Tech Wrap Aug 28: AllianceBernstein Buys a Stake in Ukraine’s IT Giant


💰US Investment Company Becomes Shareholder of Ukrainian EPAM Systems

AllianceBernstein, a US-based asset management company, has acquired a 6.1% stake in EPAM Systems, one of Ukraine’s largest IT companies. EPAM’s other major shareholders include Vanguard Group, BlackRock, Morgan Stanley, WCM Investment Management, JPMorgan Chase & Co, and Arkady Dobkin. The company’s current trading price is $240.44. [Source: Ukraine Business News]

🏥 DrugCard MedTech Receives New Investments 

DrugCard, a Ukrainian med-tech startup that automates the monitoring of medical literature to streamline processes across 43 countries, has secured additional investment from New Nordic Ventures. The startup intends to utilize this funding to expand its footprint within the European market. [Source: InVenture]

📝 EdTech Mate Academy Opens in Brazil

Mate Academy, a Ukrainian ed-tech startup that offers free training in IT professions, has inaugurated an office in Brazil and will provide all educational materials in Portuguese. Since 2021, the startup has attracted $1.9 million in investment and intends to allocate this funding towards expanding into the US and Polish markets. [Source:]

🇺🇦 Ukraine’s Tech Sector Shows Resilience Despite Ongoing War

Ukraine’s tech sector has demonstrated resilience despite the devastation caused by Russia’s invasion, as the country’s IT exports grew by almost 7% by the end of 2022 even as the economy contracted. Several tech companies, such as Djooky, Awesomic, Howly, and BetterMe, have shown adaptability, defiance, courage and cooperation to continue growing despite the ongoing conflict. [Source: WIRED]


📑 Asian Development Bank Releases Report on Uzbekistan StartUp Ecosystem

A newly released report by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) highlights the burgeoning startup community in Uzbekistan, particularly in fintech, e-commerce, and healthcare sectors. The report underscores that despite the substantial growth of the startup community since 2020, the support ecosystem still requires further development, including increased external funding and mentorship. The authors also suggest the establishment of new incubators and accelerator programs in the region, alongside the need to streamline state support and involve private businesses. [Source:]


📶 Yandex To Move Servers to Kazakhstan

Russian tech giant Yandex plans to relocate their servers to Kazakhstan to ensure information security and personal data protection, as reported by the Ministry of Digital Development. This decision underscores the company’s attempts to adhere to international and national information security standards in a wartime environment. [Source:]


☀️ Business Angels Fund Exits Solar Energy Solutions Energia Futura

Business Angels Fund, a Lithuanian fund that backs early-stage startups, has divested from Energia Futura, a provider of solar energy solutions for households and businesses. The fund deems the €300K investment made in the startup in 2020 as unsuccessful. [Source: BalticVC]

🩺 Sign on Tab Raises €310K From Business Angels Fund

Sign on Tab, a Lithuanian e-signature startup catering to healthcare organizations, has secured €310K in funding from Business Angels Fund, adding to its prior investment offers of €150K from BADideas.Fund and €150K from the seed venture fund Depo Ventures. [Source: BalticVC]


🚗 Ansi Arumeel Joins Estonian Milrem Robotics As a New COO and Board Member

Ansi Arumeel has assumed the position of Chief Operating Officer and Board Member at Milrem Robotics, a prominent Estonian developer of unmanned vehicles and automated systems. In this capacity, Arumeel will oversee operational efficiency and organizational development. [Souce: BalticVC]

📱Veriff StartUp Announces Global LayOffs

Estonian startup Veriff, a unicorn in the online identity verification sector aimed at preventing identity fraud, has made the decision to lay off 101 employees. The announcement of these layoffs by CEO Kaarel Kotkas is attributed to high interest rates and the ongoing global economic slowdown. Despite a recent 12% reduction in its workforce to improve operational efficiency, Veriff continues to stand as one of the most profitable Estonian startups, with a significant turnover of €38M in the first half of 2023. [Source: BalticVC]

🛏️ Oura Ring Acquired By Estonian Siena Secondary Fund

Oura Ring, a sleep tracker offering health and performance insights, has been acquired by the Estonian Siena Secondary Fund, which provides liquidity to early investors, founders, and employees of startups in Baltic and Scandinavian countries. With offices in Oulu, Helsinki, and San Francisco, and a workforce of over 475 employees, Oura Ring has sold more than 1 million rings. The general partner of Siena Secondary Fund disclosed that the deal ranged between €1M to €2M. [Source: BalticVC]


🚀 New Progress MS-24 Arrives At International Space Station

The third-to-last Progress cargo ship of 2023 launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on August 23, 2023, carrying about 2.5 tons of cargo for the International Space Station (ISS). The spacecraft successfully docked with the ISS on August 25, 2023, following a mission aimed at delivering cargo to the station. [Source:]


📉 Atomico Forecasts European Startup Funding to Fall 39% This Year

Atomico, a European venture capital firm, predicts that European VC funding could decline from $83bn in 2022 to $51bn in 2023 due to the reduced participation of American investors. Nevertheless, signs of resilience within the European tech industry persist, as the combined valuation of public and private companies reached the $3 trillion milestone in 2021. [Source: InVenture]

📄 Dutch Yandex Plans to Relaunch

Dutch company Yandex N.V., the holding entity of Yandex, is advertising job openings on LinkedIn, hinting at the upcoming rebranding and relaunch of its international business structure, set to take effect in early 2024. This initiative, known as Project LEFT, aims to establish a prominent technology player in the European and Middle Eastern markets, as stated in job descriptions, particularly for positions like document workflow specialists. [Source: Telegram]

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