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    Helmut Krämer-Eis explains unicorns, EIB blog usage

    Allar and Matt uncover the imaginative names investors give fast-growing new companies, from unicorns to gazelles, dragons and…cockroaches

    A unicorn is a privately held company with a valuation of more than USD 1 billion

    When a company sells shares to the public, it’s called a dragon if it’s worth more than the entire size of the venture capital fund that first invested in it

    If you like fairy stories, you’ll enjoy the work of Helmut Krämer-Eis, chief economist of the European Investment Fund. You probably don’t associate finance with fairy stories, but Helmut points out in this episode of A Dictionary of Finance that investors have turned to mythical creatures to describe flourishing new companies.

    Perhaps when you risk your money with an investment, you need to believe in the company just as much as a five-year-old child listening to a story of flying horses needs to believe in magic? In any case, Helmut explains what kinds of companies can be called a dragon or a unicorn, as well as a gazelle. Allar weighs in with the definition of a cockroach company…

    There are 170 unicorns around the world and 21 in Europe. Of those, 10 have been supported by financing from the European Investment Fund, which provides financing to small and medium-sized companies and is part of the European Investment Bank Group.

    Subscribe to A Dictionary of Finance podcast in the iTunes podcast app or on other podcast platforms like Stitcher. You can suggest topics for future podcasts by tweeting to Matt or Allar. We’re @EIBMatt and @AllarTankler.