SURE VENTURES PLC / ISIN: GB00BYWYZ460 / Ticker: SURE / Market: SFS / Sector: Investment
Sure Ventures plc (‘Sure Ventures’ or ‘the Company’)
Portfolio Update Q4 2019
Sure Ventures plc, a London listed venture capital fund which invests in early stage software companies in the rapidly growing technology areas of augmented reality (‘AR’), virtual reality (‘VR’), Internet of Things (‘IoT’) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Fintech, is pleased to provide an update on its investment portfolio.
SURE VALLEY VENTURES
Sure Ventures has made a total commitment of €7 million to Sure Valley Ventures Fund (‘Sure Valley’) representing an interest in Sure Valley of approximately 25.9%. This commitment was made at a price of €1.00 per share.
Sure Valley has several investments across the AR, VR, IoT and AI sectors:
VR Education Holdings – http://immersivevreducation.com/
VRE is a ground-breaking developer of VR software and immersive experiences with a specific focus on education and enterprise learning and development. VRE’s core platform is the Engage VR platform that enables educators to develop VR education experiences and enterprises to develop corporate learning and development VR simulations for workplace training. The company has released five major products to date and has recently signed a commercial agreement with Deutsche Telecom for the launch of a 5G VR device:
· Apollo 11 VR: immersivevreducation.com/apollo-11-vr
· Titanic VR: immersivevreducation.com/titanic-vr
· Berlin Blitz: immersivevreducation.com/1943-berlin-blitz
· Engage VR: immersivevreducation.com/engage-platform
· Raid on the Ruhr: https://immersivevreducation.com/raid-on-the-ruhr/
WarDucks – www.warducks.com
Founded by former Facebook employee, Nikki Lannen, WarDucks’ mission is to build incredible, high quality, fun augmented and virtual reality games. The company has six bestselling titles under its belt, the latest two of which were Top Ten on PlayStation VR. To take this product to the market, WarDucks completed a series A round of €3.284 million in Q1, with new investors EQT investing €2.58 million, Sure Valley following on to maintain it percentage with €453,858.32 and existing investors making up the remaining investment. The transaction completed on the 29 March 2019. This represented a 4x unrealised uplift in our initial investment.
Nikki and her team received high public praise from Tim Cook (Apple CEO) on the AR game being built and was quoted as saying “WarDucks set out to create a game with fun, engaging and colourful characters and they nailed it”.
Wia – www.wia.io
WIA is a ground-breaking Internet of Things (IoT) cloud platform https://www.wia.io/product, enabling developers to turn any type of sensor device into a secure, smart and useful application in a matter of minutes. WIA is the easiest and fastest way to link sensors and devices to develop IoT applications. WIA’s end-to-end platform provides full device and application management, security, data capture and storage, analysis, control, as well as the seamless integration of enterprise systems. WIA also just lunched its own hardware product called the “Dot One” https://www.wia.io/dot-one as an entry level device for first time makers
ProVision – www.provisioncameramatics.com
Provision is the leader in CameraMatics solutions for commercial fleets, delivering products that allow fleet managers to reduce fleet risk, increase driver safety and comply with growing governance and compliance regulations. ProVision has merged four key technologies: video input systems (cameras and scanners), smart processing systems, communications systems and unique algorithmic IP to deliver intelligent driver and fleet safety systems. To support further growth and USA market entry the company has started meeting investors to lead its series A round; we expect that round to complete before the end of Q1 2020.
NDRC Arc Labs – http://www.arclabs.ie/
The NDRC@ArcLabs investment was structured as a subscription as a limited partner to the Accelerator. The purpose of the Accelerator is to source and develop 30 start-ups over two years that Sure Valley has the right to invest in. The Accelerator is running three calls for 10 start-ups over two years in areas that are related to the fund’s investment strategy of AR/VR, IoT and AI. As a result of the Accelerator’s programme significantly overlapping with the Fund’s investment areas, we see this Accelerator being a source of proprietary deal flow.
Artomatix – https://artomatix.com/
As previously disclosed to the market, Artomatix has been sold and this sale represented a 5x cash on cash return in a 14 month period, thus highlighting the potential investment returns available in such fast moving technology spaces.
Nova Leah is the leader in cyber security for connected medical devices and is an IoT investment by Sure Valley Ventures. Nova Leah sells directly to the top medical device manufactures typically in Boston, MA and the west coast of the USA. The company’s first product SelectEvidence helps medical device manufacturers identify and address cyber-security issues throughout the manufacturing and release process of their connected medical devices. Sure Valley Ventures invested 750K euros in the company for 10.62% of the business fully diluted. Antia Finnegan (CEO) is happy with progress and Nova Leah is now working with six of the world’s largest medical device manufacturers.
Admix has developed a Supply-Side Platform (‘SSP’), which enables developers to monetise their content by creating, managing and sell advertising inventory. Being an SSP, Admix is a broker that sells developers (think WarDucks) inventory programmatically at scale. Being programmatic automatises the buying/selling process. Admix enables, for the first time, VR/AR inventory to become immediately available to thousands of advertisers connected to the existing ecosystem, which provides VR/AR developers with instant revenue. Sure Valley invested $500 thousand at a pre-money of $5,000,000 for a shareholding of 7% fully diluted in the business, with a right in the investment docs to get to 10% at the next round should Sure Valley choose to. The company is growing with a significant headwind and we anticipate a series A funding by the end of Q1 2020.
VividQ is a deep tech software company with world-leading expertise in 3D holography: the next generation display technology. Holography has long been considered the ultimate display technology. The science fiction ideal of engineering and manipulating light to produce 3D projections appealed to the imagination of millions through franchises such as Star Wars or Star Trek. Holography overcomes these issues and paves the way for immersive 3D without the need glasses at all. VividQ disrupts existing ways of creating 3D images, such stereo or autostereo-display, to power the next generation of holographic VR headsets, AR smart glasses, and automotive head-up displays. Sure Valley Ventures invested £500k in preference shares at a pre-money valuation of £6.5m for a total stake of 5.23% fully diluted. Sure Valley Ventures invested alongside Fluxunit and UTEC and adoption of the technology is accelerating, announcing partnerships with Himax and Compound Photonics, with a strong pipeline developing with some of the world’s leading and well-known brands.
Ambisense’s Ambilytics™ platform optimises the delivery of environmental risk assessment on some of the world’s largest infrastructure projects across industrial, Oil & Gas and Waste Management verticals, partnering with global multinationals such as CEMEX, SGS & Arcadis. Ambilytics™ encompasses both IoT and AI solutions, combining information from remotely deployed field devices with contextual data sources such as weather, satellite, geophysical and operational data to build machine learning models.
Ambisense has developed a toolkit to enable customers to build fully customisable, web-enabled instruments to acquire and analyse the data required quickly and cost-effectively. Each element can be tailored to different needs whether a client wants to measure gas, air or water quality or anything in between.
Investments made directly by Sure Ventures plc:
Immotion is a UK based company that creates its own high-quality VR content and enhances the immersive experience by coupling this content with motion simulation. Sure Ventures made a £500,000 investment in February 2018. Immotion’s Q1 trading update released on the 15th of January 2020 showed a strong pace of headset deployment, with 93 headsets to be installed by the end of Q1. They have installed their out of home headsets in the London Sea Life Centre on the South Bank and numerous aquariums and entertainment sites. The company forecasts EBITDA breakeven at or around the end of Q1 and continue to see a strong pipeline.
In addition to the Sure Valley Ventures stake of £500K, Sure Ventures has also made a direct investment into VividQ of £500k at the recommendation of the AIFM. The board identified the opportunity as a suitable and complimentary investment for Sure Ventures and agreed that this was an exciting deep technology company that could have developed a solution that changes the way that people view content in 3D. Holography could be the next generation of display technology and the types of companies that are early stage adopters of VividQ’s software offers shareholders and exciting opportunity. We remain excited about the progress being made here and anticipate that 2020 could be a transformational year for the company.
Sure Ventures Director, Gareth Burchell, said, “We remain pleased and positive about the progress made by the AIFM this quarter. The sale of Artomatix has demonstrated the potential for value creation in our chosen investment areas and a 5x cash on cash return in such a short space of time was very pleasing indeed. We have constructed a portfolio that has a potential that we believe is far greater than the current mark to market valuation used in our NAV calculation and we look forward to updating the market on the progress of not only our current portfolio, but further investment opportunities being progressed in our pipeline of deals.”