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Canada's Next Generation of Small Businesses Want High Tech And High Touch

September 29, 2010

News Releases

Majority of young entrepreneurs highlight dedicated support and
remote connectivity “must-haves” when running a small business,
benchmark study concludes

TORONTO, Sept. 29 /CNW/ – Results from a benchmark study conducted by
Angus Reid Public Opinion on behalf of Rogers Communications, released
in time for Small Business Month, have found that while an overwhelming
93 per cent of 18-34-year-old small business owners are leveraging
advanced wireless solutions to keep them future forward, close to 90 per
cent say they prefer to go back to basics as customers, wanting direct
service and support from the companies they purchase from.

Additional survey findings reveal that young entrepreneurs ranked
personal service (68 per cent) and access to dedicated customer support
when making purchases (55 per cent) among the top three most important
deciding factors when choosing vendors, suppliers and providers. 

“In business, every second counts. Our customers have told us they need
the solutions that enable them to take advantage of even those small
blocks of time and the support that lets them get back to their
business,” says Gordon Stein, Vice President, Business Segment, Rogers
Communications. “At Rogers, we understand that seamless, reliable and
fast connectivity, combined with the best devices and personal,
dedicated support is imperative for all small businesses to stay
competitive, productive and ultimately help them succeed.”

Building on the commitment to providing small business customers with
the support and resources they need, Rogers today unveiled RedBoard™ Biz
(redboardbiz.rogers.com), a
new corporate blog designed to provide business customers with business
news, industry trends and key product and service information and the
opportunity to comment and share ideas. 

Earlier this year, Rogers introduced Live Agent™, a
dedicated support program specifically for business customers designed
to ensure immediate, real-time assistance with specially-trained service
representatives. Live Agent™ is currently available to all
business customers. Details can be found at www.rogers.com/liveagent.

Upwardly Mobile

The study also found that while the majority of all small business
owners (56 per cent) maintain a combination of wired and wireless
connectivity, those between the ages of 18-34 (20 per cent) have cut the
cord completely, operating wireless workplaces through devices including
Rocket™ sticks, wireless hubs, smartphones, laptops and Wi-Fi networks.
Another 11 per cent report they plan to cut the cord completely in the
next six to twelve months.

“The next generation of Canadian small businesses is leveraging the
latest advancements in wireless technologies to drive the shift from
traditional work environments to anywhere, anytime connectivity,” says
Stein. “Rogers is proud to support small businesses with our reliable
networks, devices and support solutions.”

Additional Key Survey Findings:

  • Embracing mobile technologies and enabling a mobile workforce each
    come with tangible benefits. Small business owners surveyed cited
    increased employee productivity (61 per cent), higher employee
    satisfaction (50 per cent), and cost savings (50 per cent) among the
    top three advantages to mobilizing their businesses and having staff
    work remotely. 
  • Fifty-seven per cent of owners currently invest in mobile technology
    and another eight per cent say they plan to invest. Business owners in
    Ontario are more likely to invest in mobile technology for all
    employees (32 per cent). Those owners in British Columbia and Alberta
    report the highest incidences (63 per cent) of enabling employees to
    work remotely.
  • Canadian small businesses are going global. Eighteen per cent of
    survey respondents said they operate in the U.S. and 17 per cent
    combined operate internationally in Europe, Asia, South and Central
    America
    and the Caribbean. Six per cent of owners said they travel
    internationally for business quarterly; while nine per cent say they
    travel to the U.S. on a quarterly basis.
  • Small businesses connect virtually anywhere. Eleven per cent of owners
    said they have worked at the gym and 40 per cent have worked in parks
    and public spaces.
  • Value (84 per cent) and reliability (83 per cent) trump cost among the
    top ratings when purchasing technology. While value is sky high in
    Quebec (91 per cent) and among French speakers (94 per cent),
    Quebecers are the most influenced by brand name.
  • On a national basis, Atlantic Canadian small business owners are the
    most likely to operate totally wirelessly (17 per cent).
  • The top three most important technologies for managing the small
    business are laptops (55 per cent), backups (42 per cent) and
    smartphones (37 per cent). Young adults aged 18-34 are the leading
    business adopters of smartphones (50 per cent), mobile internet (25
    per cent), laptops (70 per cent), tablets (23 per cent) and fleet GPS
    devices (20 per cent).
  • While voice remains the number one cellphone application in terms of
    importance (79 per cent), nearly half of small business owners are
    turning to their mobiles for data (48 per cent), followed by texting
    (31 per cent) and browsing the web (28 per cent).

According to Statistics Canada, as of December 2009, there were more
than 2.4 million business establishments in Canada and small businesses
of 100 employees or less comprise 98 percent of all the businesses in
Canada.1

About the Survey

From September 1 to September 2, 2010, Angus Reid Public Opinion
conducted an online survey among 503 randomly selected Canadian small
business owners who are Angus Reid Forum panelists. The margin of
error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 4.4 per cent, 19 times
out of 20. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

About Rogers Communication Inc.

Rogers Communications is a diversified Canadian communications and media
company. We are Canada’s largest provider of wireless voice and data
communications services and one of Canada’s leading providers of cable
television, high-speed Internet and telephony services. Through Rogers
Media we are engaged in radio and television broadcasting, televised
shopping, magazines and trade publications, and sports entertainment. We
are publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: RCI.A and RCI.B)
and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: RCI). For further information
about the Rogers group of companies, please visit www.rogers.com

1 Source: Statistics Canada, Business Register, December 2009.