The clients at the three Innovation Place locations in Saskatoon, Regina and Prince Albert contributed more than $647 million to the provincial economy in 2008 according to an economic impact study. This is an increase of nine per cent from 2007 and is due to a significant increase in the number of people working at Innovation Place.

The rate of new Saskatchewan jobs created in Innovation Place during 2008 approached 15 per cent outpacing the overall provincial growth rate of three per cent. Currently, there are 185 technology companies and business organizations employing 4,300 people at the research parks in Saskatoon and Regina and the Forest Centre building in Prince Albert.

"The expansion of existing companies and the addition of new startup companies at Innovation Place facilities speak to the strength of the province's knowledge economy," Enterprise and Innovation Minister Lyle Stewart said. "We are confident Innovation Place will continue to create, encourage and facilitate business opportunities for Saskatchewan's vibrant technology sector."

Seven startup companies moved into Innovation Place in 2008 and six companies relocated from outside the province. The majority of Innovation Place clients are small organizations with 60 per cent of them employing 10 people or less.

"The economic impact study shows that our clients are growing, which is very good news for the province" Innovation Place President and CEO Douglas Tastad said. "We are committed to providing the infrastructure, services and support needed for our clients to be successful."

Innovation Place is the operating name for Saskatchewan Opportunities Corporation and is mandated to encourage and facilitate business opportunities in Saskatchewan through the development of research parks.

The economic impact study was conducted and analyzed by Insightrix Research Services Inc. of Saskatoon. By using information such as the purchase of local goods and services and staff salaries they determined the economic impact of the clients' activities, based upon an economic model developed at the University of Saskatchewan. The survey cost $7,823.