Dear friends and business partners of AG Capital!
We hope you have already had a good start to the current financial year!
As you may have seen, we have now been able to announce our investments in Intelia and Embers - a good occasion for us to review the eventful period since our first closing and our achievements since then.
Successful closing of the Austrian Growth Capital Fund
The first closing of the first fund advised by AG Capital, the Austrian Growth Capital Fund, was announced in December 2021, followed by the successful completion of the fundraising in 2022.
The newly created equity fund, which was launched together with Raiffeisen Bank International and which was also able to attract Raiffeisen Holding Niederösterreich-Wien, the European Investment Fund (EIF) and other banks, insurance companies, pension and provident funds and family offices as investors, focuses on investments in small and medium-sized companies from Austria and neighbouring countries.
We pursue the approach of finding transaction structures specifically tailored to the respective situation, with the option to do both majority and minority investments. In doing so, we can adapt flexibly to the preferred deal structures of entrepreneurs, which has already proven successful with our first three investments.
Team building continued
In addition to our success on the fundraising side, we were also able to further expand our team in our Vienna office. Since last summer, Sabine Bac and Lorenz Ambrosius have been supporting us as Investment Analysts and Dominic Nowotny as Investment Manager. Since the beginning of the year, Esther Schmidt has also been actively supporting us as Executive Assistant.
In the middle of last year, we were able to move into our new offices in Schottenfeldgasse in Vienna's seventh district, where we have now built up a powerful and motivated team of nine employees with considerable experience in SMEs and private equity.
Three transactions completed - two platforms created for further growth
With the combination of Intelia and Embers, creating Austria's largest independent contact centre provider, and the investment in Improove Group, we can look back on three successful deals last year, creating two strong platforms for further growth.
The growth of the Intelia/Embers group is planned to be accelerated over the coming years in partnership with the previous owners and managers, further expanding service offering and improving customer satisfaction. The new group offers high-quality outbound, inbound and back-office services to demanding clients in a wide range of industries from its five locations in Vienna, Linz and Neunkirchen (Austria) as well as Stuttgart (Germany) and Jelah (Bosnia & Herzegovina).
With our investment in Embers and Intelia, we were once again able to find a tailor-made solution for our future partnership with the entrepreneurs involved, which also includes a substantial further participation of the owners, while the previous managing directors will continue to be responsible for the operations of the joint group.
Already back in December, we announced the acquisition of a 51% stake in Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) service provider Improove. The Vienna-based agency with further locations in New York City (USA), Madrid (Spain) and in future also Munich (Germany) is to be further developed together with the founders, who have retained a 49% stake in the course of the transaction, within the framework of a targeted growth strategy.
The focus of the growth strategy lies on organic growth in the existing core markets, the DACH region, Spain and the USA, as well as on focused acquisitions. These can include both geographical expansion and a broadening of the product and service offering in SEO and related services.
Corporate responsibility in action
As a responsible investor, we are committed to consistently taking ESG aspects into account in our investment processes - we have anchored this commitment by signing the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), an initiative supported by the United Nations to develop principles for responsible investment.
In addition to fulfilling our corporate responsibility in our investments, we also want to set a good example within AG Capital and promote resource-conserving behaviour, for example on business trips, commute to work and in everyday office life. AG Capital is currently working on a climate neutrality strategy for the company, which is planned to be implemented in the course of the year. As part of our community impact efforts, the AG Capital team contributed to the Caritas "Cooking for the Crypt" initiative last December.
Optimistic outlook for 2023
The activities of the first weeks of the new year of our still young investment company make us optimistic about the future. The pipeline of exciting investment opportunities is well filled and we plan to make new investments at least on the same scale as in 2022. In addition, growth initiatives have started at our existing investments, which could also include acquisitions.
You can read about the current investment focus here.
We look forward to continuing our dialogue and to further deepening our business relationships!
Your AG Capital Team
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