Investing In The Jobs Of The Future

    $165-Million Fund To Attract Investment In High-Growth Companies

    TORONTO, Nov. 14 /CNW/ - A new $165-million Ontario Venture Capital Fund
will help create the jobs of the future by boosting cutting-edge companies
here in the province, says Premier Dalton McGuinty.
    "Working together with sophisticated corporate and institutional
investors, we can help Ontario's innovative thinkers take their ideas to the
next level," said Premier McGuinty. "And that will generate prosperity and
good, high-paying jobs for Ontarians in the future."
    The McGuinty government has signed a letter of intent with leading
Canadian institutional investors - including OMERS Administration Corporation,
RBC Capital Partners, Business Development Bank of Canada and Manulife
Financial - to create the new fund.
    "I am pleased that successful corporate and institutional investors on
the leading edge of Ontario's economy are working with us to invest in
Ontario's future," said Minister of Research and Innovation John Wilkinson.
    "This fund will attract the capital and investment expertise needed to
bring exciting new discoveries to market faster in this province, resulting in
high-value jobs and, ultimately, a higher quality of life for all Ontarians."
    Ontario is investing $90 million in this first round of the fund, with
the remaining $75 million coming from the partner investors. In round two, the
government will seek additional private sector investors to grow the fund.
    "OMERS is pleased to be an integral part of this initiative and looks
forward to enhancing the market for venture and growth capital investment in
Ontario," said Paul Renaud, CEO of OMERS Capital Partners, the entity
responsible for OMERS's private equity investments.
    "As RBC's vehicle for investing in private equity, venture capital and
mezzanine debt, RBC Capital Partners is pleased to provide a financial
commitment to further developing Ontario's venture capital industry in concert
with the Government of Ontario and our other partners," said Gordon Nixon,
president and CEO of RBC. "Strong capital markets from venture capital through
to public markets are critical to the growth of businesses in Ontario and
across Canada."
    "BDC is delighted to be an active participant in the creation of this
fund of funds initiative to support the venture capital industry in Ontario,"
said Jean-René Halde, president and CEO, Business Development Bank of Canada.
"By supporting the development and growth of high-tech companies - key drivers
of innovation in Canada - we believe that this fund will have a positive
impact on the economy."
    "We are supporting this VC Fund because we think it's the right
initiative at a time when the supply of venture capital in Ontario is less
than optimal and investment returns have been rising," said William Eeuwes,
vice-president and head of Manulife's merchant banking arm.
    "Canada's Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (CVCA) is
pleased to see the Government of Ontario's plan for stimulating the province's
venture capital sector," said CVCA Executive Director Richard Rémillard. "We
have always believed that it is vital that we build a strong venture capital
market in Ontario if we want to build world-class, high-growth companies here,
and it is very encouraging to see that the Government of Ontario recognizes
this reality. We have supported this program since it was first announced in
the March 2006 Budget and we look forward to seeing the capital deployed into
Ontario's venture capital market very soon."
    The Ontario Venture Capital fund is just one of the ways the McGuinty
government is strengthening the economy and supporting Ontario families. Other
initiatives include:

    -   Encouraging strong job creation, with over 422,000 net new jobs since
        October 2003
    -   Committing to expand our Next Generation Jobs Fund to $1.15 billion
        to support job creation for Ontarians
    -   Launching the $160 million Ideas-to-Market strategy that supports
        emerging companies, which includes the Ontario Venture Capital Fund
    -   Establishing a six-year, $500-million Advanced Manufacturing
        Investment Strategy to help manufacturers invest in innovative new
        technologies, and
    -   Phasing out the capital tax and accelerating a five per cent rate cut
        in 2007, while working towards eliminating the tax altogether by
        July 1, 2010.

    Disponible en français


For further information:

For further information: Premier's Media Office, (416) 314-8975

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