Keit and our Investors
Keit was founded in 2012 as a spin-out from the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) in Harwell, UK. Investing in technology hardware development requires a commitment to and understanding of the development and commercial challenges of introducing new technology to established industries. Keit has been fortunate to attract investment from a selection of strong, committed and supportive investors, which has enabled us to develop a promising technology into a world-beating product.
Longwall specialises in venture capital for science, engineering and healthcare start ups. Based at the Harwell Campus, Oxfordshire, the Longwall team manage two funds, the £30m Oxford Technology Enterprise Capital Fund and the £40m Longwall Ventures Enterprise Capital Fund.
The Longwall funds have invested in over 35 investee companies in a range of sectors including cancer diagnostics, next generation DNA sequencing, scientific instrumentation, next generation PV, cancer drug delivery systems, satellite robotics, radar, oil drilling tools and organ transplant perfusion.
Since its launch at the end of 2011 the Angel CoFund has grown to become one of the most active venture funds in the UK. Working with a wide range of angel syndicates and investing across all sectors and stages the fund, along with its business angel partners and other co-investors, has committed more than £200 million to high potential businesses.
Privately managed but backed by the British Business Bank the £100 million fund makes initial investments of between £100,000 and £1 million into UK businesses, following with further investment where appropriate, and operating in partnership with syndicates of business angels. To date the fund has supported more than 70 companies (for example Gousto, Ebury, Creo Medical and Hopster) providing close to £40m million in direct investment alongside over £160 million from co-investors. The fund invests solely on a commercial basis, pari-passu with its partners, and has a long term objective to encourage and support the expansion of the business angel market.
The Rainbow Seed Fund is an early-stage venture capital fund dedicated to kick-starting technology companies from great science emerging from the National Research & Innovation Campuses. The Fund is backed by nine UK publicly-funded research organisations including STFC, BBSRC, Dstl and NERC and the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS). Rainbow, whose portfolio comprises more than 30 companies, holds investments in some of the UK’s most innovative early-stage companies. It has successfully leveraged from the private sector more than 20 times its own investment and created more than 550 high-value technology jobs. Rainbow’s identification of and very early investment in technologies is a crucial part of Impact for the research councils and a key underpinning of the Government’s Industrial Strategy.
The Rainbow Seed Fund is managed by Midven, an established venture capital firm with a successful track record of investing in small and medium-sized enterprises.
Sir Martin and Lady Audrey Wood founded Oxford Instruments plc (OI) in 1959. OI invented and commercialised the world’s first super-conducting magnets for a range of new applications, most notably enabling the development of MRI scanners. The Woods grew Oxford Instruments from its origins in a garden shed through a period of a rapid high growth before floating the business in 1983. OI has subsidiaries in Europe, USA, China, Japan and other countries. Martin and Audrey have a long history of “patient” investing in entrepreneurial businesses with several notable successes including Sophos plc, Healthcare at Home and more recently Cobalt Light Systems (acquired by Agilent Technologies) and NaturalMotion (acquired by Zynga Inc).
Wren Capital, whose managing partner is Rajat Malhotra (UK Business Angels Association Angel Investor of the Year for 2013) specialises in early stage investing across a variety of sectors. Our portfolio currently includes companies in the life sciences, B2B software, semiconductor, energy, and high-tech engineering sectors. Our involvement is tailored to the needs of each business and we aim to be a supportive value-adding investor. We generally follow a co-investment model and have links with a number of universities, VC firms, business schools, angel networks and a trusted network of high quality investors who share our investment philosophy.
The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is keeping the UK at the forefront of international science and tackling some of the most significant challenges facing society such as meeting our future energy needs, monitoring and understanding climate change, and global security. The Council has a broad science portfolio and works with the academic and industrial communities to share its expertise in materials science, space and ground-based astronomy technologies, laser science, microelectronics, wafer scale manufacturing, particle and nuclear physics, alternative energy production, radio communications and radar. STFC operates or hosts world class experimental facilities including in the UK the ISIS pulsed neutron source, the Central Laser Facility, and LOFAR, and is also the majority shareholder in Diamond Light Source Ltd. STFC is also responsible for major international science collaborations on behalf of the UK with organisations such as CERN, the European Southern Observatory and the European Spallation Source.