5 Businesses Driving the Ottawa Economy


Ottawa is the capital of Canada.

It lies close to the U.S. border, east of southern Ontario and near the Montreal city.

Parliament Hill sits at the core of the Ottawa city with grand Victorian architecture and museums housing notable Canadian art and indigenous collections.

The Ottawa Convention Centre becomes a trading pit as Canadian Tourism Commission’s international tourism marketplace generates hundreds of millions of dollars in sales. (CNW Group/Canadian Tourism Commission)

Ottawa sits on the Ottawa River and boasts the park-lined Rideau Canal with ice-skaters in winter and boats in summer.

High tech and the federal government are the top drivers of the Ottawa economy, contributing over 37% of the GDP.

Other contributors include businesses in various sectors such as:

  • Manufacturing
  • Agriculture
  • Construction
  • Tourism
  • Transportation
  • Business services.

Whether you’re doing a study of Ottawa, planning to start a business in the city or just want to learn more about your next holiday destination, there’s so much to learn. Here’re 5 businesses driving the Ottawa economy today:

Top 5 Businesses Driving the Economy of Ottawa

1) Shopify

Shopify is an ecommerce platform that allows anyone from anywhere in the world to open an online shop to sell and ship products. The platform is accepted worldwide and powers over a million businesses from around the globe.

The business model for Shopify is based on subscriptions where businesses pay a fee every month to keep their businesses online.  They enjoy the ease of setting up an ecommerce shop to sell just about anything they want.

Shopify also makes it easy for people who want to start dropshipping businesses. This business model allows you to sell products without holding any inventory, explaining its popularity.  

2) Canada Wheels

Canada Wheels was founded in 2012 by Saleh Taebi. It’s an ecommerce store that helps car owners to purchase car rims, tires and accessories. Taebi started out with helping people purchase rims online and has gradually expanded his business to offer more.

Choose the make of your car on the Canada Wheels website to start your shopping navigation. You can then filter the results by model and year of manufacture amongst other filters.

Next, you’re directed to the nearest warehouse for easy and quick shipping.

In 2019, Canada Wheels was named the 7th fastest growing company in Ottawa, with a growth rate of 1392% over five years from 2013 to 2018. Projections show that the business will continue to grow and even expand out of Canada.

3) Giatec Scientific

Giatec Scientific Inc. is a business that’s busy revolutionizing the construction industry. The company provides innovative concrete testing technologies. It has developed smart technologies used in real time monitoring of concrete properties.

The technologies are based on artificial intelligence and IoT, amongst other modern technologies. The firm has registered significant growth over the years as more people in construction see the benefits of using its technology.

The company also has developed a non-destructive testing technology that can be used in assessment of infrastructure and durability analysis of concrete projects. Applications of the technologies occur on jobsites that use concrete.

4) House of Fine Carpentry

House of Fine Carpentry is a renowned carpentry and woodworking business that has been operating in Ottawa since 2004. The company provides all carpentry and woodworking services you may need for your home or business.

The company attributes its success in carpentry to its business process. The process starts with designing. Here, designers sit with clients to put their dreams on paper. The designing is done in-house from where it’s sent to the manufacturing team.

The manufacturing team is a success because of its commitment to using quality materials and the latest equipment. To handle big projects, the company needs machines such as contractor table saws and router tables.

A good contractor table saw, especially one with a dependable hand-wheel is a great investment because it makes handling of wood easy and quick even for large projects.

A router table is used to hold a router. It allows the woodworker to use the router at many different angles. It allows for easy assemble of required items.

After manufacturing, installation of the items is done, paying absolute attention to detail. The installers are professional and courteous.

The company has also invested in the latest machines to push projects quickly and effectively for timely delivery.

5) Watersedge Dental Laboratory

This dental business was founded in 2013 by Robert Waters. It’s a full service dental lab that produces dental appliances and restorations for dentists in Ottawa and beyond.

Guided by the vision of ensuring that dentists stay calm so they can focus on their patients, Watersedge offers outstanding customer support and impeccable services to its clients.

The company offers a wide array of services including:

  • Dental implants
  • Removable restorations
  • Orthodontics
  • All ceramics
  • Full metal restorations
  • Custom shade and stain, amongst others.

Clearly, Ottawa is home to many businesses, both big and small, that keep the economy running.

The businesses also span a wide array of industries, which makes the Ottawa economy quite stable. When one sector of the economy gets affected, the rest may remain strong to keep things going.

Which other businesses in Ottawa do you know that are making a change?

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