4 Impact Brief

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Data for 2016

We forge links between the disciplines of science and business to spark a meaningful discussion around how innovation actually happens, and how it is studied and measured. The more we understand what works on the ground, the more effective we can be in the implementation of programs centered on science and technology.

The Narwhal Report

In order to provide a tool to enable entrepreneurs and investors to gauge how attractive firms are from a financial standpoint, we are pleased to introduce a way to measure Financial Velocity. Financial Velocity is defined here as the amount of funding a firm has raised divided by the number of years it has been in existence. It is expressed in millions of dollars per year. This measure reports the rate at which companies raise and consume capital.

We have assembled a list of the top Canadian businesses based on Financial Velocity and are pleased to introduce the Narwhal List. This list shows Canadian venture capital backed companies with the highest Financial Velocity.

A Failure to Scale

Policy experts and innovation practitioners have criticized Canada’s innovation system for its inability to grow and scale companies. This has been a baffling issue because Canada’s technology sector has been successful at starting companies and generating innovations with high potential. In this study we wanted to determine whether the way in which Canadian companies raise funds also adding to the scaling problem?

This study reveals three critical issues:

1. Canadian companies wait longer before they start raising funds.
2. They raise funds less often.
3. They raise less money over time.

And as a result of this pattern, even our best companies are not particularly attractive to investors as their growth rates fall well below that of the most successful US companies.

Sleep in Grad School (or Lack Thereof)

by Amol Rao The IMS Magazine recently conducted a Graduate Student Sleep Survey as part of a feature on sleep. The results, which can be seen in infographic format in the Summer 2016 issue, are quite concerning. Approximately 40% of respondents were unsatisfied or...

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Conversations on Financing

This Thursday, March 30, the Impact Centre will host the final session of Entrepreneurship 100: Conversations Series 2. Taking place during Entrepreneurship Week at U of T, the topic of this session is Financing. Our panelists for the session are: Dr. Pooja...