Brightspark Blog

Brightspark Insider | October

Posted by Brightspark on 10/7/16 10:01 AM

In case you missed it, here is the content of our October 2016 newsletter, including portoflio highlights, event recaps and educational resources. 

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Topics: Brightspark news, newsletter

The dreaded “Oh, shit.” meeting

Posted by Mark Skapinker on 10/6/16 11:07 AM

As an investor, you do whatever you can to make sure that you never have that “oh, shit.” board meeting soon after you make a new investment. You know what I’m talking about — that meeting when you learn something you hadn’t realized before and say “Oh shit… did I really just make this investment?!”

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Topics: Opinion, startups

The Brightspark Manifesto: A look at our unshakable criteria for startups

Posted by Brightspark on 8/18/16 9:30 AM

In over 15 years of investing in venture capital, we’ve developed a serious flair for finding and growing the very best early-stage companies in Canada.

At Brightspark, we invest in people first. We partner with founders that are...

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Topics: Insider

Brightspark: Riding the equity crowdfunding wave?

Posted by Jonathan Latsky on 7/28/16 9:30 AM

There is, indeed, an equity crowdfunding tsunami. This idea of creating an online space where entrepreneurs and investors can meet and transact is quite the hot topic, and new platforms — Kickstarters with an equity twist — are popping up like spring flowers.

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Topics: venture capital

The Mobile Era is Only Getting Started

Posted by Mark Skapinker on 6/9/16 2:30 PM

A few months ago, I took a vacation to India that I have been threatening to take for years. I expected to experience some culture shock, but what shocked me the most wasn’t the huge population, or the expected cultural differences — it was the fact that mobile phones and smart phones were absolutely everywhere.

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Topics: startups, venture capital

The “Facebook Generation” is Redefining the Workplace

Posted by Mark Skapinker on 5/20/16 2:30 PM

There used to be a major difference between the way we used computers at home and in the office. As a younger generation entered the workforce, the lines between “work tech” and “play tech” have blurred to the extent that it’s almost completely disappeared. Gone is the distinction between using business software and personal applications.

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Topics: Tech trends

FedDev Ontario Supports Angel Investor Network in downtown Toronto and Southern Ontario

Posted by Brightspark on 5/3/16 2:30 PM

May 3, 2016 – Toronto, Ontario – Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario)

Today, Adam Vaughan, Member of Parliament for Spadina−Fort York, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for FedDev Ontario, announced funding of up to $300,000 in Brightspark Investors Club Ontario to expand its angel investor membership.

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Topics: venture capital, Brightspark news

How to Survive Your First Venture: Lessons We’ve Learned Through the Years

Posted by Sophie Forest on 4/27/16 12:35 PM

In 15+ years of investing in startups, I’ve learned a thing or two about growing a company. There’s no question about it, my partners and I have seen the most success funding repeat entrepreneurs. Serial CEOs not only have the confidence needed to lead the strongest teams, they also have some invaluable lessons learned in their back pocket. Often learned the hard way, these lessons save companies time and money.

Her are some tidbits of advice, learned from funding my own company and picking the brains of some of the savviest entrepreneurs in Canada.

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Topics: startups, venture capital

nGUVU Raises $3 Million to Bring Gamification, Machine Learning to Contact Centers

Posted by Brightspark on 4/12/16 9:30 AM

nGUVU, which creates gamification and machine learning software for contact centres, has raised $3 million in funding from Brightspark Ventures and Desjardins Venture Capital.

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Topics: Brightspark news

Hopper raises $16 million for a travel app that tells you the best time to fly

Posted by Brightspark on 3/30/16 10:00 AM

(From Techcrunch

Hopper, the makers of a handy travel application that tells you the best time to fly in order to find the best deals, has now raised additional capital to continue to grow its business. It has also scored a partnership with American Airlines which allows it to sell AA’s tickets through its app. In terms of the new investment, the company announced $16 million in a growth funding round, led by BDC Capital IT Venture Fund. Existing investors, including OMERS Ventures, Accomplice (formerly Atlas Venture) and Brightspark Ventures, also participated.

That brings the startup’s total raise to date to $38 million.

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Topics: Brightspark news, Hopper