The main objective of a roundtable organized by iR&Dclub in cooperation with PricewaterhouseCoopers and Cisco Company was to provide an active dialogue between the representatives of Russia’s innovation market: investment community and big business to discuss possible options for cooperation and exchange of experience.
The Deputy Director of the Innovation Development Department and Corporate Management of the RF Economic Development Ministry Sergey Leshchenko attended the discussion and recalled the government course towards active introduction of modern mechanisms for innovative development in companies with state participation, and called to be reasonable when choosing instruments for financing innovation. In particular, it relates to the principles of co-investment in Russian and international venture capital funds. First of all, state-owned companies do not need to create venture capital funds wherever possible because of the government pressure. Any decision must be justified, even if it is negative.
The Board Chairman of VEB Innovations Foundation Andrey Morozov expressed doubt over corporate venturing in Russia in its classical form: I would suggest avoiding cheap popular view of venturing. If we turn to the world market, we will be able to count several thousand companies, and only dozens of them have their corporate venture funds.
The Chairman of the Investment Committee Waarde Capital Vladimir Gromkovsky supported Andrey Morozov’s opinion that venture funds can give big structures greater mobility.
The main attraction of the event was the statement of the head of the Innovative Development Directorate of RusHydro, JSC Oleg Kalinko, who introduced the concept of the company’s Fund for Scientific and Technological Development aimed to ensure the creation and commercialization of innovative technologies and solutions. In fact, it will be a corporate venture fund with the specifics of the state-owned company.
In conclusion, iR&Dclub presented its programme on pilot teams whose primary task, in close communication with the experts of Russian and foreign VC market, is to determine the motivation for the creation of venture capital funds, generate proposals for the development of corporate venture capital investment in terms of legislation, development institutions’ support, etc.