Minister Ng announces investment in venture capital for Canadian clean tech companies

News release

Funding will promote the success of Canada’s innovative clean tech sector

January 28, 2019 – Ottawa, Ontario

To advance Canada's climate change goals and help Canada's innovative clean technology firms grow, the Government of Canada is investing $50 million in venture capital for Canadian clean technology companies through the new Clean Technology Stream of the Venture Capital Catalyst Initiative (VCCI).

Access to late-stage capital is critical to helping Canadian companies scale and compete. That’s why the Government of Canada has invested $350 million in Canada’s growing venture capital ecosystem in VCCI Stream 1 and an additional $50 million in VCCI Stream 2 to increase regional, sectoral and gender diversity in venture capital, and is now investing $50 million in VCCI Stream 3 for clean tech companies.

The Government of Canada’s investments are matched by the private sector and will contribute up to $1.5 billion to Canada’s economy and support up to 30,000 jobs in emerging sectors.

Applicants are invited to submit an application by March 1, 2019. To promote an inclusive economy and improve gender balance in venture capital, each applicant will require a gender diversity strategy. Promoting gender diversity in venture capital is an objective of all three streams.

This investment, administered through BDC, responds to the advice of the Clean Technology Economic Strategy Table and complements the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change as well Canada’s Innovation and Skills Plan.

By investing in Canada’s venture capital ecosystem, Canadian companies succeed and middle-class jobs are created. 


“Canada is a world leader in clean technology. That’s why our government is investing $50 million in late-stage venture capital to help Canada’s best small and medium-sized businesses working in clean technology scale into innovative global champions. This investment complements our government’s unprecedented $2.3-billion investment in clean technology and will promote Canada’s growing venture capital ecosystem.”
– The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion

“As the world transitions to a clean economy, Canada is making crucial investments to ensure our companies are leaders. It is estimated that the clean economy will be worth $26 trillion globally by 2030. By supporting investors in clean technology today, we’re taking advantage of this once-in-a-generation economic opportunity and investing in the emission-reducing technologies that will ensure our children and grandchildren inherit a healthy environment and strong economy.”
– The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

“BDC is committed to helping build globally competitive clean tech firms at all stages of development, and BDC Capital, our investment arm, is a long-time investor in this space. Through our Industrial, Clean and Energy (ICE) Technology Venture Fund and our Cleantech Practice, we help innovative clean tech firms meet the capital-intensive needs of scaling and achieving timely growth to succeed on the global stage. We look forward to having more and better-capitalized co-investors in this space via the VCCI Stream 3 investments.”
– Michael Denham, President and CEO, BDC

Quick facts

  • In 2017, Canada’s venture capital industry invested $3.5 billion over 592 deals, marking the eighth straight year of continued growth and the most capital invested in a year since 2001.

  • By investing alongside the private sector, VCCI is expected to inject around $1.5 billion into Canada’s innovation capital market.

  • Canada is now ranked third for venture capital investment according to the OECD.

  • The Government of Canada is investing $2.3 billion in clean technology.

  • VCCI supports the work of BDC, the largest single venture capital investor in Canada, which has a portfolio of about $1 billion in commitments supporting nearly 700 high-tech businesses.

  • Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) account for the vast majority of businesses in Canada—99.8%. These 1.1 million SMEs employ 90% of the private sector workforce (10.7 million Canadians) and are responsible for 52% of Canadian GDP generated by private sector businesses.

Associated links


Follow Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada on Twitter: @ISED_CA.

Follow @CanadaBusiness on social media for business-related news: Twitter, Facebook

Mallory Clyne
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: