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Seeing Machines Ltd keeps the jewels in its crown

A change of strategy is afoot at Seeing Machines Ltd (LON:SEE), and it is raising £17mln to put that strategy into action.

Lorne Daniel, an analyst with City firm finnCap, explains the company had originally planned to spin off its driver monitoring technology for the automotive industry.

Now, it plans to go it alone, rather than selling its FOVIO unit to venture capitalists (VC).

The VC backers wanted too much of the intellectual property (IP) behind Seeing Machines’ technology transferred over to FOVIO, Daniel suggested.

“Following the discussions, the VC funds really wanted a lot of the IP transferred from the Seeing Machines group into FOVIO, and Seeing Machines would have gone forward with simply a licence to deal with all the other industries that require this technology: the airline industry; consumer electronics industry; the rail industry and the after-market for vehicles,” Daniel told Proactive Investors.

Existing shareholders were unhappy at the thought of giving away the jewels in the company’s crown and were prepared to back Seeing Machines’ plans to commercialise the technology in the automotive industry.

Daniel thinks the £17mln will be enough to tide the company over for the next two years, after which, with a number of business lines coming to fruition, the company should be self-funding.

As for the opportunity for Seeing Machines in the automotive industry, Daniel said all of the major manufacturers are looking at installing this sort of driver-monitoring technology into their vehicles, and Seeing Machines “has a very capable and proven device for this market”.

Such a lucrative market may attract competition, but Seeing Machines’ technology, which started out being used down under in the Aussie mining industry, has been used in some of the harshest conditions in the world and passed with flying colours. 

Daniel believes the company is well-placed to grab a significant share of this market.

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