Reporter 461, 12 February 2001

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13 December 2000


University company hits Seedcorn Fund jackpot

The White Rose Technology Seedcorn Fund (WRTSF) has made its largest investment to date in University spin-off company Enabled Systems Ltd.

The investment of £1/4 million is the maximum allowable under Fundís rules, and underlines expectations in the companyís success.

The Fund assists the commercialisation of early stage technologies generated at the Universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York. It was set up in 1999 through the Governmentís University Challenge initiative, which recognised the difficulty experienced by universities in securing investment to develop young technologies through traditional venture capital routes.

Already a winner of a DTI Smart Award for innovation, Enabled Systemsí expertise lies in the field of product data management (PDM) which provides solutions to help cut the time and cost of bringing new products to the market.

PDM systems organise and control access to the mass of product design data used in manufacturing and engineering industries. In order to maximise the usefulness of a PDM system, it must be integrated with other software systems used by organisations and their associated companies, such as CAD (Computer Aided Design). These interfaces are currently hand crafted at a huge cost in time and money.

Enabled Systems is at the forefront of the development of Ďopen standardsí, so that applications can communicate using published, standardised interfaces, greatly reducing if not eliminating the integration costs.

Managing Director Doug Brady commented:

"This investment gives us a real opportunity to further the application of existing open technologies to companies who havenít realised the huge potential benefits."


Further information:

Dr Doug Brady, Managing Director, Enabled Systems Ltd, 6 Blenheim Terrace, Leeds LS2 9HZ. Tel: 0113 245 2288, fax: 0113 246 8492, email

Gerry White, White Rose Technology Seedcorn Fund, 3 The Embankment, Sovereign Street, Leeds LS1 4BJ. Tel: 0113 242 2644, email


  1. The WRTSF was created with £4.5 million from the University Challenge Fund and boosted by a further £1.5 million from the member universities. It is advised on its investments by fund manager Aberdeen Murray Johnstone.
  2. Enabled Systems has been spun-off through data exchange experts CADDETC, a business division of technology transfer company Leeds Innovations.
  3. The Smart Award scheme is part of the DTI Foresight Programme to promote innovation in small and medium sized enterprises and to encourage closer collaboration between business and scientific interests.

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