Top deals seen in Central and Eastern Europe in March
Here is a list of some interesting deals from Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), seen in January. Often overlooked by big US and Western European investors, the region offers many good deals, at much cheaper valuations compared to the US market.
Swiss-Russian WayRay has raised $18 million from Alibaba Group and others to bring AR tech to cars. WayRay develops holographic AR navigational solutions for connected cars and has also announced a new deal with Chinese “internet car” maker Banma Technologies to build AR navigation and infotainment systems for cars. Banma has also received investment in the past from Alibaba as well as Chinese automaker SAIC Motor. The new AR system is expected to be built into one of Banma’s 2018 car models.
Ukrainian-Polish startup CallPage has raised €1 million in funding from Polish venture fund bValue. The investment will be used primarily to develop services in Poland and Western Europe. With more than 1,100 customers around the globe, CallPage helps commercial sites convert page views into inbound sales calls through immediate callback to the real phone numbers. Thus, the startup claims that its clients may “gain 75% more calls, conversion, leads and deals.”
Foreign investors poured more than $100 million in Polish companies in 2016, with Digital Garage, New Europe Ventures, 3TS Capital Partners, and Credo Ventures amongst the most active ones.
Russian Job Today gets $35 million in media-for-equity from major media investors – Astremedia (Spain), German Media Pool VC and RTL Germany. Launched in 2015 by two Russian entrepreneurs, Eugene Mizin and Polina Montano, Job Today has developed a job finder app which currently operates in four cities of Spain and the UK. The startup, which claims to have helped more than 10,000 people already find a job, is based in Luxembourg. It intends to enter the German market later this year.
Life.SREDA has launched a $20 million fintech fund together with MDEC.
Russia’s Shelly has raised $1.2 million from AltaIR and several private investors
The first three months of operation have been highly productive for the Riga-based FinTech startup VIAINVEST. €1 million have already been invested into consumer loans through the platform. The great activity of investors once again proves the growing demand for alternative investment opportunities. Founded in 2016, VIAINVEST is a peer to peer lending platform providing alternative online investment opportunities – both private individuals and legal entities are welcome to invest in consumer loans originated by the VIA SMS Group and its daughter companies operating across Europe. Since launch, VIAINVEST has significantly increased its investment portfolio and currently boasts an offer of up to 12,2% annual return to its investors.