Emerging, distinctive, and specialized
Immersed in natural assets and anchored in a vibrant tourism economy, Squamish is uniquely positioned for the outdoor recreation sector.
From rec tech and performance apparel, to adventure media, marketing and film, companies in Squamish not only benefit from the inspiring landscape, but from a passionate workforce and a tried-and-true testing ground for their products and services.
Squamish is the perfect arena for the outdoor recreation sector, boasting an inspiring natural setting, a passionate and professional community of outdoor enthusiasts, and world-class sporting events and amenities, it provides an ideal proving ground for recreation technology and performance apparel businesses. A combination of product user experience and proximity to user markets allows innovators and designers to keep a finger on the pulse for product development and industry trends.
There aren’t many places where you can just walk out the door to test the prototypes.
Squamish outdoor recreation evolution
Squamish’s enviable geographic and recreational assets and quality of life amenities have been key to the emerging local outdoor recreation economy. Activities are supported by an increasingly diverse cluster of companies, from consumer products to business services and green initiatives. The common thread is that these businesses focus not only on product, but on lifestyle; increasing awareness and engagement by using the natural resources to link to consumer trends in fitness and environmental sustainability.
Everybody in town is in the mountains everyday, mountain biking, rock climbing, kite boarding, you name it. We are shaping Squamish into something totally different, totally new and exciting.
Matt Maddaloni, Sea to Sky Cable Cam
BC's unique position in outdoor recreation
BC and Vancouver in particular are home to a substantial apparel industry that is the 4th-largest component of the province’s manufacturing sector. There are an estimated 436 firms in BC, employing approximately 7,642 people.
In addition to apparel, over 100 sporting and athletic goods manufacturers call BC home, and the province is ranked third in the nation after Ontario and Quebec, with over half located in the Greater Vancouver area. In 2019, the BC Apparel and Gear Association launched to help scale up and promote the performance apparel and gear sector in BC.
With targeted financial support through tax credits for film, TV, and VFX production offered by the provincial government, BC is home to the third-largest film and TV industry in North America. Over 25,000 people are employed in the Entertainment and Digital Media sector in the province. And, as one of the biggest visual effects industries in the world, BC has more than 80 VFX studios.
Canada excels in outdoor recreation
The collective outdoor recreation industry is conservatively estimated to produce $24.6 billion in economic activity for Canada each year, generating an estimated 472,713 direct jobs, $7.1 billion in taxes and $52.1 billion in total revenues. Canadian Outdoor Recreation Trade Associations Form New Coalition - MMIC
Canadian exports of sporting and athletic goods (excluding apparel) amounted to approximately $500 million and accounted for $2.3B in imports in 2020. Canada is home to over 250 sporting and athletic goods manufacturers, and self-employed Canadians represent another 380 businesses.
Clothing manufacturing, including performance apparel, accounts for nearly 3,500 firms in Canada and the majority of these (96.5%) are considered small businesses with between 0-99 employees.
Canadian film and TV productions account for $5 billion in revenue, employing more than 117,000 people on a full-time basis. Both the federal and BC governments encourage growth in the sector with investment incentives.