Briefing

CVCA asks Ottawa for $350 million to top up venture capital funds

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The Canadian Venture Capital & Private Equity Association is seeking new federal money for the funds-of-funds that manage investments for startups through the Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative (VCCI). The CVCA anticipates it will become harder for funds to raise money, and that they’ll need more public support to help startups close deals. (The Globe and Mail)

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Talking point: While there was a spike in VC funding in the first half of the year, CVCA president Kim Furlong said that activity was driven by the need for investors to shore up their portfolio companies’ coffers to help them survive the pandemic. That relief funding was possible in part because several funds had raised big rounds pre-pandemic. As that money dries up, investors may look to government programs to incentivize new activity. BDC Capital, which manages venture capital programs for the federal government, did launch a $300-million bridge-financing program for COVID-19 relief in April and still has about two-thirds of its budget to deploy. However, several startups told The Logic the terms of the program are too prohibitive. BDC executive vice-president Jérôme Nycz noted that the emergency program is only a stopgap, and that startups will in fact need access to larger funding rounds to keep growing.