29 Nov 2016
The consortium of partners consisting of several companies has won the tender for venture capital ecosystem development in Belarus - the start of the AID-Venture program was announced during a press conference at Imaguru start-up hub on November 16.
"Aleinikov & Partners" together with a group of companies Bel.biz, venture fund 500 Startups and international educational program for venture investors Angel Labs will implement the project for venture capital ecosystem development in Belarus - AID-Venture. AID-Venture program is designed for 5 years, the estimated investment volume - 2.5 million U.S. dollars.
Tatiana Marinich, the head of the group of companies Bel.biz, said that over the last 3 years start-ups who studied on the basis of pre accelerated program TechMinsk, raised 7 million U.S. dollars.
"Unfortunately, major investments in their projects came from foreign investors. There is still no ecosystem of venture capital investment in Belarus and angel investing is almost undeveloped. At the same time there is a sufficient number of people in Belarus who could be angel investors. Another issue is their competency and their willingness to invest in start-ups if all the legal barriers would be removed".
Along with the introduction of standards into national law generally accepted by international venture investors, following objectives of the program can be named:
investment training for market players;
providing professional exchange with colleagues from Europe and the United States;
developing the community of venture capital investors in Belarus;
assisting in the creation of the Belarusian venture fund (if suitable conditions);
assisting to startups to communicate with investors, training projects through accelerators and other formats.
Senior partner of Law Firm "Aleinikov & Partners" Denis Aleinikov believes that AID-Venture must re-energise business activity:
"Money became the driver of the industry in Russia. Funds began to actively invest in start-ups in the pre-stage - when 9 out of 10 startups die. The government decided that it was ready to burn money for the development of the industry. Later, when there was a cycle of money and projects everybody could see what type of legislation should be, and they started to change it.
Russian legislation is similar in many respects to ours, but in matters of venture financing it took a few steps ahead. At the same time the model of "public" financing of startups determines the work of the project in the domestic market.
Belarus is a small country, and domestic consumption is low, so we should be oriented mainly to the global market. It is better to choose a concept of venture legislation development on the basis of foreign experience – for example, Israel, Singapore as well as opinions of market players".