Deloitte Canada survey: Tech CEOs want to see a strengthened culture of risk and entrepreneurship

In spite of global economic uncertainty, the winners of the Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM have not only continued to grow their revenues in 2011, but done so with increased focus on an international customer base. Although the sector is still hindered by the lack of a robust community of domestic investors to support a stronger entrepreneurial culture at home, Canada’s tech sector continues to grow and to create jobs.

“Almost half of last year’s winners are back on the list in 2011, which is remarkable, and there are 20 newcomers alongside a handful of multiyear winners,” said Richard Lee, National Leader, Technology, Media & Telecommunications Industry Group, Deloitte. “Fast 50 companies are active in enterprise or consumer software development, as well as digital media content and platforms.”  

“As in previous years, the bulk of winners are in Ontario (26), followed by Québec (11) and British-Columbia (10), with the balance of the winners coming from Newfoundland and Labrador (2) and Alberta (1),” said Duncan Stewart, Director of TMT Research with Deloitte. ”The average growth of a Fast 50 company was 5,020 per cent in 2011, down from over 5,600 per cent last year – but still the third-highest number ever. These companies aren’t just growing fast, they are investing too: the average research and development spending was a new record, at almost $22.5 million per company. The difficult global economic conditions might not be reflected in our winners’ growth rates, but weak capital markets meant that only a round dozen of the fifty are publicly traded: a new low, and down about 70 per cent from 2005.”

Saint-Laurent-based Accedian Networks, a telecom and wireless company specializing in performance monitoring solutions, and newcomer on the Fast 50 list, is at the top of this year’s ranking with a 50,136 per cent five-year revenue growth. Accedian Networks is also a winner in this year’s leadership category.

Second and third spots go to RTI Cryogenics Inc. (46,278 per cent) a Cambridge-based company operating in recycling technologies, and Avigilon (38,796 per cent) a Vancouver-based high-definition surveillance telecom company. Rounding out the top five are Toronto-based NexJ Systems Inc. (29,161 per cent), an enterprise CRM software company, and Real Matters (28,265 per cent), a Markham-based property information solutions firm.

Also noteworthy, 8D Technologies inc. of Montreal and Wi-LAN Inc. of Ottawa are back among the 50 fastest growing tech firms for the first time since 2002 and 2004 respectively; Toronto’s  ViXS Systems Inc. and Vancouver’s  Corinex Communications Corp are returning for a fifth consecutive year while RuggedCom Inc. from Concord, Ontario and Toronto’s Impact Mobile are back for the sixth consecutive year;  Kitchener-Waterloo-based Research In Motion, a consistent winner since the beginning of the program 14 years ago has qualified again in 2011; and Richmond-Hill-based Paymentus Corporation is a new Fast 50 winner after appearing on the Companies-to-Watch list in 2008.

Immigration system creating the right talent pool: Tech CEOs
Deloitte’s annual survey of Fast 50 Tech CEOs, also released today, provides insight into the current talent debate. A strong majority (85 per cent) of Tech CEOs said Canada’s graduates have the right skill set, and over two-thirds said that Canada’s immigration system is creating the proper pool of talent.  

“Unlike studies that suggest our education and immigration systems are not working, most Tech CEOs believe we are doing well on both fronts, even though things are not perfect,” said Lee.

Recommended education improvements include a stronger focus on science, engineering and IT, and an emphasis on practical work exposure to business. On the immigration front, survey respondents would like to see a better use of immigrants’ skills as well as reduced barriers for talented individuals to enter Canada.

Lee pointed out that these results echo Deloitte’s recent report The future of productivity – An eight-step plan for Canada – which identified the re-tooling of Canada’s immigration system as one of the key steps in the country’s productivity action plan.

“In the report, Deloitte recommended concrete short-term fixes to our immigration system that should have a long-term effect in this area.”

Entrepreneurship top of mind for winning CEOs
According to the new survey results, Tech CEOs are concerned about Canada’s entrepreneurial culture.  When asked whether Canadians are entrepreneurial and risk tolerant, only 56 per cent agreed and 44 per cent said no.  

“There is a sense that we need to shift away from a mentality that punishes risk, and focus instead on building a community that supports entrepreneurship and that chalks up failures as part of learning,” Lee commented, “There are so many great entrepreneurs in this country who can help propel Canada forward, and we need to create an environment that supports them.”

Leadership awards
Leadership environment Awards single out companies that are the elite members of the Canadian technology industry, whose ability to create a distinct competitive advantage in a high-growth market allows them to dominate their sector and quickly join the ranks of other Canadian global leaders.  This year’s four Leadership Awards recipients are: EcoSynthetix Inc., a Burlington, Ontario-based emerging technology company; Kanata, Ontario-based Solace Systems, a hardware company; Desire2Learn Incorporated, a Kitchener, Ontario-based software  company; and Saint-Laurent, Quebec-based Accedian Networks.  

Companies-to-Watch awards
The Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ Companies-to-Watch (CTW) Awards honour early-stage Canadian technology companies who have been in business less than five years, and have the potential to be future Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ winners.

The ten companies recognized as CTW this year are: Beyond the Rack (Saint-Laurent, QC), Chango (Toronto, ON), Enflick, Inc. ( Waterloo, ON), Kobo Inc. (Toronto, ON), MoboVivo (Calgary, AB), Mobiroo (Toronto, ON), ScreenScape Networks (Charlottetown, PEI), Syncapse (Toronto, ON), WaveAccounting (Toronto, ON), and Well.ca (Guelph, ON).

Deloitte Technology Green 15™ awards
These awards recognize Canada’s leading GreenTech companies who promote a more efficient use and re-use of the earth’s resources in industrial production and consumption. In doing so, they use new, innovative technologies to create products and services that compete with existing products and services on price and performance while reducing our impact on the environment.

The 15 winners are: 5N Plus (Saint-Laurent, QC), Bionest (Grand-Mère, QC), BIOX Corporation (Oakville, ON), FleetCarma (Waterloo, ON), ecobee (Toronto, ON), EcoSythentix Inc. (Burlington, ON), evandtec, Inc. (Toronto, ON), Fifth Light Technology Ltd. (Oakville, ON), H2O Innovation (Grand-Mère, QC), Log-One Ltd. (Loretto, ON), Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies Inc. (Vancouver, BC), Panacis Medical Inc. (Ottawa, ON), Real Tech Inc. (Whitby, ON), RTI Cryogenics (Cambridge, ON), Tantalus (Burnaby, BC).

About the Deloitte Technology Fast 50™
The Deloitte Technology Fast 50™, the country’s pre-eminent leading technology awards, ranks companies based on their past five-year revenue growth rates. Celebrating business growth, innovation and entrepreneurship, the program features four distinct categories: the Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ Ranking, Companies-to-Watch Awards (early-stage Canadian tech companies in business less than five years, with the potential to be a future Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ candidate,) Leadership Awards (companies that demonstrate technological leadership in four industry subcategories: hardware/semiconductor, software, telecommunications and emerging technologies) and the Deloitte Technology Green 15™ Awards (Canada’s leading GreenTech companies that promote a more efficient use and re-use of the earth’s resources in industrial production and consumption.)

Program sponsors include Deloitte, Gowlings, Wellington Financial, TMX, HKMB Hub, CVCA, NACO, MaRS, IGLOO Software.
For further information, visit http://www.fast50.ca/.

About Deloitte
Deloitte, one of Canada’s leading professional services firms, provides audit, tax, consulting, and financial advisory services through more than 7,700 people in 58 offices. Deloitte operates in Québec as Samson Bélair/Deloitte & Touche s.e.n.c.r.l. Deloitte & Touche LLP, an Ontario Limited Liability Partnership, is the Canadian member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.

Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see www.deloitte.com/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms.

Contact:

Jeanne d’Arc Umurungi 
Company: Deloitte
Job Title: Media Relations Manager / Directrice des relations médias
Phone: 416-874-3518
Email [email protected]

2011 Deloitte Technology Fast 50™

Rank Growth Company name City Prov Sector Product service
1 50,136% Accedian Networks Saint-Laurent QC Telecom High performance service assurance
2 46,278% RTI Cryogenics Inc. Cambridge ON Emerging Value-added tire recycling
3 38,796% Avigilon Vancouver BC Hardware High-definition surveillance
4 29,161% NexJ Systems Inc. Toronto ON Software Enterprise CRM  software
5 28,265% Real Matters Markham ON Software Property information solutions
6 10,017% ARISE Technologies Corporation Waterloo ON Software Solar technology
7 7,976% Clevest Solutions Inc. Richmond BC Emerging Mobile workforce management
8 3,539% Dominion Voting Systems Corporation Toronto ON Hardware Election solutions + services
9 2,622% Acquisio Saint-Lambert QC Digital Media Campaign management platforms
10 2,322% GuestLogix Inc. Toronto ON Software On-board retail platform
11 2,306% Wi-LAN Inc. Ottawa ON Telecom Technology licensing
12 2,011% Vital Insights Mississauga ON Software Software solutions provider
13 1,915% Varicent Software Toronto ON Software Sales performance management
14 1,904% Cyberplex Inc. Toronto ON Digital Media Web advertising solutions
15 1,710% Layer 7 Technologies Vancouver BC Emerging Cloud and mobile security
16 1,332% SherWeb Sherbrooke QC Software Software as-a service (SaaS)
17 1,131% Marport St. John’s NL Software Underwater acoustics technology
18 1,093% Global Relay Communications Inc. Vancouver BC Software Compliance message archiving
19 1,069% Paymentus Corporation Richmond Hill ON Software Real-time bill payment network
19 1,069% Tantalus Systems Corp. Burnaby BC Emerging Smart grid technology
21 1,017% CarProof London ON Software Vehicle history reports
22 973% ProSep Montreal QC Emerging Oil and gas process equipment
23 971% 8D Technologies inc. Montreal QC Emerging Transportation management and payment
24 939% ParetoLogic Inc. Victoria BC Software Security/optimization software
25 937% Solace Systems Kanata ON Hardware Middleware appliances
26 904% Route1 Inc. Toronto ON Software Secure remote access
27 840% Verafin Inc. St. John’s NF Software Financial crime detection
28 666% H2O Innovation Quebec City QC Emerging Water treatment systems
29 634% Research In Motion Waterloo ON Telecom Smartphones and tablets
30 547% Yardstick Edmonton AB Software Testing and training Experts
31 524% ViXS Systems Inc. Toronto ON Hardware Network multimedia processors
32 522% PNI Digital Media Vancouver BC Software Transaction software platform
33 476% iBwave Solutions Inc. Saint-Laurent QC Software Wireless software
34 464% Corinex Communications Corp Vancouver BC Telecom Computer networking products
35 447% Vantrix Montreal QC Telecom Mobile video optimization
36 445% RuggedCom Inc. Concord ON Telecom Rugged communications  equipment
37 437% Obzerv Technologies Inc. Quebec City QC Hardware Surveillance cameras
38 413% 5N Plus inc. Saint-Laurent QC Emerging Purification and metal recycling
39 397% Moment Factory Montreal QC Digital Media Multimedia environments
39 397% Impact Mobile Toronto ON Telecom Mobile marketing solutions
41 388% Doxim Inc. Markham ON Software SaaS document processing
42 367% BTI Systems Kanata ON Telecom Packet optical networking
43 365% Vivonet Inc. Burnaby BC Software POS solutions
44 360% Complete Innovations Inc. Markham ON Software Mobile workforce solutions
44 360% QuickPlay Media Toronto ON Digital Media Mobile video platform
46 327% The Code Project Inc. Toronto ON Software Developer community website
47 326% BlueCat Networks Toronto ON Software IP address management
48 306% Nulogx Mississauga ON   Transportation management Solutions
49 304% QHR Technologies Inc Kelowna BC Software Healthcare efficiency software
50 294% Nightingale Informatix Corporation Markham ON Software Electronic medical records