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OCTOPUS VENTURES BACKS EUROPE’S LARGEST STUDENT ENTREPRENEURIAL SOCIETY


28th October 2008

OCTOPUS VENTURES BACKS EUROPE’S LARGEST STUDENT ENTREPRENEURIAL SOCIETY

- Support, advice and counsel for UK entrepreneurs of tomorrow -

- Exclusive industry relationship with Octopus Ventures -

Octopus Ventures Ltd, specialist investors in early-stage and expanding businesses, is pleased to announce its partnership with Oxford Entrepreneurs (‘OE’ or ‘the society’), an Oxford University society with over 4,500 members set up to champion student entrepreneurs in the UK and abroad.

OE is not only the biggest student society at Oxford University but Europe’s leading free business and entrepreneurship network. Its members include undergraduates, graduates, MBA students, active alumni, and external members.

Founded in February 2003, the society seeks to inspire greater entrepreneurialism amongst students by providing the opportunity to learn the skills required and establish the necessary contacts to help make early-stage ventures a commercial reality.

Octopus Ventures, which will be working directly with the society’s President, has joined OE’s Advisory Board with immediate effect. As part of its ongoing support, the Ventures team will lead workshops for OE members and join the judgement panel for the OE Ideas2Market annual competition.

Alliott Cole, Investment Manager at Octopus Ventures, said: “Oxford Entrepreneurs is exactly the sort of support network required to encourage business innovation in Britain and we are delighted to be working closely with them.

“As investors and mentors to a number of young businesses, Octopus Ventures has a strong commitment to fostering entrepreneurship in the UK. We are really looking forward to working in partnership with Oxford Entrepreneurs and helping young entrepreneurs gain access to the support and guidance required to turn their ideas into the commercial success stories of the future.”

Victoria Lennox, President of Oxford Entrepreneurs, said: “Octopus Ventures is widely recognised as a leading venture capital provider with an enviable track record in helping entrepreneurs develop prosperous businesses.

“We are extremely pleased to be partnering with them and believe that their extensive expertise within the early-stage arena combined with the broad array of skills and contacts available through the Octopus Investor Group, will prove an invaluable asset to our members.”

Octopus also supports the Bright Ideas Trust, an organisation designed to assist young people between the ages of 16 and 30, who are not necessarily in education, employment or training, set up in business.
-ENDS-

Media Enquires:

Octopus Investments Ltd:

Rob Forbes, Head of PR
Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7710 2840
Email: rforbes@octopusinvestments.com

The Millbrook Partnership:
Michaela Hopkins/Emily Bastin
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7520 9455
Email: oi@millbrookpartnership.com

Oxford Entrepreneurs:

Victoria Lennox, President of OE
Tel: + 44 (0)7795 315796
Email: victoria@oxfordentrepreneurs.co.uk


Notes to Editors:

About Octopus Ventures (www.octopusventures.com)
Octopus Ventures, a subsidiary of Octopus Investments, is a venture capital company with support from a dedicated Octopus Investor Group, which provides many competitive advantages.

The Octopus Investor Group was formed by a group of successful entrepreneurs and businessmen to provide capital and business expertise to small, fast growing companies. The Company received FSA authorisation in June 2000.

Over the past seven years, the Octopus Ventures team has invested £17.7m into 27 companies and generated a return of 61% per annum (equivalent to 4x the amount invested) from 11 liquidity events. Across the entire portfolio (including those investments not yet realised), Octopus Ventures’ annual rate of return has been 29%.

In October 2007, Octopus Investments launched Octopus Titan VCT 1 and Octopus Titan VCT 2 which have since raised £30 million. Octopus Ventures is the Investment Manager of this Fund. The focus of the fund is to generate real returns on investors’ money over the long term by investing into unquoted companies with strong growth potential. The typical deal size will range from £500,000 to £2 million and the portfolio is expected to encompass investments in 20-25 unquoted companies. The Fund is structured as a twin VCT to enable it to make investments of up to £2 million per company, twice the amount possible for single VCTs.

Following the continued demand seen by Octopus Titan VCT 1 and 2, Octopus Titan VCT 3 plc was launched in May 2008. Like the previous Titan VCTs, Octopus Titan 3 has been designed to deliver strong returns to investors through investment into smaller UK companies. The Fund will seek to raise up to £25 million in the 2008/2009 tax year and will have the potential to support up to 30 unquoted UK companies.

About Octopus Investments Ltd (www.octopusinvestments.com)
Established in 2000, Octopus Investments is one of the UK’s fastest growing alternative investment specialists, providing investors with access to a growing range of innovative investment products including venture capital trusts, enterprise investment schemes, inheritance tax solutions, business property relief products and a range of UK equity OEICs.

Since its inception, Octopus Investments has doubled its customer base annually to over 20,000 today and has grown its funds under management by 100% per annum to over £600 million.

Octopus Investments Limited is authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Services Authority, 25 The North Colonnade, Canary Wharf, London E14 5HS. Registered office: 8 Angel Court, London EC2R 7HP. Registered in England & Wales under No. 3942880.

About Oxford Entrepreneurs (www.oxfordentrepreneurs.co.uk)
Launched in February 2003, Oxford Entrepreneurs is the largest student society at Oxford University and has now become the largest free business and entrepreneurship society in Europe with over 4,500 members.

The network includes undergraduates, graduates, MBA students, active alumni, and external members.

Oxford Entrepreneurs encourages and supports student entrepreneurship by providing inspiration, education, networking and the chance to learn the skills needed to succeed in business and start entrepreneurial ventures.


Publisher Contact Information:

Octopus Ventures (www.octopusventures.com),
+44 (0)20 7520 9455
ov@millbrookpartnership.com

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