NZVIF makes ‘healthy return’ on GreenButton sale
By Suze Metherell
May 2 (BusinessDesk) – The New Zealand Venture Investment Fund, the Crown-funded start-up investor, says it secured a profit from the sale of cloud-based computing firm GreenButton.
Microsoft bought the Wellington-based startup for an undisclosed amount, but local investors received a “very healthy return,” NZVIF chief executive Franceska Banga said in a statement. NZVIF had held about an 8.4 percent stake in the company prior to the takeover, according to Companies Office records.
NZVIF’s seed fund invested $24.4 million in 96 companies as at June 30, out of a total $127.7 million in 146 firms, according to its 2013 annual report.
Microsoft plans to incorporate GreenButton into its Azure platform, its public cloud service. The software allows companies to access software remotely, from the cloud, meaning there is less demand on infrastructure, it said. GreenButton’s existing customers include NASA, Pixar and Boeing.
The company will remain in Wellington and its existing 18 staff will become Microsoft employees. GreenButton already had a long relationship with Microsoft through the BizSpark programme which gives free resources to early stage businesses, it said.
Scott Houston, founder and chief executive of GreenButton, had previously worked on Lord of the Rings as chief information officer with Weta Digital.