Ottawa, October 15, 2018: In recognition of small business week, Mayor Jim Watson today issued a special proclamation recognizing the significant economic contribution of the small business community in Ottawa, in the presence of the Board of Directors of the newly formed Ottawa Board of Trade and other key economic stakeholders.

Nearly 95% of the 23,000 plus businesses in Ottawa are under 50 employees, according to the latest statistics from the City. There are over 400,000 small businesses in Ontario that employ over 3,000,000 Ontarians and contribute 30% of the provincial GDP.

“Small Business Week is a great opportunity to recognize the important contributions of our small businesses and entrepreneurs to Ottawa’s economy,’’ said Mayor Jim Watson. “These hard-working men and women bring economic vitality to our neighbourhoods and create jobs that sustain the livelihoods of thousands of families in our community. I look forward to continue working with them to grow our economy and improve the well-being of our residents.”

For the past 161 years, the Ottawa Board of Trade along with key economic stakeholders have continuously supported entrepreneurship and acceleration of small businesses. The recent consolidation of the West Ottawa Board of Trade, Orléans Chamber of Commerce and the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce into a single entity has facilitated a stronger voice for the small business community and will provide enhanced economic diversity for the region.

“Small businesses are the backbone for our economy and are too big to be ignored as they provide vital employment and economic growth for our city” said Ian Faris, President and CEO, the Ottawa Board of Trade. “We will continue to advocate for better business opportunities, eliminate barriers for the creation & advancement of our small business community”.

According the 2018 Ottawa Business Growth Survey by the Ottawa Board of Trade, the top three priority issues for business advancement in Ottawa include;

  1. Attracting new customers
  2. Access to skilled talent
  3. Changes in technology

Small business week is celebrated across Canada during this week, and the Ottawa Board of Trade has several events scheduled to coincide the celebrations.

The Ottawa Board of Trade is the single largest independent voice of business in Ottawa, representing over 1,100 members and 30,000 employees from multiple industries.