Enterprise supports stem cells

Enterprise Venture Fund I, the venture capital fund managed by Central and Eastern European private equity firm Enterprise Investors, has acquired a controlling stake in Polish stem cell bank Polski Bank Komórek Macierzystych for €4.4m.

Established in 2002, Polski Bank Komórek Macierzystych is the largest stem cell bank in Poland and the fourth largest cord blood bank in Europe. It operates predominantly in Poland and also through its subsidiaries in Italy, Spain, Hungary, Romania and Latvia.

According to Enterprise Investors, PBKM’s revenues and profits have grown at an average annual rate of 30% in the last few years. Combined with its subsidiaries, the company achieved total sales of almost €5m in 2008 and sales are expected to grow 30% in 2009.

Rafal Bator, partner at Enterprise Investors said: “The market in which PBKM operates is relatively young and under-penetrated in Poland and other CEE countries. The number of newborns that have their stem cells stored in Poland is several times smaller than for example in Portugal or Greece. So the market in Poland and CEE is well-positioned for further growth.”