On November 19, 2020, MaRS hosted an information session featuring speakers from the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC). Petia Tchouk of MaRS Discovery District prepared this summary from the event, highlighting the key insights shared.
The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is responsible for regulating Ontario’s capital markets and protecting investors.
The Office of Economic Growth and Innovation (The Innovation Office) is a dedicated team at the OSC focused on initiatives that support economic growth and innovation in Ontario’s capital markets. The Innovation Office contributes to processes that support innovation and drive efficiency at the OSC.
This webinar recording focuses on two key areas at the Innovation Office:
The OSC’s LaunchPad program works directly with innovative firms, helping them navigate securities laws.
To request support from LaunchPad, visit the website, review the eligibility criteria and submit an online Request for Support form. You’ll be asked to provide information about your business and target customers, give details about your innovative product and describe what kind of guidance or support you hope to receive from the OSC LaunchPad team.
Which compliance considerations apply to your company will depend on your business model. They might include:
The OSC provides information for different industries, including information sessions and guidance documents to help you dive deeper into many of these topics. You’re not alone in figuring out how these rules apply to you!
Startups have access to a variety of capital sources, including grants, funding from friends and family, bank loans and venture capital.
If you are raising capital, familiarize yourself with Ontario securities law. Generally speaking, companies selling securities (including equity) to the public in Ontario are required to prepare a prospectus and file it with the OSC (which will issue a receipt). A prospectus is a comprehensive disclosure document that sets out detailed information about the issuer and its financial position, and describes the securities being issued and the risks associated with purchasing them. After raising capital through a prospectus, a company becomes public and must also comply with continuous disclosure requirements.
The OSC recognizes that a prospectus offering can be costly and that early-stage companies need flexibility to raise capital efficiently. There are exemptions from the prospectus requirement that may be used by early-stage businesses to issue securities and raise capital.
The OSC is just one of several regulatory bodies that may be relevant for your company. Examples may include:
The information set out here is current as of March 4, 2021. Please check www.osc.ca for the most up-to-date information about how securities regulation may impact your business.