Impact Centre’s 2019 Narwhal List shows Canadian tech struggling to produce unicorns

Montreal-based Element AI and Toronto-based Hootsuite topped the list, with total funding sitting at $105.7 million and $279.9 million, respectively.

The Impact Centre at the University of Toronto has released its Narwhal List for 2019, a report that highlights Canada’s fastest scaling private tech companies.

The Narwhal List ranks financially attractive firms by financial velocity. The metric is derived by the amount of funding a firm has raised, divided by the number of years the company has existed. The report also measures the rate at which a company raises and consumes capital to support its growth.

The 2019 report looked at the fundraising patterns of over 1,000 private VC-funded Canadian technology product businesses listed on the CB Insights’ database as of December 31, 2018. It also looked at an equivalent number of companies identified by Crunchbase. This year, 17 new firms have been added to the list, and compared to the year before, Canada almost doubled the number of companies on track to become Unicorns in the near future.

The top ten companies on the 2019 Narwhal List are:

Element AI (Montreal, QB)

Hootsuite (Vancouver, BC)

Ritual (Toronto, ON)

Wealthsimple (Toronto, ON)

Kik (Kitchener-Waterloo, ON)

North (Kitchener-Waterloo, ON)

Lightspeed POS (Montreal, QB)

Blockstream (Victoria, BC)

Integrate.ai (Toronto, ON)

Hopper (Montreal, QC)

This year’s top 10 list comprised four mobile, two AI, and one blockchain companies. Montreal-based Element AI and Toronto-based Hootsuite topped the list, with total funding sitting at $105.7 million and $279.9 million, respectively. North (née Thalmic Labs) moved down to the sixth spot from third last year, and Lightspeed POS, which is readying itself for an IPO, landed the seventh spot, after last year’s second place ranking.

Tech on the rise, healthcare on decline

The report also includes a second ranking of 10 high-growth healthcare firms in healthcare. BlueRock Therapeutics topped the list again, with $225 million in funding and nearly double the growth rate of any other firm.

The list had a strong sector of 25 technology companies that have raised an average $40 million, and two healthcare companies, each averaging $100 million in new capital. Internet and software services beat out the other sectors, with 15 companies placing in the top 50, with healthcare (10), mobile and telecommunications (8), electronics and computer hardware (4) following behind. The remaining 13 companies fit into miscellaneous sectors.

“Even as Canadian Unicorns continue to grow and eventually go public, the challenge is not to lose sight of the whole pipeline.”– Impact Centre

Notably, although the number of healthcare companies on the list have traditionally exceeded technology companies over the last three years, the former seems to be on decline, while the latter is steadily on the rise.

The average financial velocity in the technology sector also increased from 9.4 to 12.8. But for companies looking to find a place on the Narwhal List, entry is becoming more exclusive, with the minimum financial velocity for entry being 6.7, compared to 4.7 in 2017.

No new unicorns since 2015

Per the report, Canada has yet to produce a Unicorn, which is a private company with a market value over $1 billion USD, since Canada’s Kik Interactive attained Unicorn status in 2015. That three year gap falls well short of the two-to-five a year required to keep pace with comparable jurisdictions, as seen below. Since Kik became a Unicorn in 2015, 19 American companies were founded and became Unicorns.

2019 Narwhal - by country

“If Canada’s objective is to create more world-class companies from the tech sector (as envisioned by the federal government, and particularly Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada), then one step on the road may consist of creating more Unicorns,” the report reads.

Thirty-four US-based unicorns have raised an average of $275 million. Of those 34, there are 21 US Unicorns with a financial velocity of $10–33 million per year, and Canada has 28 potential Narwhals with a financial velocity in that same range. In fact, this number almost double from last year, and tripled from the previous year. These findings suggest Canada is making slow but steady process to produce more Unicorns.

“Even as Canadian Unicorns continue to grow and eventually go public, the challenge is not to lose sight of the whole pipeline,” the report reads. “We have to continue to produce a steady stream of startups that can grow and have all the supports necessary to become members of the exclusive Narwhal List and Unicorn Club.”

The report concluded the findings point to a sense of cautious optimism in Canada’s technology space, but Canadian firms have significant work ahead in order to compete on a global scale.

Read the full report here.

Image courtesy the Impact Centre.

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Startup World Cup 2019 West Coast Competition: Applications Open

The Finals competition was judged by veteran investors from Kleiner Perkins, Y Combinator, Techstars, Intel Capital, 500 Startups, GE Ventures, DFJ, …

SUNNYVALE, Calif. (PRWEB)January 18, 2019

Startup World Cup is back for the third year! The US West Coast Regional Competition is scheduled for February 21st, 2019, at the Plug and Play Tech Center in Sunnyvale, CA.

Startup World Cup is looking for the best and the brightest startups to apply to compete. The selected top 15 applicants will present on stage on February 21. The winner of this event will join the top winning 40 finalists, in which they will receive a shot to win a $1,000,000 investment prize in San Francisco on May 17th, 2019 at the Grand Finale.

Apply here: https://www.startupworldcup.io/us-west-coast-application.

For more details on the West Coast event: https://www.startupworldcup.io/west-coast.

The West Coast Regional Competition is part of the Startup World Cup global competition, with regional events in 40 cities around the world, including thousands of entrepreneurs and hundreds of investors. The mission of the Startup World Cup is to highlight the best new technology startups in regions around the world, and to connect those startups into the global innovation ecosystem. This is the third year of the competition, which is organized by Fenox Venture Capital, a global venture capital firm that invests in early-stage and growth-stage technology companies around the world.

Entrepreneurs who are not in the West Coast US region should check out regional competitions in their part of the world:

Worldwide Regional Competitions: https://www.startupworldcup.io/.

Investors and other supporters of startup companies should encourage any brilliant founders they know to apply in their region.

Startup World Cup 2019 Grand Finale: May 17, 2019, San Francisco

Once the 40 regional winners have been chosen, they will come to San Francisco for the Grand Finale Competition in May. Past Startup World Cup Grand Finale events featured prominent figures from the high-tech community, including John Chambers (Former CEO of Cisco), Steve Wozniak (Co-Founder of Apple), Reid Hoffman (Founding CEO of LinkedIn), Vinod Khosla (Co-Founder of Sun Microsystems), Adam Cheyer (Co-Founder of Siri), Marc Randolph (Co-Founder of Netflix), and Jay Vijayan (Former CIO of Tesla). The Finals competition was judged by veteran investors from Kleiner Perkins, Y Combinator, Techstars, Intel Capital, 500 Startups, GE Ventures, DFJ, Social Capital, Index Ventures, Founders Institute, and Plug and Play Ventures.

Startup World Cup 2019 Grand Finale

May 17th, 2019

San Francisco Masonic Auditorium

http://universe.com/startupworldcup2019

Check out the 2019 Trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4beZbfxUEzE.

Startup World Cup Media Contact:

Janice Mok

Marketing Lead

Tel: +1.650.919.3182

janice@startupworldcup.io

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McDonald: ClearObject Can Now Be ‘Bolder’ and ‘Grander’

The founder and chief executive officer of Fishers-based ClearObject says the majority interest investment from Egis Capital Partners and ABS Capital …
FISHERS –

The founder and chief executive officer of Fishers-based ClearObject says the majority interest investment from Egis Capital Partners and ABS Capital Partners puts the Internet of Things company “more in control of our own destiny.” John McDonald, who will remain the company’s CEO, says working with one equity partnership rather than several investors means ideas can become reality more quickly. It also doesn’t hurt, McDonald says, for that partnership to have “very deep pockets.”

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business Reporter Mary-Rachel Redman, McDonald says the deal lets ClearObject pursue ideas that are “much bolder and much grander.” He says that could include pursuing acquisitions or investing in other startups.

ClearObject was founded in 2010 as CloudOne and designs, develops and manages Internet of Things-driven products and platforms. McDonald says it was important to find an investment partner that understood that IoT is “the biggest thing since anything.” He says all industries will have to embrace the technology to thrive in a data-driven economy.

The deal also involves Mike Reffeitt, previously chief business officer, taking over as president. McDonald says Reffeitt overseeing day-to-day operations will allow him to concentrate on what he considers to be his three main jobs: raising money, “hiring people that are better than me at everything,” and keeping them.

ClearObject will remain based in Fishers. The companies are not releasing financial details of the transaction.

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ConsenSys Announces Two New Investments in a Bid to Win Over More Traditional VCs

Some of them are 122 West, Intel Capital, La Famiglia and Paradigm, Coinbase Ventures, Kindred Ventures, General Catalyst, and Sequoia.

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Coinbase Fulfills Yet Another Acquisition Buying Out Andreessen Horowitz–Backed Blockspring

The major US digital asset exchange Coinbase has further expanded its scale of activity and influence. The company has acquired Andreessen …

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To read our story click here

I can not only find information about something, I can tell you what’s related to it, and where it is going. I can help you visualize connections between concepts, businesses, ideas and people. I can help you find the information that can make you the one that knew before everyone else. I make research more effective. I help due diligence become deeper and more meaningful to investors. I can organize your data so you can see unseen relationships that are creating an impact. I am #hiswai

This is what I can do for you:

A VC firm considers investing in a new cryptocurrency startup located in Nevada.

– The research analysts begin their due diligence of the startup’s directors, financials and market fundamentals

– #hiswai is used to map a variety of issues that surround the cryptocurrency market

– Strong relationships are found across a broad section of data that includes articles, references and government issued releases

– #hiswai shows strong relationships concerning SEC regulation, taxation, and security surrounding the venture

– The research team is able to assemble and consume the necessary references to produce their report – within minutes.

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