Mike Lazaridis, Arlene Dickinson, Tobi Lutke, Susur Lee — what do these Canadians have in common? They immigrated to this country before going on to entrepreneurial fame.
Each has a unique story, but immigrant entrepreneurs play a special role in this country’s economic development. First- and second-generation entrepreneurs undertake 34.7 per cent of all early-stage entrepreneurship in Canada — significantly higher than most other comparable economies. And according to Statistics Canada, immigrant-owned companies are younger, grow faster and have higher rates of job creation. They’re also more likely to enter global markets.