Chris Arsenault has more than 25 years of operating and investing experience, and through his vision, has become a key pillar of today's maturing Canadian tech ecosystem. Chris played an important role in supporting many of Inovia Capital’s most valuable companies, including Lightspeed, Luxury Retreats, Sonder, and AppDirect, where he currently serves as a board member and a coach to the founders. Through his decades of leadership and relationship building, Chris has developed an outstanding track record of identifying high potential companies early on, maximizing deal value, supporting management teams as they scale, and managing paths to exit. Notable exits that generated substantial shareholder value include the 2019 IPO of Lightspeed (LSPD), Luxury Retreats, Well.ca, Localmind, Routehappy, Airborne Entertainment and SIT.
Chris co-founded Inovia Capital in 2007 and leveraged his entrepreneurial instincts to not only shape the culture of the Firm but also its vision and path forward, which led to the Inovia platform and the inception of Inovia Capital’s growth funds. Chris currently serves as a director on the boards of AppDirect, Poka, Life House, Snapcommerce, SOAR Technology Acquisition Corp, Talent.com and Groupe Dynamite; he previously served on several boards, including Lightspeed (until its IPO), Luxury Retreats (acquired by Airbnb in 2017), Reflex Photonics (acquired by Smiths Interconnect in 2019), and Well.ca (acquired by McKesson in 2017). Chris is also a board member of the Montreal Heart Institute Foundation, Forum AI Québec (part of the Quebec Supercluster for Artificial Intelligence), and he is also a proud Charter Member of Silicon Valley based The C100.
AppDirect, Poka, Snapcommerce, Life House, Talent.com
The first life-changing entrepreneurial quote I remember is one from George S. Patton who said: “Lead, follow or get out of the way”. Although I was very young, that quote became a permanent tattoo pushing me beyond my limits ever since, making me see everything around me under a very different light.
Inovia Capital was founded on the underlying belief that tech entrepreneurs have unique character traits that enable them to do amazing and impossible things. And Inovia Capital was literally created to support them in their endeavor.
I believe that the future is whatever you decide to make of it. There are no limits. So you better make it good!
I grew up in a small town of 2,800 people — building things, breaking things, starting things, intrigued about how big they could become. I felt that the only way I could make a difference was by traveling the world and connecting extraordinary people.
Founders, you had me at “your contagious passion” — for problem solving more than the solution, your street smarts, and intellectual-integrity.