Business Technology

Saturday 19 October 2019

Silicon Valley Bank commits $300m to help grow Irish tech, life sciences companies

The news was welcomed by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe (Niall Carson/PA)
The news was welcomed by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe (Niall Carson/PA)

Shawn Pogatchnik

Silicon Valley Bank is providing $300m (€266m) in loan and credit capital to Irish technology and life sciences companies, a commitment backed by the Irish Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF).

The agreement between the specialist California lender and the State development fund is being unveiled Wednesday in a ceremony involving Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe.

Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), the leading corporate banker in California’s dot.com heartland, entered the Irish corporate finance market in 2012 and since has provided €226m to 29 Irish tech and medical sciences companies. That list includes Accuris, AMCS, Atlantic Therapeutics, Boxever, Clavis Insight, Drop, Glofox, Movidius and Profitero.

The bank says its new €300m credit line will be deployed over the coming five years. ISIF, in turn, will deepen its existing investments in SVB Capital-managed international funds.

“The Irish innovation sector has experienced incredible growth since we began working with the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund in 2012. We’re proud to continue this great relationship and work with a growing roster of Ireland’s best tech companies,” said John China, president of SVB Capital.

Minister Donohoe said Silicon Valley Bank’s deepening commitment to Irish companies “is a concrete example of ISIF’s strategy to leverage into Ireland private-sector investors willing to invest in innovative Irish start-ups to the benefit of the Irish economy.”

Fergal McAleavey, senior director of private equity and venture capital at ISIF, said its partnership with Silicon Valley Bank would ensure that Irish tech and life sciences companies can tap sufficient financing to “help them to grow and thrive. This commitment is fully aligned with ISIF’s strategic investment focus on supporting the growth of indigenous companies.” 

Wednesday’s event is happening at the Dublin headquarters of one of the bank’s client companies, Glofox, which builds IT systems and management software products for gyms and fitness studios worldwide.

"Silicon Valley Bank has been a great supporter of Glofox as we continue to grow and develop new solutions for our clients,” said Glofox chief executive Conor O'Loughlin. “Glofox was founded to help passionate fitness entrepreneurs be successful running their business and we needed a financial services provider that understood the complex needs and quick pace of founders and their growing start-ups. We found that partner in SVB.”

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