Friday, October 26, 2007

13 Canadian Companies Break Into Deloitte's Wireless Fast 50 List

Canadians involved in the wireless industry can puff their chests in pride today: a total of 13 Canadian born and bred companies managed to snag spots on the Deloitte Wireless Fast 50 list, which ranks the fastest growing wireless companies (based on revenue growth) over the past five years. Three companies (all based in Ontario) even managed to crack the top 10!

BTI Systems Inc., a fibre optic microWDM system provider, came in fourth place, tied with Tira Wireless Inc., which aids developers and publishers in getting their content to the wireless arena. MyThum Interactive Inc., which provides tools for services like text messaging, interactive TV, and voice response, came in sixth place. The country's capital, Ottawa, bred an impressive five of the Canadian entries (BTI, DragonWave Inc., Bridgewater Systems, EION Inc., and SkyWave Mobile Communications Inc.); while the greater Toronto area serves as home for four (Tira, MyThum, Redline Communications Inc., and AirIQ Inc.) Three companies hailed from BC: WebTech Wireless Inc., Tranzeo Wireless Technologies Inc., and Ascalade Communications Inc. Of course, there's no surprise that Waterloo, ON-based Research in Motion (RIM), makers of the widely popular Blackberry device, also made it to the list, coming in at #34. Redline Communications is my prediction as the "company to watch" for the next few years: it provides infrastructure products for WiMAX wireless networks, which have been touted as the "next big thing" in WiFi technology.

Moving away from the Canadian theme, I was pleasantly surprised to see that NYC-based Sirius Satellite Radio ranked numero-uno on the list, with an impressive 79% growth over the five-year period. The second place company, SkyBitz Inc., showed only half as much growth at 40%. Way to go, Sirius! TeleNav, Inc., which provides the very useful GPS capabilities you find on many smartphones today, ranked third with 16.6% growth.

Aside from being proud that Canadian companies have made a significance presence in this area of technology, it's also promising to know that it's an area that's continually growing at a rapid pace. With more data services becoming available for mobile phones, from streaming video, to downloadable tunes, satellite radio, and enhanced web browsing capabilities, plus faster network speeds, wireless-related companies will likely be experiencing growth of massive proportions over the next few years. To further reinforce this point, Deloitte notes that 60% of all voice calls are made using wireless connections, and many of these while the caller is within a few feet of a landline phone! We're certainly moving faster and faster toward a world without wires.

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