Foresight Williams Technology invests in leading gemstone laser marking technology specialist Opsydia
- Opsydia places immutable and microscopic ‘identifiers’ beneath the surface of diamonds and coloured gemstones to securely identify stones
- Core products sold to the international diamond manufacturing companie
Click here to read the PDF version.
07 September 2022: Foresight Group (“Foresight”), a leading listed private equity and infrastructure investment manager, has invested growth capital into Opsydia (the “Company”), a company producing sub-surface gemstone laser inscription technology. Alongside existing investors Parkwalk Advisors and Oxford Science Enterprise, the investment has been made through the Foresight Williams Technology (“FWT”) EIS and VCT funds.
Opsydia was spun out of the University of Oxford in 2017 to commercialise research carried out by academic founders, Prof. Martin Booth and Dr. Patrick Salter. The Company has developed a laser-based technology that rapidly and accurately performs sub-surface marking of diamonds and other gemstones. Opsydia Systems produce secure identity features that cannot be tampered with or removed without negatively impacting the value of a gemstone.
Current methods for identifying diamonds do not fully prevent fraudulent practices. For example, surface inscriptions can be polished away or replicated to mislead a purchaser and/or grading laboratory. With consumers placing greater emphasis on the traceability of gemstones, coupled with the growing market for laboratory-grown diamonds, there is an increasing need for stakeholders to ensure their gemstones are accurately identifiable.
Opsydia plans to capitalise on the large addressable market of polished diamonds, including the hundreds of millions of smaller-size stones processed annually across both the natural diamond and laboratory-grown diamond sectors. The investment will also enable Opsydia to expand its research and development capabilities, in addition to increasing production and support for existing and future customers.
Opsydia has already sold systems into diamond companies operating in both the synthetic and natural stone markets, and its customers include some of the largest diamond companies in the world. The injection of funds will aid in expanding Opsydia’s research and development arm, which is working on the emerging fields of diamond-based electronics and diamond-based quantum solutions, and will also allow for fresh hires across engineering, software development and production departments.
Commenting on the investment, Christopher Wiles, Investment Director at Foresight said: “Opsydia’s technology has the potential to become the de facto marking standard in the diamond industry for the next 20 years. We look forward to supporting Opsydia’s experienced Management team as they deliver on this ambition.”
Andrew Rimmer, CEO at Opsydia, added: “The Foresight Williams team bring a deep understanding of advanced technology and hardware systems, which along with this funding, will enable us to embark on the next phase of growth with this unique technology.”
Matthew Burke, Head of Technology Ventures, WAE, commented: “In addition to the investment from FTW, we look forward to supporting Opsydia’s growth plans with access to WAE’s engineering, production and manufacturing capabilities.”
For more information contact:
Lucy Sherwood: firstname.lastname@example.org / +44 (0) 20 3763 6977
Notes to Editors
Opsydia is a leading innovator in diamond security, combining cutting-edge technology with immutable microscopic identifiers that form a physical link between a specific diamond and its grading report, blockchain record or branded jewellery origins.
Using next-generation surface and sub-surface laser techniques, Opsydia provides secure and tamper-proof ways of confirming a diamond’s identity and empowers all stages of the diamond supply chain to protect the integrity of diamonds.
Our pioneering sub-surface identifiers support diamond traceability initiatives, guard against counterfeiting and distinguish natural and laboratory-grown diamonds to instil greater trust in the diamond sector among consumers.
Opsydia technology can be deployed across the globe for use by jewellers, miners, manufacturers and grading laboratories. By tackling the future needs of the diamond industry today, we attract those ready to take the next step in diamond security.
About Foresight Group LLP (“Foresight”):
Foresight Group was founded in 1984 and is a leading listed infrastructure and private equity investment manager. With a long-established focus on ESG and sustainability-led strategies, it aims to provide attractive returns to its institutional and private investors from hard-to-access private markets. Foresight manages over 330 infrastructure assets with a focus on solar and onshore wind assets, bioenergy and waste, as well as renewable energy enabling projects, energy efficiency management solutions, social and core infrastructure projects and sustainable forestry assets. Its private equity team manages ten regionally focused investment funds across the UK and an SME impact fund supporting Irish SMEs. This team reviews over 2,500 business plans each year and currently supports more than 200 investments in SMEs. Foresight Capital Management manages four strategies across six investment vehicles with an AUM of over £1.6 billion.
Foresight operates from 13 offices across seven countries in Europe and Australia with AUM of £12.2 billion*. Foresight Group Holdings Limited listed on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange in February 2021. https://www.fsg-investors.com/
*Based on FSG unaudited AUM as at 30 June 2022 and Infrastructure Capital's AUM as at 31 March 2022.
About Foresight Williams Technology
Foresight and Williams Advanced Engineering started their investment collaboration in 2016 with the launch of the Foresight Williams Technology EIS Fund. 2019 saw the launch of a sister fund, the Foresight Williams Technology VCT share class, which sits within the Foresight Solar & Technology VCT plc. These two funds target investment in companies developing innovative and transformational technologies and where we believe Foresight’s and Williams’ expertise and services can be harnessed to assist with the development of the businesses, with the objective of achieving successful exits at high-value multiples.