LPG Innovations acquires capital for growth
SOFTBANK Europe Ventures steps in as the lead investorThe Finnish mobile software company LPG Innovations today announced that it has secured a 10 Million infusion from SOFTBANK Europe Ventures, the $500 million European fund of SOFTBANK CORP, and from CapMan Capital Management Oy, the leading Finnish venture capital company. The investment provides a springboard for LPG Innovations aggressive expansion into Europe, Asia and North America.
LPG Innovations secured its first round investment from CapMan Capital Management Oy in 1999 and has since opened offices in Germany and the UK.
SOFTBANKs backing is central to LPG Innovations next stage of expansion, says Mr. Pekka Kelkka, CEO of LPG Innovations. In the world of top VCs, SOFTBANK Europe Ventures is well positioned to take advantage of worldwide wireless opportunities. SOFTBANK offers global reach, strong experience and access to its network of over 600 companies to take us to the next level and into new territories just as the wireless market is taking off around the world.
As part of the agreement Mr. Daniel Sasaki, Managing Director of SOFTBANK Europe Ventures, will become a board member of LPG Innovations.
In the coming battle for market share on the wireless Internet, LPG has crafted some powerful weapons, says Mr. Sasaki. LPG ServicePortalTM is a basic tool for managing wireless applications that is already in demand by major European operators such as Vodafone and large corporates like BMW. And, LPG WAPofficeTM is achieving rapid market penetration as the first carrier grade software product that provides direct wireless access to existing home and office email, calendar and address book applications without requiring installation of any new calendaring or other redundant office applications. SOFTBANK has a strong track record of investing in companies that revolutionise industries and we see LPG as a candidate to do just that for wireless business applications.
"With this new investment we will be able to continue to develop LPG into a truly global player in the area of wireless application platforms", states Mr. Petri Niemi, Investment Director at CapMan and also the Chairman of the Board at LPG Innovations.
LPGs mission is to develop robust and scalable device independent solutions that give service providers greater control over their offering and their brand and which substantially improve the user experience.
The mobile market is undergoing a transformation, with established players such as telecom operators facing new competition from financial institutions, media corporations and insurance companies. This opens a window of opportunity for companies like us, says Mr. Kelkka.
LPGs main products are the LPG ServicePortal and the LPG WAPoffice. The LPG ServicePortal is an infrastructure platform for mobile and Internet services. The solution combines dynamic service management with high availability and scalability and allows rapid and easy-to-use delivery of services to end-users. Various additional components, such as profile advertising and billing systems, can be included in the product.
The LPG WAPoffice is a personal office application which streamlines office routines in a WAP environment. The LPG WAPoffice application enables easy and quick access to basic office applications, such as electronic mail, address books and calendars, using any mobile device.
About LPG Innovations Oy
LPG Innovations Oy, founded in 1994, is one of the mobile Internets early pioneers. The company provides service level enhancing solutions for corporations, operators and service providers. LPG Innovations focuses on transforming new technologies to highly scalable solutions with open interfaces and inbuilt fault tolerance. LPG Innovations customers include mobile operators (such as Vodafone), b-to-b service providers (LCI Consultants), and large corporations (BMW). LPG Innovations partners include Hewlett-Packard, Oracle, WM-Data and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young. Currently, LPG Innovations employs over 120 people in three Finnish development centers and branch offices in Germany and the UK.
About Softbank Europe Ventures
Softbank Europe Ventures (SBEV) is a $500 million venture capital fund dedicated to investing in and building the best new technology companies in Europe; key investment areas include the Internet, infrastructure, wireless and new media. SBEV is part of SOFTBANK CORP, one of the worlds leading Internet investors and a stakeholder in over 600 Internet companies. Softbank Europe Ventures brings its portfolio companies the benefits of Softbanks international network, as well as the expertise that has helped Internet companies such as Yahoo!, E*Trade and ZDNet become industry leaders. To date, SBEV investments include LPG Innovations, Picofun, Startupfactory, and StiVentures NV. SBEV offices are located in London, Munich and Paris.
About CapMan Capital Management Oy
CapMan Capital Management Oy is one of the leading private equity investors in the Nordic countries specialising in medium-sized management buy-outs and buy-ins, and technology investments in the fields of information technology, telecommunication and the media. Currently CapMan has funds in excess of EUR 950 million under management. To date CapMan has invested in more than 90 companies in Finland and elsewhere in Europe. The funds managed by CapMan have made an exit from 24 investments so far. In addition to LPG Innovations, examples of CapMans technology investments include Aldata Solution, Satama Interactive, Iobox and Netseal.
For further information, please contact:
Mr. Pekka Kelkka, CEO, LPG Innovations Oy
tel. +358 30 6006 30, mobile +358 400 895930
Email: [email protected]
Mr. Daniel Sasaki, Managing Director, SOFTBANK Europe Ventures
Tel. +44 207 881 2777
Email: [email protected]
Mr. Petri Niemi, Investment Director, CapMan Capital Management Oy
Tel +358 9 6155 8346, Mobile: +358 400 511 493
Email: [email protected]