Nova Scotia start-ups will continue to have access to the money they need to create innovative products and services, and sell them to customers around the world with a new financial commitment from the province.

Government is recapitalizing the Nova Scotia First Fund so that $40 million is available for venture capital investments in businesses.

Access to this funding is expected to provide support for Nova Scotia entrepreneurs over the next eight years, creating even more made-at-home success stories.

"Over the past few days we've seen Analyze Re sold to a United States company and Kinduct attract $12 million in funding from highly strategic investors," said Business Minister Mark Furey. "Clearly, Nova Scotia's startup scene has impressive momentum, and we need to ensure these businesses have access to the right resources to launch, expand and grow our economy."

The fund includes a new commitment of $29 million and $11 million from a clean technology fund that expired this year. The entire fund will be available to all types of investments, including clean technology.

Innovacorp manages the fund, which invests at the earliest stages of a company's development. The high risk of companies at this early stage makes it difficult for them to attract capital from the private sector.

"Access to early stage capital is important to drive innovation and bring new companies and products to market," said Adrian Bentley, chief executive officer of Analyze Re. "We benefited first-hand from a capital investment from Innovacorp, which was instrumental in our ability to get our idea off the ground, and we also received a wealth of advice and support from the investment team as we learned to build our business."

The Nova Scotia First Fund helps address a funding gap for startups in a variety of technology sectors. On average, access to capital for companies in Nova Scotia trails behind the national average and, by a more significant margin, that of the United States.

In June, government announced an investment of $25 million towards the creation of a new, private sector-led venture capital fund. A request for submissions has been issued for a fund manager. While the Nova Scotia First Fund invests in the earliest stages, the new fund will support startups at a later stage in their development.

For more information, please contact:

Heather Desserud
902.223.9772 (cell)
Heather.Desserud@novascotia.ca

Dawn House
Innovacorp
902.424.8670
902.456.9705 (cell)
dhouse@innovacorp.ca

Halifax, Nova Scotia, October 27, 2016