The Navarra Tech Transfer fund was set up and registered with the CNMV last June with a first closing, maintaining a period of attracting new investors for twelve months since its establishment and proceeding to the final closure of the fund. It currently has an equity of 4,210,000 euros, contributed by the so-called Feder funds in a minority (percentage close to 50%) and by nine Navarre companies: Clave Major, Elctrónica Falcón, Frenos Iruña, Grupo AN, Grupo Infarco, Instrumentation and Components (Inycom), Mapsa, M. Torres and Viscofán.
The investments will be directed mainly to companies and projects in the early stages of development or new creation, based on technology from research centers, technology centers, universities, companies and / or their research groups, as well as other entities promoting Innovation in Navarra.
The projects will aim to commercially exploit the results of technological research and development (patents, intellectual property, prototypes and other research results). The objective is to facilitate the transfer of these results to the market.
In addition, they must be aligned with the strategic sectors defined in the Smart Specialization Strategy of Navarre, locate their activity in Navarra and present a business plan for the investment project.
The average investment per project is expected to be approximately 500,000 euros, either in the form of minority participation in capital or through participative loans, estimating that the company’s stay would be a minimum of four to six years from the contribution initial.
The investments would be adapted to the situation and development phase of each project, seeking co-investment with third parties, progressively making value creation and the needs of the company, being able to finance projects that require more than one million euros in several phases.
The Vice President of Economic Development of the Government of Navarra, Manu Ayerdi, explained in the presentation of Navarra Tech Transfer that “it is a venture capital fund that involves public and private agents in financing the regional needs of the I + D + i that offers financial leverage capacity to innovative companies and that aims to achieve the return of investments by being market oriented “.
According to Ayerdi, this responds to one of “the 24 prioritized challenges for the period 2017-2020” such as “technology transfer to companies”.
“It’s about stimulating collaborative innovation among companies, technology centers and universities, integrating entrepreneurs and small businesses in the challenges of sector leaders, it is of course to favor the creation of innovative technology-based companies,” said Ayerdi. “The objective is to respond to the competitive challenges in terms of R & D & I to contribute as a support and competitive advantage of the strategic sectors of our region, that is, an R & D + i focused on the market and without ruling out projects of interest in other areas, “he added.
The vice president said that “this challenge highlights the creation of a financial instrument dedicated to technology transfer and the promotion of technology-based companies, hence the creation of the Navarra Tech Transfer fund.
Finally, Ayerdi wanted to emphasize that “innovation increases prosperity, improves the quality of life and finds creative solutions to the great remains of our society.” For this reason, he stressed that “the budgets presented by the Government of Navarra corroborate our commitment to the subject, this year 2017 we have increased funding by 50% compared to 2016 and in the budget bill of 2018 the forecast is that grow another 18% “.
For his part, Francisco Arrarás, president of the AN Group, spoke on behalf of the nine companies that are part of the fund and said that “the creation of a fund can be a good formula to invest in innovation and future without misleading the companies of our day to day but supporting the best ideas, the best projects “.
Arrarás has also pointed out that these “can become not only future business but can transfer knowledge and solutions to the many needs that companies have from the new technology-based companies that are in Navarra because they know the region and are close to us” .
On the other hand, the CEO of Senior Key, fundraiser and also the Navarre company responsible for managing the fund, José Javier Armendariz, said that the “goal is to invest in the order of three projects a year, which will be more if we get in this period that we have until June to try to increase the size of the fund “.
“We will invest in projects in very early stages, therefore this means that they are high risk projects, but we want to support the promoters, the research teams from their origin and we will even support them in the constitution of the society in which we will invest to to be able to fulfill the objective of transferring technology to the market “, assured Armendariz.