Orion has decided to invest in Lithuanian start-ups and has created a unique motivational system for employees
Investment banking firm Orion Securities has launched Orion Ventures, an employee fund that will invest in early-stage start-ups. Alius Jakubėlis, CEO of the company, says: “The fund was created not only to expand Orion’s activities to the growing start-up community in Lithuania. It will also contribute to Lithuania’s economic growth and use the fund’s earnings to create a unique motivational system for our team. Orion will contribute a certain amount of money to each team member each year, and for this amount, the team member will receive a corresponding amount of stock options in the created fund.
The first investment has already been made
“Orion Ventures plans to invest in different early-stage Lithuanian start-ups.
The first investment has already been made in Oxus.AI, a start-up aiming to improve customer service. “Oxus.AI” product is a tool based on artificial intelligence algorithms that listens to 100% of the conversations that take place between a customer and a manager in call centres. The conversational content analytics tool recognises the conversation, analyses the content, assesses the quality of the conversation against the same criteria as a traditional manager, and provides actionable and accurate insights to improve the quality of the conversation and the customer experience.
Alius Jakubėlis | Orion CEO
“We select our start-ups very carefully. This particular start-up passed all the selection criteria. Oxus.AI addresses the very important issue of poor quality of service over the phone. Around 40% of customers switch service providers because of poor experiences with call centre managers, and existing traditional tools for assessing and training call quality are slow, expensive and ineffective. So, seeing the great potential, we invested in Oxus.AI,” says A. Jakubėlis.
We are now actively looking for other start-ups to invest in.
Added value for the start-up
“When evaluating start-ups, we draw on our experience in corporate finance and investing, which we have accumulated over nearly 30 years of operations. Our experienced team thoroughly evaluates all financial indicators and takes the time to analyse the market and dig deep into the start-up’s plans. From the very first conversations with start-ups, we realised that our financial expertise could be very useful in advising young enterprises, so not only do we invest in start-ups, but in order to make sure that they perform well, we will spend additional time providing financial advice to the selected start-ups,” says A. Jakubėlis.
He adds that “When talking to start-ups, we quickly noticed that young ventures often lack financial information. Often young ventures simply don’t have the funds for professional advice, so our firm’s experience and our team’s interest in maximising the value of the start-up will be of great benefit to the start-ups that work with us.”
“To contribute to the growth of Lithuanian start-ups, we are also working with the Orion team to offer Lithuanian start-ups the opportunity to take advantage of the accounting services provided by the Orion team of specialists. For the first two years, start-ups will be able to use the services of share accounting, registration of share transfer transactions, registration of options free of charge. We will also provide free accounts for shareholders.”
A unique way to motivate your employees
When asked how the idea came about, Jakubėlis says: “We have been thinking about investing in start-ups for some time, and by giving each employee a share of the company’s income, we aim to create long-term value for the whole team. We often educate clients about the long-term value of investments, so creating a motivational system for employees based on this seemed like a very good solution. Just by example, we show the importance of a long-term approach to finance. We believe in consistent work and long-term returns. But, of course, this is not the only way to invest in the well-being of the team, we continue to actively invest in the professional development of the team, in training, and we go abroad with the team at least once a year. Still, this incentive package, with the possibility to actually earn from a successful investment, motivates and involves the whole team more.”
“The team is very supportive of the idea and happy that the company has found a really unique way to create a motivational system. There was a lot of interest in the idea, a lot of voluntary willingness to get involved, and the team came back with some really good ideas. For example, everyone can choose whether to receive a bonus at the end of the year or invest in the fund. It was good to see that the team also believed in the long-term value of the investment. I believe that together we will achieve very good results.” – says the Orion CEO.
– Oxus.ai receives 800K Eur investment [article in Lithuanian]
– Verslo Žinios [article in Lithuanian]
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