More Than Half A Million Aspiring Entrepreneurs On The Prairies, According To RBC Survey

    170,000 Plan to Become Their Own Boss By Next Year

    WINNIPEG, Sept. 28 /CNW/ - The Canadian Prairies are home to
approximately 630,000 aspiring entrepreneurs, and 27 per cent (170,000) of
them believe they will be their own boss within the next year, according to
RBC's annual Small Business Survey.
    The RBC/Ipsos Reid survey also indicates that aspiring entrepreneurs in
Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba are emerging from a range of occupations,
including professional (20 per cent); executive/managerial (17 percent); blue
collar/labourer (14 per cent); sales (11 per cent); secretarial/clerical
(9 per cent); and technical (7 per cent).
    As to their preferred choice of work, would-be entrepreneurs have their
eyes set on an array industries, the top five being: personal
services/arts/crafts (14 per cent); Internet/online services (12 per cent);
retail (11 per cent); business services/communications/management consultant
(9 per cent); and travel/hospitality/ restaurants (8 per cent).
    "We're seeing a great deal of interest in entrepreneurship from the
Prairies," said Mark Odegard, RBC regional vice-president, Greater Winnipeg.
"Aspiring entrepreneurs are also coming from all walks of life. Given the many
tools and resources now readily available, entrepreneurs have the support they
need to start up, grow and sustain their businesses, no matter what their
previous work experience may have been."

    Aspiring Entrepreneurs on the Prairies: Fast Facts

    -   74 per cent are currently employed
    -   46 per cent have been either self-employed or owned a business before
    -   46 per cent expect to invest less than $25,000 to start up their
    -   42 per cent believe it will take between 1-3 years from start-up to
        begin earning revenue
    -   44 per cent believe it will take between 1-3 years from start-up
        until their business breaks even (e.g., makes enough money to cover
        the costs)
    -   Aspiring entrepreneurs are split 56 per cent male, 44 per cent female

    Canada's 2007 Entrepreneurs: By the Numbers

    Region          Existing Entrepreneurs        Aspiring Entrepreneurs

                         %        Total                %        Total

    BC                 18%       500,000             17%       560,000
    Alberta            11%       310,000             13%       430,000
    Sask./Man.          7%       200,000              6%       200,000
    Ontario            41%     1,150,000             39%     1,290,000
    Quebec             19%       530,000             19%       630,000
    Atlantic            4%       110,000              7%       230,000
    Canada           11.5%     2,800,000           13.0%     3,300,000

    These are some of the findings of an RBC poll conducted by Ipsos Reid
between July 27 and August 3, 2007. The online survey is based on a randomly
selected representative sample of 3,806 adult Canadians of which 2,253 owned
small or medium-sized businesses (entrepreneurs) and 1,553 aspire to own small
or medium size businesses (aspiring entrepreneurs). With a representative
sample of this size, the results among entrepreneurs are considered accurate
to within +/- 2.1 percentage points, and among aspiring entrepreneurs +/- 2.5
19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult Canadian
population been polled. Within the smaller populations of entrepreneurs and
aspiring entrepreneurs in the Prairie provinces (Alberta, Saskatchewan and
Manitoba) the results are considered accurate to within +/- 4.9 per cent for
entrepreneurs and +/- 5.8 per cent for aspiring entrepreneurs 19 times out
of 20.

    RBC delivers a wide range of financial services and practical advice to
small and medium-sized businesses and their owners. RBC is Canada's leading
financial institution for small business, serving one in four small
businesses. For practical advice and information about starting, owning and
managing a small business, entrepreneurs - existing and aspiring - can visit

For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: Liz Redston, (204) 988-3516

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