Based in the Midlands, one of Mercia’s core investment regions, Allinea Software was presented with their award at an annual celebration of excellence for UK businesses backed by private equity and venture capital.
Allinea and the other Midlands winners will now be going forward into the national final to compete against seven other regions, before the national winners are announced at the BVCA Gala Dinner on 30th November in London.
The judging panel commented: “The judges were impressed with David Lecomber and his team, who have taken a project within a university spin-out and developed it into the leading provider of analysis tools for High Performance Computing. Allinea’s global customer base is a testament to the respect it commands in this sector. A strategic exit to ARM in December 2016 proved its pre-eminence.”
Mercia exited its holding in Allinea when the company was acquired by ARM Limited, the world's leading semiconductor intellectual property company, on 16th December 2016.
Allinea was sold to ARM Limited for a total cash consideration of up to £18.1million. Mercia recognised an immediate realised gain of £0.7million, compared with the holding value of £1.9million as at 30 September 2016. Mercia's total investment cost was £1.54million, so the initial proceeds of £2.6million represents a 73% uplift.
Mercia’s managed funds (the University Challenge Fund) returned 26x the original investment cost and Mercia Technologies’ later stage balance sheet investment returned 21x the original investment cost.
In 2009, Mercia led the funding of a management buyout of Allinea from another University of Warwick spinout. Mercia's third-party managed funds provided early-stage investment and support. Following a period of successful trading, Allinea then became one of the Group’s original direct investments or 'Emerging Stars' at the time of Mercia's IPO in December 2014. Mercia's direct holding increased from 6.9% at IPO, to 16.6% as at 30 September 2016 via its purchase of the Mercia Fund 2 investment portfolio in 2015.