Cambista buys Brokat e-finance division; secures EUR 5.1 million funding

Cambista buys Brokat e-finance division; secures EUR 5.1 million funding

Cambista Technologies has signed an agreement to acquire Brokat's Emea e-finance business, for an undisclosed sum. Additionally, the company has secured EUR5.1 million funding from new VC firm, Favonius Ventures.

The acquisition includes the majority of Brokat's interests outside Germany and central Europe including business infrastructure, intellectual property rights to a range of banking software applications and a customer base of 20 banks across Europe and the Middle East.

Cambista intends to build on Brokat's e-finance offering to deliver a range of Internet-based applications from retail banking to high-end corporate cash management. The applications will be offered on a 100 per cent Java (J2EE compliant) business platform - the Cambista Financial Framework.

The company claims that diversity in payment systems, customer demand for electronic services and pressure for STP, combined with widespread industry consolidation is overloading banks' development capabilities. Cambista aims to focus its product development efforts on functionality that has historically proven problematic for banks to implement. The company hopes that the Cambista Framework will be attractive to banks wishing to offer on-line corporate and business banking services within a short time-scale, yet keep the flexibility to extend and enhance their offerings in the future.

Cambista's optimism regarding the marketplace is in contrast to the experience of the quoted e-finance solution providers, many of which are struggling to close new sales in the current market. The acquisition would appear to bring Cambista into competition with established banking delivery channels vendors, such as Eontec, eFunds, S1 Corporation and CR2.

Cambista also announced it had secured EUR5.1 million funding from European venture capital firm Favonius Ventures. The cash injection from Favonius is supplemented by additional private funding from members of the management team. The total investment will meet Cambista's working capital requirements and create opportunities to expand the business, says the company.

A new player in the VC marketplace, Favonius' advisory board features a galaxy of hi-tec industry veterans. Among the luminaries are Leo Apotheker, SAP president Emea, Charles Wang, founder & chairman of Computer Associates, and Tom Perkins, founding partner of US venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins.

Institutional investors in the Favonius fund include ABN Amro, ING Groep and California State pension fund Calpers.

Stephen Duckett, UK managing director of Favonius Ventures, comments: "Cambista has a significant technological advantage over its competition. Furthermore, we believe that the Framework approach is set to become an industry standard for banks wishing to buy or build banking applications that run on J2EE compliant enterprise application servers."

Cambista already offers a full range of locally based professional services to clients across its three regional markets. As a fully authorised Encorus Technologies reseller, Cambista will continue to provide existing customers and systems integration partners with full support and maintenance for the Encorus Enterprise Server platform (formerly marketed under the "Twister" brand name).

Cambista will initially concentrate on working with partners to service the requirements of customers in the United Kingdom/Ireland, Middle East and Nordic regions. It will undertake an expansion plan into new geographic markets following consolidation of existing operations.

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