There are more than 500 companies in the Nova Scotia Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector. In 2006, Nova Scotia had Canada’s fastest growing ICT industry quantified by a 5.4% cent growth rate in provincial GDP. The sector now provides employment for approximately 15,000 people in most urban and rural areas of the province.
The software and services subsector provides over half of the jobs. Among software companies, the majority work in databases, data warehousing, data mining and e-commerce applications. Most service providers are in consulting, computer programming and internet web page design. A number of firms work in security, engineering and geomatics and other specialties.
Nearshore outsourcing and direct investment have been vitally important to the growth of the ICT sector in Nova Scotia. Many international firms have recognized the benefits of Nova Scotia’s location, quality of life, political stability, number of IT graduates, low costs and supportive governments.
For all these reasons, Nova Scotia is a choice location for international and home-grown ICT firms. Research In Motion (RIM) recently opened a new 1200-person technical support operations centre, joining Keane, CGI, EDS and Register.com and others that have established facilities in the province.
The result is a broad mix of ICT companies across the province. 75% of firms have 25 or fewer employees, but even the smaller companies are exporting. Markets are dispersed more widely than other sectors, selling in all parts the United States and around the world. The ICT sector holds great promise for Nova Scotia.
Trade Team Nova Scotia Representative: Nova Scotia Business Inc.
Industry Association: the Information Technology Association of Nova Scotia (ITANS)