Passionate for entrepreneurship, wine, and philanthropy, Lena Romanova is a serial entrepreneur and investor. She founded her first company, a direct mail-order business, at the age of 16. It was the first mail-order business in Latvia after the collapse of Soviet Union. Since then, Lena has accumulated a unique blend of investment banking, private equity, startup, and international business development experience.
Lena currently acts as the managing director of Granita Capital, her family-owned holding company with diversified holdings in real estate, industrial parks, hospitality, and manufacturing. The family’s interests can be found in the Baltic countries, the Russian Federation, Belarus, Ukraine, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and most recently, the USA.
Lena runs LE/ROM Real Estate Development, a company that develops luxury residential and commercial properties in the Baltics and Russia; and Granita Ielas Ipashumi, a company that builds industrial parks and provides build-to-suit services to large manufacturing and production companies in the Baltics.
Lena is an investor and director of Digex Media Labs in the USA, a new generation media and data company that works with leading brands to provide theme-based environments for meaningful entertainment and authentic engagement with brands. She is the founder of L’Espace, the Contemporary Museum for Design, Fashion and Hollywood that hosts, creates, operates, and tours fashion and brand-themed exhibitions in key markets in the USA, Asia, and Europe.
Previously, Lena worked in investment banking in London and New York. She specialized in restructuring opportunities and distressed M&A at Houlihan, Lokey, Howard & Zukin. Some of the companies that Lena advised were Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts, Chiquita, Agfa, Waterford Wedgwood, Petters Group/Polaroid, Eurotunnel, Scientific Games, and others. She was also part of Morgan Stanley’s Technology, Media & Telecom M&A team.
Lena also spent time in the venture capital and private equity fields. She worked at HgCapital, a later stage LBO fund (a spin-off Merrill Lynch), where she was part of the Technology Investment team. Some of the companies that Lena was involved with include: Xyratex, Rolfe & Nolan, and Iris Software. Prior to HgCapital, Lena worked for Catalyst Venture Fund, an early stage fund that invested in early stage financial technology companies and for Ariadne Capital, an early stage t