(Bloomberg) -- A venture firm backed by Power Corp. of Canada closed a round for a new climate-technology fund, tapping Quebec institutions as it raised about $37 million.
Montreal-based Diagram Ventures will seek out investments in early-stage companies with promising technology to reduce emissions. The company operates as part as Power’s alternative investment platform, Sagard Holdings Inc., alongside numerous other entities. Power’s major shareholder is Canada’s billionaire Desmarais family.
“We focus on what we call the ‘digital layer’ that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” Diagram Chief Executive Officer Francois Lafortune said in an interview. The first of a dozen expected deals is with a company that does electric-vehicle charging infrastructure, and will be announced in January, he said.
Besides capital from Sagard itself, Diagram’s ClimateTech Fund brought in money from Investissement Quebec, businessman Mark Pathy’s family office Mavrik, and an entity financed by the Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec.
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“The reality is that many funds are struggling to raise at all,” said Lafortune. “There’s a few reasons that I think led us to be able to do this. One — climate tech really resonates with people.”
Diagram funds have invested in about two dozen companies so far, including Canadian online mortgage lender Nesto Inc. The firm was also behind Dialogue Health Technologies Inc., a virtual health-care provider that went public in 2021 and briefly reached a market capitalization of about C$1.3 billion. It was recently acquired by Sun Life Financial Inc. for C$365 million.
Lafortune said Diagram has returned investors’ original capital “multiple times” so far, but declined to provide figures.
Another private investment group under Power’s umbrella, Power Sustainable Capital Inc., announced Wednesday the closing of a C$800 million fundraising for its energy infrastructure fund, bringing capital commitments to C$1.8 billion.
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