Montréal, June 7, 2011 - Speaking at the National Assembly today where he tabled Investissement Québec's annual report, President and Chief Executive Officer Jacques Daoust said: "Fiscal year 2010-2011 turned the spotlight on Québec's economic rebound and Investissement Québec's transformative role. The Québec economy has continued to grow stronger, and Investissement Québec has helped put it on a solid footing through 1,899 financing operations involving over 1,500 Québec businesses."
Investissement Québec's $884 million contribution, chiefly in the form of loans and loan guarantees, provided for the implementation of projects worth $3.7 billion, helping create over 9,000 jobs and preserve nearly 8,000 more.
"Investment performance in this pivotal year of the global economic recovery has helped diversify and bolster the Québec economy. These results bear out the government's decision to pool the expertise and talents of Investissement Québec and Société générale de financement, giving Québec a highly effective financial arm," indicated Clément Gignac, Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade.
The 2010-2011 fiscal year was rich in investments and achievements. Investissement Québec recorded a net income of $62.2 million, compared to $26.5 million the previous fiscal year. It was one of the highest net income levels in the past decade. The Corporation's portfolio under management had a total value of $8.8 billion as at March 31, 2011.
The Corporation continued its investment prospecting operations abroad in order to attract new business partners and foster the development of foreign subsidiaries already established in Québec. In 2010-2011, those efforts led to 81 foreign investment projects, a new record, with a total value of $1.8 billion. Comprising 33 business set-ups and 48 subsidiary growth initiatives, these projects helped create close to 3,200 jobs.
Investissement Québec administers various tax measures designed to stimulate R&D, technological innovation, job creation and economic development in every region of the province. In 2010-2011, the Corporation issued 189 initial eligibility certificates, surpassing its objective by 89%, mainly because of strong demand for tax credits for the production of multimedia titles. The Corporation also issued 3,965 annual certificates, exceeding its objective by 37%.
In 2010-2011, 473 non-refundable contributions totalling $64.5 million were provided to Québec businesses under this program. The funds were generated by the return on investments made by immigrant investors.
After receiving a government mandate to create three investment funds specialized in technology company start-ups, the Corporation set up the Cycle-C3E (specializing in new cleantech), Real Ventures (IT) and Amorchem (biotechnologies) funds in partnership with private and institutional investors. The three funds have a total initial capitalization of more than $115 million.
By the end of the fiscal year, Investissement Québec had completed implementation of a plan of action ensuring the sound governance of the locally administered FIER-Regions funds, which are designed to support regional entrepreneurship. In addition, all the recommendations made by Québec's Auditor General and modifications proposed by Clément Gignac, Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade, were implemented.
On September 15, 2010, the government announced its intention to merge Investissement Québec and Société générale de financement du Québec (SGF) in a single corporation, a new Investissement Québec. By pooling their complementary expertise, Investissement Québec's traditional business solutions, namely loan guarantees, loans, debt financing and an array of tax measures, will be enriched by SGF's extensive experience in development capital and capital investments in businesses active in Québec. "For the new Investissement Québec team, this move represents a new challenge for a new era marked by economic recovery," stated Jacques Daoust.
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