Ulster University spin-out is acquired by global components giant Molex

The BittWare operation which began in Coleraine has been acquired by Molex

WHAT started as an Ulster University spin-out company in Coleraine has been subsumed into Molex, a leading global manufacturer of electronic solutions and components.

UU and Innovation Ulster Ulster Ltd's former portfolio company BittWare has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by Molex, which has a presence in more than 40 countries and employs 40,000 people.

Kenneth Adamson, an academic in Ulster University's School of Computing, originally started software development company EZ-DSP in 1989 to specialise in digital signal processing.

He raised funding of £1.25m from Enterprise Equity and the Viridian Growth Fund, with further grant support from Invest NI also providing aid in the region of £95,000.

EZ-DSP developed a strong client base including several international blue-chip customers before being acquired in 2004 by BittWare, which had been designing and delivering high-end solutions for 25 years.

Headquartered in New Hampshire, many of the world's leading companies use BittWare products to provide the processing power for demanding applications in data centre, military and aerospace, government and financial services.

Molex offers a full suite of solutions and services for many markets, including data communications, consumer electronics, medical, industrial, automotive, and commercial vehicle.

Mr Adamson said: “The historical support of Ulster University, private investors, venture capital funds and Invest NI helped set the wheels in motion for this ultimate acquisition.

"Although the market is difficult for start-ups in the ICT sector, this shows there are still opportunities for ambitious companies to achieve high growth with patience and hard work and by utilising the connections available in Northern Ireland.”

Innovation Ulster Ltd (IUL) is a wholly owned knowledge and technology venturing company of Ulster University which works closely with external companies to access a portfolio of technologies and early stage concepts.

It also supports the commercial advancement of new inventions developed by academic staff and students.

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