Thursday, March 12, 2009

Canadian Small Businesses See Their Future in Foreign Markets

(Canada NewsWire)

A recent survey conducted for HSBC Bank Canada found that the majority of Canadian small and mid-sized businesses see the benefits of doing business in international markets. According to the survey, 45% per cent of small businesses are currently conducting some business outside of Canada while an additional 8% intend to develop some involvement in international markets over the next two years.

Jon Hountalas, Executive Vice President, Commercial Banking, HSBC Bank Canada, said: "These findings show that even in the current challenging economic times Canadian businesses understand that their future lies not in retreating into our home market but in continuing to look beyond our borders for new growth opportunities."

The HSBC survey was conducted with 250 small and mid-sized business owners and managers across the country whose businesses produced between $1 million and $20 million in annual revenues. It determined that the sectors most likely to be currently doing business abroad are those in the information services and manufacturing industries. Of the companies surveyed who are currently doing business outside of Canada, 72% sell their products and services abroad while 28% source some of their products from outside the country.

While this openness to expanding outside the country bodes well for the future of Canadian small and mid sized businesses, Mr. Hountalas notes that entering new offshore markets under current economic conditions may entail additional risks that many business owners may not have considered. Read more here.