PARTEQ Innovations has been awarded $50,000 from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario’s (FedDevOntario) Investing in Business Innovation initiative to build a local network of “angel” investors. The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for FedDevOntario, made the announcement during a keynote address delivered at the 2011 National Angel Summit today.
An accredited member of the National Angel Organization – Ontario, the PARTEQ Angel Network aims to attract Kingston-area investors and Queen’s alumni interested in participating in PARTEQ-managed venture funds that support emerging Queen’s technologies.
Angel investors fill the crucial funding gap between a startup company’s beginnings and its first major round of venture funding. Typically entrepreneurially minded individuals, angels may also provide hands-on support, such as mentoring and advising.
The funding comes at an especially opportune time for potential investors, says John Molloy, President and CEO of PARTEQ.
“Government incentives, and some really exciting emerging technologies are generating excellent opportunities for investors,” he says. We will be able to leverage every dollar of angel investment with funding available through both federal and provincial programs – so the potential for this group to build momentum is very strong.”
A unique benefit of the network is broad risk management, which generally is not available to individual investors. “Investment opportunities are not only pre-screened by us, in most cases they’ve already received significant investments of our time, money and expertise,” says Mr. Molloy.
PARTEQ has been attracting and managing investments and investment funds in startup companies for more than two decades. During that time PARTEQ’s spinoff companies have been able to raise more than $1 billion in external financing as a result of those early investments.
“Angel investors have played significant roles in many of our successes,” Mr. Molloy says. “This funding now enables us to formalize that activity and build a critical mass of like-minded local investors interested in helping us move breakthrough discoveries to market.”
The network builds on PARTEQ’s own growth, including its establishment of a national commercialization centre for green chemistry discoveries, and its expanded reach into other institutions acrossEastern Ontario. These developments give investors access to a larger pool of opportunities, Mr. Molloy adds.
PARTEQ launched the network earlier this year. The Kingston Economic Development Corporation was the first investor, seeding the fund with $50,000.
“KEDCO is proud to participate in the PARTEQ Angel Network,” says Jeff Garrah, CEO of KEDCO. “The commercialization of applied research at Queen’s brings great opportunity to the City ofKingstonin terms of creating jobs and investment. Kingstonis home to numerous PARTEQ spinoff companies – BKIN Technologies, Endetec, Quibit Systems, Jolly Giant Software and Performance Plants, to name just a few. The global importance of the discoveries developed and the new companies created speak to the innovative and supportive business environment inKingston.”
So far the PARTEQ Angel Network fund has attracted $535,000 in investment from its angel members.
The network expects to announce its first spinoff investment in the near future.
President & CEO
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About PARTEQ Innovations:
PARTEQ Innovations is the not-for-profit technology transfer office of Queen’s University, part of the Rideau Commercialization Network. PARTEQ works with institutional researchers and the business and venture capital communities to bring early stage technologies to market. Since 1987 PARTEQ has been instrumental in the establishment of 45 companies developing a variety of products, from potential drugs for Alzheimer’s, cancer and heart disease to automated bacteria detection for water systems, solar-powered appliances, and advanced materials used in the plastics, automotive, aerospace and household appliance industries.
About FedDev Ontario’s Investing in Business Innovation initiative:
Created in 2009, FedDev Ontariosupports the southern Ontarioeconomy by building on the region’s strengths and creating opportunities for jobs and economic growth. The Agency’s Investing in Business Innovation is designed to boost private sector investment in start-up businesses to accelerate the development of new products, processes and practices and help bring them to market. The Government of Canada is focusing on a portfolio of early-stage businesses that are recognized by the investor community as having the potential for high-growth and a net long-term economic benefit for southernOntario.
Funding under the initiative is also available for angel investor networks and their associations to attract new investment and support the growth of angel investment funds.
Applications for funding are being accepted and assessed on an ongoing basis. For more information and to apply, please refer to the program guidelines available on the FedDev Ontario website at www.feddevontario.gc.ca.