Quester acquired by NewMediaSpark

Consolidation in the VC space continues, discretely but surely.  The latest is that Quester has been acquired by NewMediaSpark.    This is big news in our world as Quester is a high quality brand name and respected co-investor.  I had experienced Quester first-hand as a co-investor is OLED company Opsys (sold to Cambridge Display Technologies) and have gained a deep long-term respect for the engagement and grit of someone like Andrew Holmes.  Jamie Brooke, Henry Sallitt etc … quality people there.  This is yet another traditional UK brand name that is evolving.

NewMedia SPARK

If you look at the bigger trends you can see:

  • continuted consolidation of regional / local funds that are seeking better scale or have trouble with either succession or track record (as happened in Germany and Scandinavia)
  • emergence of strong, branded platforms a la Accel
  • arrival of new US entrants e.g. Highland

Although I had known for a while that Quester was looking for creative GP solutions, I learned about the deal in an email signed John Spooner.  What struck me was the following:

  • SPARK has a focus on new
    media, with a particular emphasis on digital media, software applications,
    technology and communications, which complements Quester’s own activities in
    this area. Quester’s strong healthcare business will be a platform for SPARK’s
    new focus in healthcare.

Whatever happened to tech ?

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3 Responses to Quester acquired by NewMediaSpark

  1. Rob says:

    no surprise, Quester could not produce decent returns on average, as is the case with most VC firms in Europe

  2. alan lamb says:

    What is the strategic reason for the Quester/New Media Spark transaction – aside from providing a capital gain for Andrew Holmes and John Spooner ?

    For the Quester team – this must feel like a slow car crash – Simon Acland, Henry Sallitt and Iain Wilcock are not going to feature in the new line up – post merger little will be left of the Quester team..

    Having produced such poor returns for investors – it cannot be easy for VCT shareholders to learn that the founders of Quester have made over £10m in dividends and sale proceeds and are trying to spin the deal as a good deal for Quester investors

    Perhaps Holmes and Spooner should try politics in future – it would also be interesting to find out what the “independent” VCT Boards think of the deal – and the future “revenue” based payment to be made to Holmes and Spooner – what are the details of these arrangements and are they really in the interests of Questers investors ?

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