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22nd August 2019

Fintech mega-deals lead to record-breaking $120bn in H2019

Three fintech mega-deals totalling $87 billion set the scene for a record-breaking $120 billion in disclosed transaction value for the sector in a ‘white-hot’ first half of 2019, reveals Hampleton Partners, in its latest global Fintech M&A Market Report.

Hampleton Partners, which specialises in international technology M&A and corporate finance, noted that all three of the top transactions were in the payments processing segment: Fidelity National Information Services acquired Worldpay for $43.6bn; Fiserv acquired First Data for $22bn and Global Payments acquired Total System Services for $21.2bn.

22nd August 2019

Archangels leads investment in digital advertising innovator

QueryClick, an Edinburgh-based digital marketing consultancy that aims to transform how effectively advertisers invest in digital marketing, is to embark on an expansion drive following an investment of £2m led by Scotland’s leading business angel investment group, Archangels, in partnership with the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB).  QueryClick has developed a unique, machine learning-based attribution solution – marketing software that enables companies to precisely allocate their investments in different marketing channels to ensure the maximum possible return on investment.

22nd August 2019

Crane Ventures invests in SpotQA to reduce software testing costs by 80%

SpotQA a leader in automated software testing, today announces the general availability of its flagship product Virtuoso. Virtuoso tests web and mobile web apps to identify bugs, inconsistencies and errors in a fraction of the time taken using traditional manual and automated testing. Using intelligent automation powered by Machine Learning (ML) and Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Virtuoso increases the speed of testing by up to 25X, bringing down the costs of QA by 80-90%.

In addition, SpotQA has secured a $3.25M round of seed funding, led by Crane with participation from Forward Ventures, Downing Ventures and Acequia Capital. 

22nd August 2019

US and Asian investment in UK tech skyrockets

The UK tech sector has attracted more foreign investment in the first seven months of 2019 than it did during the whole of last year, according to latest industry figures, and has overtaken the US for foreign investment, per capita. 

22nd August 2019

Private equity fundraising for Central and Eastern Europe reaches decade high of €1.8 billion

Private equity fundraising for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) hit the highest annual level in a decade in 2018 with €1.8 billion, according to new data from Invest Europe.

21st August 2019

Calculus extis investment in Synpromics exceeding target returns for investors

Scottish biotech company, and the market leader in gene therapy control technologies, Synpromics, has been bought by AskBio, the American pioneer in gene therapeutics.  EIS and VCT fund manager Calculus Capital, which first invested in Synpromics in 2015 and invested £5.6m into the company in total, will receive a return on investment that significantly exceeds target returns.

21st August 2019

Retention fears for UK PLC as talent dilema intensifies

As the talent dilemma continues, UK businesses are ramping up their focus on retaining and upskilling their existing workforce. New research [1] from recruitment specialist Robert Half UK, reveals more than one in three senior executives (31%) believe employee retention and training are the two main talent management concerns facing their industry until 2020. Talent retention is a particular concern for large businesses (35%), compared to one in three (29%) small and medium-sized businesses.

21st August 2019

Antler strengthens global leadership team

Antler, the global startup generator and early-stage VC, has appointed Edward Knight as a Global Partner and Annette Wilson as European Chair and Advisor of Antler. 

21st August 2019

What is the future for Scotland's high growth sector?

Beauhurst has published its overview of the high-growth ecosystem in Scotland. There are almost 2,000 active ambitious companies in the country, most of which are buoyed by fairly different methods of support than the rest of the UK. Although private equity and venture capital funds dominate the funding scene across the UK, it is devolved government bodies and angel investors which are pulling the most weight in Scotland. So what do funding trends look like, and which other means of support are high-growth Scottish businesses drawing on?

21st August 2019

Maven NPIF invests £160,000 in Innotech Insights

Maven Capital Partners has invested £160,000 in data analysis business, Innotech Insights, on behalf of NPIF – Maven Equity Finance, part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund. The funding will support the expansion of Innotech’s sales team, invest in product development and in the roll out of the company’s flagship analysis system product, Crowded.

Innotech provides both public and private sector organisations with the information they need to make major planning decisions by accurately monitoring pedestrian movements in an area, indoors or out. 

20th August 2019

Graphite Capital acquires global conference specialist Hanson Wade

Graphite Capital, a leading UK mid-market private equity specialist, has backed the management buy-out of Hanson Wade, the market-leading conference organiser and provider of information services, focused primarily on the pharmaceutical and biotech industries.

Hanson Wade’s management team is led by Tom Richardson, who has overseen a period of rapid expansion since being appointed chief executive in 2015. Between 2016 and 2018, the company’s portfolio of events almost doubled to 108 and its revenues increased by 117% to £22.6 million.

20th August 2019

National finalists of MSDUK Innovation Challenge announced

The organisers behind the prestigious MSDUK Innovation Challenge have announced their finalists for 2019.  After a full day of pitches from shortlisted Challenge entrants the 12 strong judging panel, drawn from a wide cross-section of UK industry and academia, were finally able to agree upon their final line up of 13 finalists.

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