- Simon Cusack sold his house in the west and relocated to the East Coast with his wife, son, also one of Canada’s most promising tech startups in early 2021.
The co-founder of Rafflebox, which goes online raffles or fundraisers, relocated to Halifax in search of the ocean, a better work-life balance, and the city’s thriving technology community.
“We were very drawn to the startup scene here,” said Cusack, who left his job at Dell Technologies before in the pandemic to focus solely on Rafflebox as chief operations officer. “The support for startups is fantastic.” As soon as we arrived, doors began to open for us.”
Nova Scotia is changing. It was once known for its traditional resource industries, aging population, and westward migration of workers. Today, the province is house to hundreds of fledgling technology startups and businesses, an ambitious training program, and a growing population.
According to experts, Halifax’s growing tech ecosystem is at the epicenter of the digital shift that transforms the province into one of Canada’s hottest tech hubs.
They claim that a growing network of startups, mentorship organizations, venture capital, training programs, and government assistance encourages digital innovation, creating jobs, and bolstering the economy.
“A strong support network is critical to innovation,” said Ellen Farrell, a management professor at Saint Mary’s University’s Sobey School of Business in Halifax. “Isolation is a significant issue for startups.”
It did not occur overnight.
According to global brokerage house CBRE, Halifax’s tech workforce has steadily grown by 24% over the last five years.
According to CBRE’s 2021 Scoring Tech Talent report, the city was ranked seventh out of 25 emerging tech markets in Canada and the United States, just behind Albany, New York, and Providence, Rhode Island.
According to the industry association Digital NS, there are now over 26,000 people working in Nova Scotia’s $2.5 billion tech sector across the province.
The burgeoning tech community has aided in attracting significant players. Wattpad, a Toronto-based digital entertainment company, announced plans to open a second headquarters in Halifax in late 2019.
The company, which is eligible for payroll rebates from the province, currently employs 30 people in the Halifax area and plans to expand to 100 people within five years.
Source: Global News
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