PRIVATE EQUITY/VENTURE CAPITAL AND THE NEEDS OF SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED ENTERPRISES
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The aim of this paper is to analyze the possibilities of financing SMEs activities in Poland by the private equity/venture capital (PE/VC) intermediaries (section 1). Both theory and practice prove that the development of SMEs sector is a principle condition of the country's economic growth. One can say that it is essential for SMEs to be able to acquire enough of the growth capital. The possibility of gaining sufficient quantities of capital by SMEs is the main factor determining the development of SMEs (section 2). Venture capital is often translated as high risk capital. By accepting high risk, investors, that is givers of capital, expect profits much higher than the average (section 3). PE/VC institution based in Poland invested a total of almost 747 million euro in 2007 (303 million euro in 2006). In 2005 there was no major shift in the structure of the investment stages. The later stages of development, replacement capital and buyouts, were the key target for PE. Start-up investments were marginal, and there were no seed capital investments. Sectoral distribution of Polish PE investments brought slight changes with the decrease of high-tech investments in 2005. The three most attractive sectors for Polish PE institutions in 2007 were: consumer related, manufacturing and computer related industries. The most common form of exit was a trade sale to an investor and a public offering on the stock exchange (section 4). In conclusion, PE still plays a marginal role in the Polish capital market. The main problems which restrict PE development are: tax system, law system and a low degree of the Polish capital market development. We hope that in the nearest future conditions enabling the growth of PE sector will be created. These conditions may facilitate the development of Polish firms.
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