Mitel, Shopify lead Ottawa firms in R&D spending

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Five Ottawa firms were among the top 100 Canadian R&D spenders in 2016, according to the latest annual report released by Research Infosource.

Mitel led the local crop in 24th place, spending $129 million in R&D in fiscal 2016. That’s a slight drop from its No. 20 position the previous year.

Shopify was the next Ottawa entry at No. 28, a significant jump from No. 49 a year ago. The Ottawa e-commerce giant spent $98.5 million in R&D, an increase of 88.9 per cent year-over-year. The firm’s R&D spending worked out to 19.1 per cent of its revenue that year.

Further down the list was Kinaxis in 68th place, a bump from No. 77 last year. The firm increased its R&D spending 36.5 per cent to $29.3 million, which also made up 19.1 per cent of its revenue.

Shopify and Kinaxis also shared honours on a list released last week ranking the country’s fastest growing firms. Both companies were named “tech leaders” in Deloitte’s Fast 50 Technology list.

Rounding out the top 100 R&D spenders for Ottawa were Halogen Software (now Saba Software) and Espial Group at Nos. 91 and 92, respectively.

Research Infosource said it obtained its information through annual reports, financial statements, securities commission filings and surveys, which means its list is largely restricted to publicly traded companies.

Topping the list nationally was Bombardier, at $1.97 billion.

Multinationals continue to spend

A number of global firms with R&D presences in Ottawa were also high on this year’s list.

At No. 5 was BCE with $518.9 million in spending, followed next by Pratt & Whitney Canada, Rogers Communications and IBM Canada.

BlackBerry Ltd. closed out this year’s top 10 with $405.4 million in spending, a substantial decrease from the previous year’s $599.7 million.

Further down this year’s list were Ericsson (11), Open Text (15), TELUS (20), CAE (21) Cisco (22), Huawei Canada (25), Microsemi Storage Solutions (47), Thales Canada (58) and Lockheed Martin Canada (90).