A new investment fund has been established in Armenia with the aim of promoting the green economy through innovative financial tools and the involvement of the private sector
April 13, 2023
The “Innovative Financial Instruments and Private Sector’s Role in Fueling Green Business” forum, initiated by Shtigen Group, brought together representatives from the state, private, expert, and public sectors to address issues in the field and to present the Shtigen Ventures investment fund.
During the opening speeches, the Minister of Economy of the Republic of Armenia, Vahan Qerobyan, and Central Bank board member Hasmik Ghahramanyan, the leading members of Shtigen Group of companies operating in the field of new energy for more than a decade, emphasized the importance of green and sustainable economic development.
The Minister referring to the strategy of green and sustainable economic development, highlighted the government’s commitment to the document that will be implemented soon. “We call on both the government and private sector to work together to improve accessibility to finance in Armenia, with venture funds being key factors in this regard”, said Vahan Kerobyan.
During her speech, Hasmik Ghahramanyan expressed her hope for the success of Shtigen Ventures and highlighted the role of the banking sector in green financing, including its ambitions and main challenges. “The Central Bank of Armenia plays a crucial role in controlling the risks caused by climate change and has a responsibility to encourage investments in green tools that will develop the sector and boost Armenia’s economy”.
Hayk Shekyan, the founding director of Shtigen Group, emphasized the importance of new thinking based on old experience and the opportunity to explore new ideas.
“We highlight the importance of private sector involvement in the development of the green economy and the fight against climate change, citing Shtigen Group’s principles of corporate national responsibility. In this regard we have to use innovative financial tools and collaborate with leading international organizations and companies dealing with climate issues, state bodies, and experts”, says Hayk Shekyan.
Overall, these speeches demonstrate a strong commitment to the development of the green economy in Armenia, with private sector involvement and innovative financial tools set to play a significant role.
Garegin Gevorgyan, the director of the Financial Stability and Regulation Department at the Central Bank of Armenia stressed the importance of bearing climate change in mind every day and taking appropriate measures to establish and develop a “green agenda.”
“While the government and the Central Bank have a role to play in creating a “green agenda,” the private sector is the main driver of progress in this area. As such, Shtigen Group’s initiative to establish a venture fund is commendable. Such funds can provide guidance and serve as an example for other economic players to move in the right direction,” stated Garegin Gevorgyan.
The Shtigen VC investment fund offers an opportunity to combine private and institutional capital to make effective investments in green projects and develop the sector.
” It is essential to clarify the pillars of green development strategies for Armenia and classify the financial sources that support the growth of the green economy. Investment funds, including Shtigen VC, should consider implementing international best practices and developing policy and regulatory mechanisms in Armenia. The purpose of this forum is to seek answers to these questions,” said Hakob Khotsanyan, Director of Shtigen Ventures, stating that the fund was established not only to invest in companies operating under the umbrella of Shtigen Group but also in other companies in the industry.
As part of the forum, a panel discussion was held, which introduced the trends of green energy development, the challenges of green financing, and the role of pension and investment funds in overcoming them by attracting private and institutional capital. The panel featured experts from the field, including Karen Vardanyan (Partner at Formula VC, Fund Manager at Sprint Crowdfunders’ Fund), Samson Avetian (Vice President, Angel Investor Club of Armenia), Konstantin Saroyan (Secretary General at Federation of Euro-Asian Stock Exchanges), Erik Grigoryan (Founder & CEO, Environment Group), Hrayr Aslanyan (Deputy CEO, Fund Manager at Amundi-Acba), Garegin Gevorgyan (Director, Financial Stability and Regulation Directorate of CBA), and the moderator, Tigran Sukiasyan (Senior International Consultant on Climate Finance and Institutions, Strategic Advisor to Shtigen VC non-public venture fund).
“Venture funds can play a significant role in developing a green economy in Armenia. By financing green technologies, venture companies can attract financing from larger companies to Armenia, thereby creating a chain of active participation from all stakeholders. Through the active collaboration of all participants in this chain, the green economy in Armenia can take a significant step forward”, said the Dean of the College of Business and Economics of the American University of Armenia and former Deputy Prime Minister Vache Gabrielyan.
P.S. As part of its corporate national responsibility, Shtigen Group has been implementing the “Sunrise in Artsakh” project since April 2022, with the aim of establishing energy independence in Artsakh through the use of solar energy. The “Sunrise in Artsakh” project was showcased at the forum, with team members from “Shtigen Group” wearing T-shirts bearing the project’s slogan: “The sunrise will be in Artsakh.”
In addition, the “Sunrise in Artsakh” project was further promoted during the coffee break, where attendees were offered dry fruit boxes with the project’s branding. The boxes featured a chocolate map of Armenian regions and Artsakh administrative regions, along with typical dried fruits of the region. The concept behind the boxes symbolizes the strength and resilience of our eastern homeland.