May 19, 2020

Canada’s Top 10 Entrepreneurial Cities in 2014

Entrepreneurial Cities in Canada
Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses
Mana Tulberg
2 min
Canada’s Top 10 Entrepreneurial Cities in 2014

Read the latest edition of Business Review Canada!

A study published in October 2014 by Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses, found most entrepreneurs were attracted to the advantages of certain locations, successful growth of communities, in conjunction with large and growing markets for their products.  Good public policy was also found critical in attracting entrepreneurs. 

The study by CFIB shows local taxes as one of the most burdensome types of strains for small businesses.  Many businesses are concerned about how government spending can affect taxes because a heavy tax burden increases operation costs and reduces businesses’ chance of success.

The second most important issue for small business owners found in the study is local government regulations, as regulation burdens tend to generate high costs to business owners in terms of time and money.

14 indicators* were used by CFIB for cities with a population of roughly 20,000 or more.  Each of the 14 data series is recast as index values between 100 (highest) and 0 (lowest).

Below is the result of CFIB’s study for Canada’s overall top-ranked entrepreneurial cities in 2014: 

  1. Calgary periphery: 70.8
  2. Edmonton periphery: 68.1
  3. Saskatoon: 64.1
  4. Regina: 61.6
  5. Kelowna: 61.2
  6. City of Edmonton: 60.7
  7. Toronto periphery: 59.7
  8. Guelph: 59.4
  9. City of Calgary: 59.1
  10. St John’s: 58.0

Throughout their study, CFIB has found entrepreneurial characteristics to be strongest in Canada’s urban areas.  What these areas were found to have in common is the newness of their economy in addition to the structure and cost of doing business.

Higher entrepreneurial activities are more present in cities with more resources.  Historically, when conditions in these favorable areas deteriorate, a strong base of experienced business owners are often found to become the pillars of their communities.

Changes in economy, technology and consumer behavior all play a significant part in a community’s development.  Nevertheless, a community’s growth is highly correlated with the entrepreneurial potentials created for its residents.

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*14 Indicators used by CFIB:

  1. Business establishment growth
  2. Business establishments per capita
  3. Self-employment as a percentage of total employment
  4. Information and cultural businesses
  5. Expected future business performance
  6. Future full-time hiring expectations
  7. Overall State of Business
  8. Commercial, Industrial and Institutional Building Permits
  9. Life Satisfaction
  10. Local government tax balance
  11. Cost of local government
  12. Local government sensitivity to local businesses
  13. Local government regulations
  14. BizPal (an online source of information for permits and licenses that may be required to start and grow a business.)

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Jun 21, 2021

How AWS helps NASCAR delight its fans

AWS
NASCAR
3 min
Customer obsession and working backwards from the customer is a mantra of Amazon Web Services (AWS), epitomizing its partnership with NASCAR

AWS needs no introduction to readers of Technology Magazine but we rarely get an opportunity to look closely at how it serves the sports sector. All major sports draw in a huge supporter base that they want to nurture and support. Technology is the key to every major sports organization and enabling this is the driving force for AWS, says Matt Hurst, Head of Global Sports Marketing and Communications for AWS. “In sports, as in every industry, machine learning and artificial intelligence and high performance computing are helping to usher in the next wave of technical sports innovation.”

AWS approaches sports in three principal areas. “The first is unlocking data’s potential: leagues and teams hold vast amounts of data and AWS is enabling them to analyze that data at scale and make better, more informed decisions. The second is engaging and delighting fans: with AWS fans are getting deeper insights through visually compelling on-screen graphics and interactive Second Screen experiences. And the third is rapidly improving sports performance: leagues and teams are using AWS to innovate like never before.”

Among the many global brands that partner with AWS are Germany's Bundesliga, the NFL, F1, the NHL, the PGA Tour and of course NASCAR. NASCAR has worked with AWS on its digital transformation (migrating it's 18 petabyte video archive containing 70 years of historical footage to AWS), to optimize its cloud data center operations and to enable its global brand expansion. AWS Media Services powers the NASCAR Drive mobile app, delivering broadcast-quality content for more than 80 million fans worldwide. The platform, including AWS Elemental MediaLive and AWS Elemental MediaStore, helps NASCAR provide fans instant access to the driver’s view of the race track during races, augmented by audio and a continually updated leaderboard. “And NASCAR will use our flagship machine learning service Amazon SageMaker to train deep learning models to enhance metadata and video analytics.”

Using AWS artificial intelligence and machine learning, NASCAR aims to deliver even more fan experiences that they'd never have anticipated. “Just imagine a race between Dale Earnhardt Sr and Dale Jr at Talladega! There's a bright future, and we're looking forward to working with NASCAR, helping them tap into AWS technology to continue to digitally transform, innovate and create even more fan experiences.”

Just as AWS is helping NASCAR bridge that historical gap between the legacy architecture and new technology, more customers are using AWS for machine learning than any other provider. As an example, who would have thought five years ago that NFL would be using  ML to predict and prevent injury to its players? Since 2017, the league has utilized AWS as its official cloud and ML provider for the NFL Next Gen Stats (NGS) platform, which provides real-time location data, speed, and acceleration for every player during every play on every inch of the field. “One of the most potentially revolutionary components of the NFL-AWS partnership,” says Matt Hurst, “is the development of the 'Digital Athlete,' a computer simulation model that can be used to replicate infinite scenarios within the game environment—including variations by position and environmental factors, emphasizing the league's commitment to player safety.”

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