On March 26th, MaRS announced the launch of Canada’s first dedicated early-stage cleantech venture fund. The MaRS Cleantech Fund LP ushers in a new model in early-stage technology investing by leveraging the strength of a non-exclusive, but strategic relationship between MaRS Discovery District and the private sector.
The MaRS Cleantech Fund (www.marsvf.com) is a private venture fund focused on early-stage cleantech investing. The Fund will invest in capital-efficient companies with strong intellectual property, a global market opportunity and experienced management teams. Portfolio companies will be encouraged to seek maximum support from MaRS.
MaRS Discovery District is a mission-driven innovation centre located in Toronto. MaRS works with partners to catalyze, accelerate and amplify innovation. MaRS supports entrepreneurs building Canada’s next generation of growth companies.
With the first close of the $30-million goal already secured solely from private investors, the Fund is pleased to announce its first two investments: GreenMantra, which has developed a proprietary technology platform to convert plastics into chemicals and other fuels; and Smart Energy Instruments (SEI), which is on track to create low-cost energy sensors that form the backbone of a smarter grid by providing real-time, highly granular data measurements. The Fund will draw from a strong portfolio of MaRS client companies that target the large and growing global cleantech market, and will co-invest with angels and other institutional funds, including the Investment Accelerator Fund (IAF), Ontario’s seed stage investment fund.
“Over the past five years, MaRS has built a unique platform to support high-growth new economy firms, upon which major funding opportunities like these can now develop,” said Dr. Ilse Treurnicht, CEO, MaRS Discovery District. “With remarkable growth in the global cleantech market, we need to capitalize on this momentum and provide our most promising cleantech entrepreneurs with the critical early-stage funding they need to become tomorrow’s market leaders, driving economic growth here at home.”
According to Ottawa-based Analytica Advisors, the global cleantech market is expected to reach $3 trillion by 2020. “If Canada captures just 2 per cent of the cleantech market by 2020, which also happens to be our share of carbon emissions, we’d build a $60-billion industry. We’re investing in the next generation of global leaders in this sector,” said Murray McCaig, Managing Director of the The MaRS Cleantech Fund.
For more information contact Chris Stevenson Director, Communications.
Phone: (416) 673-8104.
© 2012, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.
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