Do strong companies start in the midst of recessions?
Let’s find out. Here is a partial list of companies that were founded in the midst of (or the immediate aftermath) of the 1990-91 recession. All were founded in 1991, '92 or '93. By the year 2000 all were ranked among Canada’s 200 fastest-growing companies by PROFIT Magazine.
TLC Laser Eye Centers
Spin Master Toys
Open Text Corp.
Aware Marketing Group
BRAK Systems Inc. (founded by Robert Herjavec, sold to AT&T Canada in 2000)
Dundas Software Limited.
Triple G Systems (Acquired by GE Healthcare)
Mad Science Group
Summer Fresh Salads
Custom House Currency Exchange
Peak Financial Group
Total Care Technologies
Canadian Plastic Lumber
Gary Jonas Computing (Jonas Software)
e Bridge Software
Jewelstone Systems (acquired by AGF Management in 2002 for $60 milllion)
Chariot Carriers Inc.
Drug Royalty Group (now DRI Capital)
Great Canadian Dollar Store
Changepoint Corp. (acquired by Compuware in2004)
iWave Information Systems
Integrated Paving Concepts
Many of these companies have changed names, products, strategies and management. Many have changed ownership. Some have morphed into successor companies.
But all of them prove out the thesis that tough times breeed great businesses.