Innovation, Science & EDC | Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative
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VCCI | Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative
Access to capital is vital to help growing innovative companies to develop their ideas, market new products, scale up and create good, middle-class jobs in communities across the country.
Venture capital (VC) is a specialized type of private equity financing that takes educated risks on great ideas and smart people, giving young, high growth-potential companies the opportunity to develop their ideas into marketable products.
In addition to capital, VC investors bring operational experience, technical knowledge, networks and mentorship to the firms in which they invest. A strong and steady stream of V.C. investments is an essential element in the success of many of Canada's potential future technology leaders.
A little background story:
In 2017, Canada saw a total of $3.5 billion of VC investment in Canadian start-ups, resulting in the eighth straight year of VC growth and the most VC invested in start-up companies since 2001. Canada is now ranked third for VC investment according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The Canadian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (CVCA) attributes much of this growth to the Government of Canada's support for VC, including through the Venture Capital Action Plan (VCAP).
To continue this momentum, Budget 2017 made available $400 million through the Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative (VCCI) in two streams.
Stream 1 invested in large funds-of-funds to support Canadian VC fund managers.
Stream 2 invested in emerging managers, under-served regions and sectors, and alternative fund structures.
Finally, the 2018 Fall Economic Statement introduced a new $50 million stream (Stream 3) under VCCI that will support VC funds investing primarily in clean technology firms.
With a strong focus on gender balance and diversity, these VCCI investments will also help promote gender parity in the industry, ensuring more firms owned by women and under-represented groups can access the capital they need to scale and grow—and strengthen the Canadian economy.
The seven fund managers to receive investments in this round of VCCI are:
"Our government is helping small and medium-sized businesses start up, scale up and access new markets. We're doing this by investing in venture capital, which helps transform good ideas into game-changing innovations and create good middle-class jobs for Canadians. Canada's venture capital industry is critical to our economy and is steadily growing. Today's investments will ensure that that growth is inclusive by improving gender balance and access to VC financing in under-served regions and sectors across Canada." said The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion.
"This second round of investments is an important and necessary complement. The seven selected funds represent a broad spectrum of technology sectors, investment models and geographies. They also include a substantial focus on accelerating gender parity in the industry. We look forward to working with fund managers to help them succeed and bring more prosperity to Canada over the long term." stated Michael Denham, President and CEO, BDC.
- By investing alongside the private sector, VCCI is expected to inject around $1.5 billion into Canada's innovation capital market.
- The recipients announced today were chosen as a result of a rigorous selection process informed by a private sector selection committee of highly qualified industry experts, as well as experts at BDC and Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada.
- In 2017, Canada's venture capital industry invested $3.5 billion over 592 deals, marking the eighth straight year of continued growth and the most capital invested in a year since 2001.
- Canada is now ranked third for venture capital investment according to the OECD.
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