MaRS client gShift Labs receives $1.1 million in funding from GrowthWorks
Toronto, September 15, 2011 – MaRS client gShift Labs, the creator of a patent-pending search engine optimization (SEO) software system that allows marketers better control over their organic search campaigns, today announced a $1.1 million investment by GrowthWorks, one of Canada’s leading venture capital managers. With GrowthWorks as lead investor, gShift is eligible for and will receive an additional $500,000 in investment from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
The announcement was made at the grand opening of gShift’s new offices attended by GrowthWorks and Barrie MP Patrick Brown. This round of financing will help propel the company’s next stage of product development and fuel sales and marketing efforts as the company scales its industry leading software, Web Presence Optimizer™.
“Early-stage investment has been critical to the growth of gShift Labs as we build our team and develop a unique SEO management software product that’s gaining tremendous traction with customers,” says Krista LaRiviere, Founder and CEO, gShift Labs. “This Series A funding will enable us to further tap the wealth of talent in Southern Ontario and lays the groundwork for us to build on our early success in a fast-growth sector.”
gShift received numerous start-up awards in 2010. They were named one of Canada’s “hottest innovative companies” at CIX 2010, and also received an initial round of $500,000 in seed money from the MaRS Investment Accelerator Fund (IAF), which helps grow new technology companies in Ontario and positions them for further investment by angels and VCs.
“The IAF model is to work closely with companies to help them build their business, introduce them to new investors and even introduce them to clients,” explains Michelle McBane, Investment Director, MaRS Investment Accelerator Fund. “We called upon the MaRS advisory team to work with gShift management on several fronts including fine-tuning their successful investor pitch.”
About gShift Labs
gShift Labs provides SEO software for non-SEO professionals by giving marketers control over their organic search campaigns. Companies across North America are achieving top organic ranking in search engines using gShift’s Web Presence Optimizer™, which demystifies and standardizes the way a website gets found on the Internet. Organizations of all sizes benefit by reducing the time and resources required to analyze and improve organic search optimization. Winner of numerous technology awards, gShift is considered a top software innovation companies in Canada. For more information visit: www.gshiftlabs.com
GrowthWorks has established itself as one of Canada’s leading top retail venture capital managers. Through regionally based retail venture capital funds, GrowthWorks identifies, analyzes, and structures investments in companies with high growth potential. Particular emphasis is placed on the burgeoning Canadian information technology, life sciences and cleantech sectors. GrowthWorks is currently the largest retail venture capital investor in Canadian “green technology” companies and is one of the largest managers of retail venture capital funds in Canada. GrowthWorks has assets under management of approximately $480 million. Visit: www.growthworks.ca
MaRS Discovery District is a large-scale, mission-driven innovation centre located in Toronto and networked across Ontario. It focuses on building Canada’s next generation of technology companies. MaRS works closely with entrepreneurs to grow and scale their ventures into global market leaders in life sciences and health care; information, communications and entertainment technologies; cleantech; advanced materials and engineering; and innovative social purpose businesses.
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