A successful angel network requires support from others to fly: both, other angel networks and the ecosystem in general play a key role. This was the reasoning behind our new awards categories. Sister BAN of the Year will be presented annually to another angel network with whom we have worked closely and whose support has been invaluable to us during the year. Guardian Angel of the year will be awarded to an ecosystem champion who with their work has helped create an environment where angel investing can better thrive.

The first-ever sister BAN award is given to Estonian Business Angels Network (EstBAN), and the Guardian Angel of the Year is given to two initiatives enhancing the atmosphere for angel investing: the new professorship in ownership as well as the work of Steering Group for Domestic Ownership.

“Over the years, our deepest cooperation out of all other angel networks has been with EstBAN. Thus, as FiBAN is awarding this prize for the first time in its 10-year history, it is only natural that Sister BAN’s award goes to our dear colleagues in Estonia”, tells Reima Linnanvirta, Chair of FiBAN Board and a representative of the awards committee, and continues:

“Ownership is in the very essence of angel investing. The professorship in ownership in Aalto University is unique in the world and is an important step for wider recognition of the significance of ownership in Finnish society. This significance was also highlighted in the work of the Steering Group for Domestic Ownership. Recognition of the significance of ownership is important for us angel owners. Thus, FiBAN wishes to underline this importance with the Guardian Angel of the year award.”

Anu Oks, Managing Director of EstBAN celebrates the recognition: “We feel like EstBAN has an extended team across the gulf. FiBAN team and the board have been supporting EstBAN from very early days and the collaboration has developed into strong friendship and team-spirit. We really hope that we could unite EstBAN and FiBAN angel networks even tighter and see the cross-gulf investments flourishing in upcoming years.” 

Anu Oks, Managing Director, EstBAN and Kristjan Raude, Chair of the Board, EstBAN

Tero Luoma accepted the Guardian Angel award as the founder and the chair of the committee for the professorship in ownership. He has also acted as an external adviser in the Steering Group for Domestic Ownership.

”I was amused to hear about the new award – Business Angels surely have the best award titles in this scene! Hearing the reasoning for the award moved me emotionally. Ownership is a passion and a personal mission for me. Angel investing is an essential form of ownership that is close to my heart to advance – both as an angel investor myself and in society in general. I am grateful for this award”, he says.

Photos: Aalto yliopisto, Tero Luoma

Business Angel of the Year 2020 and Business Angel Exit of the Year 2020 will be awarded in the fall. Find more about FiBAN’s annual awards here.