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Positive balance for PET fund

  • 2008

Equity cap­i­tal invest­ments in Thuringia worth millions

The demand for equity cap­i­tal in Thuringia increased in 2008 com­pared with the pre­vi­ous year. “Just in this year alone we have con­cluded 21 busi­ness invest­ments through the ‘Thuringia pri­vate equity fund’ (PET fund)”, said Dr. Guido Bohnenkamp, man­ag­ing direc­tor of beteili­gungs­man­age­ment thürin­gen gmbh (bm|t). bm|t man­ages the fund. Last year the fund agreed to 11 invest­ments. The newly-agreed invest­ments will almost dou­ble to more than 30 mil­lion euros this year.

The PET fund finances young, tech­nol­ogy-ori­ented com­pa­nies and estab­lished SMEs. To date, the fund has agreed to 24 share invest­ments with a value of 45 mil­lion euros. In the com­pa­nies receiv­ing financ­ing, 420 jobs have been cre­ated and secured. In par­tic­u­lar, med­ical tech­nol­ogy, auto­mo­tive and machine build­ing, IT and biotech­nol­ogy have ben­e­fited from fresh equity and thus been able to imple­ment their invest­ment plans.

This way, in its 30-month invest­ment phase, the PET fund has pro­vided an impor­tant impe­tus to the econ­omy of Thuringia”, added Dr. Guido Bohnenkamp. Com­pa­nies financed through the PET fund are inno­v­a­tive: they hold more than 125 patents.

One of the PET fund invest­ments is in Sirs-Lab GmbH in Jena. This com­pany devel­ops, pro­duces and mar­kets new processes for the diag­no­sis of life-threat­en­ing infec­tions such as sep­ti­caemia. Sirs-Lab was founded in 2000 by well-known sci­en­tists from Jena and now employs more than 50 people.

Alea GmbH, also from Jena, devel­oped new, spe­cialised and logis­tics soft­ware for mail order com­pa­nies. These prod­ucts have already been suc­cess­fully intro­duced at the first cus­tomers. Cor­dus GmbH from Mühlhausen employs 29 staff in the devel­op­ment and man­u­fac­ture of highly inno­v­a­tive fibre optic products.

The next, and final meet­ing dur­ing this invest­ment phase, is sched­uled for 25 Novem­ber 2008. It is antic­i­pated that deci­sions will be made on 6 invest­ments with a total vol­ume of around 10 mil­lion euros. For sev­eral months already there has been inten­sive work going on in the prepa­ra­tion of a new fund. It is expected that this fund will have at least the same vol­ume as the exist­ing fund.


The PET fund was estab­lished on 30 June 2006 with a invest­ment vol­ume of 70.85 mil­lion euros. In addi­tion to 30 mil­lion euros from the Euro­pean Regional Devel­op­ment Fund (ERDF) and funds from the Thüringer Auf­baubank (10 mil­lion euros), four insti­tu­tional investors (Ärztev­er­sorgung Thürin­gen, HELABA, KfW and Sparkasse Jena) have pro­vided 30.85 mil­lion euros.

The PET fund invests in young, tech­nol­ogy-ori­ented com­pa­nies as well as estab­lished SMEs. Gen­er­ally, the size of the invest­ment is at least 1 mil­lion euros up to a max­i­mum of 5 mil­lion euros. The PET fund gets involved not only as a minor­ity share­holder but also as a silent partner.

The deci­sion as to which com­pany will receive invest­ment is made by an invest­ment panel based on the rec­om­men­da­tion of the bm|t man­age­ment. In addi­tion to rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the investors, this panel also includes four per­sons promi­nent in the econ­omy and research sec­tors in Thuringia:

  • Prof. Dr.-Ing. Karl­heinz Bran­den­burg, Direc­tor, Fraun­hofer Insti­tute for Dig­i­tal Media Technology
  • Dr. Sven G. Bre­itschw­erdt, Man­ag­ing Direc­tor, MDC Power GmbH
  • Gün­ther Raithel, Man­ag­ing Part­ner, KAHLA/Thüringen Porzel­lan GmbH
  • Dr. Werner Schwarze, Man­ag­ing Part­ner, AST Advanced Shock­wave Technologies

The fund is man­aged by bm|t beteili­gungs­man­age­ment thürin­gen gmbh – a sub­sidiary of the Thüringer Aufbaubank.

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