CDPQ leads $60M strategic investment round in Breather

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By Ted Liu

CPE Media News (6/12/2018) – Breather Products Inc., a provider of flexible workspace, has secured $60 million in additional strategic equity funding led by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and with participation of several other global firms including Temasek and Ascendas-Singbridge.

Initially launched in Montreal in August 2013, Breather operates close to 500 spaces globally with notable presence in New York City, San Francisco, Toronto, and London.

Founded by COO Caterina Rizzi and CEO Julien Smith, Breather has raised close to $150 million from investors that also include RRE Ventures, Valar Ventures, Menlo Ventures, Slow Ventures and Real Ventures.

[mepr-active rule=”374″ ifallowed=”hide”]#Premium Subscribers ONLY Content – Research and Intelligence – know others do not know, be informed.#[/mepr-active][mepr-active rule=”374″]The financing closed in April 2018. Jonathan Pearce, SVF for CDPQ’s real estate subsidiary Ivanhoé Cambridge, has joined Breather’s board of director. Founder Julien Smith, RRE Ventures V and Valar Global Fund II rank as the top three investors.[/mepr-active]

photo credit: Breather

News Release

Quebec-based Breather completes a CAD $60 million funding round led by la Caisse and Temasek


Breather, a leading global provider of flexible workspace, announces that it has raised approximately $60 million in equity including la Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (“la Caisse”) and joined by several other global firms including Temasek and Ascendas-Singbridge.

Short-term office rental services make up a multi-billion-dollar industry that provides monthly to hourly workspace rental options, including fully furnished offices, conference and meeting rooms. All types of companies, from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies, are turning toward the commercial real estate industry for flexible workspaces to meet their changing operating needs and to reduce costs. The segment in which Breather operates, which focuses on private, fully furnished offices and conference rooms, accounts for 71% of the industry.

Within the last five years, Breather has demonstrated its strong capacity to succeed in the workspace rentals sector by scaling to 10 cities globally. Today, the company is notably present in New York City, San Francisco, Toronto, and London.

“We work with businesses of every size—from growing startups to leading enterprise organizations—to provide space solutions that scale to their needs,” said Julien Smith, founder and CEO of Breather. “Traditional real estate agreements can lead to large fixed costs and teams getting locked into a space that they might soon outgrow. Breather enables businesses to access the space they need when they need it, with the freedom to scale usage up or down when they want to. We’re excited to work with our new partners to bring that freedom to even more businesses worldwide.”

Investing in Breather allows la Caisse to get ahead of a new real estate trend with one of its top players.

“Breather is a young, innovative and fast-growing company with great potential on the international scene.” states Christian Dubé, Executive Vice-president, Québec, at la Caisse. “Through its unique and innovative business model, Breather has demonstrated a unique capacity to lead within a rapidly transforming industry with a focus on technology and an ongoing focus to optimize yield management through machine learning.”

Founded in 2013, Breather operates close to 500 spaces globally. To date, the company has raised nearly CAD $150 million from partners including Menlo Ventures, Valar Ventures, RRE Ventures, Slow Ventures and Real Ventures.

Breather is the leading provider of space-as-a-service, with its growing network of private workspaces built for productivity. Breather gives businesses access to a variety of workspace solutions on the most flexible terms – by the hour, day or month with hundreds of spaces available across 10 cities including New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and London. Powered by its proprietary technology, Breather makes it easy to find space for quick meetings and full-day offsites, or longer-term solutions for your entire office. Learn more and explore spaces at

Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) is a long-term institutional investor that manages funds primarily for public and parapublic pension and insurance plans. As of December 31, 2017, it held $298.5 billion in net assets. As one of Canada’s leading institutional fund managers, CDPQ invests globally in major financial markets, private equity, infrastructure, real estate and private debt. For more information, visit, follow us on Twitter @LaCDPQ or consult our Facebook or LinkedIn pages.

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