Spike takes equity injection fix

Techpacific.com Ltd. has purchased Pacific Century Cyberworks Ltd.'s 30 percent share in Australian digital services company Spike Cyberworks and has forked out an additional A$10 million to take a controlling 51 percent interest in the company.

As a result of the transaction, PCCW will no longer be a direct shareholder of Spike Cyberworks but will retain an indirect relationship through a 4 percent shareholding in the Australian company's new parent, techpacific.com, a Hong Kong-based financial and technology services firm.

Techpacific.com operates an investment bank for technology companies, an early-stage technology venture fund and a digital services business, which will now be integrated into the Spike business. The company is not related to IT distributor Tech Pacific.

Spike Cyberworks chief executive officer, John Craven, told ARN that PCCW decided to pull out of its investment in Spike due to a major change in its business model.

"When they became our partner in May last year, they were operating under a model much like CMGI, building incubators and investing in technology companies," he said. "But when they bought Hong Kong Telecom, they effectively became a phone company. They still have a small stake in techpacific.com, but primarily their interests lie elsewhere. That's why they left and we found a new partner."

Spike currently operates out of Australia with branch offices in Japan and Hong Kong. Craven's aim is to use the techpacific.com funding to create independent but interconnected offices throughout the greater Asian region.

Part of the agreement includes a name-change to take place within the next month.

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