Edinburgh Instruments in £1.9m sale

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EDINBURGH Instruments (EI), the first spin-out company from Heriot-Watt University, is being sold to Hong Kong-listed Techcomp in a £1.9 million deal.

Techcomp has already bought a 66 per cent stake in the company from founder Professor Des Smith, Japan-based Hammatsu Photonics and Scottish Enterprise. A spokeswoman for EI said that she expected the company’s other shareholders to sell their stakes to Techcomp over the coming months.

Under the deal, Smith will join Techcomp as its chief scientific officer, while Alan Faichney, EI’s chief executive, will leave the business after two-and-a-half years in the post.

Chris O’Connor, chief executive at Techcomp Europe Group, said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity of adding EI to our portfolio of businesses and to be able to expand our range of technologies and products.”

EI was spun out from Heriot-Watt in 1971 when Smith was head of the university’s physics department. Last year the firm appointed Derek Shepherd, a former director at Glasgow-based temporary power supplier Aggreko, as its chairman.