Polatis gets #5.93 million

Investee Company – Polatis Ltd (UK)

Investee Company Business Type – Develops next generation photonic switch communications networks

Type of Financing – Expansion

Equity Providers – Prelude Trust, 3i Group, Alta Berkeley, EonTech Ventures

Equity Leader (Individual) – Dr Robert Hook, Prelude Trust

Debt Providers – N/A

Debt Type – N/A

Debt Leader (Individual) – N/A

Equity Amount – £5.93 million

Total Deal Value – £5.93 million

Other Advisors – N/A

Comments – Polatis Ltd, a photonic switch producer for next generation communications networks, has secured a second round of financing totalling £5.93 million. The funding was led by Prelude Trust (£2.12m) and included existing investors 3i Group (£1.55m) and Alta Berkeley (£1.55,), and a new investor EonTech Ventures (£0.71m).

Founded in July 2000 by research director Andrew Dames, Polatis develops ultra-low loss photonic switches enabling system integrators to roll out the next generation of optical networks. The company raised its first round of financing of £2 million in December 2000. Polatis is based in Cambridge, UK.

Dr Bob Hook, director of Prelude Trust plc commented: “The Internet has become indispensable and user expectations are continuing to grow, putting optical networks under increasing pressure. Low-loss optical switches are a fundamental requirement for cost effective management of network traffic and in this respect Polatis has a world-class product. Prelude prides itself in taking an active management role and we look forward to working with Polatis to make the company a commercial success.”

Dr Gary Vanstone, chairman and CEO of Polatis said: “Our success in securing funding during what has been a very difficult period for our industry is indicative of the confidence investors have in our unique technology and in our strong team. With our broadened investor group we now have the financial backing to achieve our objective of becoming a world-class optical switch supplier.”

Laurence Garrett of 3i and Tim Brown of Alta Berkeley said: “We are pleased to continue being major backers of Polatis. Polatis has world class technology and genuine potential to be a leader in its market and is precisely the type of company that we look to support”.