Moscow-based UFG Private Equity Fund II has made another investment in the Russian telecomm market with the acquisition of 15% of Prestige Internet; a company operating under the brand name Enforta. The shares were acquired from Sumitomo Corporation whose stake is now reduced to 15%. Other investors in parent company Enforta B.V. include Baring Vostok Capital Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, the EBRD, and company management.
Based on mean market values, some estimates place Enforta’s value at USD 90-100 million.
Enforta was established in 2003 and is one of a handful of national companies employing WiMAX and pre-WiMAX technologies to offer wireless broadband in Russia. Current services include internet access, email, telephony, local phone service, and virtual private networking (VPN).
Enforta serves more than 50,000 business and residential customers in 70 Russian cities with a goal of reaching 95 cities by year’s end. The company was reported in 2007 to control as much as 22% of the wireless broadband market in the country.
Enforta’s 2009 revenues were RUB 1.6 billion, up 21% from RUB 1.31 billion in 2008. Enforta is based in Moscow and employs approximately 1,700 individuals.
UFG Private Equity (www.ufggroup.com)
UFG Private Equity (UFGPE) is the private equity investment arm of UFG Asset Management, an alternative investment firm specializing in Russian and CIS markets. UFG Private Equity manages two funds; UFGPE Fund I, the fully committed USD 280 million fund which closed in 2006, and the UFGPE Fund II which is currently raising funds. It has a target size of USD 200 million with a planned final close in June 2010. Both funds have no limit on investment sectors as UFG prefers to remain diversified.