Tech City first as Facebook app developer sold

THE GOVERNMENT’S Tech City project has seen its first successful exit, with Shoreditch-based Facebook application developer iPlatform sold to Irish marketing firm Betapond.

iPlatform was founded by entrepreneurs Joshua March and Dan Lester in 2008, shortly after Facebook allowed outside developers to create software on the website. The firm designs social apps for the likes of McDonalds and The Economist, and was the first British firm to gain Facebook’s recognition as a “preferred marketing developer”.

Its sale, the value of which was not disclosed, is a success for Number 10’s Tech City initiative, which has championed iProspect and other technology startups in London. March, who is leaving iPlatform to focus on his other startup Conversocial, told City A.M. that the support of Tech City has “given the scene credibility, and its becoming easier and easier to set up companies, it’s less of a risk”.

Benjamin Southworth, deputy chief executive of Tech City, said: “To see a home-grown Tech City company such as iPlatform achieve such success shows the potential of our tech community here in the UK. It’s going from strength to strength.”

Betapond, which has offices in Dublin and San Jose, will employ around 30 people in its London office.

In a separate deal, London email security firm Mimecast raised $62m (£38m) from US investors in a funding round valuing it at $300m.