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Outstanding Response to Seed Fund Call

8 December 2005

‘Outstanding Response to Seed Fund Call’

Thirteen distinctive investor applications were received from New Zealand angel investors and investor networks in response to a call for applications for funding through the Seed Co-Investment Fund1.

The first round of calls for applications under the Seed Co-investment programme closed on Wednesday, 30 November 2005.

“VIF is delighted with the response to the call and the variety and quality of the applications. This is exactly what was hoped with the creation of the Seed Co- Investment Fund” said Franceska Banga, VIF’s Chief Executive. Applications were received from investors across the technology investment spectrum and covered:

Software, Electrical, Electronic engineering, Biotechnology, Life Sciences, Agricultural, Marine technologies, AgBio, Biomedical, Internet, Medical devices, Medical/Veterinary devices, Communications technologies (digital products, digital information/wireless technologies), Food and beverage processing, Oil and Gas, Logistics, Tourism, Chemical and Biotech discovery

“In terms of sectoral coverage, it is a quintessential New Zealand response” Banga added.

North Island investors dominated with 12 of the 13 applications, including 7 applications from Auckland.

“VIF will look to the South Island and the regions with our next Seed Fund call as we recognise that investors are often geographically focussed. We think there is still a lot of investment potential which is not reflected in the geographic spread of applications received to date” Banga said. The Fund is managed by the New Zealand Venture Investment Fund

Seed Funds will be available for equity investments made alongside approved co-investors, deal by deal. The maximum investment per deal is $250,000, subject to at least 50/50 matching investment by the approved co-investor. A maximum of $4 million (ie, at least 16 deals) may be accessed per co-investor partner. Once approved, leadership on investment decisions and working with promising portfolio companies resides with the co-investor.

“We’ve noticed that some of the investor proposals are still at the concept stage while others have an established investor group with capital available for investment - they are ready to go. The timing of investment will be driven by our co-investor partners and matched to the investment opportunities as they arise” Banga added.

IF will work through the applications with the investor nominees and move toward finalising approvals by the end of February 2006. It is anticipated that a further round of proposals will be considered during 2006.

ENDS

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