The company became a partner of the Internet Initiatives Development Fund (FRII) by entering into the authorized capital of its investment unit – FRII Invest LLC.
About three years ago, Rostelecom formed a business unit, the purpose of which was the development of new business areas and product segments. One of his activities is working with
internal and external innovation, including the acquisition of large enterprises, joint ventures and start-ups.
According to Alexander Aivazov, Vice President of Rostelecom Business Development, most of the latter came to the company from the FRII and FRIII Invest accelerators.
The FRID was created in 2013 by the Agency of Strategic Initiatives on behalf of Vladimir Putin. The Fund invests in technology companies, both in the early stages of their development and at
stages of growth, develops an accelerating program for entrepreneurs and corporations, participates in the development of methods of legal regulation of the venture industry.
FRII Invest invests in technology startups in the early stages of their development.
Over the past five years, the fund has invested 3.87 billion rubles. in more than 420 companies, of which 350 continue to do business to this day, and 50 of them are successfully developing not only in Russia but also in
Among the largest investments of “FRII Invest” is the developer of voice technologies “STAFOROV” (the sum of investments – 217 million rubles), the Manufacturer of portable projectors Cinemood (210 million rubles), the Developer
IT and Financial Services for PimPay Online Stores (RUB 197 million), PlayKey Cloud Game Service (RUB 160 million), Promobot Business Robot Creator (RUB 150 million) And Developer
infrastructure solutions for the analysis of large data sets of UBIC Technologies (150 million rubles).
By 2018, the FRID was the most active player in the venture capital market – they had invested about 43% of all Russian IT deals. But since 2019, when the standard 5-year cycle ended,
investments were no longer being made, although the company had the opportunity and desire to continue working in this area.
Although Rostelecom has extensive expertise in various fields of innovation, technologies and business models are evolving so fast that sometimes even specialists
it is very difficult to understand which of these, today, are only bold ideas, tomorrow will start to conquer markets.
The desire to improve efficiency and find new business growth points have led Rostelecom to a strategic partnership with FRII.
The company’s investments in the authorized capital of “FRII Invest” amounted to 2 billion rubles. The first phase was completed in early 2020, when Rostelecom received 18.36% in FRII Invest. The second stage
started on January 20 and will end by the end of January. As a result, the share of Rostelecom in the capital of FRII Invest will grow to 31.03%.
To date, a special investment committee, consisting of 15 members, 14 of which were independent, has been involved in making investment decisions at the fund.
This practice will continue in the future, with the only difference being that now two representatives of Rostelecom will be part of the investment committee of FRII Invest.
Since the fund has established rules that have led to some of its effectiveness, in the future we do not plan to change either the investment focus or the system of investment decisions.
Director of FRII and FRII Invest Kirill Varlamov notes that the partnership with Rostelecom allows to restart the investment cycle, as it significantly increases the volume of the portfolio, which
provides funding for new Russian startup projects and co-financing existing ones.
During 2020-21, it is planned to invest about 50 companies with the help of new funds and to keep the same focus on the technologies that was in the fund before: II, virtual reality, cloud
technologies, medical technologies, housing, agriculture, etc.
In this case, the investment proposal for startups will be significantly increased: companies in the early stage of business development will now be able to claim for a round not 2.5, but up to 5 million rubles, companies
same at the stage of growth will be able to get up to 65 million rubles investment.
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