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RSA Insurance Celebrates Entrepreneurs and Small Business Trends

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Celebrating Entrepreneurs

Everyday there are men and women of every age and background who are driven to take hold of the limitless possibilities, to push the boundaries and to change the world we live in. At RSA Insurance, they want to be there to help these industrious entrepreneurs turn their dreams into reality.

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) are the backbone of the Canadian economy, contributing almost one quarter (23%) of the country's total gross domestic product, according to Statistics Canada. As of 2007, small businesses alone employed approximately five million individuals in Canada, or 48% percent of the total labour force in the private sector.

But running a successful business is no easy task. Only half of all new small–medium businesses survive past their third year according to Statistics Canada. On a daily basis, business owners face numerous challenges – from finding and keeping top talent, to reaching new markets, to managing risk.

RSA Insurance is listening

Entrepreneurs drive the economy through a varied mix of businesses. RSA assists various small business industries and have an intimate knowledge of their world and the challenges they face. They understand that these are busy people who need a comprehensive range of insurance solutions designed especially for them. With tailor-made protection in place, they can focus on what they do best: grow their business.

The RSA commitment doesn't end there. After acquiring an even greater understanding of the needs of SMEs over the past year, they have worked to build a bigger profile within the business community and enhance their small and medium-sized business proposition. Over the next several months business owners will experience the evidence of their continued investment as they launch new products and services, and make it even easier to do business with RSA.

Some Interesting Trends In Small Business

Small business trend watch

Entrepreneurs drive change. And as the business world itself keeps changing at breakneck speed, RSA is committed to helping you offer the advice and protection you need to harness that change for future success.

Being aware of the latest social, economic and technological changes affecting businesses will help you understand business needs. Here are some key trends to watch for:

  • Real-time results. Information is power, and for businesses today, that information needs to be immediate. From mobile phone apps to VoIP communications and online business tools, entrepreneurs of today rely on having data – and business connections – at their fingertips.
  • Boomer economics. Not only are businesses aimed at retiring boomers – such as vision care, travel, condo real estate – booming, but the aging population is affecting the leadership of small businesses, as well. According to a survey by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, 34% of Canadian small-business owners plan to exit their businesses in the next five years, and another 32% plan to exit in six to ten years.
  • Social media landscape. Networking has always been an important business-building tool for entrepreneurs, and now online networks such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and others, have extended the global reach of this age-old practice.
  • Green scene. The shift to sustainable business practices, products and services is changing how companies operate and are creating a wide range of new small business opportunities.
  • Falling optimism. According to a recent Canadian Federation of Independent Business Survey, small business confidence fell for the third consecutive month in August and business owners are seeking to become more efficient wherever possible.

Who are today's entrepreneurs?

According to Statistics Canada's Business Register:

  • Retail trade, personal services, construction and professional services account for almost one half of all small businesses.
  • The majority of these are "micro" businesses, such as small grocery and convenience stores, car dealerships, pharmacies, gas stations, clothing stores and appliance retailers.
  • Most small businesses are built around the expertise of a single individual (or small group of individuals) with special knowledge in the following areas:
    • Technical or professional fields
    • Sales; local services
    • Construction trades
    • Farming
    • Trucking

Small business stats

  • Strength in numbers: 98% of businesses in Canada are considered small and they employ 48% of the labour force.
  • Survival: 96% of new businesses with 1 to 99 employees survive for one full year, 85% for three years and 70% for five years. As well, from 1997 to 2009, business bankruptcies in Canada fell more than 50% to about 6,700.
  • Women in business: 46% of SMEs have some degree of female ownership; 16% of SMEs are majority-owned by women; 19% are owned in equal partnerships between male and female owners.
  • Exports: 87% of Canadian exporters are small businesses.

Source: Industry Canada, Key Small Business Statistics, July 2010.

The Insurance Advisors @ Guthrie Insurance Brokers Ltd

Toronto – (416) 487-5200 Richmond Hill – (905) 313-8481

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