Who's Here?

6 Sectors Flourishing in West Parry Sound’s Picturesque Canadian Towns

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Retail

Making up 19% of the market, the retail sector is the largest industry in West Parry Sound.  Business owners, executives and professionals return to the region year after year for cottage country life, as seasonal residents, ready to shop at your business venture. Year round the population is 20,000 full-time residents with 80,000 seasonal residents.

Surrounded by natural resources, many retailers have established a growing market of organic products, too:

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Health Care

Health care is the second largest industry (14.2%) for employment in West Parry Sound.  The largest employer in the region is the West Parry Sound Health Centre giving the community a large base of highly skilled and trained professionals. With Canadore College nearby, employers can easily find trained staff, with lots of local talent graduating from Personal Support Worker and Practical Nursing programs.

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Tourism

West Parry Sound captures the best of Canada’s outdoors making it a popular tourist destination. Canadore College supports this industry with an Ecotourism 1 year Ontario College Certificate.

In 2015:

  • 1,573,897 people visited West Parry Sound 
  • Visitors spent $210,135,029 in the region

Accommodation and food, to support the tourism sector, make up the third largest sector, at 11.8% of total businesses. Home to Georgian Bay’s 30,000 islands and the world’s deepest freshwater port, West Parry Sound provides rich opportunities in the hospitality sector: resorts, marinas, large campgrounds and cruise liners are all located in the region. Annually, visiting cruise lines schedule multiple trips to the area, bringing 1000s of tourists each time. Given how many people visit West Parry Sound each year, there is room for more tourism businesses!

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Manufacturing

Manufacturers make up 8.8% of employment in businesses in West Parry Sound.  Operating close to raw materials, proximity to urban areas, and a robust highway infrastructure make for easier shipping logistics than in other regions. Larger manufacturers (with over 50 employees) are already here:

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Construction and Real Estate

Imagine waking up in a cottage, surrounded by wind-swept pines over the water: Northern Ontario cottages draw in visitors and residents alike and construction and real estate firms are rising to meet this demand.

Parry Sound’s natural beauty was the inspiration for The Group of Seven, making it prime Cottage Country (Ontario). In Parry Sound District, construction firms are the most dominant industry, with more than 21.3% of the workforce employed in trades, followed by real estate. Just ask Distler Construction how fast their property development sold out!

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The Film Industry

Fresh Canadian pines, amongst a backdrop of Canadian granite, Georgian Bay beaches and classic heritage buildings look great on film. Local movie studio, Muskoka North Film Studios, provides a local place to shoot, and saves you transporting equipment which is already here.

Since 2010

  • 18 productions have been hosted in West Parry Sound
  • $54.7 million generated from economic spinoff

Productions include:

Eyewitness, Riot Girls, American Hangman, The Dark, Slasher, Country Crush, Dead of Winter, October Gale, People Hold On, Shelby: The Dog Who Saved Christmas, The Steps, A Very Larry Christmas, And Now a Word From Our Sponsor, Stage Fright, The Dogfather, The Entitled.

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You won’t be alone in trying to figure out if your business idea can work here

The West Parry Sound Economic Development Office is here to help you.