European Commission welcomes establishment of Croatia’s first social impact investment fund

ZAGREB, Oct 4 (Croatia Sun News) – The European Commission on Thursday welcomed the establishment of Feelsgood, the first Croatian investment fund which will help early- to growth-stage startups with an ecological and social impact.

“The launch of the new Feelsgood Fund in Croatia, which is being financially backed by the European Investment Fund and the Juncker Plan, is good news. Not only are key sectors, such as the circular economy and healthcare, to receive a financial boost, but those companies will make a positive social impact,” said Commission Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis, responsible for the Euro and Social Dialogue.

The €30 million strong Feelsgood Fund is being launched in Zagreb today. The EIF contributed to the Fund with €15 million, almost entirely covered by the European Fund for Strategic Investments, the core of the Investment Plan for Europe, or the Juncker Plan.

“With support for Feelsgood Fund, the EIF is making yet another positive mark on Croatian economy. This time we are enabling new investment opportunities for country’s startups with environmental and social impact to make sure we achieve sustainable development of Croatian economy and make sure Croatia is able to respond to major social and environmental challenges of today”, said EIF Chief Executive Grabenwarter Uli.

The Feelsgood Social Impact Investment Fund is the first venture fund in Croatia founded and managed by a completely Croatian team. It is backed by the impact academic panel from four academic institutions from Croatia and Slovenia to advise SMEs on the impact criteria and their progress measurement.

The Feelsgood Fund will invest in Croatian startups operating in financial inclusion, agriculture and farming, circular economy, education and healthcare sectors. To measure and monitor the social impact (a significant, positive change that addresses a pressing social or environmental challenge) of their investments, the Fund management team will also include two researchers from the University of Zagreb and Zagreb Institute of Economics. Companies from Slovenia will also be able to apply for support from the Feelsgood Fund, the Commission said.

“‘Feelsgood will be ready to provide long-awaited smart capital for the SMEs in Croatia and Slovenia which are determined to yield a positive social and environmental impact in addition to profit, said Renata Brkic, the fund’s founding partner.

(Source: Hina)

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