2018 Summary11 Dec 2018

On December 7, 2018 Ukrainian Venture Сapital and Private Equity Association (UVCA) has celebrated its fourth anniversary from the day it was founded.

The event took place at the office of the Silk Road Association of Ukraine, who were the location sponsors for this event.

Created on the model of the European Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (Invest Europe), UVCA brings together 57 members - leaders of the international and Ukrainian investment markets.

The Association forms the future aim of direct investment industry development by promoting investment opportunities in Ukraine, representing the interests of private investors to political leaders and contributes to improving the investment and business climate in Ukraine. We are the "bridge" that connects all the stakeholders of Ukrainian investment market.

The association is all of you. We help unite your voices into a single voice of the private capital market.
During these 4 years we have grown to 57 members from all over the world - Ukraine, USA, Europe, even, partially, Japan. You have invested millions of dollars in Ukrainian companies and startups, as well as thousands of hours in the development of entrepreneurship and innovation in our country.

Olga Afanasyeva
Executive Director of UVCA

Traditionally, according to UVCA Charter, the composition of the new Supervisory Board, which was elected by the Association members during the annual elections, was announced. This year it includes:

"We invest in Ukraine" has become our “business card”. UVCA brings together those who believe in Ukrainian market and each one of us is ready to share this faith, attract more investors and speak about the opportunities and prospects Ukraine has.

Andrey Kolodyuk
Managing Partner of AVentures Capital

All of our initiatives, both in Ukraine and abroad, are aimed at improving the image of Ukraine in the world, investment and innovation, in particular, as it is very important for our country.

During these four years, the Association has implemented many projects, including:

  • UVCA Challenge: SVOD Edition - The UVCA Challenge was held in May 2016, the winners of which (Cardiolyse and Cluise) represented Ukraine at the Silicon Valley Open Doors (SVOD 2016) conference in Mountain View.
  • UA Tech at CES - in October of this year, the third selection for the Ukrainian pavilion at CES 2019 - Hardware Day was held. The team of Ukrainian and foreign experts and investors selected six winners of Ukrainian selection at UA Tech in CES 2019, who will present their projects in Las Vegas on January 8-11, 2019. For the first time, such an initiative was implemented in 2016 with financial support from WNISEF.
  • Ukrainian Davos nights 2017 - in frames of the World Economic Forum in Davos, which took place on January 17-19, two Ukrainian investment-oriented events were held by the Ukrainian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (UVCA).
    Events gathered more than 400 participants of the World Economic Forum: investors, entrepreneurs, media representatives to let them learn more about Ukraine’s achievements, partnership opportunities in IT and investment sectors. The main goal of these jointly organized Ukrainian business events was to position Ukraine not only as the new technological leader but also as the country where new international R&D centers are being opened and people are making successful investments.
  • Ukraine House in Davos is a multi-format venue, which opened in Davos, Switzerland in 2018. Under the theme Ukraine: Creativity, Innovation, Opportunity, this multi-format space showcased investment opportunities in Ukraine’s IT and Innovation sector to global business, technology and investment leaders. Ukraine House was a unique opportunity to highlight the vibrant, energetic European country and society that is Ukraine.
    >Ukraine House was operated January 22-26, 2018 and was organized by the Ukrainian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (UVCA) in partnership with Western NIS Enterprise Fund (WNISEF) and Victor Pinchuk Foundation.
  • Ukraine Discovery Tour the project aimed to open Ukraine for the international community with its success stories and developments, break the stereotypes on its internal transformation and improve the investment climate. We want to show Ukraine in reality - modern and progressive, united, European with its potential and progress, as well as to show what "doing business" and "living" in Ukraine is like.
    In 2018 was the fourth tour that brought together participants from all over the world: from the United States to Australia.
    This is a private nonprofit initiative of the Global Shapers Kyiv Hub, which is part of the World Economic Forum, in partnership with UVCA.
  • Financial Health Forum was a part of the two-year initiative by Village Capital and MetLife Foundation. UVCA became their partner in Ukraine. 10 teams presented their solutions to improve the welfare of people with middle and low incomes. As a result, 2 startups - Hotline.finance and MO.Cash - received $ 20,000 grants in total.

In addition, UVCA is working on market researches which are regularly updated. Due to consolidation and established relationships with market players, previously unpublished data and agreements were included into the reports. This gave a more complete picture of the investment situation in Ukraine than was available in the media.

Also, we should not forget about the results of the work of the Association's committees: legal, blockchain, energy, research, ICT, Invest Ukraine.

The committees of UVCA are set up to work on the most important aspects of the Ukrainian investment market development, to deepen cooperation with state authorities and foreign partners, and to create an environment with fair rules for all participants of the innovation and investment ecosystem.

The Law Committee of UVCA (co-chairmen: Anna Zorya, Partner at Arzinger and Taras Dumych, Partner at Wolf Theiss) initiated the work on and and lobbying of bills (on the simplification of employment for foreigners and simplification of the state investment procedure), which were successfully adopted by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and are already in force. Also, representatives of the Legal Committee took active part in the drafting of the bill on corporate governance in limited liability companies, which was adopted by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in 2018.

At committees, we work together to solve main market problems. We draft the agenda and it is important not to miss out on such an opportunity. Join our work, let's develop the ecosystem together!

Taras Dumych
Partner Wolf Theiss

The Association holds workshops, inviting experts from Ukraine and around the world. During these 4 years we have held about 40 meetings in this format. For example, the first official visit of a leading international partner accelerator - Y Combinator. We are trying to raise important issues and discuss practical aspects, such as product development, legalization and protection of property rights, access to ICO, etc. We invite the best specialists from Ukraine and from abroad.

The development of international partnership is also a positive result of UVCA’s work. The Association regularly partners with international conferences, summits and organizes panel discussions with international experts.

Due to our active position, we establish relationships with national associations around the world. Among our partners are international foundations and the most famous accelerators. For example, in 2018 UVCA and global accelerator SkyDeck at American University of Berkeley have agreed on a strategic partnership to support Ukrainian startups.

For the members of the Association, we hold investment tours and closed meetings. They allow Ukrainian investors - our members, to get acquainted with their colleagues from around the world and tell more about the Ukrainian investment market with real examples. During this time, we together with the members of UVCA, organized tours to Canada, Japan and the USA. Also the Association was a partner of the Eastern Europe Tech Tour - Warsaw & Sofia investment tour organized by Almaz Capital and BVCA.

As a member of Invest Europe (European Private Equity & Venture Capital Association), UVCA is involved in the formation of annual investment market surveys, which provides relevant data to the international community. 2015 was the first year UVCA provided data on investment activity in Ukraine.

But the results of the work are not only big projects or loud initiatives, but also daily work, which consists of meetings, negotiations with international and Ukrainian investors - that is often not taken into account when evaluating, but it is the basis on which every successful business is built.

What are our plans for the next year? In addition to implementing existing initiatives, we set ourselves strategic goals:

  • Increase the annual volume of investments into the country in 2 times;
  • Simplify access to capital for startups by increasing opportunities for acceleration and incubation,and mentoring programs;
  • Ecosystem development - expansion of industry’s institutions: accelerators, incubators, clusters, etc.;
  • Expansion of the partner network, stimulation and other interaction of participants (including public authorities) with the sector both within the country and with foreign partners;
  • Inclusion of Ukraine and the main domestic innovation hubs into international innovation rankings.
By joining and working together, we are stronger. We share our own experience, learn about our own and others' mistakes, which helps create a quality ecosystem and implement successful projects.

Denis Gursky
Сo-founder 1991 Open Data Incubator,
Founder & Head of Board, Social Boost

We are working to achieve these results now and we will contribute to such development by making efforts to reduce the pressure on business by state and law enforcement agencies, creating guarantees and protecting the rights of investors, engaging in shaping the industry's development strategy, creating favorable conditions and contributing to improving the business climate in the country, both at the legislative level and in the information space, so that specialists and companies remain and carry out their activities within our country.