The Silicon Valley of the North

There are now multiple contenders for the Silicon Valley of the North title: Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, and Edmonton are among the fastest growing talent pools for tech in North America, according to a new report from CBRE Group. 

Background: CBRE Group, an American real estate and investment firm, compiled data on North America’s 50 largest tech markets between 2015 and 2020. The report tracks the these tech hubs’ labour markets, and other metrics like average salary and diversity. 

By the numbers: 

  • Canadian cities took 3 of the top 5 spots in ranking for tech markets that gained the most talent, with Toronto taking the top spot, Montreal third, and Vancouver fourth.
  • Smaller, but growing markets for tech talent in Canada are Edmonton with a 53.3% growth rate—the highest among the 50 markets compiled—and Calgary, with a 17.9% growth from 2015-2020. Which of these cities will call themselves the Silicon Valley of the North West?
  • Montreal’s tech market, which is the second-largest in Canada, grew ~31% from 2015-2020.
  • Vancouver sits somewhere between Canada’s small and large markets with around 91,000 tech workers and a ~36% growth between 2015-2020, and Ottawa at 74,000 workers with a 22.5% growth rate.
  • Ottawa was ranked the most concentrated tech talent market in North America—that’s the Shopify effect, for you. 

Zoom out: While SF and NYC have retained their statuses as popular tech hubs, smaller cities like Waterloo’s and Edmonton’s tech labour markets have seen massive gains over the past five years.