OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Sept. 28, 2016) - Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

More than 120 Canadian companies are benefiting from a successful Government of Canada program that has raised a total of $1.356 billion in venture capital. The financing, which surpassed initial targets established for the program, will allow many more Canadian businesses to get their innovations to market faster and create the well-paying jobs that help grow the middle class.

The first set of results for the Venture Capital Action Plan (VCAP) was released today by the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development.

The data provide a snapshot of a program that takes a market-oriented approach to steering Canada's venture capital industry on a path to sustainability, while increasing the availability of venture capital financing for innovative Canadian firms.

Developing start-ups and scaling high-impact small businesses are part of the Government's Innovation Agenda, which will drive economic growth through innovation and create well-paying jobs for the middle class and those working hard to join it.

Since the Government of Canada's launch of VCAP, the Government's initial investment of $390 million has been leveraged into a significant pool of venture capital. In particular, four funds-of-funds attracted over a billion in additional capital from a diverse set of investors that included pension funds, high-net-worth individuals, corporations, banks, and the governments of Ontario and Quebec.

In total, the program has raised $1.356 billion in venture capital. The funds have been invested primarily in companies with early-stage innovations in sectors such as energy and clean technologies, information and communications technologies, and life sciences.

To date, a total of 20 venture capital funds have benefited from the money raised through VCAP, translating into $453 million invested in 126 Canadian companies. Many more investments are expected in the coming years.

The Government's support under VCAP has sparked a revitalization of Canada's venture capital industry, which has generated significant private sector investment and gained international recognition.


"The Government is committed to making Canada a global centre for innovation. We aim to achieve this goal by promoting research, translating ideas into new products and services, and propelling entrepreneurs from the start-up phase to international success. By helping Canadian businesses gain access to capital, we are helping innovative companies grow. We are also keeping more of the well-paying jobs that these companies create in Canada. These winning conditions help grow the middle class. And when the middle class thrives, Canada thrives."

- The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

"The Government is committed to helping innovative Canadian businesses grow, thrive and create the jobs that Canada's middle class needs. As a result of this important joint effort involving both public and private sector capital, we are helping to build a more innovative Canada where globally connected and competitive Canadian companies are able to prosper."

- The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Small Business and Tourism

"The Venture Capital Action Plan has catalyzed about $1.4 billion in fresh capital for Canadian start-ups, with over $900 million of it from private investors. It has succeeded by bringing together 30 public and private institutions and many individual investors, which is a great achievement in itself. As the administrator of VCAP, BDC is committed to helping Canadian entrepreneurs grow their businesses into global champions."

- Michael Denham, President and CEO, Business Development Bank of Canada

Quick facts

  • VCAP funds-of-funds raised a total of $1.356 billion in venture capital from governments, pension funds, high-net-worth individuals, corporations and banks, among others. Of that total, $904 million was raised from private sector investors.
  • The Business Development Bank of Canada supported the Government of Canada in the implementation of VCAP, providing independent expertise and advice as well as deploying VCAP investments.

Related product

- Backgrounder: Venture Capital Action Plan Performance Metrics

Follow Minister Bains on social media.

Twitter: @MinisterISED

Contact Information:

Philip Proulx
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Innovation,
Science and Economic Development

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada