This story originally appeared on PROFITguide.com
We’re knee-deep in nominations for our 26th annual PROFIT 500 ranking of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies. That’s terrific, but we’re hungry for more. Our team is in the process of reaching out to the entrepreneurial community to encourage as many growing Canadian firms as possible to apply. Simply put, we’re looking for the best of the best.
One of the most common questions we’re asked by prospective participants is “what’s in it for me?” A fair question. There are many, many benefits that the PROFIT 500 affords, but we’ve narrowed it down to our top five.
1. It’s free (and easy)
There is absolutely no cost to enter—or make—the PROFIT 500 ranking. And it takes only a minute or two to declare your candidacy by filling out a ballot. If it looks as though you’re a contender, we’ll follow up for more information. (Not sure if you’re eligible? Our FAQ spells out our criteria.)
2. You’ll get a pile of perks…
PROFIT 500 winners receive many great benefits. If you make the ranking, your firm will be profiled in the special PROFIT 500 issue of Canadian Business, reaching a projected audience of 1 million readers from coast to coast. (We think you’ll agree that’s not bad publicity.) Your firm will be listed onPROFITguide.com year-round (take a look at the 2013 winners here), and you’ll be considered for extended editorial coverage throughout 2014 (and beyond). Depending on your industry and/or location, you may also receive coverage in our partner magazines, including L’actualité and Atlantic Business.
You’ll get the opportunity to attend our exclusive CEO Summit, a one-day event—to be held this year on June 16 in Toronto—designed specially for the leaders of fast-growing companies. Check out some of the highlights of the 2013 CEO Summit (available here and here) to get a taste of what this unique and highly valuable event has to offer.
3. …Which will help your business
All that publicity can mean very good things for your company. Every year, PROFIT 500 winners tell us how the ranking has opened new doors for their businesses. Making the ranking gives customers (current and prospective) confidence in your brand. It tells employees (again, current and prospective) that you’re a prosperous place to work. And it gives potential partners, investors and/or allies a clear indication from a third party that your firm is a successful one. As Brent Usick of veteran PROFIT 500 winner Paramount Parts Inc. explains, “Being on the ranking raised awareness of my company among large-scale firms, which we were able to secure contracts with in the last year or two. They see that we’re growing greatly and have been noticed by PROFIT.”
4. You’ll be in great company
Make the list, and you’ll join a group of alumni that reads as a Who’s Who of Canadian entrepreneurial success. In the 26 years the ranking has existed, we’ve welcomed companies that have gone on to become giants (if they weren’t already). Past winners include such renowned Canadian brands as WestJet, Globalive Communications (a.k.a. Wind Mobile), GardaWorld Security and Canada Goose. When Research in Motion (now BlackBerry) first made the ranking in 1999, its sales were $33 million. When it last appeared on the list in 2011, its sales were nearly US$20 billion.
Check out our PROFIT 500 Hall of Fame—produced for the 25th anniversary of the ranking in 2013—for more on the company winners keep.
5. It gives you the acclaim you deserve
The PROFIT 500′s main purpose—the biggest reason we compile the list every year—is to celebrate entrepreneurial success. We know how much work goes into building a successful, dynamic, growingbusiness. And we know just how crucial that work is for the health of the Canadian economy. That’s why we believe it’s so important to give those of you leading growing companies an extremely well-deserved pat on the back. You’ve earned the right to tell the world you’re among Canada’s best. Why not take it?
Nominations for the 2014 PROFIT 500 close on March 31. Submit your ballot now atPROFIT500.com/enter.