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Life is getting busier and busier, so that the weekly news have now been officially renamed into bi-monthly news. I am working on the resource issue.
Before I dig into the news, a few support words for Antti Vilpponen who decided to discontinue five-year-old Arctic Startup blog in its current setup.
I thought that the blog was an amazing source of startup news, and now many journalists and investors will scratch their heads as the arctic curtains close. But blogging is a tough occupation. It is stressful as there is always pressure to post, produce more content, because frequency of posting means more traffic, means more page views and ad clicks. As you may have noticed, I disregard this rule as I do not want to dilute the condensed startup scene coverage in exchange for page views, but this is not a sustainable business model.
So, thumbs up for Antti, Greg and Dmitri for an amazing job, and I am confident that the Nordic startup ecosystem will work out how to keep the blog to continue propelling Scandinavian and Baltic tech companies to the global audience.
Now back to the treadmill: here are the major startup news I have been hiding for the past couple of weeks.
Russian VC fund Almaz Capital sold its stake in the company Vyatta, a network security software for virtual environments, reports Unova. Having invested an estimated $10 million, the fund returned between 3 and 5 times its investment (the details of the deal have not been disclosed).
Polish fashion startup SHOWROOM raised Series A from a strategic investor Burda Digital.
Polish fund Xevin Investments backed the food delivery service Skubacz.pl.
Atomico invested $16 million into the travel booking website OneTwoTrip.
David Yan, the founder of the Russian global success story ABBYY (OCR, translations) has raised another $6 million for his new venture iiko, the business management software solution for restaurants. The investor is Leader-Innovations Fund backed by the state-owned Russian Venture Company.
Seed fund Startobaza and Bars Ventures backed the cloud-based accounting software startup Nebo, the sum of the investment has not been disclosed.
Russian health website Vitaportal received $2 million in funding from Prostor Capital and Esther Dyson.
Moscow seed fund, set up by Moscow city government, will make loans to startups in collaboration with other co-investors, reports EWDN. If startups receive $923,000 from one of the 12 selected investors (e.g. Prostor Capital, Pavel Cherkashin), the fund will put in $246,000 in loans at 12 percent annual interest. Let’s see who’ll take it.
Launches and new product releases
A new seed fund OnlinePartners.pl launched in Poland by former founders of the daily deals site Gruper.pl.
Following the Seedcamp Budapest, which saw 14 startups from Eastern Europe, the winners have been selected. They include Czech Futurelytics that offers predictive analytics about online customers and a team in a stealth mode (smart move!)
Mobile gaming startup Highand Lute won AppCamp Kosovo.
At How to Web, featuring a long list of Eastern European startups, Greek Incrediblue (long tail boat rentals) won the competition, and according to Mike Butcher’s tweet, received a term sheet from an investor within hours of its TechCrunch coverage.
— Mike Butcher (@mikebutcher) November 9, 2012
Hungarian Accelerator European Entrepreneurship Foundation, Peter Zaboji and Seedcamp Budapest were featured in the Financial Times. Google the headline “Entrepreneurship: Dedicated business leaders help new ventures prosper” to get through the paywall.
Maxim Gurvits of Bulgarian accelerator eleven.bg shared his experience about launching the accelerator.
Oliver Holle, the founding partner at the Austrian venture fund with CEE focus SpeedInvest has published a power point presentation on how to launch eastern European startups in the US. It should have been a Prezi.
At the same time Alexey Alyarov, the CEO and founder of Avaya has been offering tips to Russian startups entering US market.
We reviewed Slovak gaming company PixelFederation, which made it into the top 20 EMEA game developers on Facebook.
Mobile AppCamp will take place in Skopje, Macedonia on the 30th of November to the 2nd of December.
Vilnus, Lithuania is turning into a European startup capital this week, as AppCamp took place over the weekend, Silicon Valley comes to Baltics on November 15-16 followed by a StartupWeekend Lithuania on the 16 to 18th of November.
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