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Kiwi Ex-Pat Joins Pioneer Venture Team

Media Release – New Zealand Innovation Fund


Pioneer Capital Partners Welcomes Leading Life Sciences Executive and Investor to its Advisory Board

Kiwi Ex-Pat Dr. David Evans Joins Pioneer Venture Team


Auckland, New Zealand, 30 August, 2005 – Pioneer Capital Partners (Pioneer) – a leading New Zealand venture investment firm – announced today the appointment of Dr. David Evans to its New Zealand Innovation Fund (NZ Innovation Fund) advisory board.

Dr. Evans is a life sciences veteran with a 30-year career in North America, during which he has held senior positions with leading biotech and life sciences companies, including MDS Nordion.

While at MDS Nordion, Dr. Evans led commercial activities (sales, marketing, production distribution, quality assurance, regulatory affairs and product development); managed international teams; led acquisitions in Belgium, France, Germany and Sweden; and achieved 15% p.a. revenue and operating income growth in business units for which he was responsible.

As President and CEO, Dr. Evans recently led a successful IPO of Liponex Inc, a Canadian biopharmaceutical company developing a product for blood lipid level modification.

Dr. Evans is an investor in New Zealand Biotech companies Nexus6 and Biomatters, is on the board of the latter, and has an interest in actively assisting New Zealand companies to progress into the North American market.

Dr. Evans spends 6 months of the year in New Zealand and 6 months in North America, making him ideally positioned to help New Zealand companies entering that market

Pioneer’s recently-launched NZ Innovation Fund is an investment programme established to capitalise on the rich flow of venture investment opportunities originating in New Zealand that are ripe for growth in international markets.

The NZ Innovation Fund has a broad innovation mandate that provides its institutional and professional investors participation in New Zealand’s best venture investment prospects in the areas of specialised manufacturing and design, information and communications technology, and life sciences. The NZ Innovation Fund also targets expansion stage businesses (in addition to early stage) and is currently open for investment.

“I’ve been fortunate to work with and invest in successful and innovative companies in North America, Europe and New Zealand, in several cases alongside other members of the Pioneer team,” said Dr. Evans. “I believe that the Pioneer team with its exceptional collective track record and ‘international best practices’ strategy is well placed to outperform the market and I’m delighted with the opportunity to help New Zealand Innovation Fund investee companies enter the lucrative North American market” adds Dr. Evans.

Peter Maire, Chairman of Pioneer’s Investment Committee and acclaimed New Zealand entrepreneur says that growth in large markets is essential when targeting venture level returns for investors and adds: "We are very pleased to welcome David to the team.” “His own track record in investing, building and guiding companies, especially in the world’s largest life sciences market, gives us additional strengths with which to select and grow New Zealand’s next success stories in this promising sector.”

Randal Barrett, Pioneer Director, adds: “David’s investments in innovative New Zealand companies such as Nexus6 and Biomatters and his active involvement on their behalf on both sides of the Pacific provides Pioneer with the best of both worlds: deep sector expertise in life sciences, complementing that of our executive team, and leadership in turning innovation and science into successful companies. We welcome David to our team of entrepreneurs, executives and financiers and look forward to working with him.”

ENDS


Background Notes

About Dr. David Evans

Dr. Evans is a life sciences veteran with over 30 years of development, marketing and senior management experience in North America and Europe, principally with MDS Inc and its subsidiaries – the largest Life Sciences and healthcare croup in Canada with annual revenues of CA$1.8 billion.

In various Senior Vice President positions, Dr. Evans was responsible for all commercial activities (sales, marketing, production distribution, quality assurance, regulatory affairs and product development), led acquisitions in Belgium, France, Germany and Sweden and achieved 15% p.a. revenue and operating income growth. He led specific initiatives and represented the company on the board of other companies, including Resolution Pharmaceuticals, a start-up corporate venture within MDS Nordion that that was grown and then sold to European diagnostic imaging specialist Bracco. Dr. Evans also represented MDS Nordion in Europe on the board of its subsidiary there. He was actively involved with the start up of MDS Pharmaceutical Services Division now headquartered in Princeton, New Jersey, that provides development services to all major participants in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries and has annual sales of over CA$800 million.

Dr. Evans recently completed a 2-year role as interim President and CEO of Liponex Inc, a Canadian biopharmaceutical company developing a product for blood lipid level modification, as well as a drug delivery technology platform, and is now Chairman of the company’s board of directors. Dr. Evans led a successful IPO for the company in 2005 on the Toronto Stock Exchange, with an initial market capitalisation of CA$25 (NZ$30) million.

Dr. Evans is also an active angel investor with a particular interest in helping New Zealand companies entering the North American market. He has invested in Nexus6, a medical device developer, where he is also on the board, and Biomatters, a bioinformatics development company.

Dr. Evans sits on and is past Chairman of the Ottawa Life Sciences Council and is current Chairman of the Ottawa Biotechnology Incubation Centre. He is also a member of the board of the Ottawa Heart Institute, Canada’s leading cardiac care and research centre. Dr. Evans received his Batchelor and Master of Science degrees (in Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry respectively) from the University of Auckland (New Zealand) and his PhD from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario (Canada).


About Pioneer Capital Partners and the New Zealand Innovation Fund

Pioneer Capital Partners is a venture investment firm based in Auckland and Christchurch, New Zealand, with partners in the United States, Europe and Asia. The Pioneer team is made up of entreprenuers, senior executives and financiers who have significant expereince in international business and a collective track record of delivering excellent investor returns.

Pioneer’s New Zealand Innovation Fund is an investment programme recently established to capitalise on the rich flow of venture investment opportunities originating in New Zealand that can be scaled in large international markets. The New Zealand Innovation Fund has a broad mandate that provides its institutional and professional investors with participation in New Zealand’s most promising prospects in the areas of specialised manufacture and design, information and communications technology, and life sciences. The New Zealand Innovation Fund invests at both the early and expansion stages of business development at a time when innovative New Zealand companies are scaling rapidly to meet demand for their products and services in large markets.


Additional information on Pioneer and the New Zealand Innovation Fund can be found at www.pioneercapital.co.nz


ENDS

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