Ontario Construction News staff writer
Google is investing in Canada, with three new offices and significant funding for digital skills programming for Canadians. The news coincides with the launch of new research about Google’s impact on the Canadian economy.
Ruth Porat, senior vice president and CFO at Google, was in Toronto on Thursday to announce the construction of offices in Montreal at 425 Viger Avenue, in Toronto at 65 King Street East and in Waterloo across from its current space on Breithaupt Street.
“The open web allows any size company or individual creator in Canada to become a global business and reach customers,” Porat said.
“Canada’s digital economy is now bigger than its forestry, mining and gas industries, and the transition to digital reflects incredible momentum for Canadian businesses leveraging data and online technologies.”
The Montreal and Toronto offices will replace Google’s existing facilities in those cities.
By 2022, Google’s Canadian offices will accommodate up to 5,000 employees. Google has a long history of investing north of the border. Google opened its first Canadian office in Toronto In 2001, with one employee. Nineteen years later, Google employs more than 1,500 people including engineers, game developers, sales leaders and AI researchers.
According to research from Public First, Google’s search and advertising products helped generate an estimated $23 billion CAD in annual economic activity for more than 500,000 businesses in Canada last year alone – a total impact equivalent to approximately 1.1 percent of Canada’s entire GDP.
Google.org is also announcing today a $2.5 million grant for NPower Canada, a charitable organization that launches under served young adults into meaningful and sustainable careers. The grant will go towards scholarships for the IT Support Professional Certificate and the IT Au-tomation with Python certificate, to equip Canadians with in-demand tech skills to land new jobs in Canada’s booming digital economy.
“We’re investing directly in programs that support digital skills training for all Canadians,” says Sabrina Geremia, VP of Google Canada.
“We’re excited to partner with NPower Canada, which has a strong track-record of supporting successful digital careers in IT, and meeting the ongoing demands of Canadian em-ployers.”
Google will also be launching the first Google for Startups Accelerator in Canada. The Accelerator will be based in Waterloo, and will be Google’s 12th accelerator globally. Google has been working with Canadian founders and ecosystem partners to invest in their potential so more Canadian startups can grow, scale and reach global success.
“Google is committed to helping the Canadian startup ecosystem thrive by investing in an Accelerator in Waterloo,” says Steve Woods, Canada Engineering and Waterloo Site Lead. “As the Toronto-Waterloo corridor continues to be a global centre of tech talent and innovation, it’s the perfect place for us to expand our footprint and help grow the next generation of founders in Canada.”
Tony LaMantia, President & CEO, Waterloo EDC said Google has be-come a major, collaborative anchor in the region’s tech scene.
“More importantly, it has strengthened our ecosystem by becoming a magnet for great local and global talent. I congratulate Google for their Waterloo expansion and, along with my peers in Toronto and Montreal, commend their commitment to the Canadian tech scene with genuine enthusiasm.”