Evok Innovations targets cleantech investments with first close of $300 million USD Fund II

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LPs in Fund II include Export Development Canada, RBC, and TD.

Vancouver venture firm Evok Innovations announced a first close for its $300 million USD ($375.8 million CAD) Fund II, with $150 million USD ($187.9 million CAD) of the capital committed.

New investors, the Export Development Canada, Royal Bank of Canada, and The Toronto-Dominion Bank, joined Evok’s second fund as limited partners (LPs) alongside returning LPs Suncor Energy and Cenovus Energy.

Canadian oil and gas companies Suncor and Cenovus, and the BC Cleantech CEO Alliance, helped launched Evok’s first fund.

The fund will target early-stage investments across North America. Evok plans to invest in decarbonization verticals, including carbon capture use and storage, low-carbon fuels, clean energy and grid innovations, and advanced materials.

BetaKit has reached out to Evok to confirm the exact amount raised in the fund’s first close.

Evok partners Mike Biddle, Naynika Chaubey, Jane Kearns, and Marty Reed will lead Evok’s Fund II.

Canadian oil and gas companies Suncor and Cenovus, and the BC Cleantech CEO Alliance launched Evok’s first, $100 million CAD fund in 2016. That fund aimed to accelerate the development of energy transition technologies across North America.

Evok’s mission is to protect the environment and strengthen the economy. The firm’s Fund I has made 16 investments to date in carbon capture, electrification, hydrogen, and digital technology.

The firm claims that, so far Evok’s portfolio companies have raised more than $500 million CAD to scale and commercialize their technologies, from investors including Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Microsoft, OGCI, Capricorn, MIT’s The Engine, and DCVC.

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Most recently, Evok invested in Sanctuary AI’s $75.5 million CAD Series A round. Sanctuary’s mission is to create the world’s first human-like intelligence in general-purpose robots designed to help people work more safely, efficiently, and sustainably.

Some of its other investments include a $7.4 million CAD Series A in SaaS startup Veerum; $6 million CAD in a Series A in SaaS startup SensorUp; and $8 million CAD in Series A funding for cleantech startup DarkVision. The latter marked Evok’s first investment from its Fund I.

Evok’s Fund II arrives at a time when BC is positioning itself as a leader in cleantech. The province created the Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy (CICE) to support the development and commercialization of cleantech in BC in 2021. The BC government in its 2022 budget committed to providing one-time funding of $25 million in 2022-23 to support clean energy, tech investments, and partnership opportunities with the federal government.

“We are pleased to have our founding investors returning to participate in our second fund, which we see as a testament to our approach and their confidence in our ability to drive large-scale industrial decarbonization while generating market-leading returns,” said Reed. “Alongside our returning investors, the addition of EDC, RBC and TD will bring new strategic strength to our fund.”

UPDATE 01/04/2022: This article previously stated that the $300 million fund was in Canadian currency. That has since been updated to reflect that the fund is USD.

Feature image courtesy of Unsplash.

Charles Mandel

Charles Mandel

Charles Mandel's reporting and writing on technology has appeared in Wired.com, Canadian Business, Report on Business Magazine, Canada's National Observer, The Globe and Mail, and the National Post, among many others. He lives off-grid in Nova Scotia.

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