Toronto-Waterloo innovation corridor highlighted in 2022 Startup Genome rankings

University of Waterloo support for startup community, vision and values reflected in GSER top-20 rank 

By Jon Parsons University Relations

The Toronto-Waterloo innovation corridor has been recognized as one of the world’s premier locations to start a company.

A recently released report ranks the region top in Canada for startups and among the fastest growing in North America.

The ranking lists the University of Waterloo as a key player in the innovation corridor because of its unique entrepreneurial culture and as host to the largest post-secondary co-op program in Canada.

OpenText and eSentire, both University of Waterloo spinoffs, are listed among the main companies contributing to the overall Toronto-Waterloo ecosystem valuation at $46 billion USD.

"Innovation and entrepreneurship have long been drivers for our region, and we are proud of the role our institution has played in preparing and empowering talent and technology," says Vivek Goel, president and vice-chancellor of the University of Waterloo. "This latest recognition is a reflection of the important work being done by community, private sector and government and industry partners to foster Canada’s high-tech sector."

The ranking notes that while well-established startup locales in Silicon Valley and New York continue to lead the pack, "North American founders are increasingly choosing to set up outside of established leading ecosystems and are creating new thriving hubs of innovation."

Startup Genome’s founder and CEO, J.F. Gauthier, offered a glowing review of the Toronto-Waterloo startup ecosystem, specifically highlighting some of the major entrepreneurial incubators in the region. 

"Toronto-Waterloo is Canada’s leading startup ecosystem, ranking as number 17 globally due to an impressive growth of 128 per cent," Gauthier says.

One key to the region’s ongoing success as a hub for innovation is its multiculturalism, which the report notes is driven by Canada’s social-democratic values, in turn attracting talent from around the world.

As a hotbed for talent, the region has seen a flourishing of new companies working in AI, cybersecurity, fintech, healthtech and sustainability.

Startup Genome’s 2022 Global Startup Ecosystem Report compares some of the world’s major innovation regions, including Silicon Valley, New York, London and other major entrepreneurial ecosystems.


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