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This recap will cover funding and M&A news from startups in Latvia, Ukraine, Romania, Belarus, and Russia.
Latvian Startup Association, which brought together state officials and entrepreneurs willing to promote the local startup scene to the rest of the world, voted for #StartinLatvia to become the official hashtag of the startup ecosystem in Latvia. Continue reading about the initiative on Arctic Startup.
Latvian online microfinance platform Creamfinance offers fast and easy P2P loans, is currently available in the Czech Republic, Georgia, Latvia, Poland, and Slovakia. Recently published, the annual Inc. 5000 Europe list named them the fastest growing fintech company in the EU. They are indeed. During the last 3 years, the company has seen the drastic growth of 4542% achieved thanks to smart partnerships, the ultimate belief in the service and the ability to adapt to new market conditions. The company’s approach to microfinance is minimizing efforts from customers and maximizing machine self-educating risk management algorithm capacities. Creamfinance is also nominated for European FinTech Awards 2016. In 2014, Flint Capital invested $6.2 million in the startup. Read more about Creamfinance on 150sec.com.
Latvian startup BranchTrack is an online service for building interactive corporate training programs. It provides easy-to-use smart tools for creating custom trainings at very affordable prices. With this offer BranchTrack is entering the growing $130 billion market for corporate training. Their paying customers include KPMG, Person, Slack, PwC, and over 1,500 other companies. Read more on Labs of Latvia.
The IoT (Internet of Things) startup from Ukraine, which offers the hardware and software for home energy saving, has got quite a bit of media attention since Deutsche Telecom invested into the team in 2014. And recently, Ecoisme has made it to Virgin Media Accelerator, run in partnership with acknowledged American incubator TechStars. It is the only startup from CIS countries who made it to this batch. The teams from 71 counties applied. In exchange for 6% of shares, the startup will get 13 weeks full of product development knowledge, and $20K in cash. Later on, the residents of the accelerator will get $100,000 as a convertible loan for an additional 4% of shares. Ecoisme’s CEO Ivan Pasechnik claims that the company’s value will climb to $2.5M in this case. Previously they raised from Ukrainian business angels Nikolay Byelogorski and Sergey Povzner. Source in Russian.
The Ukrainian travel startup TripMyDream won the travel track the finals of the international startup competition in Lausanne, Switzerland. They impressed the CEO of lastminute.com, the-the sponsor of the travel track, more than 6 other teams, and as a sweet bonus, they got $500K in cash prize. The relatively young service, started in May 2015, searches for a trip, but, unlike its analogs, it does not require you to enter the destination. The customer just fills in the starting point, the budget and the type of a trip he or she prefers. The rest is done by search engines, which provide the customer with several affordable trip options. Source: Seedstars.
The most popular (33,000 users across the country) invoicing and accounting SaaS platform in Romania SmartBill has secured Eur 1M in a B-round led by 3TS Capital Partners. The lead investor gets 25% of the company’s equity for €0.83 m. Gecad Group, founded by one of the most successful serial entrepreneurs in Romania, will participate in the deal with €0.2M in return for a 7% equity. Gecad Group is also an investor an upmarket smart watch brand with a 30 days battery life Vector Watch. The full story about SmartBill is on 150sec.com.
DocDoc.ru, a service for finding doctors and setting medical appointments operating in 16 Russian cities, has raised $4 million on undisclosed terms from the Russian fund Guard Capital. Previously in 2012, the startup has secured $1 million from another Russian venture fund, Aurora Venture Capital. According to the startup’s data, in 4 years since its launch DocDoc.ru has helped more than 350,000 patients to meet one of 21,700 physicians from 1,624 clinics enrolled into the service. More information.
The leading Russian sports media Sports.ru, with about 7 million monthly users and $2.8M in annual revenue in 2015, is acquiring 90live.org. It’s a Belarusian sports app developer authoring 20 apps for football clubs, including Real Madrid and Barcelona. With more than 1 million downloads across its app range, the company was making $20,000 monthly, including from advertising. Sports.ru wants to capitalize on their mobile audience, especially in the US, where mobile advertising market is larger and the rates are 12 higher than in Russia. The story appeared on EWDN.
We wrote so much about this team and their successful and rocket-speed exit, so we will be brief and won’t even publish masks to illustrate the post 🙂
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