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Target Ventures, a Russian VC firm founded only a year ago in September 2012 , aims to boost the domestic consumer sector by funding projects who derive more than 50% of their income from online business. Last week, we had a post about an investment of ‘several million dollars’ by Target Ventures in Babadu.ru, an online store geared towards parents. Following the post, I spoke with one of the co-founders of Target Ventures, Mikhail Lobanov, who co-founded the firm with Anton Terekhov to learn the firm’s investments, and about their plans going forward.
Although this firm is still relatively young, Lobanov and Terekhov have worked in the areas of investment and business management. For his part, Lobanov previously managed the assets of the 15 wealthiest clients for Alfa Capital Asset Managemtent and was dealt with operations involving stocks, bonds, various kinds of derivatives, and other structured products. All told, the assets under his control were valued at more than $100 million (75,8 million Euro). He actually previously invested in Mixville, which was the first investment by Target Ventures, and had a good experience with them, which eased the negotiation process when Target Ventures looked for investment possibilities. Terekhov, on the other hand, heads some of the Russia’s top internet companies: he served as the CEO of OZON from 2006-08 and as the head of e-commerce for TUI Russia & CIS from ‘09-11. He has also acted as CEO of Begun.ru and Price.ru and founded Fivebirds.ru, which is responsible for Five birds, which includes projects like ichiba, Shopolog, and Da! Marketing.
Target Ventures was founded in September 2012 and has made 2 investments thus far. The first was an investment of an undisclosed amount in Mixville, billed as the first service in Russia which allows customers to customize chocolate, muesli, macarons, and coffee, and it was followed by the most investment in Babadu. Although the did not really reveal specifics about the amounts invested in each company, Lobanov says that they generally are looking to invest $500K-2 million (379,000-1,52 million Euro). They are looking for teams which have already reached $1 million (758,000 Euro) in annual revenue, have a strong team, and have high growth potential. They are primarily interested in consumer-oriented companies, focusing on e-commerce, B2C and lead generation.
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