This article appeared in the Private Equity Yearbook 2016 published by INCARI (INSTITUTO DE CAPITAL RIESGO) - [PDF]
Private Equity started in Spain with the foundation in 1976 of the Biscayan company TALDE Promoción y Desarrollo, S.A., a pioneer in the sector. Its main goal was to contribute to the development of SMEs by providing them with financial resources, while providing the management support that employers might need.
Years later, in 1985, the Private Equity activity in the Basque Country received a boost from the public sector with the foundation of the company Gestión de Capital Riesgo del País Vasco SGEIC, from SPRI, the business development agency of the Basque Government.
In later years, several Private Equity companies as well as Private Equity Funds Management Companies came onto the scene in the Basque Country. Examples of such firms are the company Seed Capital de Bizkaia (1989), a dependent of the Provincial Council of Bizkaia, its aim being to support the development of local businesses or Seed Gipuzkoa SCR (2007), aimed at new technology-based or innovative companies in Gipuzkoa.
During these years, Private Equity has been fully developed, with the creation of new Private Equity Funds Management Companies, both in the Basque Country and in the rest of Spain. They are mainly concentrated in Madrid and in Barcelona, but practically all the Autonomous Communities have their own Managing Company, mainly of public funds.
In the Basque Country. TALDE continues to develop its activity 40 years after having launched its entrepreneurial initiative. New national and international investors have joined the private founding investors, with their investment activity currently focused on Spanish SMEs.
In the last few years of severe economic crisis, the fundraising process to raise new Private Equity funds in Spain has been aided thanks mainly to FOND-ICO Global, the first public Private Equity Fund of Funds created in Spain in 2013. This has been the catalyst for the creation of more than 40 new Private Equity funds, reaching an approximate total amount of three billions euros.