Innovative early-stage companies in Atlantic Canada will now have access to more financing thanks to the launch last week of Build Ventures, a new private-managed regional venture capital (VC) fund.
“In order to grow the economy, we have to give businesses the tools they need to be successful,” said Prince Edward Island Premier Robert Ghiz. “Our combined investment in this venture capital fund will help companies realize their full potential, here in Prince Edward Island, and throughout the Atlantic region.”
The $48.5-million fund is actively seeking investment opportunities throughout Atlantic Canada. The provincial governments of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are each contributing $15 million to the fund, while Prince Edward Island is contributing $2.5 million. In addition, the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) is contributing $10 million, Moncton-based private sector company Technology Venture Corporation is contributing $5 million, and the fund managers are contributing $1 million.
“The Business Development Bank of Canada is pleased to see Build Ventures getting off the ground. This fund will help finance Atlantic Canada’s most promising and innovative start-ups,” said Jean-Renée Halde, President and CEO of BDC. “Our venture capital arm, BDC Venture Capital, has seen concrete examples of the region’s high tech potential recently with companies like Radian6 and Q1 Labs. The future certainly looks very promising.”
The fund will be managed by Patrick Keefe and Rob Barbara. Mr. Keefe has more than 15 years of investment and entrepreneurial experience, and comes out of Innovacorp, where he oversaw its early-stage VC activities. Mr. Barbara spent 11 years with Burgundy Asset Management, a Toronto-based global investment management firm.
The fund will be headquartered in Halifax and will concentrate on making Series A investments, with a focus on companies in the IT, cleantech, life sciences and other high-growth sectors. Investments will range between $1 and $5 million per venture.
Build Ventures is also looking to raise an additional private sector investment in the coming months.
Total amount of funding disbursed: $90,528,008
Funding by sector:
Funding by province:
Funding by program:
A complete breakdown of funding announcements is available to subscribers through to The Funding Portal’s Data & Analytics Reports.
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Finance Canada is moving forward with the implementation of its Venture Capital Action Plan, a strategy to increase the amount of venture capital available to innovative early-stage companies.
“The Venture Capital Action Plan is a new market-oriented approach to put Canada’s venture capital industry on the path to sustainability by increasing the availability of financing for innovative Canadian firms,” said Finance Minister Jim Flaherty. “Our Government’s support will make Canada’s venture capital industry more globally competitive, while helping ensure Canada’s high-potential firms have the resources they need to grow and create jobs.”
In Budget 2012, the government announced it would allocate $400 million to support Canada’s venture capital industry. In the summer and fall of 2012, the government held a consultation on how best to allocate these funds to promote a sustainable private sector-led VC sector.
An Action Plan was published this January, allocating the $400 million as follows:
The plan is expected to attract close to $1 billion in new private sector investments in funds of funds, which consist of portfolios of investments in several VC funds made by a General Partner and Manager on behalf of investors.
The government has now announced that is moving forward with the selection process for General Partners and Managers to manage the funds of funds, with each ranging between $300 and $400 million.
Interested parties are invited to submit their candidacy by June 3, 2013 through an expression of interest. Along with managing the fund, the General Partner will be expected to commit its own resources and secure private sector investments to support the fund.
A private sector advisory panel will select a limited number of candidates from the initial pool to move on to the next stage of the selection process. A final preferred candidate for each fund will be selected by the fund’s lead investors.
A separate selection process is also being undertaken to choose the three to five existing VC funds which will share the $50 million. To be considered, VC funds are expected to be dedicated to key growth sectors in Canada. The deadline to submit an expression of interest is May 27, 2013.
The private sector advisory panel which will assist in the selection process for both groups will be announced in the coming weeks.
The Financial Management Institute (FMI) of Canada is a volunteer not for profit organization that has worked closely with the Provincial and Federal governments for the last 50 years in providing exceptional professional development for the public sector financial community. One of its largest annual learning events is the Public Sector Management Workshop, held June 2-4th at the Toronto Eaton Centre Marriott Hotel.
This two day professional development event will bring together influential speakers who will share their insight with us on financial management strategies we can all use in our roles as we are called upon to provide analysis, advice, and strategic direction. Topic streams include:
• New Frontiers in Public Sector Management
• Oversight of Transfer Payment Recipients
• Leadership skills for the financial professional
• Communicating and Presenting Financial Information
FMI Ontario is proud to announce that this learning event will include many respected leaders in the public sector, including Peter Wallace, Secretary of Cabinet, Tom Scrimger, Comptroller General at Treasury Board Canada; Steve Orsini, Deputy Minister at Ministry of Finance; André Marin, Ontario Ombudsman; Mel Cappe, O.C. School of Public Policy & Governance at the University of Toronto; Harvey Schachter, writer Globe & Mail and Canadian Government Executive; and the ever popular Pierre Pettigrew, former Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister and International Trade, Executive Advisor (International) at Deloitte.
PSMW 2013 provides solid value for money, as the registration costs are only $375 for one day, or $675 for both days. Use code N0000 to get the membership rate. Registration closes May 24th. You will bring back up-to-date best practices, contacts, and improved understanding of the financial issues in the public sector.
To register, go to http://www.fmi.ca/events/psmw/