This week the University of Calgary and Innovate Calgary announced the launch of UCeed Energy, the fifth startup investment fund to be added to the UCeed portfolio. The $3.75 million fund will invest in research-driven startups from universities across Canada and fuel the discovery of new energy solutions.
The UCeed Energy Fund is made possible through a $2.5-million founding gift from Calgary entrepreneur and community leader Don Archibald (fourth from the left), with additional philanthropic support from the Tamaratt Fund at Calgary Foundation and funding from UCalgary’s Global Research Initiative.
Early stage companies focused on the development of research that has the potential to bring innovation into the energy sector can now apply for funding.
Since its launch in 2020, UCeed has introduced five funds including Health, Child Health and Wellness, Social Impact, the Haskayne Student Fund, and Energy, all funded through philanthropic support from visionary partners and community members. UCeed makes commercially motivated, pre-seed and seed-stage investments with a mandate to help the most promising early stage companies bridge the gap between innovation and commercialization.
Using the “evergreen” model, returns are reinvested back into the fund to ensure a sustainable legacy of impact. So far, UCeed has made investments in 30 companies and, with the introduction of UCeed Energy, that impact will continue to grow.
“As the global community looks beyond using existing technology and thinking to meet 2030 emissions targets, we must keep working to build and sustain momentum. We know meeting 2050 targets will require innovative, new technologies. The world needs university research to play its part,” says Dr. John Wilson, president and CEO of Innovate Calgary.
The launch of UCeed Energy comes on the heels of last month’s official opening of the Energy Transition Centre (ETC), a collaboration between UCalgary, Innovate Calgary and Avatar Innovations. The ETC provides incubation space and commercialization programming for startups in the energy industry. It’s one example of the university’s commitment to building connections with industry and community while using research and innovation to address growing challenges.
“UCalgary is Canada’s entrepreneurial university, and Calgary is its energy capital. Our research strategy has been very focused on advancing thought leadership and innovation that will drive sustainable energy solutions. UCeed Energy is the next big step in advancing this research to make lasting impact on a global scale,” says Dr. Ed McCauley, UCalgary’s president and vice-chancellor.