Header image

Meet the largest LP in the CEE Region

With over 3.8 Billion Euros invested, the European Bank of Reconstruction & Development (EBRD) is the investor of choice for first time funds in the CEE region. We sat down with Grzegorz Zielinski, Director and Regional Head of Poland and Baltics to talk about their portfolio and future objectives. 

On the sidelines of the CEE M&A and Private Equity Forum, Mergermarket's Catherine Ford caught up with Grzegorz to find out how EBRD became the biggest LP in CEE, the role of private equity in economic development and the challenge of cultivating a home-grown insitutional investor base from within the CEE region.

"We understand the importance of small and medium sized enterprises but sometimes they're too small for us to work with directly," explains Grzegorz Zielinski when asked about why the regional development agency chooses to invest via private equity vehicles. 

The EBRD was established as a development agency to support the transformation of post-Soviet economies. Despite the transition to market economies in some parts of Central & Eastern Europe, such as Poland and the Baltic States, he admits there remains "transition gaps" where the requirement for strong and sustainable private equity investment is still very much in demand. 

As an investor, EBRD supports 165 fund managers; equating to an investment portfolio of over 1400 companies of which more than 900 have been exitted

On the topic of challenges in the CEE, the fundraising climate has witnessed a marked change since the financial crisis. The EBRD is now playing an important role in supporting the entry of new LPs into the region's funds. The need to grow the local investor base has been widely reported previously by Unquote.  

"How EBRD can support creation of the local institutional investor base [is the main goal]," says Zielinski, referencing their work with national authorities in improving pension regulation and guidance for pension funds. These are already bearing fruit, such as recent successes in Estonia. 




For more presentations and interviews from the CEE M&A and Private Equity Forum visit the CEE insights zone today.

Catherine Ford Editor-at-Large Mergermarket

Catherine Ford is the Editor-at-Large for the events division of Acuris. She is a consultant editor to event programmes, and engaged in the development of timely editorial content for global corporate finance, M&A and capital markets related conferences and events. She routinely moderates discussion panels at conferences across the region. She has worked for Acuris since early 2002, holding a number of senior editorial roles in the company’s European, US and Asia-Pacific head offices.

Catherine Ford Editor-at-Large Mergermarket

Catherine Ford is the Editor-at-Large for the events division of Acuris. She is a consultant editor to event programmes, and engaged in the development of timely editorial content for global corporate finance, M&A and capital markets related conferences and events. She routinely moderates discussion panels at conferences across the region. She has worked for Acuris since early 2002, holding a number of senior editorial roles in the company’s European, US and Asia-Pacific head offices.

Join My Mergermarket Events

Get exclusive content from our leading M&A and private equity events.

Watch sessions again, download presentations and get exclusive interviews.

Connect with an international community of dealmakers via our event networking app (for attendees only).

Sign Up