Sigma sells stake as Frontier IP places shares

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SHARES in Frontier IP, which helps universities to commercialise their research, jumped by 10 per cent yesterday after the Edinburgh-based firm raised £392,000 through an over-subscribed share placing.

Sigma Capital, the Aim-quoted investment vehicle in which Sir Tom Hunter has a 22 per cent stake, reduced its holding in Frontier from 26.7 per cent to 5.9 per cent as part of the move to place new and existing stock.

Aim-quoted Frontier was spun-out in 2009 from Sigma, which is expected to pocket a £70,000 profit on the sale of its shares for £228,000.

Frontier placed the shares with new and existing institutional investors at 10p each, helping to push its share price up 0.88p to 9.75p.

Neil Crabb, chief executive at Frontier, said: “We are delighted with the response we have had on this placing. The placing has been oversubscribed and we have been able to raise the full amount to invest in the future of Frontier and to enable Sigma to reduce its shareholding.

“The placing has been supported by both new and existing investors – testimony to the quality of our underlying university relationships and investee companies.”

In a separate deal, Crabb and Michael Brennand – one of Frontier’s regional directors – are swapping their stakes in Nandi, a food technology outfit spun out from Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University, for more shares in Frontier.

Crabb’s stake in Frontier will rise to 14.45 per cent, while Brannand – who is also Nandi’s executive chairman – will see his holding rise to 6.4 per cent. Meanwhile, Frontier’s stake in Nandi will increase to 20.15 per cent from 3.68 per cent.

In December, ingredients maker Tate & Lyle signed a deal to use Nandi’s technology.