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Inovo VC closes third fund with €100M to back early-stage CEE startups

Inovo VC founders
Image credits: Inovo VC

Polish VC firm Inovo VC just closed its third fund with €100 million to provide early-stage funding for CEE-based tech startups. Backing nearly 20 to 30 companies from Poland and the CEE (Central and Eastern Europe), the third fund will provide early-stage funding ranging from €500,000 up to €4 million from pre-seed to Series B rounds.

Investment plans

Inovo VC plans to invest 60% of its capital in tech startups from Poland, and the remaining 40% in companies from other CEE countries, including includes Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. Already, the fund has seen the commitment from private investors, accounting for over half of its total AUM, with institutional investors expected to commit by the end of the year.

“We are looking for companies conquering global markets that can grow to USD 100 million in revenue in just a few years. We have managed to become a fund of choice for Polish founders and we want to replicate that in the other CEE countries, as we already see we can be as helpful to those founders as we are to the ones from Poland” explained Michał Rokosz, Partner at Inovo VC.

“Over the last 7 years we’ve seen the region growing at an exceptional pace, which results in the rise of the number of funding rounds and in an even faster rise of startup valuations at every stage of their development. We are sure that the CEE region will raise at least ten new unicorns in the upcoming 5 years. With our new fund we want to help make that happen”, said Tomasz Swieboda, partner at Inovo VC.

“We see an increasing interest of international investors in companies founded in the CEE countries. Two third of our portfolio companies managed to raise follow-on rounds with top-tier international VCs. We want to strengthen the links between the CEE region and the global VC ecosystem even more. So far, we have co-invested with over 70 international funds and we are convinced this number will grow at a fast pace” said Maciej Małysz, Partner at Inovo VC.

Growth in VC investments

Reportedly, the Polish venture capital investments have grown by 22,6x since 2018 and reached €792 million in 2021. In the first half of 2022, the total VC investments in Poland accounted for €448 million. With the third fund, Inovo VC plans to strengthen this flourishing VC ecosystem in the country.

Inovo VC was founded by Tomasz Swieboda, Michał Rokosz and Maciej Małysz in 2012. It has already set a strong track record its two previous funds backing over 30 companies. Notably, six of these companies have a valuation of over €100 million.

Portfolio of investments

Inovo VC’s portfolio includes a slew of companies such as AllSet – a pick-up or dine-in food marketplace in the US, Booksy – a SaaS-enabled marketplace for beauty services, Infermedica – an AI-powered tech preliminary medical diagnosis and triage, connecting tutors with students, Packhelp – a custom-made packaging producer, Tidio – live chat, chatbot and mailing solutions for micro-businesses, Spacelift – a Terraform-compatible CI/CD platform for infra-as-code, and Zowie – a self-learning AI chatbot automating customer service.

“Inovo was the first investor of Booksy and has been actively supporting us since then. Michał Rokosz even joined us as an interim COO for almost two years, helping the company grow its revenue sixfold and raise over USD 15 million from international venture capital firms. They have remained with us today and I still can call them for help even in the most extraordinary cases. Inovo is effectively a Swiss Army knife of VCs.” Stefan Batory, Co-Founder and CEO of Booksy.

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