After more than two years of holding a majority share of Polish financial advisor Expander Advisors, the consortium led by Innova Capital has acquired the remaining shares from GE money to become the company’s sole owner. The Innova consortium first invested in 2007, acquiring 60% while GE Money retained a 40% stake.
The acquisition comes at a time when Innova believes good things are on the horizon for the financial services sector in Poland. The company will focus on establishing a solid market position for Expander.
When it was founded in 2000, Expander Advisors was Poland’s first financial advice firm focused on the needs of the individual, non-commercial client. The company was originally a web portal designed as a distribution outlet for various financial services, but has since grown into a branch operation with almost 9,000 clients per month visiting the locations throughout Warsaw. As a “personal finance broker”, Expander offers a variety of products and services including mortgage loans, home equity loans, debt consolidation, insurance, and savings products.
Based in Warsaw, Innova Capital is a private equity firm active in Central and Eastern Europe with an emphasis on investments in Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary. Preferring opportunities in the financial services, media, manufacturing, and telecom sectors, Innova typically invests €5 million to €15 million per project with a horizon of 3-5 years. Innova/4, the fund which closed in 2006 at €225 million, received commitments from institutional and corporate investors in both Europe and America.