All Articles

Defy the downturn! Best business bets in tough times

    PROFIT Magazine presents its 13th annual opportunity guide, available now

    TORONTO, Dec. 1 /CNW/ - Does the current economic crisis have you
convinced now is not the time to even contemplate growth or expansion? Maybe
you believe the old adage that the only sure bets for businesses during a
recession are coffins and liquor. In fact, there are many businesses that
actually thrive in a recession-and other sectors that are hot enough to melt
through any economic chill that comes their way.
    What are an entrepreneurs best bets for startups, expansions and new
sales? PROFIT Magazine's 13th annual opportunity guide tells opportunistic
business people what they need to know.-   Affordable food is a key sector to get into or to sell to. Low-cost
        comfort foods (canned soup, macaroni and cheese, staples) and fast
        food and family restaurants do very well in a recession. Health
        foods, such as rice cakes and protein bars will also outperform as
        consumers maintain a focus on their well-being.

    -   Cell phones and PDAs: These are no longer luxuries. Canadians now
        regard them as essentials, so wireless devices, accessories and
        services will continue to thrive.

    -   When it comes to health care, more pain means more gain. Health care
        spending in Canada is huge. Baby boomers are getting older and
        needing more care, hospitals and community clinics are continuing to
        be built. As record-keeping and prescription-filling goes electronic,
        more computer hardware and software are required. Eco-friendly health
        care devices and services will be big. More nurses and practitioners
        will need training, and with the shortage of doctors and other
        practitioners, videoconferencing equipment will be booming.

    -   Sell outsourced services. When large companies downsize they still
        need employees to perform essential tasks, so companies that provide
        such services or help companies find service providers or temporary
        staff will see an uptick in business during the downturn.
        Furthermore, companies will replace their internal operations with
        outsourced services simply to obtain more financial flexibility.

    Other opportunities: During a recession, with cutbacks, downsizing and
    bankruptcies, a lot of great talent end up on the street. Even among
    those workers who haven't lost their jobs, they might very well be ready
    to jump an apparently leaky ship. Here's your chance to nab quality
    people that are hard to find during boom times. And their salary
    expectations may be lower, too.For more tips from PROFIT magazine on business opportunities, get the
issue on newsstands Dec. 8 or go to and look for the "Help for
Hard Times" section.

    About PROFIT

    PROFIT: Your Guide to Business Success is Canada's preeminent publication
dedicated to the management issues and opportunities facing small and
mid-sized businesses. For more than 25 years, Canadian entrepreneurs across a
vast array of economic sectors have remained loyal to PROFIT because it's a
timely and reliable source of actionable information that helps them increase
their revenues, boost their profitability and get the recognition they deserve
for generating positive economic and social change. Published six times a year
by Rogers Publishing Ltd., PROFIT is distributed almost exclusively to the
chief executives of companies with 5 to 250 employees and annual revenue of $1
million to $25 million, reaching more than 300,000 readers across Canada.
Visit PROFIT online at