According to Osler’s 2023 Deal Points Report, “Ontario and British Columbia have the highest concentration of companies raising a financing round.”
But that is not to dismiss Alberta.
The spirited province accounts for 11% of the share, the report shows, which is marked growth over the previous figure of 9%.
Indeed, Osler’s Calgary office reported on 14 Alberta deals from 2020 through 2022, a growth rate of 100% for the region, the highest in Canada.
These marks of momentum for Alberta are backed up by data from the Canadian Venture Capital Association.
“Alberta, for the fifth year in a row, attracted a record amount of investments in 2022,” states the Canadian Venture Capital Market Overview: 2022 Year in Review.
The province saw startups raise more than $700 million across nearly 90 deals in 2022.
The largest investment of 2022 for Alberta was in Neo Financial: a massive Series C round that crowned the Alberta fintech with unicorn status.
In 2023, let us take a look at some of the capital raises from Alberta-based startups so far.
Michael Omidele witnessed firsthand how essential digital medical records are to improving patient outcomes: he lost a close family member as a result of a medical records mix up in his home country of Nigeria. This loss, combined with Omidele’s background in healthcare, fuelled his desire to create a solution.
After moving from Nigeria to Alberta in 2010, the entrepreneur applied knowledge from his computer network engineering degree to build experience through stints at IBM and Alberta Health Services. By 2020, Omidele had the expertise and confidence he needed to launch a tech startup.
Omidele’s answer to outdated healthcare is Clinify, a medical data platform designed specifically for Africa’s healthcare system.
“Data is the smartest way to effect real change,” believes the founder. ”Using data to drive healthcare efficiency is the best way to improve patient outcomes.”
Clinify is a one-stop-shop connecting all actors in the system, he says—from healthcare providers like hospitals and clinics to health insurance companies, patients, and physicians. It is a centralized platform that ensures the advancement of healthcare delivery for the entire continent of Africa, according to a statement from local investment firm Thin Air Labs, which recently invested in the Calgary company.
Omidele wants to digitally centralize health records with an ultimate vision to leverage data-driven insight to enable healthcare delivery for Africa’s 1.4 billion people. And now he has the capital to do it.
Clinify secured a total of US$1.5 million in February to advance its platform and market reach. Thin Air contributed the bulk of capital through its Thin Air Labs Fund I, with help from Toronto’s HaloHealth and other strategic angel investors.
Future Fields is a startup based in Edmonton looking to change the world with fruit flies. The fly biotechnology company, founded in 2018, created a biomanufacturing platform called the EntoEngine, which is the first synthetic biology system in the world to use fruit flies for recombinant protein production.
The EntoEngine leverages an “approach that uses fruit flies and not giant steel tanks.” This is in response to a “critical need to shrink the cost, increase the supply, and diminish the carbon footprint of bioreactors.”
By using flies, Future Fields carries advantages over the traditional industry approach of big steel tanks. It can own its supply chain, for example, while having better control over the quality of product.
Founded initially to transform the creation of cultivated meat, Foresight Canada’s Venture of the Year is now adding a suite of human recombinant protein products created through EntoEngine. These include a clinically approved protein for wound healing and bone graft additive and a hormone that spurs muscle development and maintenance.
To pursue so many ambitious projects at once, the Alberta company has attracted critical funding from a diverse array of sources to fuel the next phase of growth.
In addition to securing $5 million from the Government of Canada, Future Fields recently raised several million dollars in capital from private investors, including Toyota Ventures, Builders VC, AgFunder, Amplify Capital, angel investors, and more.
Future Fields will use this capital influx to hire key personnel and build out its first production facility, according to a statement from the startup, which will enable the production of recombinant proteins at greater scale.
The facility will be located beside corporate headquarters in Edmonton, the company says, signalling Future Fields’ intention to build and grow within Alberta’s innovation ecosystem.
Calgary healthtech startup Nimble Science raised $2.7 million in April to commercially scale their revolutionary Health Platform to food, diagnostic, and drug companies.
The funding brings Nimble Science out of stealth mode to enable academia, government and industry to unlock critical health data insights in the previously out of reach small intestine.
Over fifteen chronic diseases are associated with dysbiosis of the small intestine, representing a 75 billion dollar total addressable market. Nimble Science’s consumer-friendly capsule finally enables small intestine multi-omic microbiome data collection to empower novel consumer product, therapeutic and diagnostic development.
Fusion Fund, of Palo Alto, California led the oversubscribed financing round, which included new investors First Spark Ventures, Alumni Ventures, Joyance Partners, Adara VC and Startup TNT and TNT Capital, with follow-on funding from pre-seed partners, which include BoxOne Ventures, Threshold Impact, BlueSky Equities, UCeed Child Health and Wellness Fund and angels.
Funds will be deployed to advance the SIMBA GI Health diagnostic test platform, grow commercial research partnerships spanning consumer products, academia, government and drug companies, as well as expand Nimble Science’s team.
Edmonton’s Nanoprecise Sci Corp raised a USD $10 million series B financing round led by Export Development Canada in January.
Nanoprecise is an automated AI-based predictive maintenance solution provider that specializes in the implementation of Artificial Intelligence and IIoT technology for predictive asset maintenance and reducing the carbon footprint of manufacturing plants.
The investment aims to boost the Canadian cleantech company’s delivery capabilities and product offerings in the Energy Efficiency & Condition Monitoring Solutions space.
Founded in 2017 by CEO Sunil Vedula, Nanoprecise drives value realization for manufacturers and operators in a broad set of industries by providing them with meaningful insights through a differentiated approach to machine health monitoring.
Nanoprecise utilizes ultra-low-power wireless sensors and cloud-based AI-powered software that detects the smallest of changes in machine performance and predicts the remaining useful life of any industrial asset.
The automated end-to-end solutions from Nanoprecise strive to simplify monitoring industrial assets involved in various complex manufacturing processes, with patented signal processing algorithms and state-of-the-art scalable hardware, to help operators maximize their uptime and improve their energy efficiency.
Calgary’s IrisCX quintupled its revenue in 2022 and is on track to double its revenue in 2023.
IrisCX announced in February that it received USD $4.6 million in seed funding from Arthur Ventures with the funds earmarked for product development, investing in go-to-market, and doubling it team size.
Through IrisCX’s smart video platform, brands can own their consumers’ purchasing and customer support experiences virtually. Powered by computer vision, conversational intelligence, and machine learning, IrisCX’s self-guided and live video sessions provide brands with the context-driven consumer behavior insights needed for intelligent decision making.
IrisCX has facilitated over 30,000 video sessions between product experts and consumers. Brands have achieved higher average customer satisfaction scores when using IrisCX.
The company is an alumni of Google for Startups, Acceleprise (Forum Ventures), and Stage 2 Capital’s accelerator program.
The new round of funding brings IrisCX’s total funding to USD $6.8 million. Heron Rock Fund, Forum Ventures, and private investors provided a USD $1.7 million pre-seed round in June 2021. Stage 2 Capital selected IrisCX to participate in its accelerator program in July 2022 and has also invested.