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Victoria U partners with Booster to launch $10M start-up fund


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: September 5th, 2018

Viclink, the tech transfer arm of Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, and Booster, a Wellington-based financial services firm, plan to invest $10 million in a selection of start-ups.

The New Zealand Booster initiative will invest a minimum of $2 million per year for five years. It is the first time a local financial firm has partnered with a university to support start-up activity.

“It will transform how we nurture businesses formed from our researchers’ groundbreaking thinking,” says Grant Guilford, vice chancellor at the university. “Stimulating a design-led, high-value manufacturing region is one of Victoria University of Wellington’s distinctive strengths, and the new partnership contributes to that. It will result in more jobs and add not only to Wellington’s economy but to that of New Zealand as a whole.”

According to Booster’s managing director Allan Yeo, the partnership reflects the firm’s commitment to New Zealand’s economic development.

“Commercialization of research has long been seen as an opportunity to enhance the contribution of our universities to New Zealand,” says Yeo. “Historically this financing has relied on angel funding or venture capital, which means opportunities to date have not only been hard to come by, but future commercialization and growth benefits leave New Zealand.”

Viclink currently has equity in 20 university start-ups. Over the next 10 years, and with help from the new partnership with Booster, the tech transfer office plans to increase that number to 50 start-ups.

“Having the support of Booster dramatically improves the chances of the start-ups growing faster, making them more attractive to other investors,” says Viclink CEO Anne Barnett.

Source: bizEDGE

Posted under: Tech Transfer e-News

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