Levente Richárd Kovács is a business development and accounting specialist working as an investment manager of Hiventures’ Seed Program where they invest in early-stage startups. He laid the foundation for his professional career in the world of Big4, where he spent more than 5 years. He uses his experience to develop the startup ecosystem in a consistent and system-wide way.
What do you think about impact investing?
Impact investing is a continuously growing segment of the venture capital and private equity (VC/PE) industry since it hasn’t been around for too long. It’s a great initiative that besides the strict economic interest and profit-orientation of every investor, now we have the chance to value startups from a more social, environmental and sustainable point of view. Of course these aspects should never harm the business itself, but if we can make a world a more livable place, then why shouldn’t we?
What kind of projects do you invest in?
At Hiventures we don’t have a special scope of industries. We can invest in practically every segment of the market with only just a few exceptions (mining, gambling, adult industries etc). We are proud to have insight into a lot of different areas. This experience can help us make better decisions in the future
What are the main criterias you consider when deciding on an investment?
We can’t stress it enough, but we always invest in teams, in people.
Sure, the idea, the service itself, the core innovation of the project, the business plan or the market they aim for is also important, but first we have to believe that the founders can achieve their goals and hit every milestone we determine together.
Do you have any favourite projects?
Ittaszezon, of course! The project is a nice blend of for profit ecommerce but also has a huge impact on local farmers. As a social enterprise, they are working to strengthen domestic family farms while bringing quality and nutritious delicacies to the tables of those living in the city.
On the non profit side my favourite project is Járókelő.hu. The website is working to raise awareness to identify and report local infrastructure problems directly to the local and federal governments. The funding of the project is based on donations by individuals and companies. I encourage you to look around your neighborhood. Find a problem that is bugging you for a while and post it. You’ll see the difference that you’ve just made!
What advice would you give to a social entrepreneur looking for an investment?
First of all, think about how you are going to earn revenue? Are you for profit like Ittaszezon or nonprofit like Járókelő? Investors only prefer the first one!
Also, you should build a great team around the idea, surround yourself with highly skilled professionals, be humble and don’t stick to something which is unlikely to succeed. Try to bootstrap as much as you can and only approach an investor if you have something to show. It’s not easy to sell dreams or visions and it doesn’t happen to everyone. Luckily we have a solution for them too with our pre-seed programme, where you can get funding if you are at a very early stage.
Join us for the 6th Hungarian Impact Day on the 14th October 2021, in Budapest at the Radisson Blu Béke Hotel – where Levente Richárd Kovács will be one of our speakers!
The 6th Hungarian Impact Day Conference is sponsored by Hiventures.
Our main aim with this year’s conference is for the participants to gain an insight into the world of ESG funds and impact investments, their relationship, their similarities and differences, and their impact and its possible measurement. True to our mission, with this conference, we strive to stimulate the impact ecosystem, increasing the number of social impact investments in Hungary and its region.
How does ESG differ from impact investment, how do they correlate, when do they go hand in hand and how do they help each other out? How can ESGs remain credible, how can we avoid impact/greenwashing? How can we reach out to more and more investors to reach impact investment? Are ESGs a tool? We strive to find answers to these questions and many more from actors of the financial world.
More info about the 6th Hungarian Impact Day: http://thbe.hu/konferencia/
Get your tickets here: https://impact-design.typeform.com/to/o6q6RZPd#ref=web