The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) announced today the launch of a new $150 million fund, aimed at investing in Canadian startups developing technologies helping to advance progress towards climate and sustainability goals.
BDC provides financing, advisory services and capital to small and medium-sized enterprises in Canada. According to BDC, the new fund comes as Canadian sustainability-focused startups tend to be underfunded relative to their international peers, with only 5% of Canadian VC investment targeting environmental sustainability in 2021, compared to the global average of 14%.
The new fund will be led by Joseph Regan, current Managing Partner of BDC Capital’s Industrial Innovation Venture Fund. Regan said:
“Sustainability technologies will be at the forefront of innovation all around the world. Over the coming decades, we will witness an acceleration of adoption across sectors and industries. It is a privilege to be working to ensure Canadian innovators have the capital they need to develop and commercialize world-class technologies that have the potential to tackle the most urgent challenges of our time.”
The new fund will make equity investments, from seed to Series A and B, in sustainability-oriented businesses with SaaS, hardware-enabled software, and software-led business models. Technologies targeted by the fund will align with four UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including sustainable communities and cities, responsible production and consumption, climate action and clean and affordable energy.
Isabelle Hudon, President and CEO of BDC, said:
“Innovation is imperative to speed the transition to net-zero, as much as it can spur the growth of our economy. With the new fund, we have an immense opportunity to ensure that Canadian start-ups have access to the capital they need to compete and drive meaningful impact to Canada’s journey to reach net-zero and meet its sustainability targets.”