In recent months, Canadian tech accelerators have sprouted in New York, Boston and Philadelphia, with another in Denver scheduled to host its first cohort early next year. Canadian accelerators have been in Silicon Valley since 2009.
BDC Venture Capital is taking efforts a step further: it has announced a strategic partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) to expand the Canadian Technology Accelerator program in the US. According to BDC, this partnership will enable further development of new accelerators in Boston, New York City, San Francisco and Philadelphia.
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Recently, a MaRS report revealed that the BDC was highly active in the “leaderboard” for most active VC firm partnerships, listed in six of the ten most active firm pairs. For example, the BDC completed a further 20 deals with Desjardins Venture Capital and 10 deals with Fonds de Solidarité des Travailleurs du Quebec.
Further, the BDC was named the most active venture capital firm in terms of co-investment, with 211 of their 251 total deals having been completed with a partnering firm. So a US partnership is hardly a surprise.
“This partnership will help some of the most promising Canadian companies access new clients and investors in the US and abroad, which will result in a strengthening of our venture capital ecosystem as a whole,” says Jean-René Halde, President and Chief Executive Officer of BDC. “The intent is that this translates into greater and faster growth of new Canadian companies that are more competitive and improve long-term economic prospects for the whole country.”
“The Government of Canada is taking every opportunity to provide the right tools and business connections to help our leading Canadian entrepreneurs succeed abroad,” said the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway. “The Canadian Technology Accelerator program has already proven to be an effective way forward for ambitious, innovative Canadian startups and high-growth firms to tap into new, dynamic markets in the United States.”
The Canadian Technology Accelerator program was launched in 2009 by DFAIT’s Trade Commissioner Service. Canadian entrepreneurs are provided with the opportunity to pitch their product to potential US clients, strategic partners and financiers.
Notable alumnus of the US-based Canadian tech accelerators include Voices.com, Frank & Oak, and Shoplocket.