Busselton's Thumtronics raises $600k for new musical instrument

05/12/2005 - 12:19

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Busselton-based Thumtronics Ltd has raised $588,000 from investors to develop a new electronic musical instrument called the 'Thummer'.

Busselton-based Thumtronics Ltd has raised $588,000 from investors to develop a new electronic musical instrument called the 'Thummer'.

The fund raising effort takes Thumtronics above the $500,000 minimum set in its prospectus lodged with ASIC on Friday. The prospectus allows for a maximum of $2 million.

Kept under wraps as the product undergoes further testing, Thumtronics chief executive Jim Plamondon said a version of the instrument would be revealed within the next fortnight.

Mr Plamondon said unlike conventional musical instruments the Thummer plugs into a computer and is controlled by the user's hand.

The computer then interprets movements on the device, he said, converting them to sound.

"It definitely has a lot of potential," he said.

The device will be unveiled at a 'Thumfest' event on Devember 15, to be held at the Perth Concert Hall, with a band showing off the possibilities of the Thummer, Mr Plamondon said.

A former Microsoft Corporation marketing manager, Mr Plamondon moved to Western Australia six years ago from the United States.

He retired in 2000 to Busselton, before embarking on considerable research into music devices and alternative approaches to controlling and presenting musical information.

It might be strange to think of Busselton as a high-tech centre, according to Mr Plamondon, but globalisation and the internet makes it possible.

The co-creator of the device will be delivering an Executive Dean's Guest Lecture at Curtin University early next year entitled, 'Hyper-Competitive: How Small Companies Can Use Globalisation to Out-Compete International Giants.'

"Working in California's Silicon Valley and later for Microsoft, I saw new ideas improve customers' lives and return value to investors.

"I think that Thumtronics' innovations - especially its new electronic musical instrument, the Thummer - can do the same.

"I am confident that our investors will be rewarded for their faith in Thumtronics' ideas, its team, and its future."

Listed as a shareholder in Thumtronics is Chris Heyring, founder of car suspension developer Kinetics Ltd, which began in Dunsborough. Former Kinetics director and chief financial officer Scott Horsburgh is also a director of the company.

Mr Plamondon said the company had been in talks with stockbrokers Patersons Securities and Hartleys.

Thumtronics is not currently seeking new investors.

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