Canadian startup news of the week (1/30/22)


Why Canadian tech is finally accessing the global talent market.

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. If you prefer this update hit your inbox every week, make sure to subscribe to the BetaKit Newsletter using the form at the bottom of this page.

Top Stories of the Week


Techstars Toronto’s all-international cohort prompts discussion on role of city-based accelerators

Previous Techstars Toronto cohorts have featured an interesting balance between homegrown Canadians and international founders looking to the program to scale their business in Canada. But the latest cohort was unique: for the first time, it comprised only non-Canadian companies.


Deloitte Canada launches $150 million CAD venture capital fund

After tracking rising technology startups for a number of years with its annual Technology Fast 50 list, Deloitte Canada is getting into the venture capital business itself.


Michael Hyatt joins Northleaf Capital Partners as senior advisor

Northleaf Capital Partners has added noted Canadian tech entrepreneur and investor Michael Hyatt as senior advisor to the firm’s venture capital and growth equity program. Elsewhere in Canadian VC moves, Inovia Capital promoted Hugues Lalancette to partner on the firm’s growth investment team.


MaRS launches new $100 million Graphite IAF fund

The fund will also see a $25 million investment from Canadian pension fund OMERS, as well as contributions by entrepreneurs from past IAF investments.


Bench CEO and founder Ian Crosby out, company brings in president

“I told everyone I was ready to move on to the next thing,” Crosby told BetaKit in an interview.


Ottawa entrepreneur Brad Rollo remembered for his passion and enthusiasm

John Bradley “Brad” Rollo died in his sleep from cancer on December 24th, 2021. Rollo’s death triggered an outpouring of remembrances and tributes from his family and friends.


Toronto shattered venture funding records in 2021 as city grew accustomed to billion-dollar quarters

Investment in Toronto tech grew 400 percent in 2021, according to data from briefed.in. In Western Canada, British Columbia’s tech sector reached new heights last year, and Calgary saw strong results as deal volume in the region almost doubled. Elsewhere, Montréal saw its tech funding grow steadily, while Faire and Applyboard accounted for 85 percent of all capital raised by Waterloo Region startups in 2021.


Why Canadian tech is finally accessing the global talent market

The pandemic has made accessing global talent more possible than ever before. That’s especially evident in the thriving Canadian startup scene.


Clio alum launches legaltech startup Lawbrokr to match consumers with lawyers

Armed with $785,000 CAD in fresh financing, the new Toronto-based startup aims to tackle what one of its investors describes as “a universal problem”—how to find the right legal help.


Three Canadian regions ranked among the best global cleantech ecosystems by Startup Genome

The Toronto-Waterloo region’s ranking as the top cleantech hub in Canada is an interesting one, particularly as British Columbia (BC) is often seen as the country’s leader in this sector.


Latest Funding, Acquisitions, and Layoffs

  • SF – Builders VC debuts $250M for second fund (read more)
  • VIC – Certn acquires Credence (read more)

  • VAN – Ziva Dynamics acquired by Unity Technologies (read more)

  • VAN – MintList (TrafficDriven) – $2.76M (read more)

  • REG – Agtech Accelerator secures $900K in RDA funding (read more)

  • REG – HomeTeamLive – $450K (read more)

  • LON – Paystone acquires Canadian Payment Services (read more)

  • MAR – VentureLab receives $1.5M from municipal government (read more)

  • TOR – BenchSci – $63M (read more)

  • TOR – Zafin acquires Fincad (read more)

  • TOR – Daylight Automation acquires Proof Data Technologies (read more)

  • HAL – Volta Labs secures $450K in RDA funding (read more)

  • GHE – Deliverect – $150M (read more)


RBC Capital Markets Global Market Outlook 2022

This year’s Global Market Outlook combines the insights of our M&A and Equity Capital Markets experts with the foresight of our Global Economists to determine what will drive deal flow in the year ahead.

For companies, ESG is a strategic imperative and an investment in the future. For investors, ESG has become a new dataset on business operation, management and resilience. How are companies using ESG to attract capital?

Global market perspectives to help you lead today and define tomorrow.

Get the 2022 Outlook


WHAT STOPPED THE CANADIAN SHIELD FROM SUPPLYING THE PPE AND RAPID TESTS CANADA NEEDS?

The Canadian Shield made 16 million face shields at the start of the pandemic. And then they stopped. Why did they stop? What stopped them?


WHAT CAN THE METAVERSE LEARN FROM ACCESSIBILITY LEADERS?

“When you design for the edges, you get the middle for free.”

Maayan Ziv (AccessNow) and Samuel Proulx (Fable) discuss the process of improving accessibility in both the real and virtual worlds.


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