Deals from FinancePlus Central-Eastern Europe

Deals from FinancePlus Central-Eastern Europe

FinancePlus Deal Book Russia 2017

Coming Soon: FinancePlus Russia Deal Book 2017

The FinancePlus Russia Deal Book is now being updated for a new edition to be published in spring 2017.

The 300-page Russia Deal Book was last published in 2012. It stands as the largest publication devoted to the Russian mid-market investor community. This new edition will be a complete update of this resource for the benefit of mid-market business leaders, investors, and M&A and investment professionals.

The 2017 Russia Deal Book will add analysis of the Russian investment climate. It will also add a regional focus section called “Focus on Kuban” that will provide detailed information about the very important Krasnodar region.

FinancePlus invites financial services companies and business leaders to submit information for the next edition of the FinancePlus Russia Deal Book.

FinancePlus is one of the largest finance related communities on LinkedIn, with more than 800,000 members in its groups. Its groups include FinancePlus, Accounting & Audit, Chief Financial Officer – CFO, Private Equity Networking, Mergers & Acquisitions, and TechPlus among others.

Click here to Download the FinancePlus Russia Deal Book 2012

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High Density and High Strength Construction Materials from Gypsum in Latvia

The Company plans to produce high density and high strength construction materials from α form of gypsum. Despite its excellent technical qualities, this material has not been used in construction because of its high production costs. The Company is seeking investment of about USD 5m.

The Company has developed and patented a technology and machinery which decrease the energy intensity of the α form production by 2 to 3 times and shorten the production cycle from 24-78 hours to 10-12 hours, which will render this product highly competitive.
The Project plans to build a pilot plant in Latvia, which will produce α form construction material to be supplied to the international market, and prove the viability of the material to the industry.

Going forward, The Company will generate most of its revenues from selling licenses and machinery to other construction materials producers. In addition, The Company plans to acquire a gypsum quarry in order to ensure the supply of raw materials to the plant and sell the remainder to local building materials producers.

The Company is seeking funding possibilities for the first stage of the Project. The investor will start to enjoy safe and high returns on investment already within 3 years from the launch of the Project with long term continuous wealth growth in the Company that is projected to be worth several billion Euros.

Deal Contact:
Baltic Gypsum Technologies, Ltd.
Valdis Poikans
[email protected]

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Quality Awarded Turkish Car Rental and Leasing Company on Sale

The Company has operated for more than 5 years and is an operational leasing and car rental business. The Company has recently received a quality award in Europe. The client portfolio is selective composed of financial institutions, service & manufacturing companies. Gross profit of the contracts range from 9-22%. The Company’s fleet consists of close to 800 vehicles. The total number of employees is 13.

The Company’s net sales in 2014 around Usd 10 Mio where as the net profit is Usd 2 Mio. The partners are preferably seeking to sell the majority of the shares if not full sale to a strategic player. The management is in place, hence the managing partner holding 30% of the shares is willing to stay in the management, however sale of up tp 50% to a private equity is also considered based on the terms of offer. The Company’s management intends to finance the growth of fleet with external working capital in addition to already existing credit lines of banks.

Deal Contact:
Barkan Baybogan
[email protected]
+90 5065941878

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Patented Exhaust Gas Purification System for Fireplaces in Germany

Exhaust Gas Purification Systems are required to be retrofitted for all open fire combustion systems (fireplaces) under German law beginning in 2015. The Company has developed a patented system for use by commercial and residential fireplaces and ovens.
Investment: €600k, Venture Capital
Location: Germany

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Report: Goldman Sachs invested $8 million in Russian flight ticket booking site Onetwotrip

East-West Digital News
Goldman Sachs invested $8 million in, a Moscow-based startup that sells air tickets and hotel bookings to users from Russia and several European countries.
The capital injection was not publicly announced when took place in late 2014, but it was revealed last week by Russian business daily Kommersant, which cited sources close to the deal.
Onetwotrip’s valuation remains unknown, but an investor with knowledge of the company told Kommersant that it could amount to “several hundreds of million dollars.” The company, which according to its founder Peter Kutis turned profitable just one year after launch in 2011, is still growing in spite of the economic crisis, said this investor.
Last year, according to Onetwotrip’s competitor Ozon Travel, the Russian flight ticket booking market reached 230 billion rubles (nearly $6 billion at the average 2014 exchange rate). An estimated 20% to 30% of this amount was generated online, with an extremely slow growth rate from the previous year.
In August 2014 Onetwotrip sold around 10,000 tickets every day, according to Kutis.
In 2012, Onetwotrip initially raised $9 million from Phenomen Ventures, a fund with Russian roots, and $16 million from Atomico. The UK fund hailed the site as “the most efficient, elegant and innovative travel service not only in Russia, but anywhere in the world.”
Indeed Onetwotrip provides travellers with a number of smart features. These include an intelligent search system of prices, flight options and routes; statistics of the flight delays for every particular destination/airline; information on airplane model and age as well as on distances between the seats.
The Russian startup started international expansion in 2013, after acquiring US hotel booking startup DealAngel. That same year, Kutis announced IPO plans “for 2014,” but market slowdown and deteriorated international climate obviously prevented him to reach this goal.
Kutis declined to answer EWDN’s questions.
This story first appeared in East-West Digital News, a leading online resource on Russian digital industries.

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Indiegogo goes wild for St Petersburg’s iTraq

A startup with routes in Russia’s second city has attracted more than $221k in funding on Indiegogo. The company is called iTraq, and has developed a small device whose location can be tracked using a smartphone app.
The iTraq device looks just a lot like a standard credit card, and can be carried in a wallet, bag, or even attached to a car. It can be detected anywhere which has a telephone signal.
The startup is the brainchild of Roman Isakov, Director of Professional Services at First Line Software. iTraq was first developed in St Petersburg, but Isakov is now working on it in Seattle.
The company was launched on crowdfunding site Indiegogo in mid-February, asking for $35k in funding. Within in a week it had already surpassed that total and has now made six times as much. The startup will be on Indiegogo until 4th April.
The length of time an iTraq device will work for depends on how frequently the user checks its location. According to the iTraq team, if a user checks the app every hour then a fully charged battery will last for four months, whereas if they check once a day it can last for up to three years.
What makes iTraq stand out from its rivals is the fact that it works anywhere with network coverage. Similar services such as StickNFind or Motorola Keylink usually work via Bluetooth and so only function over a limited distance.

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Russia’s Ulmart shops around with Hong Kong on IPO schedule

Wall Street Journal
The Hong Kong stock exchange, once one of the world’s top venues for IPOs, hasn’t been on the shopping lists of foreign companies for a long time. But a listing plan by a Russian ecommerce retailer could put it back in the fray.

Once a market that drew foreign companies from Italian fashion house Prada SpA in 2011 to Russian commodity firms seeking to play up their popularity among spend-thrift Chinese consumers, Hong Kong hasn’t seen a major non-Chinese company listing for at least three years.

Some Japanese firms, such as Fast Retailing Co., operator of the Uniqlo casual-clothing store, and e-commerce services provider econtext Asia Ltd. have listed in the past couple of years, but they haven’t raised much funds, or in Fast Retailing’s secondary listing, none at all.
Read more…

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Telepresence robot developer receives $160,000 in grant and investment

East-West Digital News
Russian company Wicron has attracted 5 million rubles (approximately $80,000 at the current exchange rate) of investment from Ashmanov Partners, a leading Russian web and SEO agency. The transaction took place in December 2014, but was announced only last month.
This funding came in addition to a grant for the same amount offered by Skolkovo, the international tech hub under completion on the outskirts of Moscow.
The funds will be used for the development of a telepresence robot called Webot. The machine allows a person to control the robot through the Internet, watch what is happening and talk to people remotely, see the world and move at the speed of a person walking. The robots may be used for remote visits to exhibitions, the remote presence of employees in the workplace, and the education of children with disabilities.
The robot has already passed the prototype stage, the first series of production and test sales. The machine costs about 300,000 rubles. The company has already sold the first series of 10 products. One robot, for example, was bought in the USA to carry out promotional activities. Another three robots ended up in the Skoltech institute (Skolkovo) for research.
The founders of the project, Dmitry Suvorov and Roman Zhukov, are graduates from the Department of Robotics at the Bauman Moscow State Technical University. The project had already attracted an investment of 2 million rubles from Igor Ashmanov in 2013.
This story first appeared in East-West Digital News, a leading online resource on Russian digital industries.

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French Tech launches Russia tour to showcase France’s best startups

East-West Digital News
La French Tech, a government-led initiative that aims to stimulate and promote France’s startup ecosystem, is launching a Russia branch.
The kick-off event on Feb. 17 gathered around 100 tech entrepreneurs, representatives of large or small companies, research institutions, venture funds and incubators, as well as journalists and diplomats from both countries. The event was hosted by the brand-new “Maison des Entrepreneurs Français,” which aims to assert itself as the first French incubator in Russia.
“French innovation is little known in Russia, which is the largest Internet and telecom market in Europe. Russians pay more attention to the US, the UK and Israel,” noted Ozon CEO and French Tech mentor Maëlle Gavet.
However, the past few years saw several examples of successful cooperation. Runa Capital Partner Dmitry Chikhachev provided the example of Capptain, a French mobile analytics startup in which the Russian fund invested $1.5 million in 2012. The company was acquired by Microsoft less than two years later.
Other notable examples include AT Internet, Blablacar, Criteo, Kameleeon,  Target2sell, and Weborama. These French companies launched offices, subsidiaries or joint-ventures in Russia in the past few years.
Quality label and startup tour
French Tech’s Russia branch has set for itself the goal of attracting more such players to Russia. Moreover, the local French tech community will be invited to join forces to gain stronger traction in both image and commercial terms.
“For example, we plan to launch a French Tech quality label, which will benefit to companies that meet strict criteria,” Thierry Cellerin, one of the local French Tech coordinators, explained to East-West Digital News.
Among French Tech’s first initiatives in Russia is the French Tech Russian Tour, scheduled for early June, in a bid to promote French technologies in this key market. The tour will include one-to-one meetings with Russian tech players and investors, coaching sessions with market experts, and participation in two major industry events – Skolkovo’s Startup Village and international e-commerce event eDays.
Ten French startups will be selected to participate in the Russia French Tech tour. Candidates are required to apply no later than March 15. The jury includes representatives of Group, MTS, Ozon, Runa Capital and Yandex.
The Russia French Tech Tour is being organized by Business France, the government-backed export agency formerly known as Ubifrance, in partnership with Skolkovo, the international tech hub under completion on the outskirts of Moscow.
Ozon, a major Russian e-commerce company, Russian Internet giants Yandex and Group, venture investors Direct Group and Runa Capital, Paris-based tech NGO Hello Tomorrow and tech media East-West Digital News and Maddyness also participate in the initiative.
This story first appeared in East-West Digital News, a leading online resource on Russian digital industries.

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Runa Capital invests €3 million in Finnish open source database solution provider MariaDB Corp.

East-West Digital News
Last week Runa Capital, a venture firm operating globally from its offices in Moscow and San Francisco, announced a €3 million investment in MariaDB Corporation, a global software vendor specializing in high availability, high performance and highly scalable open source database solutions.
Headquartered in Espoo, Finland, MariaDB (also known as SkySQL) aims to become “the world’s premier open source database platform.”
According to the company, “much progress has already been made as the LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) stack, which used to dominate in the web development, is now turning into LEMP (where “E” stands for Nginx and “M” for MariaDB) as MySQL is being replaced with MariaDB in key Linux distributions and Nginx web-server is rapidly gaining market share among the top web sites.”
Last year, MariaDB received $20 million from Intel Capital and other European and US investors.
“There was some room reserved for a value-adding strategic investor,” Runa Capital PR Director Liliana Pertenava told East-West Digital news.
“MariaDB will largely benefit from Runa’s connections with Parallels and portfolio companies NGINX and Jelastic, by further expanding the achieving adoption of MariaDB in crucial enterprise architectures,” she explained.
Michael ‘Monty’ Widenius, MariaDB and MySQL creator, has long history with the Runa team and an advisor to Jelastic, Pertenava added.
“Despite all the hype about BigData and NoSQL, classical Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS) are here to stay. The global RDBMS market, which amounts to some $26 billion, is growing by 10% yearly over the period 2012-2016,” Pertenava noted.

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