New Wave of Entrepreneurs Emerging from Atlantic Canada, According to Annual RBC Survey

    60,000 Aspire to Work for Themselves by Next Year

    HALIFAX, Sept. 28 /CNW/ - Almost a quarter of a million (230,000)
Atlantic Canadians are making plans to start up their own businesses, and
25 per cent (60,000) of these aspiring entrepreneurs hope to become their own
bosses within the next year, according to the annual RBC Small Business
    "Entrepreneurship is an intrinsic part of Atlantic Canada's character -
there are so many opportunities here for people to act on their own
ambitions," said Tammy Holland, RBC regional vice-president, Metro Halifax.
"It's also easier to get started, and to succeed, with so many resources and
tools readily available to provide assistance."
    The RBC/Ipsos Reid survey suggests some interesting contrasts between
existing entrepreneurs and emerging ones who share similar backgrounds. While
23 per cent of Atlantic Canada's existing entrepreneurs cite an
executive/managerial background, only 12 per cent of the region's aspiring
entrepreneurs have that type of background. On the other hand, while only
13 per cent of existing entrepreneurs responded that they have previously held
professional positions, 17 per cent of emerging entrepreneurs have
professional backgrounds. Furthermore, while only 1 per cent of existing
entrepreneurs have worked in farming/fishing, 3 per cent of would-be
entrepreneurs have farming/fishing experience.
    The top five preferred industries for Atlantic Canada's aspiring
entrepreneurs, according to the survey: retail (16 per cent); personal
services/arts/crafts (12 per cent); travel/hospitality/restaurants (11 per
cent); Internet/online services (8 per cent); and
construction/trades/manufacturing (7 per cent).

    Atlantic Canada's Aspiring Entrepreneurs: Fast Facts

    -   72 per cent are currently employed
    -   45 per cent have been either self-employed or owned a business before
    -   48 per cent expect to invest less than $25,000 to start up their
    -   44 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 54 per cent male, 46 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 Atlantic Canada provinces
(Newfoundland, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island),the
results are considered accurate to within +/- 9.9 per cent for entrepreneurs
and +/- 9.5 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: Lori Smith, (902) 421-8121

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