Start Me Up: Funding Canada’s Emerging Innovators

The Conference Board of Canada, 93 pages, April 2014
Report by Michael Grant
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This report considers the strengths and weaknesses in Canada’s financial system related to funding innovative start-ups. It concludes by making suggestions for improving early-stage innovation finance.

Cette publication comprend un résumé en français.

Document Highlights

Start-ups offer many benefits that make them desirable, but are Canadians willing to do more to fund start-ups? Start Me Up: Funding Canada’s Emerging Innovators is one of several Centre for Business Innovation reports on capital markets and innovation finance. The report focuses on the unique case of financing innovative start-ups. It develops a framework for understanding the particular challenges of start-up finance. As well as considering the demand for start-up finance in Canada, the report considers strengths and weaknesses in Canada’s financial system related to funding innovative start-ups. It also makes suggestions for improving early-stage innovation finance.

The report will be of interest to four audiences: Canada’s innovative companies; the finance community; intermediaries that facilitate deals; and government policy-makers seeking to understand their role.

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Résumé

Chapter 1—Introduction

  • About This Report

Chapter 2—Start-Up Funding Needs

  • Defining a Start-Up
  • Start-Ups Innovate
  • Start-Ups Are Risky
  • De-Risking the Business
  • Use of Risk Capital
  • Estimating the Number of Start-Ups and Their Capital Needs
  • Picking the Right Capital Structure
  • The Payoff
  • Conclusion

Chapter 3—Risk Capital in Canada

  • The Nature of Risk-Adjusted Returns
  • The Booms and Busts of Early-Stage Finance
  • Doing the Rounds
  • Funding Channels
  • Conclusion

Chapter 4—Improving Canada’s Risk Capital Market

  • Develop Start-Up Investment Opportunities
  • Draw in More Risk Capital
  • Do a Better Job of Matching
  • A Vibrant Finance Market
  • Conclusion

Chapter 5—Implications

  • Innovators: Improved Management Will Attract Risk Capital
  • Financiers: Scale Up and Connect
  • Intermediaries Can Help Improve the Ecosystem
  • Government Can Kick-Start a Better Innovation Capital Market

Appendix A—Bibliography

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