Eight months after being named Investment Principal of Sandpiper Ventures, Danielle Graham has taken two new jobs, becoming a partner of both the Halifax-based business advisory group Imaginal Ventures and the U.S. venture capital group Aligne Capital.

Graham and the Atlantic Canadian female-led investment group parted ways recently, and Sandpiper has brought in Stefanie Corbett, Director of Operations at Island Capital Partners, to serve as investment lead until a permanent replacement is found. Allnovascotia.com was the first to report Graham is no longer with Sandpiper.

The Atlantic Women’s Venture Fund – a regional group that supports female investors backing female-led businesses – started Sandpiper Ventures in May. The AWVF is the overall body responsible for promoting female entrepreneurship and educating women angels, and Sandpiper will be its investment fund, with a target of $20 million.

Graham issued a press release Thursday saying she had joined Imaginal Ventures, a three-year-old firm that advises social ventures. In her new role, she will lead development of Imaginal’s Conscious Business Operating System platform to scale and leverage globally.

"Danielle joining our team is a major step in our growth and our ability to support companies that align with our values,” said Imaginal CEO Dorothy Spence. “She brings a passion for entrepreneurs, a national ecosystem of like-minded organizations that support women technology entrepreneurs, and the capability to build upon our vision.”

In an interview, Spence said Imaginal has just launched the platform, which is designed to help ensure scaling companies are growing in the right ways. The goal is to have impact-driven companies increase their revenues, so their social or environmental impact is amplified.

“Both have to happen,” she said. “If these businesses aren’t financially strong, there will be no impact.”

Graham and Spence have also been named Venture Partners at Aligne Capital, a U.S. venture capital firm that targets impact companies, especially those in the food industry that aim to reduce waste.

Graham, who will remain in Halifax, said she hopes Aligne will consider Atlantic Canadian companies so the move will benefit the region’s ecosystem. She moved to Halifax in May from the Kitchener-Toronto innovation corridor, where she helped to launch Fierce Founders, Communitech’s accelerator for female entrepreneurs.

In a separate interview, Sandpiper Ventures Managing Partner Rhiannon Davies said her group is moving “full steam ahead” with the launch of the fund.

“Island Capital Partners is demonstrating the strength of the ecosystem and we agreed with them before we made this move that they would lend us Stefanie to help us through the next phase,” she said.

Corbett is now slated to be with Sandpiper for 12 weeks, and will remain longer if it takes longer to find a full-time investment manager. The AWVF has retained the recruitment firm Royer Thompson to help find a full-time replacement.

Davies added that the fund has made progress in 2020, attracting 28 investors and training 60 women in angel investing. She said the group intends to announce the launch of the fund in January, including the backing of one of Canada’s top five banks. It will also announce its first investment.

“We will invest in 10 companies over the course of the fund in totality,” she said. “So by the end of next year, I would expect we will have invested in about four companies and will have closed the full $20 million.”