In a nutshell, I’m a serial entrepreneur turned venture capitalist.
I have the pleasure of working with an amazing team up in Montreal, Calgary and New York, as Managing Partner of iNovia Capital, and Editor of the CVCA Capital Rants Blog www.vcrants.com. Best of all, I have the opportunity of meeting, and in some cases working very closely with, some of North America’s most respectable entrepreneurs.
My background is first as an entrepreneur having played many operational roles in technology companies I founded or co-founded through out the years. All of which were in the high technology industry, with extensive experience in business development, strategic planning, sales, marketing and communications sectors. I joined iNovia Capital (formerly MSBi Capital) as a Partner at the formation stage of the first fund in mid 2002.
Over the years, I’ve been involved in numerous entrepreneurial initiatives, including the creation of ENABLIS Entrepreneurial Network Inc., a $30+ million G8 sponsored venture capital seed fund. Since 1998, I have been involved as an investor and as a board member in a number of transactions at the seed stage level, including the seed and follow-on financing of Airborne Entertainment Inc. (which was acquired by Cybird for $100 million in June 2005, and which was awarded “deal of the year” by Canada’s Venture Capital & Private Equity Association), as well as the not-so successful Californaia based Popcast Communications Corp… in which I/we lost a few million $! Active in the angel community and entrepreneurial mentoring, I continue to be a supporter of Angel networks such as the Quebec Angel Network and the National Angel Organization (NAO). And I’m a huge Fan and Supporter of the Canadians in the Valley association The C100, helping Canadian entrepreneurs build stronger links with the worlds best technology companies.
Prior to joining iNovia Capital, I was a partner and entrepreneur in residence with the Telesystem group, where, in addition to managing direct investments (such as Popcast Communications Corp., Look Communications (TSX:LOK.V) and Airborne Entertainment), I was involved in the creation of up2 Technologies – a subsidiary for Teleglobe Inc. which was then acquired by BCE Inc. (TSE:BCE); and a subsidiary for Microcell Telecommunications Inc. – i5 Corp. – which was then acquired in 2005 by Rogers Wireless Inc. (TSE: RCI). I helped built, since its inception, Wanted Technologies (TSX:WAN.V), a business intelligence information and technology provider, and was instrumental in the launch of Copernic Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ:CNIC) a leading agent based technology company.
I started out as President & CEO of Info Media Inc, and then launched into my more technology driven career as founder and CEO of SIT Inc., an international Internet integrator and the first Netscape Communications software developer, which, after undergoing massive restructuring and the winding-up of its Ste-Foy offices, was eventually sold to Ubizen of Belgium in 1999 for €42 million, and now part of the Verizon security division (NYSE: VZ).
Other than for portfolio companies, I also serve as a board member of the Canadian Venture Capital & Private Equity Association (“CVCA”) and co-chair of the Canadian Innovation Exchange (“CIX”) as well as a Charter Member and board member of the C100.
To learn more about me or to connect directly with me, check out my full profile on Linkedin: http://linkedin.com/in/chrisarsenault.
Or better yet, come say hello on on Twitter http://twitter.com/chrisarsenault
Enjoy and don’t forget to comment on the posts!