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9 April 2013

Tensilica is lucrative exit

US-based chip design software manufacturer Tensilica, backed by Japan technology companies Fujitsu and NTT, and US-based technology company Cisco, was the biggest sale of the quarter, in an exit to US-based chip design software manufacturer Cadence Design Systems for $380m. The biggest initial public offering of the quarter was the $108m raised by US-based marketing software company Marin Software.

Author: Toby Lewis, Editor

US-based chip design software manufacturer Tensilica, backed by Japan technology companies Fujitsu and NTT, and US-based technology company Cisco, was the biggest sale of the quarter, in an exit to US-based chip design software manufacturer Cadence Design Systems for $380m.

In 2010 Japan-based electronics company Fujitsu used its corporate venturing fund to make a strategic investment of undisclosed size in Tensilica. The previous year, Japan’s national phone operator NTT made a similar strategic investment through its Docomo Capital corporate venturing fund.

Other backers of the company included US-based logic device company Altera, semiconductor company Conexant Systems, Japan-based electronics company Panasonic (formerly Matsushita Electric Industrial) and Japan-based technology company NEC.

The biggest initial public offering (IPO) of the quarter was the $108m raised by US-based marketing software company Marin Software. The company’s backers included SAP Ventures. Half the top 10 deals were IPOs, reflecting a robust rebound in the public markets.

The second-biggest exit of the quarter was the $165m sale of Mfoundry, a mobile banking and payment solutions provider for financial institutions and retailers, to Fidelity National Information Services (FIS), a banking and payments technologies company, which acquired the remaining 78% stake it did not already own. Mfoundry’s backers included corporates PayPal and NCR Corp.

The sale of Skyfire Labs, a US-based mobile video optimisation company, for up to $155m,to Opera Software, a Norway-based technology company spun out of Telenor in 1995, provided an exit for US-based telecommunications company Verizon. Skyfire had raised about $40m. In January last year, Verizon’s corporate venturing unit led Skyfire’s $8m funding round.

Xoom, a US-based money transfer service backed by SVB Capital, the corporate venturing unit of Silicon Valley Bank, and Volition Capital (formerly Fidelity Ventures, a corporate venturing division of financial services corporation Fidelity Investments, before its spin-off) raised $101m in its Nasdaq flotation.

Arieso, a UK-based provider of location-aware software for mobile carriers backed by chip maker Qualcomm’s corporate venturing unit, was sold to JDSU, a Nasdaq-listed networks company, for $85m. A report by news provider PE Hub said it was a 4.7-times return for investors.

Silver Spring Networks, a US-based smart grid networking company backed by Japan-based technology group Hitachi, US peer EMC and Google Ventures, the corporate venturing unit of the search engine, sold 4.75 million shares at $17 each to raise $80.75m.

KaloBios Pharmaceuticals, a developer of monoclonal antibody therapeutics for cancers and respiratory diseases backed by corporate venturing units Genzyme Ventures and Mitsubishi UFJ Capital, raised around $70m in its IPO.

US-based medical diagnostics company LipoScience, previously backed by corporates including General Electric, raised $45m in its IPO. One of the largest shareholders in LipoScience is Agilent Technologies, which holds 5.8%.

Also sold was Baxano, a US-based developer of spinal devices backed by healthcare provider Kaiser Permanente’s corporate venturing unit. TranS1, a Nasdaq-listed medical device maker, is paying $23.6m.

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