech talent market rankings. Download the Waterloo AI Cluster Map Now!

Waterloo’s advancing technology scene makes it a “global centre of tech talent and innovation,” according to Steve Woods, Google’s Canada Senior Engineering Director and Waterloo Site Lead. Earlier in 2020, Google announced significant plans to expand in Waterloo, including bumping total local employment up to 3,000 people and doubling their square footage. They also established the first Canadian Google for Startups accelerator in Waterloo. Waterloo is also home to Canada’s three fastest-growing tech companies.

Speaking on the choice to expand in Waterloo, Woods called the region “the perfect place for us to expand our footprint and help grow the next generation of founders in Canada.”

In addition to its entrepreneurial ecosystem, Waterloo is home to three highly ranked post-secondary institutions, including the University of Waterloo.

Also mentioned in the report were new research centres in the form of a new BlackBerry cybersecurity R&D lab and Ford’s Waterloo Connectivity and Innovation Centre.

 

Want to learn more about the Waterloo business ecosystem? Contact the Waterloo EDC team today!

 

Topics: technology, manufacturing, business, site selection