101StartUp, a Russian Internet fund launched recently, has invested $1.2 million in Fishki.net, a user-generated comedic content website, in exchange for a 25% stake. The news was reported last week by Venture-News.ru based on an interview with Mikhail Gurevich, one of the fund’s managers and an existing Fishki shareholder.
The site will use investor money to create new UGC multimedia features in order to increase its audience and boost advertisers’ interest in the resource. Fishki will also launch a new mobile version.
101startup has also invested in Anews.ru, a lesser known news and blog post aggregator.
Behind the new fund are former executives of the RBC Group, a leading Russian media holding. A few years ago, they launched another fund, TMT Investments, and introduced it on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM), a sub-market of the London Stock Exchange.
101 Startup focuses more on Russian startups than TMT Investments, Gurevich explained to online news site Startup Afisha. Another difference is 101 Startup’s readiness to make more risky investments.
101 Startup is a substitute to an incubator project that had been announced a year ago. “Our incubator model would have required to select at least 20 good level startups every six month during two years – a figure that we do not believe the Russian startup market can reach” in its current stage of development, Gurevich told Startup Afisha.
Among 101 Startup’s other partners are German Kaplun, Alexander Morgulchik and Artem Inyutin, Startup Afisha reports.