EBAN 2015 Awards & Winners



(Gala Dinner Awards Ceremony. Photos by Pedro Figueiredo.)

EBAN 2015 Awards were distributed  during the Gala Dinner Awards Ceremony on 26th May 2016 at the stunning PALÁCIO DA BOLSA in Porto, Portugal.

EBAN recognized European Business Angel Federations, Networks and Investors who have demonstrated excellence and commitment to driving business angel investment over the last year. Furthermore, special recognition awards were assigned to the organizations and individuals actively engaged in the angel investment community.

The Distinguished Winners of The 2015 EBAN Awards Are:


(Ari Korhonen accepting the award.)

1. Lifetime Achievement Award: Ari Korhonen

Ari Korhonen is retiring from the board of EBAN after 4 years of service. He is an angel investor, a venture capitalist and the founder of Lagoon Capital investment company. Ari has been a successful technology entrepreneur for over 20 years and a business angel for more than 10 years. Within the last 10 years, he has made angel investments in 29 companies and has participated in 86 investment rounds . He has had three successful exits from Severa, Paytrail and The Switch.



(Selma Prodanovic accepting the award on behalf of Hansi Hansmann, below  photo of Hansi Hansmann.)

2. Best European Early Stage Investor:  Dr. Johannes “Hansi” Hansmann

Hansi Hansmann, president of the Austrian Angel Investor Association, has achieved two exits in 2015 with 3-digit million Euro valuations for each company. His first exit Runtastic, the mobile running tracking app, was acquired by Adidas. His other exit was Shpock (short for shop in your pocket) a mobile marketplace for garage sales, was acquired by Schipsted. The award was accepted by AAIA board member Selma Prodanovic on his behalf.



(Dimitris Tsingos accepting the award.)

3. The Most Successful Business Financed by Early Stage Investors:  Starttech Ventures

Starttech Ventures exited from AbZorba Games to Novomatic, making a 9.3x return on capital invested. Their portfolio company Epignosis scaled up more than 100% in revenues for the third consecutive year. Their SaaS product TalentLMS ranked No.1 in the World by GetRank for Q3/2015  in Cloud LMS market. Over the year they have made six new investments, three of which were international (Israel, Russia, USA) and four follow-on investments as well as co-founding HeBAN to champion the development of early stage investments market in Greece. EBAN is excited to give this award to our Greek members proving that the country is able to support entrepreneurship and successful early stage investing even in tougher times. The award was accepted by Dimitris Tsingos, Head of Entrepreneurship at Starttech Ventures.



(Baybars Altuntaş accepting the award.)

4. Best Individual In Globally Engaging The Early Stage Investment Within The Entrepreneurial Ecosystem: Baybars Altuntaş

Baybars Altuntaş has won this award for the third time in a row! He has promoted the Early Stage Investment Ecosystems in Middle East & North Africa and South East Europe . He played a key role in the development and promotion of new instruments aimed at fostering the market as well as introducing new practices towards the professionalization of the sector by organizing Forbes Round Table. Congratulations Baybars!



(Miguel Henriques accepting the award.)

5. The Best European Business Angel Week initiative:  FNABA ( Federação Nacional de Associações de Business Angels

FNABA, which has been awarded for Best European Business Week Initiative in 2014, was responsible of nationally coordinating different activities with the local Business Angels Associations. During the 9th National Week of Business Angels,  16 member associations organized different events to promote awareness of angel initiatives aiming to support startups with seed and early stage capital, in their regions. The highlight of this week was the National Congress of Business Angels, which took place in Porto on the 20th of November, 2015, with the presence of more than 100 investors, partners and startups. The award was accepted by Miguel Henriques, the president of FNABA.



(Luisa Alemany and Fernando Zallo accepting the award.)

6.The Best Performing EBAN Member: ESADE Business Angels Network

ESADE BAN is the Business Angels Network of private investors promoted by ESADE. It focuses mainly on fostering startups and early-stage companies. Their investment model is co-investment with other members of the network by syndication or with venture capital firms. ESADE BAN specializes in IT, Health, Energy, Industry and Social Impact startups. In 2015 its members have invested 4,7M € in 33 startups. The award was accepted Luisa Alemany, the Director of the ESADE Entrepreneurship Institute and Fernando Zallo, the Director of ESADE BAN.



(Branko Drobnak accepting the award.)

7.The Best performing New EBAN Member: Business Angels Slovenia

Business Angels Slovenia has done a great deal to develop the Business Angels Community with the EBAN Membership. The award has been accepted Branko Drobnak, the President at Business Angels of Slovenia.

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(Kim Sawyer receiving the award)

8.Special Recognition Award for Kim Sawyer – Connect to Success

This special award was given to Kim Sawyer in recognition of her tremendous initiatives for women Entrepreneurs in Europe and the world. Kim is the Founder of US Embassy Lisbon’s Connect to Success program, aimed at strengthening and growing women-owned businesses in Portugal. Congratulations!

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(Rising Tide Europe Lead Investors receiving their awards)

9.Special Recognition Award for Rising Tide Europe

EBAN was proud to award the 9 lead investors of the Rising Tide Europe Program for their ongoing efforts at promoting women investing at a global level. The 9 lead women investors awarded are: ​Candace Johnson, President of EBAN (France); Brigitte Baumann, European Business Angel of the Year (Switzerland); Jeanette Anderson, Board Member EBAN (Sweden); Patty Dimond, investor (UK); Maria Eugenia Giron, investor (Spain); Florence Korhonen, Chairman of Board NFBAN (Finland); Hedda Pahlson-Moller, Board Member EBAN (Luxembourg); Cindy Naegel, investor (Belgium); Selma Prodanovic, Board Member EBAN (Austria)


Filipe Araújo receiving the special recognition award

10.Special Recognition Award for the Porto Camara Municipal

This award is to give a special thank you to the Porto Municipality for their incredible commitment at supporting the scaling up of Porto’s startups and of course, for having made the EBAN 2016 congress a memorable event. To receive the award on behalf of the Porto Camara Municipal, Filipe Araújo, Porto’s City Councillor for Innovation and Environment.