Raising fresh capital can be one of the most difficult endeavors for any business. Equally, finding new investment opportunities can be tricky and time-consuming for any potential investor.
A new online hub called the Horizon Results Platform (HRP) aims to bridge that gap by promoting all EU-funded research and innovation.
To find out more, Business Planet spoke to Cyril Demaria, a venture capital fund manager.
What exactly is the Horizon Results Platform?
"As an investor, the Horizon Results Platform is essentially a valuable meeting point to access interesting investment opportunities. The platform provides me with a much wider investment universe, but without the risk of being flooded by projects. It aims to bridge the gap between investors and entrepreneurs. It is designed for me, as I have the option to filter opportunities, assess fairly rapidly which opportunity I should explore, and use the time and effort that I’ve saved to actually analyse in detail the selected opportunities."
What support services does the HRP provide users?
"For investors like me, the service is embedded in the features provided by the platform. The value proposition is that I can save time, effort and gain access to opportunities that I would otherwise not have had access to."
How does the platform help you as a private investor?
"As an investor, I am resource-constrained. Time is a constant issue. The HRP allows me to scout for opportunities on my own terms and in my own time. This is very valuable. I do not get flooded by requests: the platform is here to let me forge my opinion first. If I am interested, then I can reach out. If not, I do not take the risk of angering anyone."
How beneficial is the HRP when it comes to identifying potential investments?
"Venture capital investing is challenging in the sense that I need to:
- Identify investment opportunities that might not be around the corner
- Team up with other investors (syndicating my investment)
- Spend valuable resources on opportunities that I might not invest in ultimately
HRP is a significant step forward. Although I do not have offices in each of the innovation centres in Europe, I can find high-quality projects thanks to HRP. The projects are screened and qualified, so I can confidently spend some time on the platform. At best, I might find my next investment. At worst, I will have built additional knowledge on sectors, countries and innovation pools."
What would you say are the main opportunities/advantages that the platform has to offer for EU research projects?
"The HRP is going beyond the initial step of a beauty contest. There are resources, commitment and a thought-through approach to entrepreneurship. This makes all the difference. It is still difficult today to have a cross-border and pan-European approach as an innovator. HRP fills a gap in the market in that respect. It does not do the work of the innovator or the investor but establishes a bridge between their respective worlds. This is a significant achievement, which benefits both sides."