Grist funds another tech firm

15/09/2015 - 12:51

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Former Amcom Telecommunications chairman Anthony Grist has invested in listed tech company Decimal Software, which is seeking extra cashflow while awaiting the receipt of a research and development tax refund.

Grist funds another tech firm
Prominent technology investor Anthony Grist. Photo: Attila Csaszar

Former Amcom Telecommunications chairman Anthony Grist has invested in listed tech company Decimal Software, which is seeking extra cashflow while awaiting the receipt of a research and development tax refund.

Through a convertible note agreement, Mr Grist will advance $500,000 to the financial planning technology company through his investment vehicle Albion Capital Partners, with the option of an additional $250,000 investment.

Mr Grist, who is deputy chairman of Vocus Communications following the $1.2 billion merger with Amcom, will also become a strategic adviser to Decimal’s board, while Albion Capital will be issued 10 million options at an exercise price of 5 cents each.

“The convertible note facility will be used to provide additional financial headroom until receipt of a research and development rebate expected to be $1.78 million and forecast for the second quarter of FY16,” Decimal said in a statement.

Decimal chairman Michael Sertorio said the facility would provide additional financial runway for the company to build on early success.

“We welcome the opportunity to access the strategic and corporate expertise of Mr Grist and Albion Capital and believe that this support will help Decimal refine and drive our strategy into the quickly growing market for automated financial advice solutions,” Mr Sertorio said.

Decimal listed last year after acquiring Aviva Corporation and had about $11.7 million cash on hand as of 30 June 2014.

By the end of the 2015 financial year, Decimal’s cash level had depleted to just under $2.9 million.

Earlier this month, the company announced that it had cut Mr Sertorio’s salary from $200,000 per annum to $36,000 p.a. while executive director Jan Kolbusz’s salary was cut by $50,000 to $250,000 to maintain costs and optimise its use of existing funds for commercial development.

Mr Sertorio's large pay cut is also the result of him moving from the position of executive chairman to non-executive chairman.

In total, the company announced it would be reducing annual core costs by over 40 per cent.

Decimal shares hit a high of 30.7 cents each when the Aviva takeover was completed in April last year, however the value of its stock has been on a steady decline since then, falling to as low as 6.7 cents as of September 7.

Mr Grist was also a cornerstone investor in geospatial imagery products and services company Spookfish’s $5 million capital raising, which it undertook as part of a reverse takeover of White Star Resources.

nearmap founder Stuart Nixon, technology entrepreneur Simon Hackett, marketing entrepreneur Brent Stewart and Hoperidge capital (the family office of Navitas boss Rod Jones) were also prominent investors in the Spookfish raising.

Shares in Decimal were 18.6 per cent higher to 7 cents each at 12:45pm.

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