Supporting private equity and venture capital in the Baltics

By Axel  Reiserer

Supporting private equity and venture capital in the Baltics

EBRD and Baltic Venture Capital Associations team up to deepen capacity

The EBRD, with the support of the Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian Private Equity and Venture Capital Associations and OVC Consulting, is organising training for fund managers and institutional investors to further deepen market know-how and capacity in the financial markets in the Baltics.

The Baltics private equity and venture capital training starts with training for fund managers in Riga today. The two days-course will bring together recognised experts including

  • Tim Jenkinson, Professor of Finance at the Oxford University Saïd Business School and Director of the Oxford Private Equity Institute,
  • Humphrey Battcock, Partner at Advent International, one of the world's largest private equity houses managing circa US$40 billion in assets,
  • Jonathan Blake, recognised as one of the 100 most influential people in private equity and member of the British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association’s “Private Equity Hall of Fame”, and
  • Linas Sabaliauskas, specialist partner in private equity, venture capital and securities law from the TRINITI law firm.

The experts will present overviews of regional and global trends and share best practices on the establishment of private equity and venture capital funds covering areas including how investors select fund managers, preparation for investor meetings and due diligence, fundraising strategies, working with investors and investment fund documentation.

The first training for fund managers has secured the participation of over 100 fund managers, investors, government agencies and advisers to the private equity and venture capital industry across the three Baltic countries.

It follows a series of earlier workshops held by the EBRD in each Baltic state to enhance the skills of local fund managers and forms part of the EBRD Integrated Approach for the Further Development of the Venture Capital and Private Equity Ecosystem in the Baltic States that aims to assist the emergence of a sustainable venture capital and private equity sector in the Baltic region.

Troy Weeks, EBRD Senior Banker, said: “Facilitating capacity building and institutional skills transfer to fund managers and investors is an invaluable part of what the EBRD can bring to the private equity ecosystem in the Baltics in addition to our role as a long-standing and active investor. We hope the training assists to develop strong fund managers with the ability to raise institutional capital to support the development and growth of enterprise in the Baltics. We look forward to our continuing work with the local private equity and venture capital associations.”

The EBRD Baltics Integrated Approach strategy is based on a two-pillar approach of (a) policy dialogue and sector engagements and (b) investments into selected private equity and venture capital funds across the Baltics. The policy dialogue and sector engagements under the Baltics Integrated Approach have focused on:

  • enhancing the availability of market data to enable more effective marketing of private equity funds;
  • capacity building for fund managers and local institutional investors;
  • regulatory and legislative aspects affecting the venture capital and private equity sector such as local collective investment vehicles laws or public procurement procedures;
  • improving networks within the Baltic region in order to realise synergies among market participants; and
  • early-stage development to facilitate further technology transfer and commercialisation.

Under the Baltics Integrated Approach, the EBRD is also making investments into a number of private equity and venture capital funds. The most recent investment was a commitment of up to €17m to Livonia Partners Fund I providing growth and acquisition capital to small and medium-sized enterprises in the three Baltic states.

The EBRD is a major investor in the Baltic States where it started working after the countries operations in 1991. To date, the Bank has invested close to €2 billion in over 240 projects in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The mobilisation and provision of private equity is one of the EBRD’s priorities in the region in order to support the growth and development of local businesses.

Registrations for the next module Baltics Private Equity and Venture Capital Training for institutional investors in private equity and venture capital funds to be held in Vilnius on 19-20 September are currently being taken. Interested participants should contact their respective Private Equity and Venture Capital Association for more information.