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SmartCap, a small fund manager registered with the Estonian Financial Supervision and Resolution Authority, is a subsidiary of KredEx and manages a state venture capital fund with EUR 80 million.

The role of SmartCap is to ensure the best seed and growth financing opportunities, mainly through private sector venture capital funds, to develop Estonia’s venture capital market and to ensure the availability of capital in all economic cycles.

SmartCap's vision is to make Estonia’s capital market work by offering venture capital investments, which in turn would enable ambitious and innovative Estonian companies to grow internationally. 

SmartCap is a partner to the Estonian state in venture capital investments and our mission is to contribute to Estonia's economic growth and develop Estonia’s capital market:

  • being an anchor investor in venture capital funds with a long-term strategic view;
  • providing missing investment solutions, focusing on market gaps in different business growth phases and market segments;
  • investing under market conditions and following market needs;
  • investing in all economic cycles.
Portfolio

The total value of the state venture capital fund managed by SmartCap is EUR 80 million and SmartCap’s investment portfolio currently includes two early-stage venture capital funds operating in Estonia:

  1. The direct investments in technology companies made by the Estonian Development Fund and SmartCap are currently managed by the Tera Ventures team, which is responsible for managing follow-on investments, exiting companies and selling companies. Additional information from the Tera Ventures website.
  2. SmartCap has invested in Superangel One, an early stage investment fund, the goal of which is to invest in nearly 40 early stage technology companies within 10 years. The Superangel team created the start-up accelerator Alpine House, which will be brought to life using funds from the Startup Estonia programme. Additional information from theSuperangel website.

 

High-tech Enterprises Fund

The High-tech Enterprises Fund will begin investing in high-tech companies, the product or service development and business models of which are based on research and development and intellectual property. The introduction of SmartCap’s High-tech Enterprises Fund is an important step in developing high-tech entrepreneurship in Estonia and expanding the local start-up ecosystem in this regard.

The State-side anchor investment in the High-tech Enterprises Fund is EUR 15 million, to which the private capital raised by the management company will be added.

The suitable management company will be found in the course of an open competition which will be announced in the end of December 2020.  In addition to their own team, SmartCap will also involve an independent expert with specific international experience, who will participate in the final stage of the preparation of the terms and conditions of the competition, and in the evaluation of tenderers. The new management company will be selected in the second quarter of 2021.

Sponsorship principles

As a participant in Estonia’s venture capital market, SmartCap contributes to the development of the venture capital market with sponsorship activities by supporting projects aimed at market development as well as events in the field, favouring young talents, and initiatives that have a long-term effect on developing entrepreneurship.

Through its support activities, SmartCap wishes to create long-term partnerships by contributing with its team’s competence in addition to funding. We prefer regularly occurring (e.g. annually) projects and initiatives that have a widespread impact.

All sponsorship projects must be coordinated with the SmartCap values and strategic goals and correspond to the fields determined in the sponsorship principles.

SmartCap does not support private persons (except scholarships when co-operating with Estonian universities), political or religious initiatives and events.

Areas of sponsorship

In its sponsorship and supporting activities, SmartCap focuses on four main areas.

  1. Developing Estonian venture capital market

    As a participant of the Estonian venture capital market, SmartCap actively contributes to developing the market by participating in the work of Estonian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (EstVCA) and by supporting initiatives, projects, and events linked to the field, the goals of which are developing the local venture capital market, strengthening the community and increasing reputation and reliability among foreign investors.

    In addition to sponsorship, SmartCap also supports activities aimed at developing the market with its team’s competence.

  2. Increasing the venturesome attitude of young people, especially girls and women

    SmartCap supports initiatives and projects aimed at young people, which inspire the youth to engage in engineering, technology, technical research, and robotics. The objective of the sponsorship projects is to support the development of future generations and we prefer initiatives that are directed at increasing the number of women in entrepreneurship and knowledge-based fields.
     
  3. Cooperation with Estonian universities

    In cooperation with Estonian universities, SmartCap contributes to scientific progress, future experts and researchers of STEM subjects, and the quality of teaching and research. Our goal is to support the development of knowledge-based entrepreneurship and the new specialists required for creating innovation and technological developments. We support the motivation of students and teachers to do research in the fields of engineering, technology, technical research, and robotics by supporting respective MA and doctoral research with scholarships.
     
  4. Activities directed at developing technological and knowledge-based business ideas

    SmartCap supports activities, projects, and competitions aimed at developing and supporting technological and knowledge-based business ideas. We prefer regular (e.g. annual) and long-term initiatives.

Submitting a sponsorship application

Please submit your sponsorship applications in writing. In the application, please note the following information:

  • The applicant’s name and contact details, name of the organisation being represented.
  • Introduction to the project team and a description of the experience of the team members regarding implementing similar projects.
  • Short description of the project, including the objective, target group, time and place, expected number of participants, etc.
  • The amount of the desired sponsorship and precise and clear overview of how these funds shall be used.
  • Expected results and description of the project’s impact.
  • Overview of advertising outputs offered to the sponsor.

Please send your applications to marina.bachmann@smartcap.ee.

We shall review the applications and get back to you within a month.

Research and analyses

SmartCapi poolt tellitud uuringu eesmärk oli kirjeldada erinevas faasis (loomise, kasvu-, ning laienemise) iduettevõtete kapitali kättesaadavuse probleeme, analüüsida nende olemust ning hinnata seniste finantsinstrumentide sobivust ilmnenud probleemide lahendamiseks. Uuringut rahastati Startup Estonia programmi vahenditest ja see viidi läbi perioodil oktoober 2019 – jaanuar 2020 Civitta Eesti AS poolt.

Tutvu uuringu ja selle kokkuvõttega.