Staircase Ventures Fund I, a new fund launched by Janet Bannister, has held an initial close securing $22 million in capital commitments from Royal Bank of Canada, other institutional investors, and several high-net-worth individuals and family offices.
Staircase Ventures Fund I offers a 5-pillar Founder Development Platform – an unparalleled offering to advance founders’ personal development and successful leadership of their ventures. Each founder will also receive carry in a Carry Fund.
Staircase Ventures Fund I is led by GP Bannister and with Madison Wright making up of the investment team as Venture Scout.
Bannister, formerly Partner of Real Ventures, remains as GP of Real Ventures’ fourth fund, a $150 million 2016 vintage fund.
photo credit: Staircase Ventures
Unprecedented Support for Founders Distinguishes Staircase Ventures, New Fund by Janet Bannister
Fund offers first-of-its-kind growth and development program to enhance founders’ performance and business success.
Toronto, Ontario–(Newsfile Corp. – April 3, 2023) – Staircase Ventures, founded by venture capitalist veteran Janet Bannister, today announced a $22 million first close of Fund I. The Fund offers a 5-pillar Founder Development Platform – an unparalleled offering to advance founders’ personal development and successful leadership of their ventures. Each founder will also receive carry in the Fund, and portfolio companies will receive support from an Advisory group, composed of eight entrepreneurs who have each launched and built $1B+ companies.
Staircase Ventures Fund I limited partners include Royal Bank of Canada, other institutional investors, and several high-net-worth individuals and family offices. The Fund is focused on leading seed-stage rounds into Canadian-based B2B software companies.
Founder Development Platform
The Founder Development Platform was developed “based on over ten years of working with hundreds of founders,” says Janet Bannister, Staircase Ventures Founder and General Partner. “Most venture funds dedicate resources to help their portfolio with functional areas such as marketing, talent, and financial analysis. But the most critical factor for success at this stage is founders’ ability to develop quickly, consistently perform at their best, and handle the unrelenting challenges and changes that a rapidly scaling company entails. I set out to build a platform that would address this need to an extent that no other venture firm is doing – one that would help to develop thriving, energized, resilient founders.”
With the 5-pillar Founder Development Platform, Staircase Ventures founders will have access to:
CEO coaching: An experienced, one-on-one executive coach to support them with their personal development objectives.
Peer support groups: Confidential, facilitated, stage- and function-appropriate peer groups with other founders across North America.
Health & wellness program: A dedicated Cleveland Clinic Canada health coach to help them enhance their physical and mental health.
Personal financial advisor: An experienced financial advisor who specializes in supporting early-stage tech founders.
Family stipend: A cash stipend to cover unexpected childcare, elder support, or other family needs.
World-class start-up operating experience
Staircase Ventures is managed by Janet Bannister, a veteran of the Canadian tech industry. Bannister has over 25 years of experience building and investing in rapidly growing tech companies.
In addition to Bannister, Staircase Ventures’ group of eight Advisors will support the portfolio with their knowledge, networks, and experience launching and scaling massively successful tech companies. Advisors include Mike Wessinger, founder of the leading healthcare software provider; Craig Miller, former CTO and CPO of one of Canada’s most successful software companies; and Kristen Hamilton, multiple-time founder with an IPO exit.
“We’re building something powerful – and investors recognize it,” comments Bannister. Strong support enabled the Fund to exceed its first close target within a four-month period, despite tough economic conditions for tech start-ups and venture funds. “We’re excited to foster the next generation of great Canadian tech companies,” she concludes.
For more information or to request an interview with Janet Bannister, please contact:
About Staircase Ventures
Staircase Ventures fosters the next generation of great Canadian tech companies by providing the first institutional capital into high potential, B2B software companies. Staircase offers a 5-pillar Founder Development Platform – a first-of-its-kind offering to accelerate founders’ development and help them perform at their best. Founder and General Partner Janet Bannister brings her entrepreneurial and investing experience, track record, and ethos to the Fund.