Testplant backed by angel fund Seraphim

Industry veterans gain £1m for IT acquistion vehicle

A company formed by seasoned software entrepreneurs as a vehicle to make acquisitions has gained £1m of funding.

Testplant has gained backing from the Seraphim Fund, an Enterprise Capital Fund backed by business angels and corporate financiers as well as the UK government.

The company has already begun to buy up competitors in what it believes to be a fragmented software testing market. Its first acquisition is Redstone Software Inc, a subsidiary of Gresham Computing which it bought for £500,000.

Testplant is led by chief executive George Mackintosh and chairman Jon Richards, who between them have successfully built up and sold more than a dozen software businesses during the last decade. Both are investing alongside Seraphim in this current round.

As part of Seraphim’s investment, David Harrison is joining the board as a non-executive director. Harrison was previously managing director of Mercury Interactive – which was acquired by Hewlett Packard in 2006 for $4.5bn.

“Seraphim’s investment and our acquisition of Redstone marks an exciting development for Testplant,” said Mackintosh.

“With best in class testing products that deliver more reliable software systems quicker and at a lower cost to the developer, and an existing base of Fortune 500 customers, we now have a tremendously credible springboard to expand Redstone’s business beyond its traditional US borders and into the Asian and European markets.

“With Seraphim’s backing, we will continue to look to identify other acquisition targets within the software testing market that will complement and enhance our product offering.”

The company was advised on the acquisition by UK law firm Freeth Cartwright LLP and US law firm Richards, Layton & Finger.

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2008


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