Deal round up 14/08/02

Piper backs Las Iguanas expansion; Finnish bio fund invests in Galileo; Herald Ventures commits to OneClickHR

Piper backs Las Iguanas expansion

UK private equity firm Piper has co-ordinated a £3.4m development capital financing round for Metrodiner Limited, the holding company for the Las Iguanas restaurant chain. The investment comprises £1.5m provided by Piper, with the remainder coming from Royal Bank of Scotland.

Las Iguanas, a Latin American restaurant chain targeting towns and cities outside London, currently has four restaurants trading in Bristol, Bath, Cardiff and Birmingham. The new financing will fund the roll out of new sites.

Finnish bio fund invests in Galileo

Bio Fund Management, the Finnish venture capital firm specialising in life science investments, has invested in Canadian genetics firm Galileo Genomics. Bio Fund’s $3m investment in Montreal-based Galileo coincides with a $3.5m debt financing round from Investissement Quebec, through its Financière du Québec subsidiary.

Galileo will use the additional funds to accelerate the search for genes associated with more than 25 common and economically important diseases. The company will also use some of the funding to further develop its technology platform for the discovery of disease genes.

Herald Ventures commits to OneClickHR

UK venture capital firm Herald Ventures has agreed a deal with UK human resource software company OneClickHR which will see Herald acquire over 20 per cent of the company’s issued share capital in return for a £1m loan. Herald will be entitled to subscribe for OneClick share’s at a 65 per cent discount to the company’s current price.

OneClickHR, which floated on the London Stock Exchange’s junior list in 2001, has struggled to come to terms with life on the public markets, announcing in June that its trading performance would not meet expectations.