Mike Edwards is the executive director of Vancouver's GrowLab and a founding partner of InitioGroup, a seed investment company. So he knows a thing or two about the local startup ecosystem and, while he thinks our city is home to myriad brilliant entrepreneurs, he lacks confidence in the other side of the startup coin: funding.
When asked about the landscape of angel investing in Vancouver and whether it could be described as a hotbed, Mike affirmed that "it is definitely not a hotbed."
Speaking in a roundtable discussion for BCBusiness, Mike ran the puny numbers: "one angel investing group, one public angel investment company, and a few active angels. It's a very, very small community."
Mike confirms that tech startup titans south of the border, such as Silicon Valley and New York (and even Boston), have considerably superior angel communities. He also says that, even in Canada, Toronto and Montreal boast more active angel investing.
He points out that there are more than 300,000 Canadians living and working in Silicon Valley right now and it's certain that at least some of them are there because they couldn't find angel funding in Vancouver or other regions of Canada.