The venture capital business hasn’t exactly been setting the house on
fire in Canada in recent years. The number of successful exits has been
tiny, and some funds have all but dried up or stopped making new
investments. According to a recent survey released by the Canadian
Venture Capital & Private Equity Association, investment levels in
2009 were the lowest they’ve been in
over a decade. That said, there have been some encouraging signs
that money is starting to flow — or may soon begin to flow — into
smaller-stage companies: A new $20 million investment fund called
Mantella Venture Partners launched this week, and the Quebec government
also announced that it’s selected three seed-capital
venture funds to receive a total of C$100 million ($96.82 million)
in provincial funding.
Mantella Venture Partners is a collaboration between Mantella Corp. — a family-owned real estate development firm based in Toronto — and Basecamp Labs, a technology fund run by Robin Axon and Duncan Hill. Both Axon and Hill were formerly at Vancouver-based Ventures West, and left to set up Basecamp Labs, which they describe as an “accelerator” for early-stage companies. The fund provides financing for startups, but also gets involved in hands-on support, including business development, marketing and team development. Hill says that he feels that the “more passive investment model that is common in Silicon Valley” works there because the Valley has a strong ecosystem of repeat entrepreneurs, but that a more hands-on approach works better in a market like Toronto, where most startups are run by first-timers.
To read the full, original article click on this link: Venture Capital Market Warming Up in Canada – GigaOM
Author: Mathew Ingram