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Catalyst Romania closes VC Fund II at €50M to scale tech companies in SEE

The Catalyst Romania team
Image credit: Marius Ghenea (Managing Partner) and Alin Stanciu (Partner), part of the investment team at Catalyst Romania

•Venture capital investor Catalyst Romania, backed by 3TS Capital Partners, just announced the closing of its second venture capital fund at 50 million, surpassing its original target of 40 million.

•This follows Fund I, which was financed through the JEREMIE Romania initiative, and invested from a pool of 15M in 10 renowned Romanian tech companies, 3 of which exited.

•Catalyst Romania Fund II will continue focusing on technology companies with scaling potential and experienced management teams.

Catalyst Romania II is a regional fund for early-stage technology companies, with a focus on Romania, yet open to investment opportunities in the rest of Southeast Europe. The average ticket size is in the EUR 1-3 million range.

Alin Stanciu, Manager of Catalyst Fund II, shares more about the fund’s investment strategy:

“With the second Catalyst Romania fund, we will continue our search for the most innovative technology startups in the region that have the potential to become true global challengers. Teaming up with driven founders, Catalyst brings significant scale-up expertise, alongside with initial investments ranging from 1 to 3M euros, to help startups accelerate the growth and internationalize their products. 
Catalyst is investing in any technology with high scaling potential, while being particularly interested in areas like EdTech, FinTech, MarTech, Low-code / No-code platforms or Marketplaces, with emphasis on Artificial intelligence / Machine learning enabled applications”.

Catalyst Romania Fund II was established with a 22.5 commitment and support from the European Investment Fund (EIF), as the cornerstone investor with capital from JEREMIE Romania Reflows and the EU’s InnovFin Program. The rest was secured from other investors and the Catalyst team.

JEREMIE Romania represents a set of financial instruments that were initially supported with the 2007-2013 national structural funds. After this period, EIF continued to manage the resources returned from the initial funding on behalf of the Romanian Government.

Read more:  The first Bulgarian mezzanine fund Silverline Capital launches with €42М to offer alternative SMEs financing

So far, Catalyst Romania Fund II has invested in two companies. The first one is the crowd-investing platform Seedblink. The second investment is  Code of Talent, a micro-learning solution aimed to optimize employee training. Three other investments are in the due diligence phase. 

The investment team is already experienced in growing the local tech ecosystem with infusion of growth capital, business expansion know-how, strategic guidance, and access to global networks. 

Catalyst was the first Romanian venture fund backed by the JEREMIE Romania initiative in 2012. Under Fund I, they invested in 10 Romanian tech companies including Elefant.ro, Vola.ro, Vector Watch, which was acquired by FitBit, SmartBill, which exited to Visma, and GreenHorse Games, acquired by Tencent. They plan to further divest the portfolio through transactions with investors, or listings on stock exchanges in the region.

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Antoanela is an Innovation Reporter at The Recursive with a knack for sustainability and environment protection. She is on a mission to communicate and celebrate innovative ideas and solutions that improve our ability to thrive together on this planet.
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