Baltic M&A and Private Equity Forum 2018

The best insight into the
challenges and opportunities of
the Baltic M&A and private equity scene

The Baltic M&A and Private Equity Forum has become the
main networking event for the Baltic M&A industry and market
participants interested in the region.

We welcome representatives of private equity and venture capital funds and
investment banking, consultants, lawyers, investors, and other representatives of the
financial sector, as well as interested business executives and owners.

The forum is organised by SORAINEN and the Estonian business daily Äripäev, in partnership with the Baltic
business dailies Verslo žinios (Lithuania) and Dienas bizness (Latvia), the Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian Private Equity and Venture Capital Associations.

Any questions? Contact us: +372 667 0025 / +372 667 0238

For sponsorship cooperation opportunities please contact



Sorainen Äripäev Verslo žinios Dienas bizness EstVCA


Stay tuned! We keep adding speakers. 
Day 1, 18 October
Day 2, 19 October

08.00 — 09.00 Registration and morning coffee

09.00 — 09.10 Opening Remarks

Meelis MandelMeelis Mandel Toomas PrangliToomas PrangliMeelis Mandel, Editor-in-Chief of Äripäev
Toomas Prangli, Co-Managing Partner of SORAINEN

09.10 — 09.40 Keynote address. Baltic security update. How likely is military conflict in the Baltic countries today and what does it mean for investors? (How vulnerable are the Baltic countries today?)   

Jonatan VseviovJonatan Vseviov Jonatan Vseviov, Permanent Secretary of the Estonian Ministry of Defence (EE) 
One of the sharpest experts on defence and security in the region, Jonatan Vseviov is a man whose word carries weight also among our allies.

09.40 — 10.10 Market overview. Catching up with new trends in Baltic M&A. Are you a trend maker or swimming upstream? 

Guntars KrolsGuntars Krols Henrik IgastaHenrik Igasta Moderator: Agnė Mažeikė, Baltics Correspondent at Mergermarket (LT) 
Guntars Krols, Partner at Ernst & Young (LV) 
Henrik Igasta, Managing Partner at Superia Corporate Finance (EE) 
Julijus Grigaliūnas, Managing Partner at Porta Finance (LT) 

Julijus GrigaliūnasJulijus Grigaliūnas

10.10 — 10.40 Panel discussion. Infrastructure projects. Why should private money managers be interested in infrastructure? 

Ville PoukkaVille Poukka Mārtiņš LazdovskisMārtiņš Lazdovskis Ville Poukka, Head of Infra Funds at CapMan (FI) 
Ville Poukka, heads Finnish CapMan’s infra funds, which invest in the energy, transport and telecom sectors and recently closed a EUR 70 million deal. 
Mārtiņš Lazdovskis, Member of the Board of Latvian State Roads (LV)
Mārtiņš Lazdovskis will share insights on the Kekava bypass, a major road connecting Latvia with the Lithuanian border and will use the PPP financing model.

10.40 — 11.10 Coffee break 

11.10 — 11.40 Panel discussion. To invest or divest, that is the question. What do foreign investors who enter Baltics find here? And what are the reasons behind the decisions to leave?   

Ralph WagnerRalph Wagner Ralph Wagner, Co-Founder and COO of Axinom Group (DE) 
Axinom, a company with subsidiaries in Germany, the USA and Estonia, provides cutting-edge software systems serving many of the world’s leading brands in the aviation, telecommunications and entertainment industries.

11.40 — 12.00 From experience. Why did we acquire Estonian-founded visionary java developer ZeroTurnaround?    

Brian PierceBrian Pierce Brian Pierce, CEO of Rogue Wave (US) 
ZeroTurnaround’s technology is Java developers’ favourite tool, used by over 5,200 enterprise teams in over 90 countries, including 36 of the Fortune 100. Brian Pierce is a technology industry veteran who has led and built rapidly scaling businesses.

12.00 — 12.40 Investing in alternative assets.     

Kadri LaasKadri Laas Presenting Estonian Art Index. Can you put a price tag on emotion?
Kadri Laas, Manager at the Estonian Contemporary Art Development Center (EE)
Cultural manager and art lawyer Kadri Laas will present a new index she co-founded, which seeks to monitor Estonian art prices in recent decades and provide a tool for art investors.

Outside the box. How to win money with alternative investments?
Sanjeev Sarkar, Managing Director at Crestline (UK)
Crestline Investors is an institutional alternative investment management firm with over USD 9 billion of assets under management, specialising in credit and opportunistic investments. Sanjeev Sarkar, Managing Director at the firm, is a member of Crestline's Credit Strategies team, which has closed over 75 transactions. At the end of last year, the team closed its third Opportunity Fund, exceeding the fundraising objective and securing over USD 1.34 billion of capital commitments.

12.40 — 13.40 Lunch  

13.40 — 14.40  VCA session. Reality check. What are the most burning issues that private equity is facing today?    

Baltic venture capital associations and their guests shed light on topics that keep investors up at night - are the valuation levels in the Baltics too high; emerging investment strategies in private equity; drawdown credit facilities, social investment funds etc.

14.40 — 15.10  Keynote address. The birth of Luminor. What were the real challenges and victories behind the largest merger in Baltics' financial history?    

Nils MengailisNils Mengailis Nils Mengailis, Chairman of Luminor Group (LV) 
Combining the Baltic operations of DNB and Nordea was the largest transaction in the history of the Baltics, with the value of combined assets reaching EUR 13 billion.

15.10 — 15.30 From experience. What are the learnings from 20 years in international finance?   

Ragnar MeiternRagnar Meitern Ragnar Meitern, Managing Director at ING Bank and investor (EE/UK) 
Ragnar Meitern has built and led businesses and acted as an advisor to Fortune Global 500 corporates, private equity investors, governments and entrepreneurs across geographies. He has invested in FinTech companies such as Monese and Bondora and advised technology start-ups such as Taxify and Click and Grow.

15.30 — 16.00 Coffee break    

16.00 — 16.20 TBC  

16.20 — 16.40 From experience. How does Estonian-born global taxi market disrupter drive and finance growth?      

Martin Villig or Markus VilligVillig Martin Villig or Markus Villig,Co-Founder of Taxify (EE) 
Taxify, founded by two brothers Markus and Martin ‒ then aged 19 and 34 ‒ has today grown into a global ride-sharing provider operating in 26 countries and competing with Uber. It has financed growth with rounds of investment, including from the Chinese Didi. At the forum, one of the co-founders will speak about their ride.

16.40 — 17.00 Q&A. Summary of the day     

19.00 After-hours networking. Awarding last year’s M&A and Private Equity achievements. All participants are invited!  

Day 2, 19 October

09.30 — 10.00 Morning coffee

10.00 — 10.20 From experience. What is the most important hindsight wisdom of Magnetic MRO exit from the owner's perspective?   

Kristjan Kalda Kristjan Kalda Kristjan Kalda, Partner at BaltCap (EE) 
The exit of Magnetic MRO, the Tallinn-based aircraft maintenance company, was the largest transaction in BaltCap’s history. Having built a small regional player into a profitable global company, BaltCap sold it to Chinese investors for EUR 43 million. In 2017, Magnetic MRO was announced as Company of the Year in Estonia.

10.20 — 10.40 TBC. Slot reserved for latest deals.   

10.40 — 11.00 TBC. Slot reserved for latest deals.   

11.00 — 11.30 Panel discussion. Brave and courageous. What are the stories behind companies who think bigger than Baltics?    

Janek Pohla Janek Pohla Jānis Ošlejs Jānis Ošlejs Moderator: Juhan Lang, Head of Äripäev’s Stock Market Desk
Janek Pohla, Co-founder of Tahe Outdoors (EE)
The sales network of Estonia-based Tahe Outdoors, one of the biggest kayak, canoe and paddling equipment manufacturers in Europe, covers more than 35 countries. Over the years, they have grown through acquisitions, buying up competitors in Germany, Sweden and France.
Jānis Ošlejs, CEO of Primekss (LV)
Latvian-headquartered Primekss, with direct subsidiaries in 10 countries and the US Army among its clients, produces ecologically friendly concrete solutions. They recently opened a manufacturing unit in the USA.

11.30 — 12.00 Coffee break 

12.00 — 12.30 Panel discussion. Privatisation in the Baltics. Is privatisation moving along in the Baltics and what keeps it from happening?   

Povilas Poderskis Povilas Poderskis Valdo Kalm Valdo Kalm Povilas Poderskis, CEO of Vilnius City (LT)  
The Latvian government recently published a much more ambitious plan for taking state companies to capital markets. Is the situation hopeful?
Valdo Kalm, CEO of Tallinna Sadam (EE) 
Let’s take a look at the current pace of privatisation in the Baltics. Some things are indeed moving along. Tallinn Port’s IPO is in the works in Estonia.

12.30 — 13.00 Panel discussion. Alternative dispute settlements. Why take your M&A dispute to arbitration?    

Heidi Merikalla-Teir Heidi Merikalla-Teir Heidi Merikalla-Teir, Secretary General at The Arbitration Institute of the Finland Chamber of Commerce (FIN) 
Leaders of arbitration bodies speak about alternative dispute resolution methods available for companies facing disagreements.

13.00 — 13.30 TBC  

13.30 — 13.40 Closing remarks   

13.40 Lunch 





Until 22 June
385 €

After 22 June
425 €
VAT (20%) will be added to all invoices.
Invoices are sent by e-mail.



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Venue. House of the Blackheads

The House of the Blackheads is the only surviving Renaissance building in Tallinn. A residential dwelling probably existed at this location on the upper floors of the building of the Brotherhood of Blackheads as early as in the 14th century. The Brotherhood bought the property in the first half of the 16th century, when they also built a new unvaulted hall.

A major reconstruction took place in 1597, when the façade was redesigned in the spirit of Renaissance architecture of the Netherlands, with its rich ornamentation and carved decorations.

One of Tallinn’s most extraordinary painted doors dates back to the 1640s. The two-nave, arched guild hall bought from the St. Olaf's Guild dates back to the 15th century.

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