We are structured to invest early in the life cycle of a business and to continue to invest in and support a successful business over time.
The sectors targeted by True North involve the delivery of "social goods" – goods and services that confer benefits and/or impose costs beyond the consumer to a broader society – where governments historically have been involved not only in regulating market participants but also in defining the markets themselves. Existing modes of investing have not been as successful supporting these types of disruptive innovations. At True North, we are focused on unique and innovative solutions:
Entrepreneurs seeking to disrupt these sectors must be prepared to build their businesses wherever political and regulatory environments are conducive to market adoption – rather than positioning their success soley on their domestic market's political and regulatory environment.
We have built global businesses from the ground up and can help entrepreneurs navigate these challenges. We maintain and continue to build a network of global relationships that enable us to assist entrepreneurs in evaluating opportunities, establishing operations and forming critical relationships in attractive foreign markets.
Companies in these sectors must be able to work effectively with the public sector from an early stage, frequently in foreign countries, in order to influence the policy frameworks needed to support disruptive innovation.
We have done this and succeeded in markets around the world and can help entrepreneurs develop the necessary relationships, talent and expertise.
Many "clean tech" companies fail to transition from start-up to robust, profitable and growing enterprises. This so-called "Valley of Death" often results from the inability of nascent organizations to identify, focus on and execute the initiatives that are critical to survival before they run out of funding or lose key talent.
We have successfully negotiated the "Valley of Death" on multiple occasions and can help entrepreneurs by introducing proven business practices and methodologies as well as accessing and recruiting top notch talent.
The sectors we target are typically capital intensive, posing challenges for companies seeking to introduce novel technologies to risk-averse capital providers.
We have a strong understanding of the corporate and project capital structures employed in these industries, as well as relationships that allow us to access capital across these structures as needed to support market expansion of the businesses we back.
In the final analysis, all disruptive innovation is difficult and fraught with risk. To be successful, entrepreneurs must combine commitment and persistence with the flexibility to "read and react" as things unfold.
We understand the process of building disruptive businesses and are structured and prepared to support entrepreneurs over the extended journey.