Skip to content
Join our Newsletter

B.C.’s largest software firms experience volatile year

Smaller companies have grown faster than their larger counterparts since 2015

The past year has been volatile for B.C.’s biggest software companies, according to data collected on Business in Vancouver’s list (see page 10). Of the 20 companies on the list, 10 expanded their employee base while seven experienced declines. The remaining companies reported no growth over the past year.

No. 20 on the list, AvenueHQ, boasted the largest growth (150%), increasing its employee base to 100 in 2019 from 40 in 2018. AvenueHQ’s growth was nearly four times that of the second-fasting-growing company, No. 8-ranked Clio, at 39.1%.

No. 6,, had the largest employment decline, falling 75% or by 1,050 employees to 350 in 2019 from 1,400 in 2018. The percentage change in employment was not as large as that experienced at AvenueHQ, but’s decline was 3.5 times that of the second-largest employment loss (21.2%), posted by No. 14 Sage.


Over the past five years, employment at the largest software companies has grown an average of 17.8%, to an average of 361.2 employees in 2019 from 306.5 in 2015. The median employee count grew more than twice that rate over the same period, up 45.1% to 281.5 in 2019 from 194 in 2015. The larger growth in median employment suggests that smaller software companies grew faster than their larger counterparts.

Of the five largest software companies with five-year data available, No. 7-ranked Traction on Demand recorded the largest one-year and five-year growth. Since 2015, the company has increased its employee base 155.6% or by 202 employees to 332 in 2019 from 130. Over the past year, the company also reported growth of 7.4% from 309 employees in 2018.

No. 4-ranked Hootsuite was the only company in the top five to experience employment declines over the five-year period, falling 5% to 551 employees in 2019 from 580 in 2015. Employment at Hootsuite also dropped 3.7% over the past year. But the largest one-year decline was at No. 2-ranked MDA, where employment fell 6.2% to 666 in 2019 from 710 in 2018. That wiped out all the company’s employment gains since 2016. •