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.
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Top Stories of the Week
VCCI-BACKED KENSINGTON CAPITAL PARTNERS SECURES $158 MILLION FIRST CLOSE FOR THIRD VENTURE FUND
Now over halfway towards its $290 million target, Kensington is the first of four fund managers selected by the Government of Canada's Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative to announce it has closed its financing.
With its first close, Kensington Venture Fund III (KVFIII) surpassed the $150 million size of Kensington's last venture fund. KVFIII will serve primarily as a fund-of-funds, backing Canadian venture capital funds, with a quarter of its capital reserved for direct investments in tech startups.
WONDERFI, COINSQUARE, COINSMART TO MERGE AS CANADA’S CRYPTO INDUSTRY CONSOLIDATES
WonderFi, Coinsquare, and CoinSmart Financial announced today that the three companies reached an agreement to combine and create what they claim will be “Canada’s largest regulated crypto asset trading platform.”
Collectively, Vancouver-based WonderFi, and Toronto’s Coinsquare and CoinSmart have over $600 million CAD in assets under custody and more than 1.65 million users.
ONE YEAR IN, COMPETITION IN ONTARIO’S IGAMING MARKET REMAINS RED HOT
As one of North America’s largest markets by adult population, Ontario was initially pegged to generate approximately $570 million in iGaming revenue in 2022; the results were almost three times higher.
As the iGaming market heads into its second year in the province, companies are doubling down on unique growth strategies to gain an edge.
CANADIAN PRIVACY COMMISSIONER LAUNCHES INVESTIGATION INTO CHATGPT
The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada said on Tuesday that the case was launched in response to a “complaint alleging the collection, use, and disclosure of personal information without consent.”
JANET BANNISTER LAUNCHES STAIRCASE VENTURES WITH $22 MILLION FIRST CLOSE
Bannister launched Staircase just six months after stepping back from the managing partner role at Real Ventures and wants to raise $30 million for the fund overall.
Bannister is taking a unique approach by giving portfolio founders a portion of fund profits.
HOW STARTUPS CAN ACCESS AN UNTAPPED POOL OF TALENT IN CANADA
Pablo Listingart, Executive Director of tech skills school ComIT, explains what founders need to be aware of when hiring rural employees.
Latest Funding, Acquisitions, and Layoffs
VAN – LayerZero Labs – $120M (read more)
VAN – ChopValue – $10.36M (read more)
CGY – Nimble Science – $2.7M (read more)
TOR – Greentank Technologies – $22.2M (read more)
TOR – Felix – $18M (read more)
TOR – Agnostiq – $8.22M (read more)
MTL – Eli – $5M (read more)
QC – Brizo Data – $12M (read more)
Osler releases multi-year study of 350+ Canadian VC and growth equity financings
Osler’s market-leading Emerging and High Growth Companies Group has released its second annual Deal Points Report: Venture Capital Financings, a study of 353 anonymized venture capital and growth equity financings from 2020 to 2022, valued at more than US$6 billion.
This comprehensive report is a must read for founders, entrepreneurs, investors and advisors who are contemplating transactions in 2023 and beyond.
Read the Deal Points Report now.
The BetaKit Podcast
WAS RENORUN ABANDONED BY INVESTORS OR JUST ANOTHER MANNEQUIN STARTUP?
"Nobody is cheering you on for reaching the top of Everest if you don't make it back down to base camp."
Matt Cohen, Managing Partner at Ripple Ventures and host of the Tank Talks podcast, joins to unpack the complicated spot Canadian startups find themselves in.
ASK JOHN RUFFOLO ANYTHING: SVB FALLOUT, VC GROUPTHINK, GOVERNMENT DEPENDENCE & MORE
“The [Canadian] venture ecosystem is never going to get to the right level of maturity if they constantly rely upon the taxpayer to provide them with the capital.”
Maverix Private Equity founder and Managing Partner John Ruffolo joins to answer listener questions on the fall of SVB, its impact on the Canadian venture debt market, regulatory capture by new federal bills, and how many VCCIs are too many.
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