CALGARY, AB/CAMPBELL, CA -- Vincent S. Zuccaro, O.D., F.A.A.O., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of UltraVision, Inc., ("UltraVision"), announced today that the Corporation has completed the acquisition (the "Acquisition") of Igel International Limited, a contact lens company located in the United Kingdom, Capricornia, Singapore Pte. Ltd., a related contact lens company operating in Australia, and a 25% equity interest in Igel CM Laboratory Pte. Ltd., a contact lens manufacturing company located in Singapore (collectively referred to as "Igel"). In addition to the Acquisition, Igel CM and UltraVision have entered into a long-term arms-length agreement for the supply and manufacturing of FDA-approved molded disposable contact lens products.
Dr. Zuccaro also announced that the Corporation has closed a $26 million debt and equity financing consisting of special warrants, the conversion of outstanding convertible debentures and $3.5 million in a new subordinated debt financing from MM Venture Partners. A portion of the proceeds of the equity financing was used to acquire Igel, with the balance of the funds to be utilzed to meet UltraVision's working capital requirements.
"Dr. Zuccaro and his team are to be commended on putting together a complex transaction that will provide a solid foundation for UltraVision's future," said Minhas Mohamed, Managing Partner, MM Venture Partners. "The Company's needs for less dilutive growth capital were a perfect fit for our type of financing, which also augmented the other equity providers in a complementary and seamless manner. We look forward to participating in the success of UltraVision."
Commenting on the acquisitions and long-term manufacturing agreement, Dr. Zuccaro noted, "The synergies between Igel and UltraVision are remarkable. UltraVision's focus has been on the development of new markets and unique eye care products such as the contact lens industry's first molded disposable flexible gas permeable lens, the UltraCon® contact lens. Besides significantly lowering UltraVison's current cost of goods sold, the Igel acquisition provides a strong doctor-account base in over 30 countries along with dozens of well placed products, many of which are patented and virtually all are FDA approved and C.E. marked."
With regard to the completion of the Corporation's current financing, Dr. Zuccaro stated, "We are extremely grateful to our new partners from Igel and our new and existing shareholders who have demonstrated their support of UltraVision's strategic plan with their respective investments. Specifically I am grateful for the support of our new investors, including Fonds de Solidarité des Travailleurs du Québec (F.T.Q.). Société Innovatech du Grand Montréal, Business Development Bank of Canada, GATX/MM Venture Finance Partnership and MDS Life Sciences Fund. Also participating in the current financing were existing shareholders, OXBOW Capital Corporation and Canadian Medical Discoveries Fund Inc. ("CMDF"). We look forward to working with these institutions and their representatives in the future. In addition, Drug Royalty Corporation Inc., which provided royalty financing at an important stage in the Company's development, continued its support to facilitate this transaction. Finally, I would like to thank First Marathon Securities Limited who performed a critical role as sole agent in the successful completion of this financing."
MM Venture Partners is the General Partner of the $50 million GATX/MM Venture Finance Partnership. This privately held venture capital fund focuses exclusively on information technology and biotechnology companies in Canada. MM Venture Partners has focused specifically on a niche in the capital markets by providing venture debt financing, including working capital loans and software and equipment leases to Canadian information technology and biotechnology companies. This form of capital is in direct response to emerging companies' needs for capital that is less dilutive, less intrusive and less controlling."
UltraVision Inc. is a global contact lens company dedicated to the development, manufacturing, and marketing of high quality, state-of-the-art speciality contact lens products. UltraVision's products include the UltraCon® and the EpiCon™ contact lenses, revolutionary contact lenses developed from the Corporation's proprietary carbosilfocon material. The UltraCon® is the contact lens industry's first molded, disposable rigid gas permeable contact lens and is designed for patients with astigmatism while EpiCon™ is designed for patients with pathological eye conditions such as keratoconus. UltraVision also markets a broad selection of speciality soft contact lenses including the Specialty Progressive®, the Specialty Choice A.B.® and the Speciality-T-FRP® in approximately 40 countries around the world.
UltraVision's common shares trade on the Alberta Stock Exchange under the symbol UVC.
For further information please contact:
Mr. Vincent Zuccaro
President and Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Minhas Mohamed
MM Venture Partners