A group of Russian industrial investors led by ONEXIM Group has acquired 82% of the shares in the LED chip company OptoGaN Oy including the shares owned by Via Venture Partners, VNT Management Ltd and Finnish Industry Investment Ltd.
OptoGaN Oy is a Finnish-German company with leading technology in Gallium nitride based LEDs. Optogan develops high-brightness light-emitting diodes for the background lighting of mobile terminals, computer LCD displays, the automotive industry, traffic lights and for general lighting. LEDs will replace conventional light bulbs in lighting. LED bulbs use only a 10th or 12th as much as conventional incandescent bulbs and half as much as energy-saving bulbs. OptoGaNs patented technology makes LEDs extremely bright and cheap to produce.
OptoGaN has a research lab at the Helsinki University of Technology and a pilot line and production facilities in Dortmund.
The Nordic venture fund Via Venture Partners invested in OptoGaN Oy in April 2007 and prior to that the company was since its foundation in 2004 funded by VNT Management and Finnish Industry Investment.
Peter Thorlund Haahr, Partner in Via Venture Partners says: "OptoGaN has made significant progress over the last years and have been a very success investment for VIA. We are proud to have made a significant exit before VIAs 3rd anniversary and this prove we have established a well functioning team and a solid investment practice.
VNT Management is pleased with the fact that a Finnish based start-up company like OptoGaN Oy has come all this way. This transaction demonstrates that solid innovation, seed capital and a strong investor syndicate can produce excellent results, adds Veijo Karppinen, Managing Partner with VNT Managament.
Antti Kummu, Investment Manager in Finnish Industry Investment comments: OptoGaN Oy is a good example of a Born Global company. It operates in highly competitive global LED business and it has operations, management or investors from several European countries like Finland, Russia, German, Denmark, etc.
Details about the deal are not being disclosed.
- Peter Thorlund Haahr, Via Venture Partners A/S: +45 28101795,
pth (at) viaventurepartners.com
- Veijo Karppinen, VNT Management: +358 40 8371 210,
veijo.karppinen (at) vntm.com
- Antti Kummu, Finnish Industry Investment Ltd: +358 50 432 4486,
antti.kummu (at) industryinvestment.com
Optogan Oy is the emerging supplier of high brightness LEDs for global lighting applications. With its cutting edge technology, OptoGaN enables new generation of Solid State Lamps which feature bulb-like brightness, bulb-like cost, high energy efficiency, and environmental safety. Founded 2004 in Finland, OptoGaN operates an R&D center in Espoo, Finland and starting since 2006 a full pilot line in Dortmund, Germany. www.optogan.com
Via Venture Partners is a USD 200 million multi stage venture fund investing in exceptional companies in the Nordic region. Founded in early 2006, Via Venture Partners is a privately owned and independent Nordic software and communication venture capital firm. Via Venture Partners Limited´s Partner is ATP, who manages Danish pension savings in excess of DKK 400 billion. The portfolio of presently 14 Nordic companies is expected to grow rapidly within the next couple of years due to a high investment activity level. www.viaventurepartners.com
VNT Management Oy was founded year 2002. VNT Management Oy is focusing on Renewable Energy and Distributed Power Generation, Energy Saving and Clean Tech areas. VNT Management Oy was one of the first management companies having focus in above mentioned areas in Europe. The first fund, Power Fund I, was raised in February 2003 with a fund size of 17 Meur. The second fund, Power Fund II, was raised in spring 2008 with a fund size of 63 Meur. www.vntm.com
Finnish Industry Investment Ltd is a government-owned investment company. It invests the proceeds accrued from the privatisation of state-owned companies in stimulating the growth and internationalisation of Finnish businesses. Finnish Industry Investment invests in venture capital funds and directly in growth companies, together with private co-investors. The targets are in all sectors. Capital investments are needed for financing the growth of investee companies, and for spin-offs, major industrial investments, and sector and corporate restructurings. The investments of Finnish Industry Investment amount to some EUR 470 million. www.industryinvestment.com
ONEXIM Group, a private investment fund, holds a diversified portfolio of investments in the mining, metallurgical, energy sectors, including hydrogen power engineering and nanotechnology, as well as in financial services, media, and real estate. www.onexim.org