CB Insights recently published its list of private, venture-backed technology companies with valuations over $1 billion. It identified 56 such companies, many of which will be familiar to those who follow the tech sector, including Uber ($17 billion), AirBnB, and Dropbox (both $10 billion) along with some upstarts that receive a lot less press. There is also a name on the list that will be familiar to those who follow the Canadian tech sector: Shopify was listed with a valuation of $1 billion.
We are of course pleased to see a Canadian company on a list like this but we were also a little perplexed by the absence of another well known Canadian tech company: Hootsuite. Shopify received its billion-dollar valuation following its $100 million Series C round of financing in December 2013, bringing its total funding to $122 million. Hootsuite has raised nearly $285 million in funding, including a $60 million Series D one month ago. That level of funding would point towards a billion-dollar-plus valuation given current market conditions, so we were surprised to see it excluded from this list.
Regardless of whether or not Canadian companies make it onto a list like this, we remain very pleased to see our country’s tech start-ups raising significant rounds of capital. This includes Desire2Learn, which raised an $85 million Series B this past August, bringing its total capital to $165 million; BuildDirect, which has raised over $62 million through four rounds of fundraising; and Vision Critical, which has raised $42.5 million to date. We hope that this trend continues and that it is a sign of good times ahead for Canada’s tech industry.
by Jordan Dolgin, CEO of Dolgin Professional Corporation
Hands down and without a doubt the #1 Absolute Start-Up Mistake I see clients make time and time again is far from obvious and far from intuitive.
It has nothing to do with the business concept itself.
It has nothing to do with the size of the ”addressable market” for a new product or service.
It has nothing to do with the quality of key management.
It has nothing to do with raising capital, managing cash flow or the marketing strategies or techniques employed. (more…)
This article originally appeared as Mike’s commentary for the Q1 Capital newsletter in June 2012
Beaten to the Punch
The idea for this month’s newsletter came from a presentation that I recently attended where the an employee of the Toronto Stock Exchange (TMX) espoused the virtues of the Toronto Venture Exchange (TMX-V) and its Capital Pool Company program as a viable means of raising venture capital in Canada. Toronto Venture Exchange’s claims that “as the public venture capital marketplace in Canada, TSX Venture Exchange provides growth companies with access to capital and offers investors a venture investment market with comprehensive compliance standards.” (more…)
By Rob Jevon, posted online by Pharmaceutical Online on September 2009 (originally published in Life Science Leader Magazine)
Mistake #1: Hit ‘em Where They Ain’t
Although generals from George Washington to Douglas MacArthur achieved great military success by focusing their forces on underdefended positions, the same does not hold true for venture capitalists. VCs are creatures of habit — actually, profitable habit. They typically go where they have made money before. (more…)