3i and Benchmark fund launch of start-up company, OmPrompt

02 Jun 2005

Leading venture capital firms 3i and Benchmark Capital Europe today announce a £5m series A funding of a new start-up, OmPrompt, founded to address supply chain issues created by various incompatible formats and systems.

OmPrompt's "neutral messaging" service translates information, regardless of format (e.g. data, voice and fax)  from any communications device to another, eliminating current and future communications issues. Message integration is free with charges levied per transaction.

Backing from 3i and Benchmark has allowed OmPrompt to complete customer acceptance testing. Going forward, it will help expand the service offering, grow the customer base and scale revenues. The company has already attracted customers such as Kimberly-Clark and Kuehne + Nagel and is currently in discussions with several other prospective clients.

"By increasing "usability" and reducing cost for supply chain partners, 3i believes that OmPrompt's solution is truly disruptive. It has the capacity to drive technology adoption in a fundamentally new way. 3i is excited to work with the highly experienced management team to help grow OmPrompt's business" said 3i's Patrick Sheehan.

George Coelho of Benchmark Capital Europe added: "We are very excited to be investing in OmPrompt and are confident that it will enjoy great success. The combination of compelling technology and management make the company 'one-to-watch'."

Notes to editors

About 3i
3i is a world leader in private equity and venture capital. We focus on Buyouts, Growth Capital and Venture Capital and invest across Europe, in the United States and in Asia Pacific.  Our competitive advantage comes from our international network and the strength and breadth of our relationships in business. These underpin the value that we deliver to our portfolio and to our shareholders.    Underlining 3i's 30 year VC track record and success, Investor AllStars named 3i "VC Fund of the Year 2004" and EVCJ, "VC Firm of the Year" in 2005. Additionally 3i was Europe's most active VC for the year, committing €108 million to early-stage technology companies in the 6 months to 30 September 2004.   3i backs award-winning companies including Vonage, US (VOIP), Udex US (RFID), The Cloud, UK (wireless), Microsulis, Scotland (medtech), Mobile 365, France (comms), Smart Fuel Cells, Germany (alternative energy), Fractus, Spain (antennas), Sulake Finland (gaming) with successful IPO realisations through Cambridge Silicon Radio (CSR), e2v, Bookham Technology, Novuspharma (Italy) and many others.  For more information on 3i's VC division, go to:  www.3i.com

About Benchmark Capital
Benchmark Capital was founded in 1995 to help talented entrepreneurs build great technology companies focused on long-term growth.  Benchmark's partners take an intensive, hands-on, team-oriented, approach to venture investing to deliver a superior level of service to the firm's portfolio companies.  Benchmark's portfolio includes franchise companies such as Alphyra (the leading pan European electronic payments provider), Betfair (the world's largest online betting company), eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY), Juniper Networks (Nasdaq: JNPR), Sulake (the "Habbo Hotel" leading online games community, founded in Finland), Red Hat (Nasdaq: RHAT) and Zopa (the online exchange for direct loans between lenders and borrowers). Managing more than $3 billion in committed venture capital, Benchmark focuses on investing in entrepreneurs with original ideas. Since setting up a fund in Europe in May 2000, Benchmark has made more than 35 investments across a variety of market sectors and geographies.  The $375m raised by Benchmark Europe II follows Benchmark's first European fund of $500m. For more information on Benchmark, visit its website at www.benchmark.com