Halton’s Q4 Economic Performance

Halton Region Economic Development staff issues a quarterly report that provides a snapshot of Halton’s economic performance with respect to development, labour force, and real estate markets.  (Sign-up here to receive it in your inbox!)

The following three measures highlight Halton’s economy during the 4th quarter of 2016:

  1. Development industry ends on a high note

More than 2,100 building permits were issued during the 4th quarter for projects totaling $596 million in construction value.  This represents an 8% increase in building permit construction value over the same period last year.  These projects included large-scale distribution centres in Halton Hills’ Premier Gateway business park and office buildings in Oakville, as well as several new residential condominiums.  Here are a few examples of the projects getting underway:

  • 516,000 square-foot distribution warehouse at 7954 Fifth Line, Halton Hills, Ontario, Canada ($29 million)
  • 370,000 square-foot distribution warehouse at 10793 Steeles Avenue, Halton Hills, Ontario, Canada ($15 million)
  • 41,000 square-foot flexible office building at 567 Michigan Drive, Oakville, Ontario, Canada ($2.5 million)


2. Labour market boost

Halton’s unemployment rate averaged 4.7% during the 4th quarter – a substantial 2.3 percentage point decline over the previous quarter and significantly below the overall Greater Toronto and Hamilton area (GTHA) average of 6.5% and 6.1% provincial average.  Labour market participation in Halton also improved during the quarter to reach 68% of Halton’s working-age population – again notably higher than the GTHA or provincial averages which stood at 64.9% and 64.7%, respectively.  Check out additional labour market stats and historical data in the Data Centre.

3. Industrial and office real estate activity builds momentum

The ongoing swell of construction activity across Halton continues to increase industrial and office real estate inventories throughout the region.  During the quarter, 7.5% of industrial space was available for lease, and the commercial office market had a vacancy rate of 23.6%. The increased building stock, combined with highly competitive market rents ($6.07/sq. ft. industrial, $17.75/sq. ft. office) are important factors contributing to increased absorption in industrial real estate to 1.4 million sq.ft. and office real estate by nearly 58,000 sq.ft.

Stay on top of Halton’s industrial and commercial real estate information by signing up to receive email updates to your inbox.

We’re here to help.  Contact us (email link) for assistance in expanding your business in Halton Region, or for additional information on the Halton economy.  For more detailed statistics, visit halton.ca/datacenter.

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Goal Setting for Your Business

putting-ideas-on-paperWhen it comes to taking action or pursuing new endeavours related to your business, it is important to stop to think about what you want to accomplish. Change for the sake of change may lead us down a road that does not meet any goal or objective and may have results that were not expected or considered. For example, let’s say you would like to paint and refurnish your office. You can just move forward and do it, or you can stop to ask yourself, how will this endeavour meet a personal or business goal? What are the results that I seek? What are the details of this action?

It is helpful to distinguish between goals and dreams. Goals have specific objectives. Dreams are often confused with goals; however, with dreams there are no actionable items. Dreams can be seen as wishes and in some cases they do not get done with the results we may have envisioned.

It is recommended to use the following criteria to help define your objectives and keep you on track. These will also help you to differentiate goals from dreams.  The criteria below can help define and measure the outcome, and determine whether or not to take action or change.


S = Specific; the details about the goal. What are you looking to accomplish?

M= Measurable; how much?  This could be sales, units, or something measurable.

A= Attainable; can this goal be met with existing resources?

R= Realistic; do we have the skills and resources to do this?

T= Timely; when will this goal be met?

In summary, when pursuing a new business venture or personal goal, try using the SMART system to work towards your goals.  The results may surprise you. Continue reading

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The new and improved Halton Business Blog

On February 16 we’re changing our blog name from The Halton Small Business Blog to The Halton Business Blog.  All of our social media accounts including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn have the same name so it’s easy to find and follow us.

We’ll continue to provide expert tips and advice and resources to help Halton entrepreneurs start and grow their small business as well as new content in the form of our Data Insights feature posts.  Data Insights will provide local businesses and businesses looking to expand or relocate to the Greater Toronto area with the relevant facts and accurate data they need to make informed decisions.   Read our Data Insights blogs and contributions from guest bloggers to find out what makes Halton one of the best places in Canada to do business! Continue reading

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The Halton Region Small Business Centre Celebrates International Women’s Day

women-entrepreneursInternational Women’s Day is Wednesday, March 8, 2017.  It’s a day to celebrate the cultural, economic, social and political achievements of women all over the globe.  The Halton Region Small Business Centre will once again recognize this annual celebration by hosting a business event on Wednesday, March 8, specifically directed to female entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneurship across the Generations is the 2017 theme for the Halton Region Small Business Centre International Women’s Day Event. Participants are encouraged to network, build connections, share stories and meet other small business owners in the community. The event will also feature inspiring guest speakers and interactive workshops. Continue reading

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The Halton Region Small Business Centre is hosting Foodiepreneur: The Business of Food

foodIf you want to learn the best recipe for starting and running a successful food business, join us on March 28 for our unique event, Foodiepreneur: The Business of Food.

Connect and network with others in the food sector and learn important information about food safety, rules and regulations such as required licenses and permits.  You will hear from a panel of experts about funding opportunities, programs and services, how to connect to local farmers and the hot topic for 2017 – the commercial kitchen.

Two local spotlight speakers will share some of their personal business experiences while opening and running a successful food business:

Tess Gonzalez – Bread ‘N Batter

As the founder of Bread ‘n Batter, Tess has always had a passion for baking and has been experimenting with various recipes for as long as she was allowed to use an oven. Between her passion for baking and full-time employment as a Productivity and Quality Facilitator, her desire to serve the community her freshly baked goods could no longer be contained.  http://www.breadnbatter.ca/ Continue reading

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Data Insights – Halton Sector Heat Maps available on Data Centre

data-centre-bannerCheck out the Halton Data Centre for a new, interactive mapping tool showcasing Halton’s priority industry sectors. These maps are the first in an ongoing series of heat maps that display industry sector distributions across Halton. The maps that are currently available show Halton’s Advanced Manufacturing, Financial Services and Information and Communications Technology sectors. Continue reading

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Data Insights – Halton Business statistics available on Data Centre

data-centreCheck out the Halton Data Centre for new information on Halton’s business community.  The series of new Halton Business data tables includes information about:

  • the number, size, location, growth and industry of businesses in Halton,
  • halton business performance and projections,

top employers, exporters, and multinational companies in Halton A few highlights include:

  1. Halton has a robust and diversified business community

In 2015 Halton was home to over 13,000 businesses and organizations.. Wholesale/retail, education/healthcare, and manufacturing are Halton’s main industry sectors, accounting for nearly half of all businesses.  Overall, 88% of Halton’s business community was service-based while 12% were in the goods-producing industries.

  1. Halton businesses are performing well

Halton businesses performed well in 2016, with a third of surveyed businesses hiring additional staff and 42% seeing profit increases. Additionally, 34% of surveyed business owners plan to invest in growth over the next 12 months by making facility expansions, relocating or adding inventories and 70% are making productivity investments through skills training, technology, machinery and equipment, or R&D.  Business bankruptcy has also declined steadily over the past five years, reaching only 40 cases throughout Halton in 2015.

  1. Strong business growth throughout Halton, particularly in Milton and Halton Hills

Halton Region averaged 10% net business growth from 2011 to 2015 with approximately 5300 new business locations established during that period. Growth was strongest in the north Halton communities of Milton and Halton Hills, who each experienced net business growth of 17%.

We’re here to help!

For additional information on Halton’s business community and to access detailed statistics, visit halton.ca/datacenter, or submit a request for a Custom Report and we can assist you in making informed decisions for your business. Depending on availability, we can provide customized historical, industry, community, real estate and business data.


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