At the Web Summit 2016, António Costa announced a development fund for startups, known as the €200M Co-investment Fund. 50% comes from Portugal2020 funds and 50% from private investors.
Almost two years after its announcement by the government the 200M Fund is now welcoming applications. The fund is destined for supporting entrepreneurs and its ideas. In 2016, during the first Portuguese edition of the Web Summit, António Costa announced that the goal for the co-investment fund was to support startups.
At the time the prime minister stated that “sometimes, the best ideas don’t get noticed and struggle to find the right investment opportunities. To solve this part is vital if we want to boost startup initiatives, and we understand that the best way for that to happen is to develop co-investment funds”.
The Fund counts with an initial investment capital of €100m, which are provided by the Portugal2020 Funds. In a matching fund logic, the programme also provides the opportunity for other investors to fund the remaining 50%, meaning that private investors will come up with the remaining €100m. “If we let the money be managed by those who know how to invest it, we believe we are fostering growth. We also hope this initiative will boost our economy, making it more dynamic and promoting innovation”, António Costa added, in 2016 as well.
Starting this Thursday, co-investors who are interested in the programme can now present their applications through the website of the “Fundo 200M” (€200M Fund Programme). In order for the application to be accepted, however, the investor must have already shown official interest in the project he or she refers to when sending the proposal for Fundo 200M.
The proposals must be evaluated and reviewed according to the following criteria: level of experience (namely in venture capital), the sector they apply to, the volume of investment, number of jobs that will be created, number of partners involved, and the level of innovation of the project.
The Fund is managed by PME investments, whose mission is to “enlarge the financing of venture capital for the non-financial sector”, particularly speaking of small and medium-sized enterprises, through the creation of special investment funds.