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Head of the class

Winnipeg added new HQ jobs faster than any other major Canadian city

The Business Council of Manitoba says Winnipeg is lucky to have a significant number of company headquarters here, including Great-West Life’s.

JOHN WOODS / THE CANADIAN PRESS FILES

The Business Council of Manitoba says Winnipeg is lucky to have a significant number of company headquarters here, including Great-West Life’s.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 5/2/2016 (1045 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Winnipeg added new head-office jobs at a faster rate than any other major Canadian city in 2014, a new report from Statistics Canada states.

The report, titled Annual Head Office Survey 2014, says Winnipeg gained 391 new head-office positions during that year, which is the latest for which numbers are available.

That boosted the total head-office head count by 5.8 per cent to 7,186 workers from 6,795 in 2013, which was nearly six times the national average growth rate of one per cent. Vancouver was a distant second among the eight major cities surveyed, with growth of 2.6 per cent.

The study also shows Manitoba was one of the top performers among the provinces. Its head-office employment jumped by 420 workers, or six per cent, to 7,478 from 7,058. The only province to boast a faster growth rate in 2014 was Newfoundland and Labrador, at 9.3 per cent.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 5/2/2016 (1045 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Winnipeg added new head-office jobs at a faster rate than any other major Canadian city in 2014, a new report from Statistics Canada states.

The report, titled Annual Head Office Survey 2014, says Winnipeg gained 391 new head-office positions during that year, which is the latest for which numbers are available.

That boosted the total head-office head count by 5.8 per cent to 7,186 workers from 6,795 in 2013, which was nearly six times the national average growth rate of one per cent. Vancouver was a distant second among the eight major cities surveyed, with growth of 2.6 per cent.

The study also shows Manitoba was one of the top performers among the provinces. Its head-office employment jumped by 420 workers, or six per cent, to 7,478 from 7,058. The only province to boast a faster growth rate in 2014 was Newfoundland and Labrador, at 9.3 per cent.

For confidentiality reasons, the Statistics Canada report doesn’t disclose which local companies added head-office jobs in 2014. But the numbers show all the job growth was within existing head-office operations because the number of head offices in Winnipeg and Manitoba didn’t change from 2013 to 2014. It held steady at 90 for Winnipeg and 108 for Manitoba.

The president and CEO of one of the province’s leading business groups — the Business Council of Manitoba — also couldn’t say for sure which local companies added head-office positions in 2014.

But Don Leitch said it was likely some of the province’s biggest employers who were also doing well in 2014. That includes firms such as Great-West Life, Investors Group and Manitoba Telecom Services.

"I would think in terms of absolute numbers, those would be the ones having the biggest number of (head-office job) increases,’ he added.

Leitch said Manitoba is fortunate in that it has a significant number of companies that are headquartered here, have been here for decades, and do business nationally and internationally. Other examples would be companies such as Richardson International, Cargill Canada and New Flyer Industries.

"They’re indicative of the Manitoba economy, which is stable. None of the boom, none of the bust,’ he added. "They provide us with an economic base, stability and resilience.’

Leitch said it will be interesting to see what Manitoba’s head-office employment numbers are like for 2015, which wasn’t nearly as economically buoyant as 2014.

"But I’d be surprised if we’ve slipped very much given how we’re holding our own (economically) vis-a-vis what some of the other provinces are going through,’ he added.

Manitoba’s chief statistician, Wilf Falk, said if you combine 2013 and 2014, Manitoba had the strongest head-office employment growth of any province for that two-year period. Head-office employment grew by 750 workers, or a hefty 11.1 per cent.

He noted that during that same period, head-office employment declined by 0.5 per cent in Saskatchewan, the province to which Manitoba is most often compared. As a result, Manitoba now has more head-office jobs than Saskatchewan.

Another thing worth noting is head-office jobs often include a lot of well-paying positions.

"A head office would have the (company’s) accountants, it would have other staff like lawyers, and the CEO would be there, and his or her executive team would be there,’ Falk said.

Statistics Canada said Ontario still boasts the largest number of head offices (1,084) and head-office employees (94,549). Rounding out the top three are Quebec (586 head offices with 52,072 employees) and Alberta (395 head offices with 41,412 employees). 

Among the major cities, Toronto had the most head offices (696) and the most head-office employees (74,603). Montreal was second with 386 head offices and 41,276 head-office employees.

murray.mcneill@freepress.mb.ca

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History

Updated on Friday, February 5, 2016 at 8:21 AM CST: Adds photo

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