Citadele grants 2.8 Million Financing to Merito Partners for the construction of Solar Power Plant in Brenguļi

Citadele Bank has granted co-financing to the investment company Merito Partners (Merito) for the construction of a new solar power plant (SPP) in the Brenguļi parish of Valmiera municipality. This is one of the first projects in Latvia to receive funding within the framework of an agreement between Citadele and the European Investment Bank (EIB) for the allocation of EIB guarantee program funds to Latvian companies. 

During this summer, more than 12,000 solar panels will be installed on an area of 8.7 hectare for the Brenguļi SPP. The power capacity of the SPP will be 7 MW, and it is expected to generate nearly 7,000,000 kWh of electricity annually, which corresponds to the average electricity consumption of 3,800 households.  

The total cost of the project is almost EUR 5 million, of which Citadele’s co-financing comprises EUR 2.8 million. This is one of the first projects in Latvia to be co-financed with the EIB support.  

“In a time when energy independence and sustainability are particularly relevant issues, we are pleased to support companies in the development of renewable energy projects. Furthermore, the introduction of alternative energy sources is systematically supported by EIB’s program for entrepreneurs, providing co-financing with a reduced interest rate for various types of investments. We hope that the solar power plant in Valmiera municipality will serve as a good incentive for other entrepreneurs to explore opportunities for developing sustainable projects,” explains Vaidas Žagūnis, Citadele Board Member and Head of Corporate Banking in the Baltics

The owner of Brenguļi SPP is Merito Sustainable Energy Fund I, an investment fund managed by Merito, that has attracted experts from company Saules Energy for portfolio development. Both companies plan to develop eight power plants in Latvia, with Brenguļi SES being one of the first to start producing electricity this summer. By the end of this year, at least six power plants with a total capacity of 55 MW will be operational in various regions of Latvia, while the remaining one will be operational in 2024. The new solar power plants are expected generate at least 70,000 MWh of electricity annually.  

Mikus Janvars, Co-founder and Managing partner at Merito Partners: “We are pleased with the trust placed in the green energy project of Latvian investors by Citadele Bank and EIB, as they provide a loan for the construction of a new solar power plant in Vidzeme. As a result of allocated funding, the construction of Brenguļi SPP is progressing according to the plan. Currently, the installation of structures is underway, followed by the installation of solar panels and other construction works”.  

In December 2022, Citadele and the EIB Group, consisting of the EIB and the European Investment Fund, signed an agreement to expand loans to local businesses in the Baltic states amounting to at least EUR 460 million. By allocating 20% of the loans to “green” projects, this transaction will promote the green transformation of the local economy and help reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions.  

About Citadele Group 

Citadele’s mission is to modernise the financial sector and offer more opportunities to private individuals and businesses throughout the Baltics. In 2022, Citadele had 374,000 active customers in the Baltics and issued EUR 1.2 billion in new loans, with its total loan portfolio reaching EUR 2.9 billion, while total deposits reached EUR 3.9 billion. 

Alongside classic banking services, Citadele offers its clients a range of services based on next-generation financial technology, including its modern app, contactless payments and instant payments. Citadele was the first in the Baltics to introduce opening an account with a selfie, payment rings and payments to mobile numbers for private customers. Meanwhile, businesses make active use of our remote account opening and the chance to accept payments with the Citadele Phone POS app and Klix universal e-commerce tool, as well as applying for financing to develop their business. 

Citadele Bank is the Group’s parent company in Latvia, and its subsidiaries and branches operate in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. 

Signet Bank grants EUR 1 million loan to Merito Partners for a green infrastructure project 

Signet Bank has granted EUR 1 million loan to the Latvian investment company Merito Partners (Merito). The funding will be used for development of a green infrastructure project by Merito, involving the construction of a 2.7 MW solar power plant near Zilupe, in Ludza district. 

The loan from Signet Bank has been used for the construction of Zilupes solar power plant in Zaļesje parish of Ludza Municipality, near the border of Zilupe. The power plant will consist of 5,000 solar panels with total capacity of 2.7 MW. It will provide green electricity to at least 1,300 households in Zilupe and its surrounding area, and any excess electricity generated will be available to residents of Ludza and other Latvian districts. 

Roberts Idelsons, Chairman of the Board of Signet Bank, explains, “One of Signet Bank’s focus areas is providing funding for the growth and development of Latvian companies. The loan to Merito is an investment in green infrastructure, which will not only contribute to our country’s energy independence, but also provide environmentally friendly electricity to the residents and businesses of Latgale region in the near future. It is a win-win opportunity to take another step towards the transformation of the Latvian economy.” 

Zilupe solar power plant is the first of nine solar power plants in the ambitious Latvian green electricity project implemented by Merito Sustainable Energy FUND I, which will strengthen our country’s energy independence. It is planned that at least seven power plants with a total capacity of 55 MW will be operational in various regions of Latvia by the end of this year with additional two scheduled for 2024. The new solar power plants are expected to produce at least 70,000 MWh of electricity annually.  

“We are grateful to Signet Bank for their support and trust in relation to initiative of local entrepreneurs and investors, which will result in providing green energy to over 35,000 households throughout Latvia in the next two years. As a result of Merito investment along with co-financing from Signet Bank and other banks, a total of EUR 50 million will be invested in the Latvian economy,” says Mikus Janvars, Managing Partner and co-founder at Merito Partners. 

Currently over 45 investors have invested in Merito Sustainable Energy FUND I, with new investors joining the fund every month.

About Signet Bank

Signet Bank was founded in 1991 and is one of Latvia’s first independent banks. The bank’s strategy focuses on providing financing and capital management services to local entrepreneurs and their businesses. Since the start of 2021, Signet Bank has provided customers with almost EUR 500 million of financing in the form of loans and bonds. Signet Bank’s shareholders are nine Latvian and international private investors, of whom the biggest is Signet Acquisition III (25%), whose sole shareholder is US investor Aleksandrs Solovejs; AS RIT Group (19.50 %), a Latvian company owned by the Rapoport family, and SIA Reglink (15.93 %), founded by banker Irīna Pīgozne. 

Merito Partners will invest EUR 3 million in mobile device accessory retailer AIOO 

Investment company Merito Partners (Merito) will make an investment of EUR 3 million in AIOO, retailer of mobile device accessories and used smartphones. The funding from Merito Growth Capital Fund will help AIOO to significantly expand its store network in Latvia and to expand operations in Poland and other EU markets.

Currently, AIOO retail network consists of 24 stores located in shopping centres across Latvia, offering a comprehensive selection of mobile device accessories. The funding will provide company with the opportunity to accelerate the development of its network and fast-track its expansion. By the end of this year, the company plans to have at least 40 AIOO stores in Latvia, and to expand its presence into other EU countries. AIOO now has the financial capacity to grow its network to several hundred stores internationally. 

In addition, the company has implemented a new strategy to complement and diversify its business. The company has recently launched an online store as well as started a pilot project of buying and selling refurbished smartphones to customers. 

According to Kristers Kalnins, co-founder and CEO at AIOO, “Nowadays, smartphone and other device accessories play a vital role in extending device longevity. Our clients appreciate the in-store shopping experience and the convenience of being able to try out variety of items, as well as to buy high-quality accessories at affordable prices. We have just launched a pilot project in five stores where customers can buy refurbished Apple smartphones. We plan to implement this business line in all AIOO stores this year, and to also offer buying used smartphones from customers at competitive prices. AIOO is currently expanding its operations by opening on average two new stores every month. With the additional funding from Merito Partners, we will nearly double the number of stores by the end of the year, as well as expand our operations to other EU countries.”

Currently, AIOO has a team of 64 employees and is planning to create at least 34 more jobs in several cities across Latvia by the end of 2023. 

Mikus Janvars, co-founder and managing partner at Merito Partners, explains, “We see significant potential in AIOO, as its rapid growth is comparable to similar businesses in Western Europe over the past few years. Since 2021, AIOO has developed a fast-growing retail chain throughout Latvia, selling high-quality mobile device accessories at affordable prices, and providing outstanding customer service while facilitating trends of circular economy.” This transaction will result in Merito acquiring a 56% stake in AIOO, while Ainars Springis and AIOO’s management team will retain the remaining 44% shareholding. 

About AIOO

Mobile accessory retailer AIOO was founded in 2021 and now operates 24 stores across Latvia. AIOO stores can be found in shopping centres, with an average store size of 25 m². Customers can choose from an offering of around 11,000 mobile device accessories on AIOO physical stores and online store. The offering includes covers for smartphones, tablets and laptops, protective glasses, chargers, and headphones, speakers, smartwatches and other useful accessories that help to protect, personalize, and complement smart devices. Unlike other device accessory retailers in Latvia and other European markets, in AIOO stores most accessories are sold without packaging, making it easier for customers to try out products, as well as protecting the environment by saving tonnes of plastic and paper used for packaging. 

Insurer Balcia invests 1 million euros in the Merito Partners investment fund 

The insurance technology company Balcia has invested 1 million euros in Merito Sustainable Energy FUND I, an investment fund managed by Merito Partners (Merito) to develop nine solar power plants across Latvia. Balcia has previously also invested in renewable energy sector. 

The 20 million euro investment fund was set up to develop an ambitious project by local investors and entrepreneurs and to build nine solar power plants in Latvia. The total capacity of all solar parks is expected to exceed 66 MW. 

“The solar energy projects implemented in Latvia in recent years show that solar energy has great potential, but we are still significantly behind other EU countries in solar energy generation. With this investment, we will help to promote the development of local infrastructure for green energy, while strengthening the country’s energy independence with home-grown capital. Balcia is the first institutional investor in the project and our investment is an essential part of the capital needed to make this sustainability project a reality,” says Jānis Lucaus, the CEO at Balcia. 

The solar power project will be one of the most ambitious green infrastructure projects in the next two years in Latvia. At least seven plants with a total capacity of 55 MW are expected to be commissioned in Latvia’s regions by the end of this year, and the remaining two in first half of 2024. The new solar power plants will generate at least 70,000 MWh of electricity per year, supplying more than 35,000 households across Latvia with green energy.  

“Investments by private investors have demonstrated the potential for green and sustainable investment returns, and we are pleased that experienced investors such as Balcia believe in it. We will continue to work to attract financing to provide clean energy and promote energy independence in Latvia. Using investors’ equity and bank co-financing, the first solar power plants will be commissioned in Zilupe and Valmiera, and in the second half of the year – in five more places in Latvia.” informs Mikus Janvars, managing partner and co-founder at Merito Partners. 

Almost 40 Latvian investors have invested in the fund so far. Fundraising continues actively, with new investors joining Merito Sustainable Energy Fund I every month. Overall, Merito will invest €50 million in Latvia’s economy through equity investment and bank co-financing for the construction of nine solar power plants.  

About Balcia 

Balcia is an insurance technology company with local capital and experience in international markets. In 2020, the company underwent a major transformation, introducing a new business strategy and brand identity, positioning itself as an insurer focused on new, modern solutions and automation innovations, including becoming the first online insurer to offer the option to subscribe, change or cancel the insurance. In 2022, the Balcia brand had a successful launch in the Latvian market, thus expanding its geographical reach in Europe. 

Modular home manufacturer MYCABIN attracts 1.55 million euro growth capital from Merito Partners 

Merito Partners’ (Merito) growth capital fund has committed to invest 1.55 million euros in modular home manufacturer MYCABIN. The funding will be used to develop MYCABIN’s products in export markets, expand production facilities and increase production capacity.  

MYCABIN offers high-quality industrially produced Scandinavian design tiny houses that can be placed ready-made anywhere where construction is permitted. With four all-season timber frame models available, these houses can be combined and connected to a terrace, and come fully equipped for comfortable living. The main advantages of buying a tiny modular house are faster turnaround time, quality, simplicity of the process and lower, predictable costs. MYCABIN houses are made from high-quality sustainable materials. 

So far MYCABIN has installed more than 40 houses in Latvia. Merito’s investment has given the company an opportunity to expand its production facility near Riga. This will increase the production capacity to ten houses per month and speed up deliveries. There are fully equipped demo houses available in the factory so customers can review options and make their choice. The expanded premises also provide an opportunity to store ready-made house models. As a result, customers can receive a standard design tiny house in two weeks.  

In 2022, MYCABIN started collaboration with partners in the USA on a franchise basis. Franchisee manufactures and distributes MYCABIN houses in the USA. MYCABIN houses are produced in a 3,000 square meter facility in Chicago, Illinois. This year, the first deliveries have already been made to customers in Connecticut and Maine.  

Ģirts Draugs, chairman of the board at MYCABIN: “The demand for tiny modular houses is growing as the costs of energy, materials and construction increase. MYCABIN has experienced rapid growth in the Latvian market and quickly attracted the interest of collaboration partners in the USA and elsewhere in the world. We are pleased that Merito’s investment will give us the opportunity to develop new products, enter new export markets and streamline production processes. While expanding our operations in export markets, Latvia will remain as R&D center of new house designs.”

The transaction between Merito and MYCABIN is structured in tranches, making Merito a minority shareholder of the company.  

Mikus Janvars, co-founder and managing partner at Merito Partners: “Our private equity fund’s portfolio consists of competitive companies with export and investment return potential. MYCABIN has a scalable and sustainable business model that can be developed across geographical markets. Results in the USA are a good testament to that. We highly appreciate management team’s focus on sales and customer satisfaction.”

Sampsa Auvinen, timber industry professional with 30 years of management experience in Finland, Baltics, Great Britain, France, Germany, Ghana and Sierra Leone, will join MYCABIN becoming a minority shareholder and Chairman of the Supervisory Board. Sampsa is the chairman of the board of European Confederation of the Woodworking Industry (CEI Bois). 


MYCABIN started its operations in 2020, offering timber frame holiday homes of various sizes that can be combined as a set. MYCABIN homes feature functional Scandinavian design that has been praised by the architecture and design magazine Dwell, the internet magazine Designboom and other media. MYCABIN offers conveniently and quickly available vacation homes with easy-to-understand and transparent pricing, simple ordering process, standardized assembly options and fully furnished house models down to the last detail. The most popular MYCABIN models My Milla 25 and My Milla Long are designed to make use of maximum vertical space, with the living space located also on the second floor. 

Merito Partners will invest 50 million euro in the development of ten solar power plants in Latvia

In order to increase Latvia’s energy independence and the availability of green energy, the investment company Merito Partners (Merito) will invest 50 million euro and build ten new solar power plants (SPPs) in Latvia’s regions in the next two years. It is planned that at least eight SPPs with a total capacity of 55 MW will be operational by the end of this year.

Mikus Janvars, co-founder and managing partner at Merito Partners: “Merito Sustainable Energy FUND I with total target size of 20 million euro was created by Merito to develop solar power plants in Latvia and so far, the fund in a very short period of time has already attracted investments from dozens of local investors, and the fundraising is still ongoing. Investor interest has exceeded our expectations because of significant development potential of solar energy in Latvia. This is proof that Latvia’s energy independence and the European green course are not only a national priority, but also that investors see an attractive investment opportunity that will help Latvia to rise from the last place in the use of solar energy in the European Union.”

By combining Merito investment with bank co-financing, approximately 50 million euro will be invested in Latvia’s economy in development of ten power plants. The new SPPs will produce at least 70,000 MWh of electricity per year, thus supplying green energy to more than 35,000 households throughout Latvia. The first SPPs will be constructed in Valmiera, Zilupe and Rūjiena, with five more plants developed in the second half of 2023.

For the implementation of SPP projects, Merito has teamed up with experienced sector entrepreneurs to establish renewable energy development company Saules Energy that will be responsible for SPP projects.

Artūrs Plūme, chairman of the board of Saules Energy: “We work with the confidence that investments in renewable energy should serve the general public while providing return to fund investors. Considering Latvia’s current need of a considerable progress in increasing the share of renewable energy, we have focused our efforts on projects that will start producing green and cheaper electricity already this year. Most of our developed SPPs have already received building permits and we have ordered necessary equipment, all that remains is to carry out the construction works in the next months.”

SPPs financed by Merito are developed with a connection to the existing distribution infrastructure, thus electricity production takes place close to its consumers – residents and companies across regions of Latvia. Such strategy ensures both stable consumption and strengthens regional energy security.

About the project developers

Merito Partners is a rapidly growing private investment company operating in Latvia and the surrounding region. Currently it focuses on private equity and renewable energy investments on behalf of local investors. Merito Management AIFP, 100% owned by Merito Partners, is registered with the Bank of Latvia as a manager of alternative investment funds.

Saules Energy is a developer of renewable energy projects with a mission to make profitable GreenTech investments and serving the wider society. Saules Energy collaborates with leading manufacturers and engineers worldwide to make renewable energy available in regions of Latvia where it is not widespread enough.

The self-service start-up TapBox has attracted investment from Merito Partners

The growth capital fund of the Latvian investment company Merito Partners, founded last year, has made an investment in the self-service solution company TapBox, providing flexible growth capital for the development of the existing product and entry into new markets.

TapBox is a start-up company founded in Latvia, which has developed an innovative self-service solution. In the New Nordics and international market, TapBox offers businesses in various sectors a convenient and profitable way to introduce and maintain self-service services. The company’s goal is to become the top of the mind partner for introduction of self-service solutions.

In Latvia, TapBox solution is being used to streamline operations of receptions of medical institutions. Self-service terminals are available at Riga Eastern Clinical University Hospital and will be installed at a number of other medical institutions in the immediate future. The company has also started collaboration with Riga International Bus Station to introduce ticketing solutions. TapBox solutions are also used in the entertainment, retail and fintech sectors. At the end of 2022, TapBox started to cooperate with financial sector clients in Africa, and the company is currently studying other countries both in Europe and beyond.

In 2022, Merito Partners was founded by entrepreneurs and investors with many years of experience in the field of investment: Mikus Janvars, Mārtiņš Baumanis and Aigars Kesenfelds. Merito has registered an alternative investment fund manager Merito Management AIFP with the Bank of Latvia. It manages Merito Growth Capital FUND I, with a total target sum of EUR 50 million, of which over EUR 12 million have been invested during the initial subscription period by local investors and the founders of Merito Partners.

“We are delighted to attract Merito Partners, because the values of our companies and business development vision are aligned. Merito financing and considerable business experience will give TapBox the opportunity to consolidate its positions in Latvia and develop much more rapidly across a broader market. The additional capital will be used to increase exports, strengthen the team, and develop new and existing product and service solutions. In the immediate future, we plan to announce a new and unique way of selling this industry’s solutions,” commented Toms Piliksers, co-founder and chairman of the board of TapBox.

According to Mikus Janvars, co-founder and partner at Merito Partners: “Initially, we are building our private equity fund portfolio out of Latvia, but in time we will add New Nordic businesses that are competitive and have the potential to develop outside our region’s borders. TapBox is the first company in our portfolio and has demonstrated its capabilities by developing self-service solutions that are already functioning successfully in a number of sectors. And the technology has the potential to be utilised on an even broader scale. TapBox’s strengths are the SaaS or software as a service business model, strong team of professionals and the ability to export.” As a result of this transaction, Merito Partners has become a minority shareholder in TapBox.

A new investment company Merito Partners has been launched in Latvia 

The investment company Merito Partners has started making investments in the New Nordic market. During its first months, it has attracted 30 investors and financing totalling EUR 17 million.

Merito Partners (hereinafter referred to as – Merito) was founded in 2022 by a trio of entrepreneurs and investors with significant investing experience: Mikus Janvars, Mārtiņš Baumanis and Aigars Kesenfelds. Merito has registered the alternative investment fund manager Merito Management AIFP with the Bank of Latvia. Merito Management AIFP currently manages two investment funds: Merito Growth Capital FUND I and Merito Sustainable Energy FUND I. 

According to Mikus Janvars, co-founder and managing partner at Merito Partners: “We have founded Merito Growth Capital FUND I with the aim of investing in regional businesses and start-ups in various industries and stages of development, providing them with flexible growth capital. Initially, we are building our portfolio from Latvian companies, and in time we will invest in New Nordic businesses that have demonstrated their competitiveness and have the potential to develop their operations beyond our region.” 

Merito’s second current operating direction is the development of solar energy parks in Latvia with the goal of building a portfolio of solar parks. In order to achieve this, Merito Sustainable Energy FUND I has been launched.   

Merito’s founders have invested a significant amount of their own capital in each of the funds under management, thus aligning their economic interests with those of fund investors. 

“We are delighted that in the space of a couple of months, Merito has succeeded in attracting 30 investors and a significant volume of funding, which will be invested in the regional economy. We anticipate that the range of investors will continue to grow. In time, we plan to establish several other funds with alternative investment strategies,” explains Mikus Janvars.

About Merito Partners 

Merito Partners is a rapidly growing private investment firm active in the New Nordics. On behalf of its growing pool of more than 25 investors, Merito currently manages two investment strategies – private equity and sustainable energy. Merito aligns its interests with those of ambitious entrepreneurs and supports portfolio companies in achieving sustainable growth, operational excellence and market leadership. Merito Management AIFP, a 100% subsidiary of Merito Partners, is an alternative investment fund manager regulated by the Bank of Latvia.

For further information, please contact: 

Agnese Ruberte, 

Merito Partners Communication Consultant, 

M. +371 29337759, e-mail: