Capital for early-stage software companies
A EUR 15-million equity investment under the InnovFin-EU finance for innovators initiative backed by the EU's Horizon 2020 programme and extended by the European Investment Fund (EIF) is helping Polish seed and venture capital firm Innovation Nest turn promising European software companies into global players.
© cameris #67618918, 2019 source: stock.adobe.com
Founded in Kraków in 2011, Innovation Nest targets ambitious early-stage, business-to-business (B2B) software companies with a global focus and strong market expertise. Its investments range in size from EUR 100 000 to EUR 1 million and it also co-invests with other funds from Europe and the USA.
With its first fund, Innovation Nest invested in 24 Polish businesses. Its second fund is pan-European in scope, in line with its faith in European engineering talent and product intuition. It looks to combine this with sales and business practices developed in Californias Silicon Valley to enable the companies it finances to compete globally.
Given its European and global outlook, Innovation Nest approached the EIF when it needed backing for its second fund. The investment it received is the first EIF investment in a Polish venture capital firm and the first transaction in Poland under the InnovFin Equity Facility.
Creation of the second fund follows our strategy, says managing partner Piotr Wilam. We want to invest in European early-stage companies focusing on B2B software that want to grow global. We are happy that the EIF believed in our mission and we hope that the second fund will allow us to expand to European markets.
EIF chief executive Pier Luigi Gilibert says the EUR 15 million commitment will support SMEs by enhancing access to capital, helping to create jobs and fostering economic growth.
We strongly believe that Innovation Nest has the knowledge and expertise that will allow them to target innovative early-stage companies in Europe, he adds.
Innovation Nest now has some 30 firms in its portfolio from countries including Germany, Portugal, Slovenia and the UK, as well as Poland. The fund has also opened an office in London, in addition to its base in Kraków.