GVA © 2017

17 May, Wed
The thaw of the Russian venture market

After two years of apathy, the Russian venture market showed signs of revival in 2016, reveals the latest edition of the Russian venture report published annually by RG Partners, in partnership with EY and East-West Digital News.

From the seed stage to maturity deals, venture investment amounted to $894 million last year, up from just $383 million in 2015. “Market growth was essentially driven by a dramatic increase in expansion deals, whereas the volume of seed- and startup-stage deals fell to new lows,” notes Arseniy Dabbakh of RG Partners

While the total number of deals at all stages was approximately the same (around 300), the average deal value jumped from $1.3 million in 2015 to $3 million in 2016. Last year also saw 11 exits, with transactions amounting to $663 million, up from just $11 million in 2015.

“The euphoria of 2012-2013 was followed by two years of apathy as the international sanctions against Russia, the plunge of oil prices and of the ruble alike took their toll. The upturn in exits in 2016 makes us hope that a significant part of this money will come back to the innovation ecosystem this year,” says EY Partner Anton Ustimenko.

Key Russian VC market figures in 2016

Key trends in 2016:

Analysis by segment:

  • In 2016, traditional B2B technologies (corporate management systems, platforms, e-commerce and search/recommendations) shrank by a half or more, while service start-ups reigned supreme —  in which the authors of the report see a possible “sign of uberization.”
  • Software and Internet remained investors’ favorite playground, with VC preferences shifting from social networks and e-commerce to education and gaming.
  • Investment in industrial tech was on the rise with the involvement of several corporations and private-public partnerships. State-backed or state-related investors were also active this segment, in line with the government’s strategy to develop the national economy.

On the investor side:

  • In 2016, private VC funds and corporations focused on the growth and expansion stages.
  • Angel investment was vibrant, including the formation of angel and micro-angel investor groups as well as P2P and crowdfunding platforms. Last year also saw a new wave of investments from what appears to be a new type of private venture capitalists, including senior corporate executives and SME leaders, both in Moscow and in the regions.
  • State-backed or state-related investors continued to support startups at the seed and start-up stages, remaining key investors in certain segments, even though an increasing part of this support took the form of grants rather than equity investments.
  • On the corporate side, 2016 appears as a year of transition. Several Russian corporations made noticeable moves, from startup acceleration to acquisitions, to corporate venturing initiatives. Thus new funds were set up by such powerful players as Sberbank, Rostelecom, AFK Sistema and others. However, a range of Russian corporations have not clearly defined their innovation and venture strategies yet and remained little active in 2016. “There is huge potential for more efficient interactions between venture funds and corporations, and this area could drive an upturn in the venture market in 2017,” believes Ustimenko.

In addition:

  • Several of the Russian venture funds of the first generation are now raising new money. This is no easy task since the key investors for Russia’s VC funds are not institutions (as elsewhere in the world), but high net worth individuals and their families – a relatively small population, a part of which is already deeply involved in venture investment.
  • In 2016, many Russian VC funds continued to invest in foreign startups — an orientation which started in 2011 and accelerated in 2014-2015, with Russian investors seeking abroad better profitability in dollar terms. (The present report, however, reflects essentially domestic investment activity.)

November 2019
25 November, Monday
Global Venture Alliance – Accelerator-3.0

Our CEO Zamir Shukhov's interview with the SME Innovator magazine about the GVA methodology, acceleration 3.0 and the future of entrepreneurship in Russia.

March 2018
05 March, Monday
GVA became TOP CHALLENGER of the recent UBI Global World rankings

GVA is recognized as the TOP CHALLENGER according to the UBI Global World rankings of University-linked Business Incubators and Accelerators.

February 2018
28 February, Wednesday
How Russian Consumer Companies Cooperate with Start-ups

The article on Vedomosti on  cooperation between corporations and start-ups. Among examples, there are three GVA's accelerators: Mega Accelerator, PepsiCo LAB and Faberlic FMCG Accelerator.

05 February, Monday
WSJ: “Nasdaq-listed Yandex is Russia’s Uber and Google combined”

“Stock investors can’t invest in Uber, but they can invest in Nasdaq-listed Yandex, owner of Russia’s top ride-hailing platform,” writes WSJ reporter Stephen Wilmot, referring to the Yandex.Taxi platform.

02 February, Friday
The acceleration program StrartUp Kazakhstan has been launched

The first face-to-face event in the framework of the StartUp Kazakhstan – program orientation took place in innovation cluster of Tech Garden in Almaty on February 1-2. On the first day General Director of the Autonomous cluster Fund "PIT" (Tech Garden) Sanzhar Kettebekov and CEO of Global Venture Alliance Zamir Shukhov addressed to the participants with the introductory speech. 

02 February, Friday
“Startup Innovation and investment in Emerging Europe:” A groundbreaking research released by East-West Digital News

How do the local startup scenes look like in Estonia, Poland, Russia, Ukraine — but also in less known countries, from Bosnia-Herzegovina, to Moldova, to Georgia? How much do VCs invest these countries? Are corporations involved in these emerging ecosystems? Which are the most well-funded startups, and which younger ones should be followed? Why do so many ICOs come from Eastern Europe?

01 February, Thursday
2 acquisitions and 1 ICO: the Russian eSports market is heating up

The beginning of this year saw major moves on the Russian eSports scene, a sizable European market with established players operating globally. Thus, last week Mail.Ru Group — an LSE-listed Internet company which controls the largest Russian-language social networks and a range of online gaming companies — announced the full acquisition of ESforce.

January 2018
22 January, Monday
New report by GVA’s partner Pavel Luksha “Skills of the Future: How to Thrive in the Complex New World”

GVA’s partner Pavel Luksha, founder Global Education Futures and professor at Moscow School of Management, has a new report out on what graduates should know and be able to do. “Skills of the Future: How to Thrive in the Complex New World” was developed with WorldSkills Russia during sessions of the Atlas of Emerging Jobs project. The report is a thoughtful review of global trends, changes in work and concludes with implications for education. Not a continuation of the present, the authors “believe that mankind should take a serious approach towards the formation of a desired image of the future.”

22 January, Monday
The Fund for the Digitalization of Industry will be launched in Kazakhstan

On January 22 during the official visit of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbaev to the USA the autonomous cluster fund Tech Garden signed a number of important agreements with American companies on the digitization of the economy of Kazakhstan.

November 2017
09 November, Thursday

At the international GELP Moscow 2017 Summit, which was held in Moscow on 1st to 3rd of November, leaders of Russian and foreign education from 12 states outlined practical steps for systematical change of the global educational environment, taking into account the existing global challenges of civilization.

October 2017
30 October, Monday
Global Venture Alliance & Forbes Russia in a closed round table discussion

Global Venture Alliance took part in a closed round table session organized by Forbes Russia.

27 October, Friday
In Moscow for the first time the international educational Summit Global Education Leaders` Partnership will take place

The authoritative international alliance Global Education Leaders` Partnership (GELP), which influences the development of school education abroad, for the first time, chose Russia as a meeting point for leaders and experts of the world educational community. The official operator of GELP is the Global Venture Alliance.

27 October, Friday

Global Venture Alliance is the general sponsor of the event on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the magazine Forbes.

25 October, Wednesday
Russia creates a research center for IT solutions in the transport industry

The Global Venture Alliance team on October 17 at the international forum "Open Innovations 2017" in Skolkovo organized a closed signing between RZhD, IBM, NES and NCC in the field of transport logistics. 

September 2017
19 September, Tuesday
MEGA Accelerator Opening

IKEA Centers Russia and GVA have identified 9 start-ups that will go into the MEGA Accelerator business incubator. Theese are Altair VR virtual planetarium, mobile application Save4time, virtual bot MRBot, VR-platform Hexa, interactive game Ligrook, time scheduler Verme, HR-robot Robot Vera, corporate messenger Beesender and IT-service for lawyers Bots & Partners. This was reported to Firrma in IKEA Centres Russia.

July 2017
28 July, Friday
Apple imagines AR glasses that fulfill the dream of Google Glass

Tim Cook has not-so-subtly hinted that Apple is working on some sort of augmented reality product. And while ARKit may be the start, a patent application published today hints at what Apple could be picturing down the road.

26 July, Wednesday
Apple and Cochlear team up to roll out the first implant made for the iPhone

Apple has teamed up with Australian-based Cochlear to bring iPhone users the first made for iPhone Cochlear implant.

Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in June, Cochlear’s Nucleus 7 Sound Processor can now stream sound directly from a compatible iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to the sound processor.

25 July, Tuesday
Google’s DeepMind made an AI that can imagine the future

Google’s London-based AI outfit DeepMind has created two different types of AI that can use their ‘imagination’ to plan ahead and perform tasks with a higher success rate than AIs without imagination. Sorry if I made you click because you wanted AIs predicted flying cars. I promise this is cool too.

24 July, Monday
Scientists are now using Wi-Fi to read human emotions

Scientists at MIT are using Wi-Fi and AI to determine your emotional state. They’ve created an algorithm that can detect and measure individual heartbeats by bouncing RF signals off of people.

21 July, Friday
This little USB stick is designed to make AI plug-and-play

The Neural Compute Stick from Movidius makes it easy to add a machine vision processor to any device.