Alberta and federal governments invest US $22.5M in Builders VC Fund I

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By CPE News

CPE Media News (12/4/2018) – Alberta Enterprise Corporation (AEC) and BDC Capital, the investment arms of Alberta and Canadian governments, have committed US $22.5 million to Builders VC Fund I.

Founded by Jim Kim and Paul Lee, San Francisco based Builders VC is a new venture capital firm focused on supporting entrepreneurs modernizing traditional industries through the deployment of technology platforms.

AEC and BDC Capital investments are in a Canadian domiciled parallel fund.

Builders VC is targetting to raise up to US $200 million for its inaugural fund.

As mandated by AEC, Builders VC opened a Calgary office managed by Mark Blackwell. Builders VC has already made two Alberta based investments in Ambyint and Veerum.

photo credit: Builders VC

News Release

Alberta Enterprise Corporation and BDC Capital Invest in Builders VC

Builders VC is a new venture capital firm dedicated to helping traditional industries modernize using advanced technology

CALGARY, Dec. 4, 2018 /CNW/ – Alberta Enterprise Corporation and BDC Capital announced today their investments in Builders VC’s Fund I. The fund will invest in North American Series A stage startups disrupting long-established sectors including healthcare, agriculture, industrials, and real-estate.

Builders VC is a new venture capital firm focused on supporting entrepreneurs modernizing traditional industries through the deployment of technology platforms. Founded by experienced investors, Jim Kim and Paul Lee, Builders VC has offices in San Francisco, Chicago, and Calgary, Alberta. The Canadian operations will be managed by Mark Blackwell, who will lead Builders VC’s Alberta and Canadian efforts from Calgary.

“Builders VC is a strong fit with the Alberta Enterprise investment objectives. They have a compelling investment thesis that focuses on early stage venture funding in companies that are applying groundbreaking technology solutions to help longstanding industries like energy, agriculture, real estate, and construction improve the way they operate. Alberta and Canada will greatly benefit from the deal-flow and support that Calgary representative Mark Blackwell and Builders VC will bring to startups innovating in and advancing Alberta’s industries,” said Kristina Williams, CEO of Alberta Enterprise Corporation.

Builders VC has already been actively investing in the province developing its Alberta and Canadian deal pipeline hosting events and building its Alberta presence. This past summer the firm closed two Alberta based investments in Ambyint and Veerum respectively.

“Canada’s strengths in areas such as the industrial internet of things, data analytics and artificial intelligence are generating a promising ecosystem of technology companies which are fully capable of transforming Canada’s traditional sectors of resources, agriculture, infrastructure and logistics, said Alison Nankivell, Vice President of Fund Investments and Global Scaling at BDC Capital. We are pleased to support Builders VC and their strategy of investing in Canadian start-ups addressing the digitization challenges of traditional industry to better position them for global success.”

“The Builders team has a track record of investing in and supporting entrepreneurs that are providing tangible solutions for the real economy,” said Mark Blackwell, Partner, Builders VC. “The growth in the Canadian startup scene led by BDC and Alberta Enterprise Corporation’s combined efforts has resulted in a new wave of innovation and entrepreneurship that we are excited to be a part of. I am thrilled to be able to leverage the Builders network and expertise to advance the tech ecosystem throughout Canada.”
“Mark Blackwell’s company building experience and vast network in Canada gives Builders VC a strong edge in the Canadian market to invest in great founders, bringing pen-and-paper economies into the digital age,” said Jim Kim, General Partner of Builders VC. “Innovation is everywhere and we believe the combination of great technical talent, industry knowledge, and Canadian entrepreneurial spirit will result in industry-changing companies being built locally. We are excited to be a partner in helping Canadian innovations thrive globally.”

About Alberta Enterprise Corporation:

Alberta Enterprise Corporation promotes the development of Alberta’s venture capital industry by investing in venture capital funds that finance early-stage technology companies. We focus on funds that have a strong commitment to Alberta, including a full-time presence in the province. In addition to capital, we support Alberta’s venture capital ecosystem by connecting investors, entrepreneurs, and experienced technology executives who share our passion for building a bright, innovative Alberta.
Since our inception we have committed $160 million for investment to 15 VC funds, covering a diverse range of forward-looking industries including information technology, industrial technology, and life sciences. Our funds and their partners have invested more than $450 million into Alberta technology companies.

About BDC Capital:

BDC Capital is the investment arm of BDC- Canada’s only bank devoted exclusively to entrepreneurs. With $3 billion under management, BDC Capital serves as a strategic partner to the country’s most innovative firms. It offers a full spectrum of risk capital, from seed investments to transition capital, supporting Canadian entrepreneurs who wish to scale their businesses into global champions.

About Builders VC:

Builders VC is an early-stage venture capital firm focused on investing where technology meets new business models to modernize antiquated industries including healthcare, agriculture, industrials and real-estate. Builders operates offices in San Francisco, Calgary and Chicago where they manage the Builders Studio, which provides functional help to assist portfolio companies.

SOURCE Alberta Enterprise Corporation

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