Silicon Valley Bank opens in Canada

Barbara Dirks

Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) today announced that it has been granted a license to operate in Canada, and has opened its Canadian headquarters in Toronto. With its license, issued by the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, the commercial bank can now provide in-market financing solutions to private and public technology and life science companies and their investors across Canada.

“SVB’s official entrance into Canada is another sign that our technology ecosystem is growing quickly.”

“Building on SVB’s longstanding track record of supporting technology companies in the US, we are excited to help Canada’s entrepreneurs grow and scale,” said Barbara Dirks, Head of Canada at Silicon Valley Bank. “Our clients appreciate the partnership with us and our highly-specialized approach, fast pace, industry expertise and global network.”

SVB applied for the regulatory approvals to establish a branch in Canada back in May 2017. The bank works with companies around the world through offices across the US and in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Israel and China, and has helped fund more than 30,000 startups since its founding in 1983.

“Canada has a thriving innovation sector and we’re excited to be a catalyst for its continued growth,” said Greg Becker, CEO of Silicon Valley Bank. “The Canadian banking licence is a significant milestone in our global expansion. The growing team there is well-positioned to execute on SVB’s mission to help innovative companies and their investors be even more successful.”

According to the MoneyTree Canada report by PwC Canada and CB Insights, VC funding in Canada hit a record high in 2018, with $3.5 billion USD invested through more than 471 deals. SVB has served the Canadian market on a cross-border basis since 2000 via its US operations, supporting clients such as CareGuide, D2L, Freshbooks, Lightspeed, Drop, and Shopify, on a cross-border basis through its US operations.

RELATED: SVB’s Barbara Dirks talks about keeping Canada at the forefront of innovation

SVB said it will continue to provide additional cross-border banking services to Canadian companies that have, or seek, a US presence. Last November, held its first Startup Outlook survey in Canada, to determine the state of Canadian startups in the same way the bank has targeted tech and life science startup founders in the UK, US, and China.

“SVB’s official entrance into Canada is another sign that our technology ecosystem is growing quickly,” said Andrew Graham, Co-Founder and CEO of Borrowell, a FinTech startup and SVB client based in Toronto. “They have worked with many of the world’s most successful technology companies and have a deep understanding of high-growth innovation companies across life-stages. SVB’s support has been extremely helpful to us as we’ve scaled our business.”

SVB has $57 billion USD in assets under management as of Q4 2018.

Image courtesy Silicon Valley Bank.

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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