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Nanda Technologies raises 8m USD in a financing round led by DEWB and BrainsToVentures
- Innovative wafer inspection system for the semiconductor industry - Largest Series B financing round to date of any company in the portfolio of the High-Tech Gruenderfonds
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merger, acquisition and takeover/new investment
Jena/St. Gallen/Unterschleissheim/Munich/Bonn, May 8th, 2008 (euro adhoc) - Deutsche Effecten- und Wechsel-Beteiligungsgesellschaft AG (DEWB) - Prime Standard, Securities No.: 804100 / ISIN: DE0008041005 - and BrainsToVentures AG (b-to-v), a business angel network, participated in the Series B financing round of Nanda Technologies. The lead investor DEWB jointly with the investors of b-to-v led by Dr. Christian Reitberger is taking an active part in the further growth of Nanda. The financing round has a total volume of 8m USD (5m EUR). Other investors include the existing shareholders Ventegis Capital AG and Bayern Kapital as well as the business angel Alexander Bruehl. This transaction concludes the largest Series B financing round to-date of any company in the portfolio of the High-Tech Gruenderfonds.
Nanda was founded in 2006 to develop and manufacture optical, non-contacting inspection systems for the process control in semiconductor manufacturing. Semiconductor wafers are inspected for "macro defects" such as scratches, particles or other contaminants larger then 1 micron. Nanda uses a new optical design combined with innovative image processing to drastically increase the speed of inspection while maintaining high sensitivity. The result is a 10-fold decrease in inspection cost per wafer compared to existing tools. This and the compact design of Nanda´s inspection system make it attractive to integrate defect inspection directly into the production process. An industry first, Nanda enables the real-time, high sensitivity defect inspection of all wafers without reduction of the production throughput. Fast error-feedback permits accelerated process adjustments and thus increases process ramp-up speed, overall yield and process tool uptime significantly. Nanda´s first generation of inspection system is currently under evaluation with leading semiconductor manufacturers.
"Nanda´s revolutionary system design convinced us. The integration of its macro defect inspection directly into the semiconductor production process flow promises significant performance and cost improvements. Net savings for the manufacturers can be significant. We see excellent growth potential based on Nanda´s technological advantage and the experience of its management team. We expect good results from the evaluation process with leading semiconductor manufacturers and anticipate rapid market acceptance" comments Falk Nuber, Member of the Management Board of DEWB.
"Nanda offers a large growth potential. With its innovative solution Nanda addresses the fastest-growing segment within the wafer inspection market. Our know-how and broad industry contacts will help Nanda develop into a sustainable success story", says Dr. Christian Reitberger who invested in Nanda together with nine other co-investors of the b-to-v network and the b-to-v side fund.
"We are very pleased to have won DEWB, b-to-v and Alexander Bruehl as new investors in Nanda. They bring to the table their broad experience and important network within the semiconductor industry. The new investors join our existing shareholders Ventegis, Bayern Kapital and the High-Tech Gruenderfonds. We feel lucky to have a first-rate circle of European investors that will benefit the development of our company. Moreover, we feel reaffirmed in our conscious decision to build Nanda in Germany, despite our professional roots in the Silicon Valley" comments Dr. Lars Markwort, CEO. Johannes von Borries, CFO, adds: "The secured financial situation puts our market entry on solid grounds and provides us with an advantage in the search for talents. For the extension of our team we can offer potential candidates a very attractive package of an exciting work environment and excellent career opportunities. We are currently looking for experts in the area of optical and mechanical engineering as well as software development."
About DEWB Deutsche Effecten- und Wechsel-Beteiligungsgesellschaft AG (DEWB AG, Prime Standard, Securities No.: 804100 / ISIN: DE0008041005) is an investment company that specialises in young and established medium-sized companies. The focus of our investments is on strong growth companies from the areas of photonics and sensor systems for which we provide support through shareholders' equity, expertise in corporate development and our sector network. Our regional focus lies in the German speaking countries (D, A, CH). Since 1997 we have invested more than 300 million Euros in 55 companies and realized more than 400 million Euros through 35 exits, eight of which were in the form of IPOs. The company is located in Jena, one of the most successful technology and science regions in Germany, with a long tradition in the field of optical technologies and one of the most important European centres for photonics.
About Nanda Technologies Nanda Technologies offers its customers in the semiconductor industry a high throughput, high sensitivity defect inspection technology that can be directly integrated into process equipment. This makes it possible to inspect every wafer at full surface instead of just conducting statistical tests. The feedback cycle for process faults is reduced significantly and process equipment malfunctions are caught and identified at an early stage. Nanda Technologies was founded in Munich by seasoned executives of the capital metrology equipment industry and supplies to semiconductor manufacturers worldwide.
About b-to-v BrainsToVentures AG (b-to-v) is headquartered in St. Gallen, Switzerland. The company serves entrepreneurial private investors who invest their capital, network and expertise in fast-growing companies. By making this pool of capital, contacts and expertise available to portfolio companies, b-to-v has established a new business model in the venture capital and private equity industry. With over 50 members, the b-to-v Investors Circle is the most active club of entrepreneurial private investors in German-speaking Europe. Based on the members´ expertise, b-to-v´s scope of investment comprises more than 30 different industries. It is the goal of the Investors Circle to create value for its portfolio companies and generate significant profits from its investments. b-to-v´s Investors Circle invests about EUR 20m per year in early and expansion stage companies as well as buyout cases. At present, b-to-v is invested in about forty companies. Investments vary between EUR 500k and 3m per deal. www.b-to-v.com
About High-Tech Gruenderfonds The High-Tech Gruenderfonds invests venture capital in young technology companies with high prospects that are transferring promising scientific research to business enterprises. The seed financing shall result in a technical prototype, a proof of concept or a market launch. High-Tech Gründerfonds has access to a fund volume of around 272,0 million Euro. Investors in this public-private partnership include the Federal Ministry for Economy and Technology, the KfW Banking Group as well as the six industry companies BASF, Robert Bosch, Carl Zeiss, Daimler, Deutsche Telekom and Siemens. www.high-tech-gruenderfonds.de
About Seedfonds Bayern managed by Bayern Kapital The Seedfonds Bayern was started in 2003. With a fund size of 22m EUR it is focused on investments in early stage technology companies in Bavaria. The fund is managed by Bayern Kapital which was founded in 1995 by the Bavarian Government as part of the campaign "Initiative Bavarian Future" and to provide young and innovated Bavarian companies with venture capital. Up to date Bayern Kapital has invested in over 160 innovative high-tech companies with a total investment volume of about 130m EUR. More information under: www.bayernkapital.de
About Ventegis Capital AG Ventegis Capital AG is a listed venture capital company which invests nationally in high-growth companies from the early to the expansion stage. The focus of its investments lies in the areas of information and communication technology (ICT), industrial technologies and life science. Ventegis also provides advisory services in corporate finance. The main shareholder of the company with ca. 94.3 % is the Berliner Effektengesellschaft AG, which is listed on the official market (ISIN DE0005221303). www.ventegis-capital.de
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