Angels smile on four growing firms with £3.9m boost

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Four fast-growing companies have received a £3.9 million boost from angel investors and the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB).

Edinburgh-based Archangels, the business angel investing syndicate, teamed up with SIB, the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise, to back Administrate, Blackford Analysis, Fios Genomics and PowerPhotonic.

Administrate, led by chief executive John Peebles, was among four firms to receive a funding boost. Picture: Colin Hattersley

Administrate, led by chief executive John Peebles, was among four firms to receive a funding boost. Picture: Colin Hattersley

The £1.7m injection is a further boost for training software outfit Administrate – based at the CodeBase tech incubator in the Scottish capital – which last month secured a place on a publicly-backed scheme aimed at helping start-ups accelerate their growth.

READ MORE: Edinburgh software firm to scale up with UK’s best

Chief executive John Peebles said: “I’m really proud of the amazing team we’ve built here at Administrate, and that team of course includes our investors.

“Together we share a vision of building an incredible company that makes our customers successful and is a place where staff can come to work, learn and grow. It’s an incredible thing to know that we’re helping deliver education to millions around the world, and we’re just getting started.”

Fellow Edinburgh firm Blackford Analysis, which produces information systems to help clinicians compare multiple images in fields such as radiology, received £648,000 of additional investment. The company, based at the city’s Royal Observatory, will use the funds to extend its commercial and product development teams, creating a further ten jobs over the next year.

“We have a strong core business in radiology and this investment enables us to extend our capabilities to enhance imaging in other clinical areas such as ophthalmology, dermatology and oncology,” said chief executive Ben Panter.

Fios Genomics said it would invest its £550,000 cash injection from Archangels, SIB, Tri Cap and its own directors in IT infrastructure and the creation of five roles across its quality assurance, project management and marketing functions. The Edinburgh-based firm provides “bioinformatics” services that turn data into usable information for clients across the pharmaceuticals, biotech and academic sectors.

Chief executive Sarah Lynagh said: “We already work with eight of the world’s top ten pharma companies and this investment is all about funding for growth as we move towards consistent profitability. Our shareholders have been very supportive, taking the long-term view and supporting the business from early stage through to the success story that Fios is today.”

PowerPhotonic, based in Dalgety Bay, makes high-value optics that manipulate light from lasers and supplies customers in a range of sectors, including defence and the medical sector. It will use the second £1m tranche of a £2m investment round from Archangels and SIB last year to ramp up its business development and manufacturing capacity, creating up to eight further jobs this year.

“Archangels and SIB have been with us from the start and I see them very much as partners, investing not just cash but the experience and connections from the Archangels network,” said chief executive Roy McBride.

Niki McKenzie, investment director at Archangels, said: “As investors, we know that it’s just as important for Archangels to provide ongoing growth capital as it is to find and invest in start-up companies in the first place.

“The companies who have received funding in these latest rounds are each Scottish success stories in their own right, selling their ideas, products and expertise around the world, and we are proud to have them in our portfolio of exciting Scottish businesses.”

SIB head Kerry Sharp added: “The Scottish Enterprise co-investment model allows us to invest alongside Archangels into Scottish companies that are at the forefront of bringing exciting new innovations to the market.

“In addition to SIB co-investment, these companies also work with Scottish Enterprise, helping them to build on their international growth success to date. All four companies are great examples of the quality of investment opportunities in Scotland and the ability of Scottish companies to compete on the international stage.”