The recipients include six social and environmental impact-focused technology financiers from across Canada, including Idealist Capital, Maple Bridge Ventures, PaceZero Capital Partners, Raven Indigenous Capital Partners, Relentless Pursuit Partners, and The51, as well as three other firms. Realize did not disclose how much each organization will receive.
The recipients include social impact-focused tech financiers from across Canada.
Realize—a joint venture between Toronto impact investment management and advisory organization Rally Assets and early-stage venture capital firm Relay Ventures—is one of three fund-of-fund managers chosen by the Government of Canada to deploy the Social Finance Fund (SFF).
The SFF is a long-term, $755-million initiative aimed at advancing the growth of Canada’s social finance market. First announced in the 2018 Fall Economic Statement and launched in mid-2023, SFF is being distributed to social purpose organizations by Realize, Boann Social Impact, and CAP Finance.
Between 2022 and 2026, Realize is set to receive over $153 million in SFF funding. The firm aims to raise at least two dollars in private investment capital for each dollar of federal support and to help achieve this, Realize has set a target of $405 million for its first fund.
“With Realize Fund I, we aim to invest in a way that accelerates social equity in Canada and builds the social finance market,” Realize board chair Alexandra Baillie said in a statement. “We recognize this is an ambitious goal. Inequity is pervasive and deeply rooted, with many complex, often interconnected, causes. To make meaningful progress towards realizing social equity, we need an investment approach as multifaceted as the problem.”
To that end, Baillie said Realize must invest in initiatives that tackle inequality from a variety of perspectives. “Our first set of investments positions us to begin to do that,” she argued.
Newly established Montréal-based Idealist invests in growth-stage climate impact companies, while first-time Ottawa fund manager Maple Bridge focuses on immigrant-led ventures developing solutions in the health and sustainability tech spaces.
Through its first Opportunities Fund, Vancouver-based, Indigenous-led Raven aims to provide follow-on capital to fast-growing, impact-focused Indigenous enterprises. For its part, Toronto’s PaceZero, which is working on its second fund, is an emerging private credit investor that lends to companies delivering positive social and environmental outcomes.
Realize’s other tech-related investments went toward two women-led funds targeting diverse founders, based out of Vancouver and Calgary, respectively: Relentless’ Health Pursuit Fund and The51’s Food and AgTech Fund.
The other three recipients include Winnipeg community lender Jubilee Fund, affordable housing-focused Vancouver-based New Market Funds, and Calgary’s Windmill Microlending, which helps skilled immigrants and refugees finance training and accreditation.
Feature image courtesy Raven Indigenous Capital Partners.
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