Edinburgh-based venture capital firm Par Equity is to open its first US office in San Francisco, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced during her stateside visit. The firm, which was founded in 2008, aims to support Scottish companies’ expansion in America while helping to bring US business to Scotland.
Par Equity enables investment into smaller companies with high growth potential and has launched a $125m fund, focussed on health technology. Among its current investments is in the Edinburgh firm that devised Snap40, the wearable device that combines vital signs monitoring with risk analysis to identify patients at risk of becoming sick in hospital.
The First Minister met representatives from Par Equity at Stanford University ahead of making a speech on Scotland’s place in the world. “Scotland’s performance in the science and technology sector continues to grow and this announcement is testament to its success both at home and abroad,” she said. “The Par Equity Fund will be the first Scottish venture capital firm to be fully regulated in both the UK and the US and I hope this will be the first of many success stories in our health technology sector.”
William Guilfoyle, managing director of Par Equity USA, said: “We are excited for the opportunity to work with Scotland’s international leadership team in facilitating medical technology investment across the US and UK, which will promote strong growth while enhancing the lives of both Scottish and U.S. citizens.”
Dr Lena Wilson, Chief Executive of Scottish Enterprise, said: “We have co-invested with Par Equity in some of Scotland’s most exciting and ambitious early stage growth companies and today’s announcement will open up new opportunities for many of them, as well as their peers in the US. This will also help cement Scotland’s growing reputation for its health technologies and as a great place for globally-minded companies to locate and grow.”
The US is Scotland’s top source of inward investment, accounting for 36% of inward investment projects and is Scotland’s second largest export partner – worth £4.56bn a year, making up 15.9% of all international exports.
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