The State of Entrepreneurship in Canada

 Findings from the 2022 Startup Canada Entrepreneurship Census 

This week we launched our 2022 Startup Canada Entrepreneurship Census! Conducted yearly, the entrepreneurship census provides unique insights into who makes up Canada’s entrepreneur ecosystem and the challenges they face. Over the last few years, entrepreneurs have faced more challenges than ever before, from COVID-19 to tech sector changes and a looming economic crisis with unknown consequences. 

This year, our census showcased the need for more support and resources for entrepreneurs nationwide and overall frustration with how to navigate the resources available within the entrepreneurship support ecosystem. To better understand the general state of entrepreneurship, we’ve highlighted some of our report’s key findings and ways we’re working to provide entrepreneurs with more resources and support from coast to coast to coast!

Who are Canada’s Entrepreneurs?

We received responses from entrepreneurs in 115 cities across Canada! Of those respondents, we found that:

  • 45% of entrepreneurs were from the GenZ/Millenial age groups 
  • 67% identified as women 
  • 69.9% are currently entrepreneurs (beyond the ideation stage)

Current Reality and Anticipated Growth 

Entrepreneurs outlined some of the current operational functions of their businesses and anticipated growth over the next few years, including: 

  • 42.3% of entrepreneurs have been active for 1 to 3 years 
  • 54% of our respondents are currently making between $1 to $99,000 in annual revenue
  • Over 65% anticipate yearly revenue growth of $200,000 to $5,000,000+ in the next 2 to 3 years
  • Over 65% of entrepreneurs want to keep their teams small and anticipate only having 0-9 employees in the upcoming years

Diversity Across the Ecosystem

Canada’s entrepreneurs are diverse and, with differing identities, are facing increased barriers to building their businesses. We found that:

  • 27% of entrepreneurs were not born in Canada
  • 27.5% of entrepreneurs are a visible minority 
  • 12% of entrepreneurs identify as a person with a disability
  • Only 2% of venture funding went to Black-led businesses
  • Women-identifying entrepreneurs are underfunded

Frustrations and Needs

Canadian entrepreneurs continue to face various challenges and barriers to growing their businesses. Respondents told us that:

  • 66.8% of entrepreneurs’ most pressing challenge is access to funding for their business
  • 69.6% faced issues accessing government grants – citing barriers, lack of access, and overall red tape 
  • 43.1% faced barriers to information and education about funding and grants – including that educational materials were “too high level”
  • 49% of entrepreneurs want more education and support on marketing strategies

Want to learn more about our 2022 census findings? Read the full report here

Building A Better Ecosystem 

Over the next year, we’re continuing our mission to champion the underrepresented voices of entrepreneurs and make Canada the best place to start a business. We’re continuing to offer Startup Canada’s free annual programming for entrepreneurs, from Startup Women to Startup Global, and Startup Gov. Entrepreneurs also have access to the Business Owner’s Toolbox, a comprehensive toolkit with resources to start and grow your business!

We’re also bringing the entrepreneur ecosystem to a city near you! Startup Canada Tour is a five stop national opportunity to connect with the Canadian entrepreneurship ecosystem. Stopping in Whitehorse, Halifax, Vancouver, Calgary, and Ontario, we’ll be bringing together early stage entrepreneurs to build out their networks, learn from industry experts, and drive their businesses forward. Learn more about Startup Canada Tour and register for passes to a stop near you by visiting