BTexact in multi-million pound deal

SUFFOLK-based BTexact Technologies has struck a US$100 million deal to create an independent global technology venturing partnership in Ipswich.The new partnership - formed in conjunction with UK-based private equity investment manager Coller Capital and US-based venture capital firm New Venture Partners - will accelerate BTexact's efforts to commercialise its vast technology patents.

SUFFOLK-based BTexact Technologies has struck a US$100 million deal to create an independent global technology venturing partnership in Ipswich.

The new partnership - formed in conjunction with UK-based private equity investment manager Coller Capital and US-based venture capital firm New Venture Partners - will accelerate BTexact's efforts to commercialise its vast technology patents.

Those efforts began three years ago with the creation of the Brightstar corporate incubator at Adastral Park.

Coller Capital will purchase a majority stake in the new venture, called NVP Brightstar. BTexact will retain a minority stake, while New Venture Partners will manage investment decisions for the new entity and provide funding for further new ventures.

NVP Brightstar is scheduled to begin operations in March this year. It will be located in Ipswich, possibly Adastral Park, and headed up by Andrew Garman of New Venture Partners and Harry Berry, who has directed operations at the BT Brightstar incubator since its launch.

Four of the existing BT Brightstar companies will transfer into the new partnership to create a core, founding portfolio. BTexact will continue to develop the companies not transferring, including voice-web navigation specialists Gabrielle (featured in BusinessEast's incubator diary), until they reach an advanced readiness for trading.

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The new partnership will have exclusive rights to create new start-up businesses with BTexact by exploiting BT's extensive research and developing patents, but is also open to other venturing opportunities.

Stewart Davies, chief executive officer of BTexact, said: "This partnership gives Brightstar access to a bigger capital base. It underpins the vision we unfolded in 2000 to gain maximum value from continuing investment and innovation in research and technology development.

"Now, rather than having to deal with multiple VCs, we have a relationship with a very substantial business partnership which will reduce both management time and uncertainty, and give the Brightstar companies the chance to become limited companies in their own right. "

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