FrontFundr looks to help companies go public through new partnership


Silver Maple Ventures, the owner of equity crowdfunding platform FrontFundr and FinTech platform DealSquare, has partnered with a family office to help companies with their go-public strategies, amid a recent increase in Canadian firms going public.

Through this new partnership, FrontFundr will work with Canadian family office ExpoWorld to support any interested clients on the FrontFundr platform with solutions related to going public. This includes assessing a potential go-public transaction as a viable corporate finance strategy, as well as the planning and execution of a sustainable public listing.

“ExpoWorld’s expertise in private and public markets and guidance in viable go-public strategies enhances our value proposition.”

The partnership comes after a year of many Canadian companies opting to go public, including Canadian tech startups. In 2020, investor demand for initial public offerings was high, an encouraging sign for IPO candidates. In the second half of 2020, companies such as Nuvei, Lightspeed, MindBeacon, and BroadBandTV all went public or listed on new exchanges.

This trend seems to be continuing into this year, with many companies making preparations for a public listing.

One such tech startup that may be able to benefit from this partnership is Montreal-based Hardbacon, which recently closed $1.1 million in funding on FrontFundr. Hardbacon has raised $2.2 million to date on the platform and has recently retained a lawyer to assist the startup, which hopes to go public later this year.

“As more and more companies will be raising capital in the private markets, there will be increasing need for supporting these companies with adequate and suitable corporate finance and liquidity strategies to underpin their growth,” said Peter-Paul Van Hoeken, founder and CEO of Silver Maple Ventures.

“ExpoWorld’s expertise in private and public markets and guidance in viable go-public strategies enhances our value proposition to early-stage and growth companies, as well as to investors who invest in companies on FrontFundr,” he added.

ExpoWorld specializes in local and international public and private financial markets. The family office provides strategic financing alternatives, including funding to early-stage venture companies and supporting them with eventual go-public strategies and financing alternatives. The office has a particular focus on technology and renewables.

Since crowdfunding investment was legalized federally in Canada in 2015, FrontFundr’s platform has allowed investors to commit funds to early-stage and growing private companies. In 2019, FrontFundr explained to BetaKit that the platform’s crowdfunding offering moved from helping solely startups to allowing all pre-IPO companies to use FrontFundr’s platform.

In July, FrontFundr launched a suitability assessment manager aimed to automate the purchase of private market securities and ensure investor protection.

In addition to providing the go-public strategy support, ExpoWorld and Silver Maple Ventures have also agreed to work together on a solution toward facilitating secondary liquidity for qualified private companies and their investors.

Image source Unsplash. Photo by Mario Gogh.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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