Tidal Venture Partners, the recently created pre-seed- and seed-stage venture capital fund based in Halifax, has announced one of its first investments: TheProgram.ai.

Founded earlier this year and also headquartered in Halifax, TheProgram.ai is a white label app for sports organizations to distribute sports-related augmented reality content to primary school-aged children. Sports groups can create training programs, schedules and simple, automated assessments for their participants.

“We are excited to partner with TheProgram.ai and this strong founding team,” said Tidal Managing Partner Ian Whytock in a statement, which did not state the size of the round or Tidal's investment. “We believe they are pursuing a large, and underserved market and a demonstrated vision for growth and expansion now and going forward.”

Co-founded by Whytock, Tidal plans to concentrate its investments in Atlantic Canada, with a focus on “small teams with high potential” and detailed growth plans.

One of the fund’s limited partners is Toronto’s Farpointe Investments, the family office of the Merrithew family, which also own fitness class giant the Merrithew Corporation — a business relationship that appears to offer potential strategic benefits for TheProgram.ai.

And in 2020, the Merrithews launched their Merrithew Connect platform, which is a video streaming service for fitness classes.

TheProgram.ai, meanwhile, is helmed by CEO Brendon Ferguson, an accountant who was also previously business unit director for sports at California fitness software-maker Movella.

The company is officially launching its app to coincide with the close of its funding round.

“I am incredibly proud of our direct team and our extended team of investors and advisors,” said Ferguson.

“As a group of parents, coaches, and sports enthusiasts, we are collectively concerned by the trend of lower youth sports participation. TheProgram.ai helps youth sports organizations engage with millions of kids to kick-off a lifelong relationship with sport and fitness.”