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Private Equity Strategies

New Ventures: SEB Venture Capital invests in 3D graphics business

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

By: Bailey McCann, Private Equity Strategies

The venture capital arm of SEB, the Northern European financial Group is getting into 3D with a new transaction. SEB Venture Capital has invested in Donya Labs AB, a global leader in optimization of 3D graphics for computer games. The new capital will enable accelerated growth and diversification towards computer-aided design (CAD), architecture and film.

SEB Venture Capital has been investing in venture capital transactions for the past 18 years. With a capital base of SEK 2.5bn, it currently has 28 portfolio companies within technology and life science and has completed 70 exits since inception.

“We already have an investment in this segment, that produces 2D and 3D graphics. So, we are quite familiar with the market, and we think that the market will grow including 3D printing especially in areas like CAD,” says Ulf Lewander, Investment Manager, SEB Venture Capital, in an interview with Private Equity Strategies.

Donya Labs AB has developed unique software called Simplygon, to automatically optimize advanced 3D graphics. Traditionally, optimization of 3D graphics has been expensive and time consuming as a manual process. By automatically optimizing 3D graphics for applications such as real-time visualization, interactivity and 3D printing, workflows can be streamlined and integrated.

“We believe the new business model which operates a cloud version of the technology will open a huge market opportunity,” Lewander says. “Right now the company only sells licensing to high end gaming companies. Those companies pay thousands of dollars per license, per game. We have been able to prove that one 3D model at a time done on the cloud is also justifiable.”

SEB Venture Capital has subscribed to a new share issue of SEK 10m focused on growing this cloud offer and adding new geographies to the company’s footprint. SEB and Donya Labs will be looking for additional subscribers in for a serial round B in the future.

Lewander notes that SEB Venture Capital is focused on finding companies like this that can move from one niche to a broader market. “We are looking for companies that have already proven themselves in tough spaces, going forward we think that will be mostly in software, not hardware.”

This article was published in Opalesque's Private Equity Strategies our monthly research update on the global private equity landscape including all sectors and market caps.
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