According to the Estonian Private Equity & Venture Capital Association, Private Equity and Venture Capital market in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania has grown sevenfold during the last five years, reaching €3 billion in 2019.
Baltic VCA held its annual conference Baltic VCA Summit in Pärnu, Estonia, on August 21-22. The conference brought together institutional investors, as well as private equity and venture capital investors from across the world. Baltic VCA Summit is the largest event for professional investors held in the Baltic region. This year, the conference was held by Estonian Private Equity & Venture Capital Association and welcomed 200 participants from 13 countries, including Japan, UK, Singapore, and USA.
Baltic VCA Summit featured the following speakers: Tomoko Inoue, CEO of Omron Ventures (Tokyo, Japan); Chris Wade, Partner at Isomer Capital (London, UK); Kristjan Kalda, Partner at BaltCap (Tallinn, Estonia); Michael Collins, CEO at Invest Europe (Brussels, Belgium); Ralph Guenther, Partner at Pantheon (London, UK).
Kristjan Kalda, Chairman of the Management Board of the EstVCA said that the Baltics is region characterized by a strong startup community and experienced investors. “In 2013, the total volume of private equity and venture capital market in the Baltics amounted to €385 million with only a few investors. Today, we have grown to become a €3 billion market and a home for teams with various investment strategies. Additionally, a number of global startups have started their journey here: TransferWise, Pipedrive, Bolt (Taxify), Monese, Veriff, Citybee, just to name a few. We certainly have a solid foundation for the future growth“.
The Nordic and Baltic countries make up a so-called New Nordics region. “The New Nordics is becoming a region of interest for institutional investors, alongside Japan and USA. Private equity and venture capital investors consider the Baltics an attractive investment region, characterized by professional and dynamic approach,“ Kalda added.
Michael Collins, CEO at Invest Europe, noted in his presentation that although the Baltics is a small market, venture capital and private equity funds have shown excellent results. “The Baltics is an incredibly interesting region, which attracts great companies, and the local community is very strong as well. The challenge is to attract investors from different parts of the world. The sky is the limit if you can make this happen!“
Chris Wade, Partner at Isomer Capital, said that the Baltic region should take advantage of the investment potential of the private sector. „I strongly believe that Europe is a great place for startups and venture capital funds, but private sector should also invest in building successful startups. For this, a platform is needed to support the private sector.“
Taavi Rõivas, former Prime Minister of Estonia and current Member of the Parliament, emphasized in its speech that the Baltics and Estonia are defined by digital society and highly skilled workforce. “Estonia is the most advanced digital society in the world, where 99% of state services are online. It’s the first country to introduce a cross border digital identity, e-Residency. Estonians are known for their pragmatic approach to tech and a culture to innovate,” Rõivas said.
"Welcome to the New Nordics" by Taavi Rõivas
"The Unbelievable Rise of Baltic PE & VC" by Kristjan Kalda, Chairman at EstVCA.
"Behind the Scenes: Public approach to Developing VC Industry in Finland" by Matias Kaila, TESI
"EBRD perspective on the past and what lies ahead" by Pavel Dvorak, EBRD
"Inside a Corporate VC" by Tomoko Inoue, Omron Ventures
"Hello from Europe" by Michael Collins, Invest Europe
"Japan - A unique case for open innovation" by Jerry Yang (Hardware Club)