The Province has announced the five-member board of directors for Manitoba’s new Venture Capital Fund (VCF).
“Today our government takes a major step toward restoring hope and opportunity to young Manitobans who dream of creating and growing a new business in Manitoba,” said Premier Heather Stefanson in the announcement this week. “For 17 years, the previous administration ignored the venture capital drought in Manitoba and a generation of young Manitoba entrepreneurs were faced with a terrible choice: give up your dreams, or move to another province or country to pursue them. The result was a lost generation of gifted Manitobans who left the province. That drought ends permanently today.”
The inaugural board includes:
- VCF board chair – Mike Pyle, CEO, Exchange Income Corporation (appointed by the Business Council of Manitoba);
- Marshall Ring, CEO, Manitoba Technology Accelerator (appointed by the Manitoba Technology Accelerator);
- Ray Bouchard, CEO, Enns Brothers (appointed by the Manitoba government); and
- Barb Gamey, chancellor, University of Winnipeg (appointed by the Manitoba government); and
- Steve Kroft, president, Falcon Capital Corporation (appointed by the Business Council of Manitoba).
The $50 million fund was established in the 2022 provincial budget to increase venture capital available for Manitoba-focused businesses and will reach $150 million, according to the Premier.
“I am very excited to chair the Venture Capital Fund, which will help address capital availability to these companies which has not always been readily available in the past without leaving Manitoba,” said Pyle. “Capital is the fuel for successful growing businesses and the Manitoba government’s investment, alongside private equity, will enable powerful new businesses and rapidly growing companies to stay in our province, create good jobs and increase our tax base.”