2013 Federal Budget Opens Doors For a Startup Nation

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Startup Canada Release  |  March 22, 2013

Startup Canada budget response

Startup Canada optimistic that the federal budget takes step in right direction for recognizing and supporting a nation of entrepreneurs

Ottawa, March 22, 2013 – The Canadian government is moving in the right direction with elements of the federal budget, but more is required to create an entrepreneurial infrastructure to accelerate the success of Canadian entrepreneurs.

“We are pleased to see government supporting the startup community in Canada with the announcement of the entrepreneur awards and investment in venture capital and accelerators,” said Victoria Lennox, CEO of Startup Canada.  “These are positive steps to support entrepreneurs. As the Harper government has acknowledged, entrepreneurs and the businesses they create are the backbone of the Canadian economy, employing nearly half of the Canadian working population."

“Still, further efforts need to target higher-impact strategic investments that go beyond the status quo and work toward building the culture, connectivity and communities necessary to fuel entrepreneur success in Canada and to bolster our competitiveness as a nation.”

Lennox asserted that high-impact investments into Canada’s entrepreneurship infrastructure requires that the Canadian government begin to work with grassroots entrepreneurial leaders who are already driving impact in communities across Canada.

“We need to invest in entrepreneur-led community building efforts like Startup Edmonton and grassroots co-working spaces like Hub Halifax and Montreal’s Notman House,” said Lennox.  “We need to enhance access to meaningful mentorship connections and provide better connectivity between entrepreneurs and the support that they need. We need to invest in efforts that will fuel a national culture of entrepreneurship to raise the ambitions of Canadian entrepreneurs, to keep our entrepreneurs at home, and to position Canada as a beacon for global high-growth startups, investors and industry partners.”

Startup Canada is cautious about the depth of support that this budget offers for building a nation of high-growth startups and the next generation of entrepreneurs. Canada is lagging behind other G8 countries in bold support for entrepreneurs and startups. While this budget has some positive signs it does not move Canada forward at the pace needed to ensure the entrepreneur community continues to flourish.

“A culture shift is required for entrepreneurship to become a part of the fabric of Canada,” says Ms. Lennox, “and while an investment in the education and training of young people is always a wise one, we need to couple investment into trades and hard skills with the leadership and entrepreneurial awareness and skills that open the door for the next generation that will take over our small businesses or start their own.”

Startup Canada looks forward to working with the Harper Government to bring together all sectors and ensure that the items outlined in the 2013 budget are implemented to best meet the needs of Canada’s job creating entrepreneurs and the businesses that they build.

About Startup Canada

As a grassroots organization, Startup Canada represents the voice and culture of entrepreneurship in Canada. Startup Canada is the link between policy makers and the startup community that is transforming Canada into an entrepreneur country. Through its grassroots network of entrepreneurs and small business champions, Startup Canada strives to mobilize communities of people to build systems that create profit and prosperity for all.

Media Contact

Victoria Lennox, CEO, Startup Canada, Victoria@startupcan.ca
Tim Shaw, Manager, Government Relations, Tim@startupcan.ca, 587-998-0395

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