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Frequently Asked Questions

Over 20 years of celebrating Canada’s fastest-growing technology companies

Eligibility

What criteria are used to evaluate and select winners?

Companies—public or private, large or small—must be headquartered in Canada or Canadian-controlled, and create their intellectual property in Canada. In an online application form available at www.fast50.ca, each nominee provides its financials, a brief company profile, and information on its business. (Except for growth percentage, all information provided will remain confidential.)

  • To qualify for the Technology Fast 50™ ranking, companies must have been in business for at least four years and have revenues of at least $5 million in 2017. 
  • The Companies-to-Watch award category is for rising Canadian technology companies with the potential to become future Technology Fast 50 candidates. 
  • Technology Fast 50™ Leadership award candidates are judged on their ability to create a distinct competitive advantage in a high-growth market.

Upon receiving Technology Fast 50™ applications, teams of subject matter experts conduct interviews with candidates across Canada and participate in regional and national judging panels. Companies are evaluated based on:

  • Competitive advantage 
  • Size, growth, and market attractiveness
  • Management effectiveness and organization
  • Financial performance

What types of companies make the cut?

Companies that make the Technology Fast 50™ list are diverse—large, small, public, private—and come from a variety of industry sub-sectors. They’re leaders in hardware, software, telecommunications, or digital media, as well as new and emerging areas. Technology Fast 50™ companies demonstrate revenue growth, technological innovation, and entrepreneurial spirit.

Do subsidiaries of foreign-owned companies qualify?

Subsidiaries of foreign-owned companies do not qualify for the Canadian ranking, but may qualify for one of the other Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ programs around the world.

What are the specific eligibility criteria for Fast 50?

A company must be:

  • In business for at least four years (on or prior to December 31, 2013)
  • Headquartered in Canada or Canadian-controlled, with both management and research and development (R&D) teams also located in Canada
  • Generating significant proportion of operating revenue via proprietary technology and/or intellectual property
  • Able to prove minimum revenues of $50,000 in 2014 and $5 million in 2017. (Revenues to qualify for Fast 500 must be US$50,000 in 2014 and US$5 million in 2017)
  • Participating in one of the following five sub-sectors:
    • Emerging technologies 
    • Hardware/semiconductor
    • Software
    • Telecommunications/wireless
    • Digital media


Companies-to-Watch awards

What are the eligibility criteria for Companies-to-Watch?

Those wishing to enter this category must be:

  • Headquartered in Canada or Canadian-controlled, with both management and R&D teams also located in Canada
  • Generating significant proportion of operating revenue via proprietary technology and/or intellectual property
  • Participating in one of the following five sub-sectors:
    • Emerging technologies
    • Hardware/semiconductor
    • Software
    • Telecommunications/wireless
    • Digital media

This category does not have requirements related to revenue and the number of years in business.

What type of financial statements are required?

Audit-preferred financial statements are required. For 2014, the financial statements must have a year-end before or on December 31, 2014, and for 2017, the financial statements must have a year-end before or on December 31, 2017.

The 2018 Technology Fast 50™ ranking is based on fiscal year revenue growth covering years 2014 to 2017 with a fiscal year-end cut-off date no later than December 31, 2017. Companies must provide their last set of financial statements available by the cut-off date regardless of their fiscal year-end month. For example, for a company with a January 31 fiscal year-end, the cut-off will be the fiscal year ended January 31, 2017.

What is included in the R&D expenditure?

R&D expenditures can include Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SRED) program expenditures, and salaries of employees who worked on SRED activities.

What supporting information do we need to submit to demonstrate our proprietary technology?

The proprietary technology statement should be a detailed description of your technology and how your customers use it. You may be able to use the information from materials you’ve already developed, such as a product brochure. The statement should be in either Word or PDF format. Additional information regarding the applicant’s revenue and proprietary technology may be requested.

What does Total Addressable Market (TAM) mean?

Total addressable market, also called total available market, refers to the revenue opportunity available for a product or service.

How do I calculate my customer adoption rate?

The customer adoption rate may be calculated based on metrics your company has already defined. You can provide an estimate of how much your company’s customer base has grown or calculate how much growth year-over-year and year-to-year your company has had in your market.

Application

What is Deloitte’s role in the Technology Fast 50™?

All applications for the Technology Fast 50™ awards are submitted to Deloitte, which then reviews and verifies them for eligibility. Teams from Deloitte and sponsors of the Technology Fast 50™ program then conduct face-to-face interviews across Canada. Companies are judged on criteria such as market attractiveness and competitive advantage. The results of these interviews are sent to regional and national judging panels, in which subject matter experts from Deloitte and program sponsors help determine and rank the leaders in each category.

Are rankings based on revenues from the fiscal or calendar year?

The 2018 Technology Fast 50™ ranking is based on fiscal year revenue growth covering years 2014 to 2017, with a fiscal year-end cut-off date no later than December 31, 2017. Companies must provide their last set of financial statements available by the cut-off date regardless of their fiscal year-end month. For example, for a company with a January 31 fiscal year-end, the cut-off will be the fiscal year ended January 31, 2017.

How is the revenue growth calculated?

Companies are ranked based on percentage growth of fiscal year (FY) operating revenues covering 2014 to 2017. Here’s the math: FY 2017 revenues minus FY 2014 revenues divided by FY 2014 revenues times 100 = total percentage of revenue growth.
[(2017 – 2014) / 2014] *100 = % revenue growth

Why are rankings based on growth of revenues rather than on profits?

Since companies have different ways of recognizing profits, Deloitte determined that a ranking based on pure revenues makes the most sense. Ranking fast-growth technology companies by revenue growth sets a level playing field for all nominated companies and makes the Technology Fast 50™ program as fair and accurate as possible.

Will my company’s revenue numbers be made public?

The Technology Fast 50™ and North America Technology Fast 500™ programs only publish the revenue growth percentage rates.

Why does Deloitte require copies of financial statements?

We collect copies of your financial documents to help us evaluate your application. Candidates are reviewed by Deloitte and its Technology Fast 50™ sponsors according to the published awards criteria. Candidate information is shared with national sponsors and is retained by Deloitte to facilitate the awards program. The use of these documents is restricted to Deloitte and its program sponsors. For additional details on our privacy policy, please review our Privacy Statement.

How can companies apply?

Nomination forms for the 2018 program are available online at www.fast50.ca.

How long does it take to submit an application?

With all the right information at hand, the application process should take no longer than 20 minutes.

How many companies typically apply to the program?

Each year, Deloitte receives hundreds of nominations.

What is the North American Technology Fast 500™ program?

It’s an annual ranking of the 500 fastest-growing technology, media, and telecommunications companies in North America based on their revenue growth percentage over their last four years of operation.

Are all Technology Fast 50™-ranked companies eligible for the Deloitte Technology Fast 500™ ranking?

Companies must also have a minimum revenue of US$5 million in 2017 to be eligible for the Deloitte Technology Fast 500™ ranking.

Benefits

What benefits do companies get from this ranking?

Being ranked in the Technology Fast 50™ communicates your company’s great business results and strong management skills. It also provides a strong endorsement from Canada’s largest professional services firm and the program’s high-profile sponsors. Since the program began over 20 years ago, Technology Fast 50™ winners have received national media attention and publicity, industry recognition, invitations to exclusive Technology Fast 50™ community events with industry leaders and peers, unparalleled industry recognition, and heightened employee morale. Winning firms can showcase their achievement by using the coveted Technology Fast 50™ logo on their marketing materials and business cards. Winners are also eligible for the prestigious North American Technology Fast 500™, thereby maximizing their exposure.

Is there an awards ceremony for Technology Fast 50™ winners?

Awards are presented during a national invitation-only event in November.

Do companies receive an actual, physical award?

Yes, they do. Awards are provided to all winners.

Will the Technology Fast 50™ ranking appear in the local or national press?

A national press release is distributed through Canada Newswire and to all national and business media announcing the winners and the rankings. In previous years, this press release has generated considerable media coverage.

When do companies issue their own press release or publicly announce their success with a Technology Fast 50™ ranking and/or award?

This information is strictly embargoed until Deloitte makes the official announcement.

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