iNovia Capital GP Patrick Pichette joins board of Lightspeed

Lightspeed POS, a Montréal-based point-of-sale software solution for retailers and restaurateurs, has appointed Patrick Pichette to its board. Pichette, a former CFO at Google, has been a general partner at Canadian venture capital firm iNovia Capital since April 2018. INovia is a longtime backer of Lightspeed, joining last year’s Series D financing, which raised about $207 million (US$166 million). The company’s other new board members are Tandem International‘s Marie-Josée LamotheRob Williams, formerly of Amazon, and Paul McFeeters, formerly of OpenText.

Venture-backed Lightspeed preparing for $200 mln IPO: report

Lightspeed POS, a Montréal-based point-of-sale software solution for retailers and restaurateurs, is gearing up for an initial public offering (IPO), according to a report by the Globe and Mail. The company selected Bank of Montreal and National Bank of Canada to co-lead an IPO on the Toronto Stock Exchange, the report said. Sources told the Globe and Mail that Lightspeed intends to raise at least $200 million and is hoping to achieve a valuation of more than $1 billion. Founded in 2005 by CEO Dax Dasilva, Lightspeed last year raised about $207 million (US$166 million) in a Series D financing led by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec.

E-commerce marketing funder Clearbanc raises $92 mln in VC

Clearbanc, a Toronto-based provider of marketing capital for e-commerce brands, has raised about $92 million (US$70 million) in financing. The round was backed by Emergence Capital, Social Capital, CoVenture, Founders Fund, 8VC, iNovia Capital, Real Ventures, Portag3 Ventures, Precursor, WTI, Berggruen and FJ Labs. Clearbanc provides pre-revenue e-commerce businesses with $5,000 to $10 million-plus in marketing capital without personal guarantees, warrants, equity or credit checks. It has already funded more than 500 companies with over $100 million. Clearbanc was founded in 2015 by CEO Andrew D’Souza and President Michele Romanow, both serial entrepreneurs and angel investors.

Q&A with Boris Wertz, founding partner of Version One Ventures

Version One Ventures is growing its franchise. The Vancouver firm, founded in 2012 by renowned seed investor Boris Wertz, made the decision to expand when raising its third fund. One result was the September promotion of Angela Tran Kingyens to general partner. A further step will soon be taken with the hire of an associate. […]

Rna Diagnostics closes $5 mln Series A led by iGan Partners

Rna Diagnostics Inc, a Toronto-based cancer therapy guidance platform, has raised $5 million in a Series A financing. The round was led by Canadian early-stage venture capital firm iGan Partners. It was joined by undisclosed new and existing investors. Founded in 2010, Rna Diagnostics’ first product is the RNA Disruption Assay, a diagnostic test that helps physicians to rapidly assess how patients are responding to cancer treatments. President and CEO Jeremy Bridge-Cook said the funds raised will support the technology’s clinical trial in primary breast cancer as well as commercialization initiatives. Bridge-Cook formerly served as an investment manager with MDS Capital Corp.

Signal Hill-backed C&V sells custom manufacturing unit

C&V Portable Accommodations Ltd has sold the assets of its custom manufacturing division to an affiliate of Horizon North Logistics Inc (TSX: HNL), a Calgary-based provider of industrial services and modular construction solutions. Terms weren’t disclosed. C&V, a Calgary-based supplier of portable accommodations to the energy and infrastructure sectors, was acquired in 2012 by Signal Hill Equity Partners, a Canadian mid-market private equity firm. Signal Hill Managing Partner James Johnson, who is also C&V’s chairman, said the unit sale will strengthen the company’s balance sheet and support its growth in Western Canada.

PE-owned Hub International buys Kuokoa Enterprises

Chicago-based insurance brokerage Hub International Ltd has acquired the assets of Kuokoa Enterprises Inc, an Edmonton-based provider of commercial lines insurance solutions. No financial terms were disclosed. As a result, Dave Douglas, the owner of Kuokoa, will join Hub Barton, Hub’s affiliate in Chilliwack, British Columbia. Last month, Canadian long-term private equity firm Altas Partners agreed to acquire a minority stake in Hub, a portfolio company of Hellman & Friedman.

Venture-backed Dialogue buys medtech platform DXA

Dialogue Technologies has acquired DXA, a Montréal-based artificial intelligence-enabled medical technology platform. Terms weren’t disclosed. Founded in 2015, DXA developed a tool for automating triage, medical charting and diagnosis. It can be used in most provider-patient interactions, from primary care to chronic and specialized care. Dialogue said the technology complements its virtual care and telemedicine offering and will allow it to explore new partnerships with healthcare providers and insurers. Earlier this year, Montréal-based Dialogue closed a $12 million Series A financing led by White Star Capital.

Aerial Technologies raises $3.9 mln in Intel Capital-led round

Aerial Technologies, a Montréal-based wireless motion analytics software platform, has secured about $3.9 million (US$3 million) in follow-on financing. The round was led by Intel Capital. It was joined by Fonds Innovexport, which co-led Aerial’s seed financing in 2017, as well as Kibo Ventures and Telefónica Open Innovation. Founded in 2015 by CEO David Grant, CTO Michel Allegue and VP Engineering François Morel, Aerial’s technology leverages wireless infrastructure and machine learning to detect presence and motion in the home and other venues. The company, incubated and backed by TandemLaunch, will use the funds raised to add new functionalities, advance its IP portfolio, and hire more talent.


TorQuest Partners invests in Cando Rail Services

Canadian mid-market private equity firm TorQuest Partners has invested in Cando Rail Services Ltd, a Brandon, Manitoba-based provider of specialized rail support services. No financial terms were released. Founded in 1978 by Gord Peters and Rick Hammond, Cando provides a range of rail services that help industrial customers optimize bulk material supply chains and connect to Class 1 railways.

TorQuest Partners invests in Cando Rail Services

Canadian mid-market private equity firm TorQuest Partners has invested in Cando Rail Services Ltd, a Brandon, Manitoba-based provider of specialized rail support services. No financial terms were released. Founded in 1978 by Gord Peters and Rick Hammond, Cando provides a range of rail services that help industrial customers optimize bulk material supply chains and connect to Class 1 railways. Supported by more than 25 North American locations, the company moves over $22 billion of product annually. TorQuest Principal Jonathan Fraser said his firm will work with Cando’s employee shareholders to continue growing the core business.

Almada raises initial $80 mln in launch of aviation finance fund

Canadian private equity firm Almada has raised an initial $80 million for its inaugural aviation finance fund. The capital sources were not disclosed. Aircraft Opportunity LP will invest in mid-life, narrowbody and special purpose aircraft. To date, Almada has acquired three aircraft, two Bombardier Q400s and a Basler BT67, and has two other aircraft under contract. It is sourcing additional opportunities. Toronto-based Almada was founded last year by CEO Alon Ossip, Chairman Martin Goldfarb and David Ossip. Investing more than $200 million so far, the firm plans to launch more funds in other verticals, including real estate, self-storage, software and waste management.

Caisse to invest in Avison Young’s acquisition of EQT-owned GVA

Avison Young has agreed to acquire GVA, a U.K. property advisory services business and affiliate of Germany’s Apleona GmbH. Terms weren’t released for the deal, which is expected to close in Q1 2019. The seller is Swedish private equity firm EQT, which acquired GVA as part of Apleona in 2016. Avison, a Toronto-based commercial real estate services provider, will combine GVA with its U.K. operations. It said the acquisition will help expand the company’s footprint in Europe and beyond. Avison will fund the buy along with a refinancing in part through equity supplied by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. Earlier this year, the Caisse made a $250 million preferred investment in Avison, facilitating the exit of Parallel49 Equity.

ONCAP acquires minority stake in Wyse Meter Solutions

ONCAP, the mid-market investment arm of Canadian private equity firm Onex Corp, has acquired a minority interest in Wyse Meter Solutions Inc, a Newmarket, Ontario-based provider of submetering and utility expense management services. No financial terms were disclosed. Founded in 2006, Wyse serves the multi-residential, condominium and commercial markets in Canada, helping building owners, developers and operators manage their utility costs. ONCAP Managing Director Mark Gordon said his firm will partner with Wyse’s management team to achieve additional organic and acquisition-led growth. ONCAP invested through ONCAP IV, which raised about $1.5 billion (US$1.1 billion) in 2016.

Novacap sells KDC to consortium led by Cornell Capital

Canadian mid-market private equity firm Novacap has sold Knowlton Development Corp (KDC), a Longueuil, Québec-based custom maker of beauty, health and personal care brands, to a consortium led by Cornell Capital. Terms weren’t disclosed. Cornell, a U.S. private equity firm, was joined in the deal by HarbourVest Partners and others. Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec and Investissement Québec, which partnered with Novacap in KDC’s $165 million recapitalization in 2014, will roll over their stakes. Acquired in 2002 by Novacap, KDC has grown organically and through acquisitions. Cornell Senior Partner Henry Cornell said his firm will work with the company’s management team to expand operations, particularly in Europe and Asia.


BDC’s François Lecavalier joins Canada Infrastructure Bank

Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) has hired François Lecavalier as head of project development effective December 3. Lecavalier has nearly 30 years of experience leading infrastructure and private equity projects in Canada and Europe. He joins CIB from Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), where he was a senior vice president and oversaw the $600 million Cleantech Scale Up Initiative. Before then, he served as vice president of SNC-Lavalin Capital. CIB is led by President and CEO Pierre Lavallée, formerly the global head of investment partnerships at Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

PE-owned Hub International acquires Tri-Line Agencies

Hub International Ltd has acquired Tri-Line Agencies Inc, a Rose Valley, Saskatchewan-based insurance brokerage offering personal and commercial solutions, including automobile and farming solutions. No financial terms were disclosed for the deal, which will see Tri-Line’s owner, Eugene Danko, join Hub Manitoba. Last month, Canadian long-term private equity firm Altas Partners agreed to acquire a minority stake in Hub, a Chicago-based insurance company. Hellman & Friedman, which acquired Hub in 2013 for about US$4.4 billion, will remain the largest shareholder.


Stuart Olson buys Banyan Capital-backed Tartan for $12 mln

Stuart Olson Inc (TSX: SOX) has acquired the outstanding shares of Tartan Canada Corp, a Calgary-based mechanical maintenance, repairs and operations business. Stuart Olson, a Calgary-based solutions provider to the Canadian construction and industrial services market, paid about $12 million. It said the acquisition will give the company access to a larger share of the industrial market both in terms of mechanical and general contracting opportunities. Established in 1953, Tartan was acquired in 2006 by Banyan Capital Partners, a Canadian private equity firm and affiliate of Connor, Clark & Lunn Financial Group.