Canadian venture capital firm ONE9 Venture Partners has launched Special Mission Fund I, focused on national security and critical infrastructure investing. The fund, targeted to raise $50 million, was anchored with a C$10 million commitment from Kensington Capital Partners. It is led by general partner Glenn Cowan, a retired Joint Task Force 2 squadron commander, and general partner Daniel Weinand, co-founder of Shopify.
OTTAWA, Ontario–(BUSINESS WIRE)–ONE9 Venture Partners today announced the launch of Special Mission Fund I, a specialized venture capital fund focused on national security and critical infrastructure. The new fund, which has an anchor commitment from Kensington Capital Partners of CA$10 million, has a fundraising target of $50 million. The new fund will be led by General Partners Glenn Cowan and Daniel Weinand. Cowan is a retired Squadron Commander in Canada’s Joint Task Force 2 (JTF2) and Weinand is co-founder of Shopify.
“As innovations in defence and national security are more critical today than ever before, bringing a new and untapped investment vertical to the Canadian market was very appealing”
Cowan brings to the new fund his special operations experience, classified military and intelligence knowledge, and insights on unique deal flow through his deep connections. Weinand is an experienced operator who co-founded Shopify and helped scale the business during his more than 12 years with the company across roles that included Chief Design & Chief Creative Officer and Chief Culture Officer. With Kensington’s anchor commitment in the new fund and Rick Nathan, Senior Managing Director at Kensington joining the ONE9 Venture Partners advisory board, the firm adds its world-class private equity and venture capital expertise and track record to the mix.
ONE9 Venture Partners was launched in October 2020 with a focus on establishing itself as the pre-eminent defence, intelligence, and national security-focused investment fund. The firm bridges the gap between private capital markets and the world’s most innovative military technologies with substantial civilian uses.
“Since launching ONE9 Venture Partners, I’ve come to the realization that the vision, planning, and dynamic features of special forces operations closely parallel those of venture investing,” said Cowan. “While in the military, I was intrigued by the technology that we used, and the innovations being developed to support national security operations. They were at the cutting edge and showed huge potential for growth. I’m now applying this deep interest in technology related to defence and national security, along with the strategic connections I have through the special forces, to this new venture fund.”
“As innovations in defence and national security are more critical today than ever before, bringing a new and untapped investment vertical to the Canadian market was very appealing,” said Weinand. “As an operator with hands-on experience scaling one of Canada’s most successful technology companies, I have the opportunity to apply key learnings to the investment decisions we make and provide guidance to ONE9 Venture Partners portfolio companies.”
“I’ve been working alongside Glenn on several different investments we have pursued together over the past two years, which led to our collaboration on the development of ONE9 Venture Partners,” said Nathan. “And now, with geo-political tailwinds in the security market, the timing could not be better for the launch of Canada’s first defence and national security focused fund.”
ONE9 Venture Partners has the support of strategic limited partners and an extensive advisory network that includes Peter MacKay, Canada’s former Minister of National Defence.