Posted on Thursday 27th February 2014
University of Birmingham spinout, Smart Antenna Technologies secures extra funding
Smart Antenna Technologies (SAT) recently announced the completion of a further investment lead by Mercia Fund Management, the investment syndicate included Angel investors, the company’s management team and family offices. The investment will fund product development and sales and marketing activities.
SAT provides an innovative single-antenna technology enabling mobile device manufacturers to replace all existing antennae with a single multi-band antenna, the performance of which will match that of the separate antennae at their specified frequencies.
SAT’s technology has emerged from research by Professor Peter Hall, Professor Peter Gardener and Dr Sampson Hu, leading experts in radio antenna technology at the University of Birmingham. The spinout, which launched in August 2013, was originally developed with the support of the University’s Enterprise Acceleration Team and its technology transfer company Alta Innovations Limited.
SAT has made significant progress since its launch. It completed a demonstrator of the technology and is working with leading consumer electronic suppliers in each of its key market sectors; mobile phone, laptops and tablets, in-car electronics and micro-base stations. SAT expects to convert these engagements into ‘design wins’ for inclusion in future products over the next 12 months.
Rick Hillum, CEO of SAT, comments: “As handset manufacturers are rolling out devices more frequently, they are looking to produce fewer variants. Consumers also want the ability to use their mobile device globally; our antenna provides seamless multi-continent coverage whilst supporting all other integrated functions that would normally require separate antenna¹s. We are rapidly ramping-up discussions with a number of the leading portable device manufacturers and chip-set suppliers and remain on course to produce our first antenna later this year.”
Everard Mascarenhas of Mercia Fund Management added: “We are extremely pleased with the progress the company has made within such a short time. The performance of the demonstrator exceeded our expectations both in terms of its technical performance and the time-scale in which it has been produced. We were always very confident that the benefits SAT’s technology had to offer would attract mobile device manufacturers, the speed with which the tier 1 suppliers have engage with SAT has surprised and delighted us and validated the market opportunity. This only confirms our belief in the disruptive nature of the technology and the quality, commitment and focus of the management team.
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