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Invest Sault Ste. Marie

Key Sectors

With its industrial roots, Sault Ste. Marie has been a manufacturing hub for over 100 years. Harnessing the local natural resources and capitalizing on its location, Sault Ste. Marie is a leading producer of steel, forestry products, renewable energy and much more. We continue to build on our traditional industries as well as focusing on advanced manufacturing, and emerging industries such as ICT & digital, clean tech, lottery & gaming, aviation and more.

1. Advanced Manufacturing

  a) Steel Manufacturing & Fabrication

Anchored by companies like Essar Steel Algoma and Tenaris Algoma Tubes, Sault Ste. Marie has a strong history of steel manufacturing. Essar Steel Algoma (formerly Algoma Steel) is one of just three integrated steel manufacturers in Canada and produces various grades of steel sheets and plates to service the automotive industry, energy sector, bridge construction and more. 

Tenaris Algoma Tubes manufactures seamless pipe used by the oil and energy sectors. 

Many more steel fabricators and re-manufacturers such as Soo Foundry & Machine, Rector Machine Works and SIS Manufacturing produce custom steel products ranging from welded beams to locomotive chassis for export. Sault Ste. Marie also boasts a growing defence sector including steel fabricators and other companies having controlled goods certifications.

  b) Forestry & Forest Products

For over 100 years, Sault Ste. Marie was the home of St. Mary's Paper, which closed in 2013. But Sault Ste. Marie remains a significant forestry centre with mills like Arauco N.A. producing high quality MDF, Eacom producing engineered wood products, Boniferro Millworks (hardwood lumber), Bioforest Technologies and many more.

Surrounded by managed northern forest lands, Sault Ste. Marie also maintains a significant capacity of forestry expertise and knowledge as the headquarters of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources' Forest Division staff, and three forest research centres including the Ontario Forest Research Centre, Great Lakes Forestry Centre (federal) and provincial Invasive Species Centre.  

Valuable cutting-edge research and development in Sault Ste. Marie at these institutions builds knowledge for growing healthier and more valuable forests, fighting invasive species on land and sea (which can cost hundreds of millions in damage), climate change science and more.

2. Lottery & Gaming

Sault Ste. Marie is the headquarters of the Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corporation - one of the largest gaming organizations in North America. For over 20 years expertise on operating and growing Ontario's lottery business has been developing in Sault Ste. Marie and a cluster of businesses servicing the lottery and gaming sector naturally continues to develop. Companies like Canadian Bank Note, Pollard Banknote and Brooks Marketing are based in Sault Ste. Marie or have a presence here supporting lottery game development, operations and promotion.

More recently UMG Media, an e-sport entertainment company chose Sault Ste. Marie as its home base for the eastern Ontario market in competitive video game play. 

For more information about the opportunities available in the lottery and gaming sector in Sault Ste. Marie, visit www.lotteryandgaming.com.

3. Clean Tech & Renewable Energy

Sault Ste. Marie has been harnessing renewable energy for over 100 years, since its first hydroelectric project on the St. Mary's River. Today, the area produces over 500 MW of renewable made up of wind (250 MW), solar (60 MW), hydro (203 MW) and co-generation (70 MW feeding Essar Steel). Additionally, Sault Ste. Marie has acted as a hotbed for experimental and energy and clean tech projects, including gasification of waste, reverse polymerization of tires, smart grid technology, and currently a promising 7 MW battery energy storage project between Convergent Energy and the Sault Ste. Marie Public Utilities Commission.

Heliene Canada, a solar panel manufacturer is based in Sault Ste. Marie and exports panels throughout North America and Europe. Significant experience exists in the installation, operation and servicing of hydro, solar and wind projects as well.  

For more information about Sault Ste. Marie's Smart Energy Strategy, visit the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre.

4. Digital Economy

Sault Ste. Marie's burgeoning IT and digital economy sector is comprised of software development, web development, business process outsourcing, digital marketing, app development, game development and cloud-based software companies. Some examples include business process software company Workiva, online media company Village Media, Insightworks (online training and onboarding), Microsoft 365 technical support firm - Createch, Veracity, Canada Bank Note, SSI System Solutions, LucidiaMiramar, Cavera and much more.

Sault Ste. Marie recently ranked very high (top 10) for competitiveness in the digital entertainment and software design industries in the 2016 KPMG Competitive Alternatives Study. Local digital companies enjoy lower labour costs, overall operating costs, and affordable leasing/rental costs for office space.

Additionally, the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre works closely to support local science and technology companies - from startup through growth.

5. Aviation/Aerospace

In Sault Ste. Marie, there is a bustling airport community waiting for you. We currently have FBOs, maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) companies, flight training facilities, a College campus, two Ontario Government hangars, and numerous private hangars. There are over 1,000 acres available for development at the Sault Ste. Marie airport.

Aviation focused companies include J D Aero, Springer Aerospace, Humphrey Aviation, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources Air Services, Sault College aviation program, World Fuels, AvJet Fuels and more. J D Aero provides aircraft maintenance, repairs and overhaul services for airlines around the world, including Air Canada Jazz, Air New Zealand, Austrian Airlines and Porter Airlines.

For more information on aerospace development in Sault Ste. Marie, contact John Febbraro, Director of Business Development at SSMEDC.