Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are an integral part of the Canadian economy. SMEs – classified as businesses that employ fewer than 500 people – make up more than 99% of all business establishments in Canada and are responsible for just under half of total employment. But, this understates their importance as an economic driver. Coming out of the last three recessions, 85% of the net job creation in the first two years of recovery took place in SMEs.
The Great Recession, however, was particularly damaging for small businesses across Canada due to their high presence in a number of heavily battered industries and greater reliance on real estate as collateral. The recovery, thus far, has generally favoured larger sized firms through an improved ability to directly tap into capital markets and a strong manufacturing rebound – both of which are overly represented by large-sized firms. However, the tide will turn. The shape of this recovery will increasingly
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