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27 October 2017

Auckland charges to PowerbyProxi exit

Apple has acquired the wireless charging technology developer, spun out of University of Auckland in 2007.

Author: Sam McCaffrey, Reporter

PowerbyProxi, a New Zealand-based wireless charging spinout of University of Auckland, has been acquired by technology firm Apple for more than $100m.

While the exact figure has not been confirmed, the deal's miminum value was confirmed by New Zealand government agency Overseas Investment Office in a summary approval.

Founded in 2007, PowerbyProxi has been developing wireless charging technology for a range of battery powered devices including sensors, robotics and medical equipment.

Sensor manufacturer TE Connectivity took a 10% stake in PowerbyProxi when it contributed to a $5m tranche of series C funding in May 2013, alongside venture capital firm Movac.

Consumer electronics producer Samsung provided the final $4m when the series C round closed at $9m in September 2013, making the investment through its corporate venturing unit, Samsung Ventures Investment.

Movac had previously joined Evander, the investment arm of the Holdsworth family, in a 2009 funding round for the company that raised an undisclosed amount.

Other PowerbyProxi investors include incubator Icehouse, which had a 2% stake according to

Andy Hamilton, chief executive of Icehouse, confirmed to that the company's backers received a return on their investment.

Stuff speculated that the price paid for earlier PowerbyProxi shares suggests the amount Apple likely paid "at least" a high eight-figure US dollar sum.

– A version of this article first appeared on our sister site, Global Corporate Venturing. It was amended on October 30 to remove a reference to New Zealand Venture Investment Fund, which had been erroneously listed as a direct investor. It was updated again on December 1 to add the deal's value.

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