VCCI investment helps Pique Ventures deploy its second fund to invest in a diverse community of leaders, building technologies with long-term utility and companies that care, connect, and protect.
Vancouver, BC (November 5, 2018) – Pique Ventures, an impact investment and management company, has been chosen by the Government of Canada to participate in the country’s Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative (VCCI) to invest in emerging and underserved sectors of the Canadian venture ecosystem. The Government of Canada, through the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), has committed to support women-run funds and new fund managers under Stream 2 of VCCI. The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion announced the second round of investments under VCCI on November 5, 2018 in Montreal.
The VCCI investment will enable Pique Ventures to deploy its second fund dedicated to gender balance, diversity, and impact investing. VCCI aims to improve access to capital to grow innovative companies and create good equality employment opportunities across Canada. A key objective of VCCI is to enhance diversity and address gender balance among venture capital fund managers and portfolio companies.
“We are honoured to be selected to participate in the Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative,” said Bonnie Foley-Wong, CEO of Pique Ventures. “Our second fund aims to scale and grow the impact and outcomes we have already experienced with our first fund and this VCCI investment helps us do that. So far, our portfolio companies demonstrate management team and workforce diversity that exceeds national averages. In terms of our investor community, we’ve flipped the ratio and have high rates of women and people of colour investing in our fund.”
While impact investing is gaining traction from investors, more support is needed to expand and accelerate these efforts in Canada.
“With their social impact investment thesis, and a major emphasis on female investors and founders, Pique Ventures is one of the most promising and differentiated stories of the seven recipients of VCCI investment,” noted Neal Hill, Vice President, Market Development at BDC Capital, which will be managing the program’s investment in Pique. “We very much look forward to working with Bonnie and the team in the years ahead.”
Women continue to be underrepresented in leadership positions in the venture community. On average, women represent approximately 12% of partners in Canadian venture capital firms and only 7% of partners at top 100 venture capital firms globally. Only 5% of Canadian tech companies have a female founder or CEO and there is a severe venture capital funding gap for women entrepreneurs. Pique Ventures is building a second fund to invest in a diverse community of leaders, building technologies with long-term utility and companies that care, connect, and protect.
“Pique Ventures has been investing in leadership diversity and evaluates investment opportunities for their potential for impact and financial returns. We have championed women to lead in the venture community as investors and entrepreneurial leaders and invested with a gender lens since our inception,” added Foley-Wong. “We’re excited to see the commitment of the Government of Canada to improve gender balance in the venture community.”
Pique Ventures has been actively investing in women-founded technology ventures in Canada since 2014 and enabling more diversity in the investor community. With its first fund, Pique Fund, 80% of the fund’s capital came from women. Women represent only 25% of the workforce in the technology industry in Canada, whereas women represent 42% of the workforce amongst Pique Fund’s portfolio of technology companies. Women represent 40% of the management teams of Pique Fund’s portfolio companies compared to Canadian average of 13%.
About Pique Ventures
Pique Ventures is an impact investment and management company. Pique Ventures enables a diverse community of investors to pursue integrated investing. Integrated Investing is a proprietary investment decision-making methodology to help create a better world and was developed specifically to evaluate impact and early-stage ventures.