Over the last couple of years, Polish startup scenes have been growing dynamically, thanks to wide-spread public funding from sources like the Polish Agency for Enterprise Development (PARP) or National Center for Research and Development (NCBR). According to PFR Ventures, capital provided by international funds accounted for as much as 63% of the total invested into Polish startup companies last year.
Jan Habermann, a founding partner of Credo Ventures:
Our track record includes not only the largest number of investments but also exits – and that makes us the most experienced fund in the region. With a new fund with committed capital at nearly $100M, we’re equipped to increase our CEE investment activities in a big way. Given the dynamic growth among startups in Central and Eastern Europe and the status of this region as a powerhouse of tech talent – we’re putting a priority on investments in Poland. We want to make sure that the market knows we’re here.
The fund’s other managing partners include Vladislav Jez, Andrej Kiska, and Ondrej Bartos. The Czech company has an additional office right at the heart of Silicon Valley, in Menlo Park, opened three years ago.
Founded by Jan Habermann and Ondrej Bartos, the company is on a mission to identify and back the most exciting early-stage companies in the region, support them in their growth plans (including expansion to the U.S. / global market), and help to achieve their objectives.
It gets involved at the seed and round A stages of financing with single investments of up to $10 million (approx €8.8 million). Currently, across three Credo funds, the committed capital is valued at $180 million (approx €159 million).
The vehicle is currently investing using its third fund (Credo Stage 3, CS3), which in November last year raised $100M from several institutional investors from Europe and North America as well as from several private individuals who invested in previous funds. Of that amount ca $90M is still at the disposal of the fund’s managers.
Jan Habermann added:
Our third fund, the capital from which we are currently investing, is building on the experience and success of the previous two funds. We want to use our reputation and contacts in Central Europe to invest in the region’s most promising tech. Our intentions? Turn them into companies with at least 9-figure valuations. For us, getting involved in the businesses in our portfolio means making use of our biggest advantages – the ability to cooperate with VC funds from around the world and the expansion possibilities provided by our office in Silicon Valley.
The Credo Ventures investment portfolio currently features 30 companies from Czech, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Slovenia, Croatia, and Poland. Five of those companies make up the current Polish portfolio, and, of them, the standout is Displate – a platform that brings together graphic designers and clients from around the world – then printing their projects on metal posters.
As it continues to invest in other Polish companies, Credo Ventures will bring to the table everything it has learned about building value and creating unicorns.
Main image picture credits: Credo Ventures
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