District Ventures Capital tops inaugural CPG fund at $100M

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By Ted Liu

District Ventures Capital has secured additional $35 million in capital commitments to bring its inaugural fund to $100 million.

Farm Credit Canada (FCC), BDC Capital, family offices and existing limited partner (LP) investors committed to this close. FCC and BDC Capital join OMERS and Bank of Montreal as institutional LPs.

Launched in 2016, the new close is likely to the final close for the fund.

Founded by Arlene Dickinson, District Ventures Capital is a consumer goods venture capital fund focused solely on investing in companies operating in the food & beverage, health & wellness and beauty consumer goods categories.

photo credit: District Ventures Capital

News Release

District Ventures Capital reaches $100 Million

Canada’s premier venture capital fund focusing on companies in the food, beverage and wellness sectors raises additional capital to continue supporting innovative companies

TORONTO, April 6, 2020 /CNW/ – District Ventures Capital (“District Ventures”) announced today the close of its first fund at $100 million raised. Additional funding commitments of approximately $35 million came from Farm Credit Canada (“FCC”), Canada’s largest agricultural term lender, BDC Capital, the investment arm of BDC, Canada’s bank to entrepreneurs, family offices and additional investment from existing investors, all of which took the fund to this milestone.

District Ventures Capital is a consumer goods venture capital fund founded by Canadian investor and entrepreneur, Arlene Dickinson. The fund focuses solely on investing in companies operating in the food & beverage, health & wellness and beauty consumer goods categories. In addition to capital, District Ventures provides marketing, programming and commercialization as support to the companies it invests in.

“From the outset, District Ventures Capital has invested under the thesis that early-stage consumer goods companies represent immense opportunity for growth – particularly in Canada which is known for its strength and knowledge in agriculture and health,” said Arlene Dickinson, General Partner of District Ventures Capital. “While the majority of venture capital dollars in Canada continue to be earmarked for technology investments, we are focusing on helping companies who deliver on providing for consumers nutritional, health and well-being needs. The additional investors in the fund signal that there is both confidence in District Ventures and value seen in the growth opportunities in these categories.”

Operating as the country’s largest agricultural term lender, Farm Credit Canada echoed Dickinson’s comments and added that their investment in District Ventures supports their mandate of supporting agri-food companies in Canada.

“FCC is proud to support District Ventures, which is playing an important role in ensuring access to capital and other support services for companies that are innovating and expanding Canada’s food industry,” said Rebbecca Clarke, FCC Vice President and Treasurer. “FCC has supported the agriculture and food industry for 60 years, and District Ventures is an important and exciting opportunity for the food sector.”

Alison Nankivell, Vice-President, Fund Investments, BDC Capital, added that entrepreneurs are the real beneficiaries of their investment and this milestone.

“District Ventures is well positioned to support the wave of innovative Canadian start-ups we see operating in the food and health and wellness sectors”, said Alison Nankivell, Vice President of Fund Investments, BDC Capital. “This is a significant area of competitive strength for Canada which BDC Capital wants to develop by working with partners such as District Ventures. We are also proud to support a strong Canadian female GP striving to build a portfolio with significant female representation at the management level.”

District Ventures has built a unique VC platform aimed at investing in and supporting the growth of Canadian companies in the food, beverage and wellness consumer goods categories.

About District Ventures Capital

District Ventures Capital is a venture capital fund investing in innovative companies in the food & beverage and health & wellness sectors. The fund is led by General Partner, Arlene Dickinson. District Ventures is the leading ecosystem in Canada that focuses on the CPG space and brings capital, marketing support, programming and commercialization as support to the companies it invests in.

For more information, visit www.districtventurescapital.com.

About Farm Credit Canada (FCC)

FCC is Canada’s leading agriculture and food lender, with a healthy loan portfolio of more than $38 billion. Our employees are dedicated to the future of Canadian agriculture and food. We provide flexible, competitively priced financing, management software, information and knowledge specifically designed for the agriculture and food industries. As a self-sustaining Crown corporation, we provide an appropriate return to our shareholder, and reinvest our profits back into the industries and communities we serve. Visit fcc.ca or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and on Twitter @FCCagriculture.

About BDC Capital

BDC Capital is the investment arm of BDC- Canada’s only bank devoted exclusively to entrepreneurs. With over $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. Visit bdc.ca/capital.

SOURCE District Ventures Capital

For further information: Media Contact: Jerry Nasr, PR and Social Communications Manager, District Ventures Capital, 416-585-2090, jerry@districtventurescapital.com