High growth entrepreneurs showing reduced confidence in the Canadian economy

Nov 15, 2012, 08:00 ET from Richard Ivey School of Business

Ivey Entrepreneurs Index dips in Fall 2012

LONDON, ON, Nov. 15, 2012 /CNW/ - The Ivey Entrepreneurs Index reveals that two-thirds of entrepreneurs surveyed believe the Canadian economy will grow over the next year, a sharp 12% decline from only six-months ago.  Coupled with a decline in overall economic optimism, high growth entrepreneurs are becoming less likely to hire additional employees.  This past spring 84% of those surveyed planned on hiring, however, that figure now stands at 77%, marking a seven percent reduction.       

In spite of diminished economic confidence, the Index found that 90% of entrepreneurs still expect their revenue to grow, a figure which has remained relatively steady over the past two years.  But over the past six months the Index shows that six percent fewer entrepreneurs believe their profits will grow in the next year.

"Entrepreneurs in Canada are becoming more cautious," says Stewart Thornhill, Executive Director, Pierre L. Morrissette Institute for Entrepreneurship at the Richard Ivey School of Business. "This may be indicative of a wait and see attitude amongst this normally bullish group. External factors such as warnings surrounding the looming fiscal cliff in the United States and unpredictable economic developments in Europe have dampened the spirits of high-growth private business in this country.  While these companies still expect their revenues to increase, they seem less willing to commit to hiring additional employees until there is more evidence of stable economic certainty moving forward."

"There is no doubt some entrepreneurs are facing headwinds in the current economic climate, however, we are still seeing many companies moving forward confidently," said Paul Woolford, Partner, National Program Champion, KPMG EnterpriseTM.  "Entrepreneurs have an advantage that they are able to be nimble in tough times, changing their course for smoother sailing."

This is the fifth release of the semi-annual Ivey Entrepreneurs Index.  For a detailed breakdown of the survey results please click here.

The Ivey Entrepreneurs Index is based on a short survey of five questions distributed to 350 Fellows of QuantumShift™.  Entrepreneurs are asked what they expect will happen in their private companies over the next 12 months, covering their outlook for the Canadian economy in general as well as prospects around revenue, profits, hiring, and borrowing.

QuantumShift Fellows companies have average revenue of approximately $75 million with an average of approximately 350 employees. Their businesses have achieved 31% average growth annually. The entrepreneurs surveyed are graduates of QuantumShift. Co-founded by the Richard Ivey School of Business and KPMG Enterprise, now in its 10th year, QuantumShift brings together 40 top Canadian entrepreneurs for a week-long leadership and executive development program.

About the Richard Ivey School of Business, Western University
The Richard Ivey School of Business at Western University is Canada's leading provider of relevant, innovative and comprehensive business education. Drawing on extensive research and business experience, Ivey faculty provide the best classroom experience, equipping graduates with the skills and capabilities they need to tackle the leadership challenges in today's complex business world. Ivey offers world-renowned undergraduate and graduate degree programs as well as Executive Development at campuses in London (Ontario), Toronto and Hong Kong. Visit www.ivey.ca.

About KPMG Enterprise
KPMG Enterprise™ is a national network of professionals dedicated to helping business owners and entrepreneurs build value in their business and grow thriving enterprises in Canada. Why is this important for your business? Because KPMG Enterprise advisers care passionately about the success of their private company clients. As the primary point of contact, they take time to understand your business and help deliver value that is unique to your private company. Our service delivery goal is to provide relevant, timely advice and ideas about your financial, business, and operational challenges in a way that is manageable and affordable, which can ultimately help any business owner save time and money.  Visit kpmg.ca/enterprise.

About QuantumShift
QuantumShift™ is an intense and exclusive leadership development program for Canada's most promising entrepreneurs, co-founded by the Richard Ivey School of Business and KPMG Enterprise  10 years ago. The program brings an elite group of 40 entrepreneurs together annually for a rigorous five-day developmental experience at the Ivey Business School in London, Ontario. Admission to QuantumShift is by invitation only selected from amongst hundreds of nominations annually. The curriculum explores topics that matter to high growth entrepreneurs. For further information about the program, visit kpmg.ca/quantumshift or quantumshift.ca. Nominations for QuantumShift 2013 close December 7th, 2012. To nominate an entrepreneur, contact Donna Trifunovic at 416 228 7142.

SOURCE Richard Ivey School of Business