Statistics Canada this year performed an analysis based on a linkage between the Canadian Employer–Employee Dynamics Database, the Census of Population, and the National Household Survey.
For the first time, StatsCan data provided an opportunity for granular analysis of trends in business ownership by racial profile.
The analysis uncovered positive signs for black business owners in Canada, including a rise in the proportion of Black-owned businesses from 2005 through 2018 and an increase in black female entrepreneurship over the same period.
Since 2020, programs such as Google for Startups Accelerator: Black Founders have helped ensure these trends persist in North America.
One Canadian Black Founders accelerator participant is a financial technology startup based out of Ontario aiming to unlock global banking opportunities for black, indigenous, and other coloured persons.
Expedier was founded by Kingsley Madu, who informed Google that his startup was “born from my personal experience and pain.”
“When I came to North America, I was financially stranded from the second I landed in the airport,” he explains. “I didn’t have a credit card so I couldn’t get a rideshare, rent a car or book a hotel. Every landlord required six months of credit history before they would let me lease a property, but the banks required a home address before I could open a checking account or apply for a credit card.”
Madu says that the traditional banking system “is broken and unable to serve the newer generation.”
Expedier’s banking platform promises personalized financial services for immigrants and travellers that understands their “culture,” Madu explains.
The entrepreneur wants to “ignite transformative change for immigrants with banking challenges globally.”
“Expedier remains a solution that not only bridges the financial gap but also addresses the broader needs of underbanked immigrants on their journey to a better life,” he says.
Initially bootstrapped for three years, the accelerating Expedier now claims “several partnership deals with global banks” alongside a top 12 position in the 2023 Digital Commerce Bank Calgary Fintech Awards competition.
Moving forward, Madu expects that opportunities “to leverage Google’s extensive resources and expertise tailored to technology startups” will turbocharge his company’s trajectory—though he is wise to recognize that a little friction can fuel a powerful fire.
“In the face of adversity,” he observed, “every step has been rewarding.”
Expedier was founded in Hamilton in 2019.