Monday 22 July 2019

Irish tech firm VR Education starts trading on London and Irish stock markets

CEO David Whelan
CEO David Whelan
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

An Irish virtual reality and software firm has started trading on the London and the Irish stock markets.

The listing by Waterford-based Immersive VR Education is the first IPO for an Irish tech firm on the Irish Stock Exchange’s Enterprise Securities Market (ESM) since inception in 2005. 

The company raised €6.7m (£6m) before expenses as part of the admission process.

Its oversubscribed placing of 60,000,000 shares of 10p each implies a market capitalisation of around €21.6m (£19.3m) on admission.

ISE Chief Executive Deirdre Somers said that it is "fantastic to see VR Education Holdings, an ambitious Irish tech company at a relatively early stage of their development, utilise the ESM to access international pools of capital to deliver the finance they need to fuel their growth".  

"VR Education’s IPO success demonstrates that listing on an exchange is an option for SMEs with a great business, ambition and plans to scale."

VR Education focuses on the delivery and effectiveness of digital education and corporate training.

Its social learning and presentation platform, ENGAGE, offers users the capability to hold lessons, meetings and presentations in a secure, virtual, multi-user environment.

The platform, which is to be rolled out this year, also allows trainers to create pre-recorded or live content.

CEO David Whelan, CEO, said that the AR/VR market is growing at a fast rate - and as hardware becomes more affordable, this growth will undoubtedly gain further traction.

"We are at the forefront of this. As a VR software and technology group operating in the niche education sector, we provide students, educators and corporate trainers with a real alternative to attending brick and mortar institutes; benefits include cost-savings and course completion rates amongst others," he said.

"Having raised £6m and with the support of our new shareholders, our focus is now on strengthening our network of educational institutions and corporations, which already includes the likes of Oxford University and the BBC, and building our sales team to roll-out and position ENGAGE as the go-to platform of choice for digital education and simulated training globally."

Shard Capital Partners LLP and Davy are joint brokers to the group and Cairn Financial Advisers LLP is acting as Nominated Adviser. Davy is also acting as ESM advisor.

Prior to today’s IPO, VR Education raised €1.3m from a number of investors, including Suir Valley Ventures, Kernel Capital Venture Funds and Enterprise Ireland. 

The company currently has 21 full time employees in roles including animators, artists, researchers, marketing and developers.

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