VenGrowth Closes Criterion Sale

VenGrowth Asset Management has agreed completed the sale of its mutual fund business, Criterion Investments, to First Asset Capital Corp. No financial terms were disclosed. In an earlier statement, Vengrowth said the move would allow it to “dedicate itself fully to its private equity business.”


First Asset Capital Corp. (“First Asset”) and VenGrowth Asset Management (“VenGrowth”) are pleased to announce that they have completed the sale of Criterion Investments (“Criterion”) to First Asset effective July 31, 2009.

Since 2004, Criterion has been at the forefront of unique investment strategies for Canadian retail investors, launching Canada’s first global water infrastructure fund, first global clean energy fund and first family of currency-hedged funds.

Independently owned, First Asset has managed investments on behalf of individual investors since 1996, and has grown into a leading Canadian provider of innovative investment funds – primarily TSX-listed closed-end funds.

“We believe this marks the beginning of a great partnership,” said Ian McPherson, who will continue his role as President of Criterion. “By joining forces with First Asset, Criterion will continue its commitment of helping investors make portfolios better by offering innovative investment solutions.”

“We are very excited to welcome Criterion to the First Asset family. It is our intention to build the Criterion brand, expand its current product line-up, and continue its tradition of innovation,” said Barry Gordon, President and CEO, First Asset.

“This transaction allows VenGrowth to dedicate itself fully to its private equity business while still participating in the future success of Criterion and First Asset through a minority equity interest resulting from the deal,” said Michael Cohen, VenGrowth Managing General Partner.”

About First Asset

First Asset is a Canadian wealth management company that offers a diverse range of investment products including exchange listed investment funds, mutual funds, principal-protected notes and flow-through limited partnerships, covering a variety of domestic and global mandates. At the end of July, the combined assets of First Asset and Criterion were approximately $1 billion.