The Most Profitable Industries in Canada

Canada offers a tremendous opportunity for entrepreneurs looking to start a business. Whatever your background is, with the right vision and work ethics, you can find a profitable business opportunity that fits your unique skills set.

These five industries are worth thinking about if you’re starting a new venture in Canada. Get inspired!

Transportation and Storage

The transportation and storage industry comprise passenger transportation services and the shipping of goods, as well as warehousing and storing products. One nice thing about this industry is you can start small, purchasing a single truck and soliciting a handful of customers, then you can quickly expand by hiring more drivers and putting more trucks on the road as your customer base grows.

Don't think you have to limit your services to trucking. Transportation companies are making money on Canada's waterways, too.

Storage is another option that allows you to start small, renting modest warehouse space and growing at your own pace.

According to the Canadian government, more than 86percent of small- and medium-sized enterprises engaged in transportation and storage are profitable as of 2017, with average yearly revenues exceeding $279,000.

In starting a transportation business, you would need to decide on the type of transportation business you would want to go into, which includes taxi service, medical transport, courier service, bus company or trucking. You would need to carry out due diligence and determine which registration, license and permit you would need before starting the business.

Here is a list of some of Canada’s fastest-growing transportation and logistics companies in based on their reported revenue:

Energy Transportation Group

  • Revenue (2017): $50M–$100M
  • Headquarters: Montreal, Quebec
  • What it does: Transports freight by ocean, air, rail and road

Custom Delivery Solutions

  • Revenue (2017): $5M–$10M
  • Headquarters: Alberta, Ontario
  • What it does: Provides delivery services specializing in furniture and appliances

Gigg Express

  • Revenue (2017): $100M–$200M
  • Headquarters: Mississauga, Ontario
  • What it does: Provides freight transportation and logistics services in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico

Joseph Haulage Canada

  • Revenue (2017): $50–$100M
  • Headquarters: Hamilton, Ontario
  • What it does: Transports bulk construction materials

Centurion Trucking

  • Revenue (2017): $10M–$20M
  • Headquarters: Surrey, British Columbia
  • What it does: Provides freight transportation services across North America, primarily for food and beverage clients

Passport Trucking

  • Revenue (2017): $5M–$10M
  • Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario
  • What it does: Provides container transportation services for import and export shipments

Business Support Services and Waste Management

An unavoidable by-product of a growing economy is the accumulation of waste; as businesses expand, more paper gets used, old electronic devices get tossed in favour of newer models, construction debris pile up from adding new office space, and so on. Waste is never going away, meaning there’s plenty of opportunity for environmentally conscious entrepreneurs to help the planet and make a nice profit doing it.

According to the Canadian government, more than 86 percent of small- and medium-sized enterprises engaged in waste management are profitable as of 2017, with average yearly revenues being $336,800.

Includes: Office administrative services, cleaning, facilities support, employment services, travel arrangement services, security, waste collection and disposal.

Here is a list of some of Canada's fastest-growing companies in this industry based on their reported revenue:

  • TEEMA Solutions Group
    Revenue (2016): $50M–$100M
    Headquarters: Vancouver, British Columbia
    What it does: Provides permanent and contract staffing services
  • Absolute Industrial Automation
    Revenue (2016): $5M–$10M
    Headquarters: Windsor, Ontario
    What it does: Designs, builds and integrates custom industrial equipment for manufacturers
  • Green Standards
    Revenue (2016): $5M–$10M
    Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario
    What it does: Helps large organizations donate, resell and recycle unwanted office furniture
  • Seasonal Impact
    Revenue (2016): $5M–$10M
    Headquarters: Sherwood Park, Alberta
    What it does: Provides landscape development and maintenance services for residential, commercial and industrial clients

Professional and Consulting Services

Do you have a professional skill, such as accounting, marketing, management consulting, or conducting scientific research? If so, you might consider starting a business in which you sell your knowledge and expertise as human capital. If you can help businesses save on taxes, streamline their accounting and payroll processes, improve their managerial strengths, or innovate new products, you can find clients to pay you handsomely for your skills and know-how.

Another benefit of a professional services business is that if you are a lifetime learner, you can continuously update your skills set to ensure you remain in demand no matter which direction the economic winds shift or what new technology comes down the pipe.

As of 2016, small- and medium-sized professional service businesses are doing well in Canada, with nearly 88 percent of them being profitable and their average annual revenue tipping the scales at nearly $260,000.

Includes: Legal services, accounting, architectural services, management consulting services, scientific research and advertising.

Average revenue: $259,400

Here is a list of some of Canada's fastest-growing companies in this industry based on their reported revenue:

Optimus SBR

  • Revenue (2016): $20M–$50M
  • Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario
  • What it does: Delivers management-consulting services to private and public companies

Bennett Design

  • Revenue (2016): $5M–$10M
  • Headquarters: Uxbridge, Ontario
  • What it does: Offers interior design services and workplace strategy consulting for businesses

Isaac Operations

  • Revenue (2016): $2M–$5M
  • Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario
  • What it does: Consults companies on improving operations and financial processes

Scribendi.com

  • Revenue (2016): $5M–$10M
  • Headquarters: Chatham, Ontario
  • What it does: Delivers online proofreading and editing services

Arcane

  • Revenue (2016): $10M–$20M
  • Headquarters: London, Ontario
  • What it does: Helps companies increase sales via digital marketing campaigns

Keyspire

  • Revenue (2016): $10M–$20M
  • Headquarters: Cambridge, Ontario
  • What it does: Provides education and an online community for real estate investors

Real Estate and Construction

Another corollary of a flourishing economy arises from people buying, renting and renovating houses, condos, and office space. Companies in this sector are primarily engaged in constructing, repairing and renovating buildings and engineering works, and in subdividing and developing the land. Real estate professionals help people buy and sell properties, manage rental or investment real estate, and serve as intermediaries between buyers and sellers.

If you have experience in the construction business in your home country, construction or real estate sector might be your ticket to a lucrative market in Canada.

According to the government statistics, 85 % made money in 2016, pulling in average revenue of $181,000 in real estate business. Around 82% of construction businesses made around $427,000 in revenues in 2016.

The construction business is quite challenging and competitive, however, you should think of the type of construction service you would want to offer – from general contracting to a highly specialized kind of restoration. However, this kind of business would require licenses and permits.

Here is a list of some of Canada’s fastest-growing companies in this industry based on their reported revenue:

Gillam Group

  • Revenue (2016): $50M–$100M
  • Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario
  • What it does: Builds institutional, commercial, industrial and residential structures in Ontario

Bronte Construction

  • Revenue (2016): $10M–$20M
  • Headquarters: Oakville, Ontario
  • What it does: Provides civil and environmental construction services

QuickContractors.com

  • Revenue (2016): $10M–$20M
  • Headquarters: Guelph, Ontario
  • What it does: Connects businesses with contractors, assemblers and installers of furniture, appliances and other fixtures

Home Painters Toronto

  • Revenue (2016): $2M–$5M
  • Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario
  • What it does: Provides painting and handyman services for residential and commercial spaces

Rockwood Custom Homes

  • Revenue (2016): $20M–$50M
  • Headquarters: Calgary, Alberta
  • What it does: Builds and renovates luxury homes

Accommodation and Food Services

This sector comprises establishments primarily engaged in: providing short-term lodging and complementary services to travellers, vacationers and others, in facilities such as hotels, motor hotels, resorts, motels, casino hotels, bed and breakfast accommodation, housekeeping cottages and cabins, recreational vehicle parks and campgrounds, hunting and fishing camps, and various types of recreational and adventure camps.

This sector also comprises establishments primarily engaged in preparing meals, snacks, and beverages, to customer order, for immediate consumption on and off the premises.

In 2016, the Canadian government reports, roughly 70% of those that did well, numbers were strong around $618,000 in average annual revenue — the highest amount of all industries profiled. The takeaway is that this industry requires a lot of dedication and hard work, but if you bring that to the table, the sky's the limit. 

Here is a list of some of Canada’s fastest-growing companies in this industry based on their reported revenue:

CanaDream

  • Revenue (2016): $20M–$50M
  • Headquarters: Rocky View County, Alberta
  • What it does: Provides RV rentals and sales to individuals and travel industry professionals

Atlantis Programs & Pedalheads

  • Revenue (2016): $5M–$10M
  • Headquarters: Vancouver, British Columbia
  • What it does: Operates bike camps, swimming lessons and other recreation programs for kids

Famoso Pizzeria

  • Revenue (2016): $2M–$5M
  • Headquarters: Richmond, British Columbia
  • What it does: Franchises a chain of pizza restaurants across Canada

Blush Lane Organic Market

  • Revenue (2016): $20M–$50M
  • Headquarters: Calgary, Alberta
  • What it does: Operates organic and natural food grocery stores

Conclusion

Canada offers a great diversity of economies and businesses opportunities, one of which is bound to be right for you. All the different sectors mentioned here offer unique and viable options that can be turned into great reward. One of the greatest rewards is the autonomy to be in charge of your own destiny and success. Being a business owner lets you turn your passions into lifelong lucrative careers. The key is to find the business that is right for you.

It is important to remember that in starting any business, you are responsible for doing your due diligence and finding out what types of registration, licensing and permits you need before starting the business. But once you do the work with diligence and dedication, you too can be a Canadian success story.

If you want to establish a new business, buy out an existing Canadian business and come to Canada to manage your business, contact Sobirovs Law Firm to see how we can help you!