3TS Capital Partners in partnership with US networking company Cisco Systems have jointly launched a new venture capital fund, the 3TS–Cisco Growth Fund III with a first close of €30 million.
The fund will primarily invest sums of €1 million € 4 million in small and medium-sized companies in technology, media and communications sectors. Cisco is making the anchor investment in the 3TS-Cisco Growth Fund III.
Kaan Terzioglu, Cisco's vice president for Central and Eastern Europe, said, “Cisco helps drive entrepreneurship in Central and Eastern Europe through initiatives such as the Cisco Entrepreneur Institute, as well as through project financing, leasing programs and, most recently, [this] venture fund partnership.
He added, “Countries in the region innovate across a broad range of technologies, including broadband, wireless, security, and communications technologies. They also lead in the adoption of VoIP applications, multimedia and gaming, mobile content, and entertainment delivery. The opportunities in the region are therefore immense.”
To date, Cisco has invested more than $2 billion in venture capital and is a major investor in China, India, Israel and Europe, in addition to the US, operating through a combination of direct and indirect funding vehicles. Yoav Samet, head of Israel and Emerging Europe Corporate Business Development will lead the 3TS–Cisco investment initiative.
“Investing in geographically focused venture funds like the 3TS–Cisco Growth Fund is another strategic tool in our global investment portfolio that fuels ICT market growth through investment in the innovation economy,” said Hilton Romanski, senior director of Global Corporate Business Development for Cisco. “This strategy will help catalyse and accelerate tech innovation in Central and Eastern Europe and take technology investment in the region to the next level.”
Cisco is rolling out Cisco Entrepreneur Institutes across Central and Eastern Europe, in cooperation with leading educational institutes, with the aim of teaching local entrepreneurs the skills needed for running a small or medium-sized business. The curriculum, includes strategic and business planning, financing, the development of venture capital relationships, and the use of information and communications technology (ICT) to achieve better business results.
3TS Capital Partners is a private equity and venture capital firm headquartered in Budapest and investing across central and eastern Europe through offices in Budapest, Bucharest, Prague, Vienna and Warsaw.
3TS primarily targets expansion capital and buyout investments in high growth sectors including Technology and Telecoms, media and marketing, services and environment and energy. It is interested in companies that are in growth sectors, which are likely to benefit from the catch up to the western European Union, or the pre-accession run up in the case of the next wave entrants. 3TS can also provide financing to companies expanding into central and eastern Europe.