Mobile phone antenna firm wins 3.4m funding

4/05/2001

Antenova, the company with the clever antenna for mobile phones, has won 3.

4 million first-round venture capital funding.

The consortium of investors is led by Cambridge Gateway Fund, with Nippon, Quester (which normally backs spin-outs from Oxford University), FNI (Nixdorf family fund) and Analysys all in there.

Alan Barrell, of Gateway, and Jamie Brooke, of Quester, join the Antenova board.

The new money will allow Antenova to develop prototype antennas for the coming generation of mobile phones and the much-heralded Bluetooth market -- wireless communication between household appliances designed to cut another layer of domestic chores.

Antenova's special technology has the potential to multiply capacity and at the same time shrink the size of phone handsets and base stations.

It also minimises any risk to health from RF radiation by blocking transmissions in the direction of a user's head -- or in the case of base stations, sensitive neighbours such as schools.

Mr Barrell said: 'Antenova has a unique technology targeting a very large and well defined market. It directly addresses fundamental problems faced by all the players concerned.'

Dr Graham Cooley, Antenova boss, said: 'In light of the current financial climate we have been especially pleased to have concluded the funding round swiftly.'

The clever antennas will be directional and steerable, will perform significantly better than other equipment and yet be much smaller and need less power.

Antenova is based at Bottisham and the first prototypes are expected to appear later this year.
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