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Industrial Research Raises $3.5 For Entrepreneurs

Industrial Research Raises More Than $3.5 For Entrepreneurs

Industrial Research Encouraged By Early Success of its Pioneering Business Angel Network

Auckland, April 2, 2002 -- Industrial Research Ltd has helped raise more than $3.5 million capital for emerging growth companies since launching its now expanding business angel network seven months ago.

Announcing this today, Industrial Research Ltd Business Development Manager Geoff Todd said: "This is an encouraging start to the development of angel network activity in New Zealand and we are building on this by expanding the network into new regions."

"We are particularly pleased by our ability to attract a pool of serious investors to our network to generate capital for developing early stage businesses with growth potential."

Through its pioneering work in launching the MINE (Mentor Investor Network Events) for Business Angels network, Industrial Research Ltd has helped establish angel investing in New Zealand.

Industrial Research Ltd has assisted six companies in securing capital to grow their businesses. The successful investees represented a range of business activity, including software development products, technology products and a call centre training service.

The network has helped five businesses individually secure $1,500,000, $1,250,000, $403,000, $250,000 and $100,000, while another has received an Industry New Zealand grant totalling $19,500 and the other has gained a $10,000 Technology New Zealand grant with the assistance of the network. This comes to a total amount raised of $3,532,500, following two series of presentation evenings, two events each in Auckland and Wellington.

Entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to present their business proposals to the network's investors at the next series of presentation evenings, which begin in Auckland on April 29 followed by Wellington on May 1. During this third series the network expands to Christchurch, where the network hosts its first presentation evening on May 27, and Palmerston North (on May 29).

Since it was launched in June last year more than a hundred investors have registered with the network. These registered investors comprise of investment companies, high net worth individuals, corporate investors, facilitators, family trusts and government departments.

"The high level of interest from investors in the MINE process indicates we are fulfilling a demand for a regular investment forum where investors can save time and view an array of high-quality presentations by entrepreneurs specially groomed by the network," Mr Todd said.

Since June the network has received nearly a hundred applications from people seeking capital. Of these 23 were selected to register with the network with the opportunity to present their business proposal.

Mr Todd said plans were underway for Industrial Research Ltd to launch the network in new regions by partnering with existing business organisations in these areas to host the events.

About Industrial Research Ltd Internationally recognised Industrial Research Ltd (www.irl.cri.nz) is New Zealand's leading scientific research institute specialising in developing technologies in four key areas: information, communication and electronics, advanced materials and performance, intelligent devices and systems and biochemicals. One of Industrial Research's key strategic roles is to act as "a catalyst for New Zealand's development as an advanced technology, value-added economy. Industrial Research works closely with industry partners to help them gain commercial advantage through advanced technology - a key factor for success in highly competitive global markets. Industrial Research's Ltd's also supports start-ups through its technology incubator facilities in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

About MINE for Business Angels MINE for Business Angels (www.mine.org.nz) is an innovative Industrial Research Limited initiative to create New Zealand's premier angel network and encourage innovative new and early stage companies to grow, realise their full potential and make a contribution to wealth creation and job creation in New Zealand. MINE is designed to help people who have funds and experience in business to invest in start-up companies. It works by giving them easy access to investment opportunities, as well as offering seminars in early stage investing. The network holds a series of MINE presentation evenings and seminars regularly. The networks will invest in promising enterprise and provide mentoring support for the founders and management. MINE links up serious investors with innovative start-ups and early stage ventures through formal presentation evenings, private face-to-face sessions afterwards and mentoring services.

Ends

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