London Stock Exchange welcomes Draper Esprit plc

London Stock Exchange welcomes Draper Esprit plc

Draper Esprit (AIM: GROW, ESM: GRW), one of the leading venture capital investors involved in the creation, funding and development of high-growth technology businesses with an emphasis on digital technologies in the UK, the Republic of Ireland and Europe has today successfully listed on AIM and the ESM segment of Irish Stock Exchange.

Overall the Company has raised £102 million including approximately £79 million at an issue price of 300 pence per Share by way of a placing of 14,020,547 new and 1,500,000 existing ordinary shares of 1 pence each ("Shares"), and a subscription (the "Subscription") of 10,700,000 new ordinary shares with institutional and other investors. A further 7,953,362 Shares (worth approximately £24 million) were issued to a number of vendors in part-consideration for the acquisition of their interests in the Initial Portfolio.

The Draper Esprit team has considerable experience. The team has operated the Group for nine years and, prior to that, its members worked for leading firms within the venture capital industry. In aggregate, the team has been involved in investing over US$1 billion into more than 200 technology businesses and has been involved in creating businesses with a total aggregate value of over US$8 billion, with an exited value of over US$6 billion.

On Admission Draper Esprit will own minority interests in 24 portfolio companies balanced across four sectors: Consumer Technology, Enterprise Technology, Hardware and Healthcare. Notable companies in the portfolio include: Graze (Nature Delivered Ltd), Trustpilot, Lyst, SportPursuit, Qosmos, M-Files, Conversocial, Horizon Discovery and Movidius.

Simon Cook, CEO and Co-Founder of Draper Esprit, said:

"Our motivation for evolving our Venture Capital business model was twofold. Firstly, we wanted to be able to invest for longer in our emerging companies and to be able to build bigger stakes as companies remained private for longer periods, capturing more value for shareholders. Secondly, we wanted to further democratise funding for entrepreneurs.

Traditionally the Limited Partnership model in Europe has restricted who can invest in venture capital backed companies and many growing technology companies are not accessible to institutions or public investors until they go public. Now everyone can participate in the growth of VC backed companies from their earliest stages through series A and B to their success in the later stages up to and including their IPO.

This permanent capital model is ideally suited to a listed vehicle and we are grateful for the support this approach has received from shareholders including: Woodford Investment Management, the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund, China Huarong International Holdings Ltd, Baillie Gifford and several other city institutions, successful entrepreneurs and family offices, many of whom have active later stage and IPO investment activities."

Numis Securities Limited acted as Lead Bookrunner and Nominated Adviser with Goodbody Stockbrokers and Zeus Capital Limited acting as Joint Bookrunners. Goodbody Stockbrokers also acted at ESM Adviser in Ireland.