Calgary | Edmonton | Kelowna | Winnipeg

Category Archives: Press Releases

VA Angels Announces Gender Diversity Initiative

February 29, 2016

VA Angels is pleased to announce a new initiative to increase the number of women angel investors and women entrepreneurs served by the group.

“VA Angels is a place where female entrepreneurs can expect to be taken seriously and funded accordingly,” says Randy Thompson, CEO of VA Angels. “We are working hard to ensure that when women-led companies do present at the form, they encounter an aware and diverse group of investors.”

Kristina Milke, President of VA Angels, leads the Deal Screening committee. “We are looking for great scalable business to present to our members. We would love to see more female-led ventures applying.”

Currently only four percent of venture capital goes to women in North America. If women were financed to the same degree as male-led companies, it would create six million jobs in the next five years in North America.(1) Venture capital firms with women partners are more than three times as likely to invest in companies with female CEOs.(2)

“The research is very clear that diverse groups make better decisions and out-perform non-diverse groups”, says Rosalee Gordon, Director of Diversity for VA Angels. “In VA Angels, individual angels make their own decisions on whether to invest each company and for how much. Yet we discuss each deal together and we do influence each other’s decisions. It’s very important to have female investors at the table.”

“The time is right for a focused effort on improving gender diversity in the angel community,” says Rosalee Gordon. “As we roll out this initiative at each of our chapters, I am encountering a groundswell of support from both our male and female members. Many of our angels are already working this issue in their own spheres of influence – in academia, in business, in professional organizations. We don’t like the statistics we are seeing. We don’t like the pace of change. We have daughters, we have sisters, we have strong female role models in our lives. For many of us we care, and we care at a very personal level.

For more information about the Diversity initiative at VA Angels, please contact:

Rosalee Gordon
Director of Diversity
VA Angles

1 SheEO Fact Sheet: Radical Generosity
2 Babson College Study 2014 “Women Entrepreneurs 2014: Bridging the Gap in Venture Capital”

eThor to Partner with MasterCard on Loyalty Platform

December 7, 2015

eThor, the world leader in point-of-sale (POS) integration, has announced a partnership with MasterCard, as the global payments giant launches a new technical program to support loyalty initiatives across all channels.

Consumers and merchants alike have been looking for ways to make the payment and loyalty program elements of shopping more convenient and seamless. While online redemption of offers is commonplace for consumers, the industry is just starting to deliver the same functionality at point-of-sale checkout via a mobile app. With the introduction of a new technical specification, MasterCard is taking steps to deliver a unified, seamless check-out experience both in-store and in-app.

Read More

Phoenix welcomes Canadian investment firm to the Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation

March 18, 2015

City officials held a press conference Tuesday morning to welcome the VA Angels, a Canadian angel investment firm, to its new location in Phoenix.

The Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation at Gateway Community College will house the VA Angels, said Jeff Saville, executive director of CEI. Saville said the firm will hold its monthly meetings at CEI and will also retain offices there.

Randy Lennon, co-founder and managing director of the firm, said it recently celebrated its 100th investment company and currently has 120 investors.

Read More

TEC Edmonton and VA Angels Edmonton Chapter to merge

February 5, 2014

EDMONTON: Feb. 4, 2014

Two of Canada’s largest angel investor networks, TEC Edmonton and VA Angels Edmonton Chapter, are merging to become TEC Venture Angels.

TEC Venture Angels will build a bigger investor network, offer investment services and streamline connections between Northern Alberta angel investors and regionally-based early stage tech companies. A more sophisticated entrepreneur class and a healthier innovation ecosystem in Northern Alberta will result.

TEC Venture Angels will be run by not-for-profit innovation business incubator and accelerator TEC Edmonton. TEC Edmonton will initially screen, then assist start-up companies wishing to approach TEC Venture Angels for investment capital. No government money will be invested. Start-up companies will pay no fees or commissions to TEC Venture Angels.

Angel investors are so termed as they are usually the first providers of capital to early-stage companies.

In the last two years, operating independently, TEC Edmonton and VA Angels Edmonton have helped early stage companies raise more than $100 million.

VA Angels Edmonton leader Randy Thompson will be Director of TEC Venture Angels.

The bottom line is that deserving regional companies will access badly needed early-growth capital.

Please join  Alberta Deputy Premier and Minister of Innovation and Advanced Education, the Honourable Dave Hancock, City of Edmonton Mayor His Worship Don Iveson, TEC Edmonton CEO Chris Lumb and TEC Venture Angels Director Randy Thompson for more details on this unique public-private investment merger, believed to be the first of its kind in North America.

Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Time: 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. (A light lunch will be available)
Place: The Westin Hotel, Manitoba/Saskatchewan Room, 10135 100 St., Edmonton