Canadian startup news of the week (2/06/22)

Koho finds its flywheel.

Welcome to BetaKit’s startup stories of the week! Here, you will find the week’s most important news, features, and editorials published on BetaKit. If you prefer this update hit your inbox every week, make sure to subscribe to the BetaKit Newsletter using the form at the bottom of this page.

Top Stories of the Week


Koho secures $210 million to give more Canadians access to wealth creation

The question has always been: can Koho disrupt Canadian banking before Wealthsimple disrupts them?


Founder Dax Dasilva out as Lightspeed CEO

The shuffle comes after Lightspeed’s share price has dropped more than 75 percent over the last six months from its September peak following short-seller attacks, low revenue guidance, and general tech stock malaise.


RenoRun closes $181 million CAD Series B to fuel Canada, US expansion

In an interview with BetaKit, RenoRun co-founder and CEO Eamonn O’Rourke spoke about where the startup fits into the building materials market, and the opportunity to take the “back office-running of a construction project off of the contractor’s hands.”


Hopper now valued at $5 billion after $35 million secondary deal

Montréal-based travel booking startup Hopper has a new $5 billion USD valuation after a $35 million secondary sale that allowed Hopper employees and some shareholders to sell part of their holdings in the company. The new valuation comes less than six months after Hopper raised $175 million in Series G financing at a $3.5 billion valuation.


Amplify Capital closes $30.7 million for second fund, eyes Québec startups with Montréal office

With its much larger Fund II, Amplify aims to build on its Fund I track record and thesis, increase its presence in Québec, and help more traditional investors think about impact investing.


Fractional real estate investing startup Willow comes out of stealth

Willow’s platform will include what the startup claims are handpicked, stable, rent-generating properties from across the country.


BDC report expects tech sector revenue to grow by 22 percent by 2024

BDC’s findings expect the tech sector revenue to grow by 5.3 percent in 2022, and by 22.4 percent in the 2021-2024 period.


Universities have a role to play in addressing BC’s tech talent crunch: report

The report, released last week by University Canada West, gathered opinions and insights from industry participants on how academia and industry can collaborate to fill the current gaps in BC’s workforce.


Latest Funding, Acquisitions, and Layoffs

  • BUR – Ekona Power – $79M (read more)

  • VAN – Gandeeva Therapeutics – $40M (read more)

  • TOR – VendorPM – $6M (read more)

  • TOR – BKR Capital closes additional $4.5M to back Black-founded startups (read more)

  • TOR – Pluribus Technologies acquires Kesson Group, Social5 (read more)

  • TOR – Fyyne closes pre-seed funding, launches platform (read more)

  • MTL – Wrk – $30M (read more

  • MTL – TickSmith – $20M (read more)

  • MTL – ClearEstate – $16.8M (read more)

  • VIC – Vosker – $60M (read more)

  • QC – LeddarTech – $140M (read more)

  • QC – Stamped AI – $2M (read more)


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HOW ADA AND BENEVITY BECAME CANADIAN TECH UNICORNS

Kelly Schmitt (Benevity) and Mike Murchison (Ada) discuss their company’s journey to a $1 billion valuation, scaling and keeping talent in Canada.


WHAT STOPPED THE CANADIAN SHIELD FROM SUPPLYING THE PPE AND RAPID TESTS CANADA NEEDS?

The Canadian Shield made 16 million face shields at the start of the pandemic. And then they stopped. Why did they stop? What stopped them?


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Josh Scott

Josh Scott

Josh Scott is a BetaKit reporter focused on telling and breaking Canadian tech and innovation stories. His coverage is more complete than his moustache.

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