3i leads $30m series F financing of Zonare Medical Systems

10 Jan 2006

Company presents at 24th Annual Global JP Morgan Healthcare Conference

California based ZONARE Medical Systems, Inc., a manufacturer of next generation ultrasound technology, today announced that the company will present at the 24th Annual JPMorgan Healthcare Conference.  The presentation by Donald Southard, ZONARE's president and CEO, on the tremendous market opportunity of the z.one ultrasound system, highlighting its revolutionary software based architecture and patented Zone SonographyT technology, will take place at 3:30 on 9 January 2006, at the Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco. ZONARE began shipments of the z.one ultrasound system, the world's first Convertible UltrasoundT platform, in the first quarter of 2005.

"Our company made significant progress during 2005 and I look forward to sharing our achievements at this prestigious forum," said Southard. "We now have more than 200 z.one ultrasound systems installed in less than one year from our initial commercial shipment.  Industry analysts, such as Klein Biomedical Consultants, believe our Zone SonographyT technology is creating a completely new category in the ultrasound market with the ability to provide the industry's first Convertible Ultrasound system."

The z.one premium compact system is a fundamentally new advance in ultrasound combining Zone Sonography technology with the system's radically new physical design. Clinicians are able to instantly convert the z.one system from a full-featured, cart-based unit into a premium compact ultrasound system with all the performance of substantially larger and more expensive ultrasound units, yet with greater portability and clinical flexibility than conventional compact systems.

In addition, the z.one platform's Zone Sonography software-based architecture ensures that its performance will increase as improvements in processing power become available. This allows for fast, convenient upgrades in clinical capabilities, keeping clinicians at the forefront of diagnostic capabilities as well as protecting their investment.  Upgrades can now be downloaded via the Internet, another industry first.

"We are also pleased to announce the completion of a Series F round of financing totaling $30 million in December 2005," said Donald Southard. The financing round was led by 3i and included several of ZONARE's current investors. The funds will be used to expand the company's sales and marketing capabilities along with product advancements for the z.one system, further enhancing the return on investment for ZONARE's rapidly expanding base of customers.

"ZONARE satisfies the need for an easy-to-use, compact portable system that offers the greatest speed of image capture and premium performance at a reasonable price. Instead of carting a patient off to the ultrasound site, the cart can now come to the patient," said Klaus Stoeckemann, 3i VC partner and head of the German VC healthcare team. "This premium compact system enables a doctor to have superb image quality, to diagnose a patient quickly at the bedside or in the ICU. As an international venture capital firm we are delighted to support the company's global expansion."

"We believe ZONARE's singular focus on ultrasound and introduction of Zone Sonography technology will result in a rapid succession of clinical ultrasound advancements," said Donald Southard. "We are dedicated to bringing innovation back to ultrasound by combining significant clinical and workflow solutions with outstanding economic value, thus, protecting our customers' investment today and in the future."

Notes to editors

About ZONARE Medical Systems
ZONARE Medical Systems, Inc. designs, develops, and manufactures premium compact performance ultrasound solutions, which combine revolutionary technology with an innovative physical design. Zone Sonography technology, ZONARE's unique patented approach to ultrasound imaging, is focused on bringing the highest performance to all clinical settings, leading to advanced diagnostic capabilities, more cost effective operation and increased value to providers.

For more information, please visit our web site at www.zonare.com

About 3i
3i is a world leader in private equity and venture capital. We focus on Buyouts, Growth Capital and Venture Capital and invest across Europe, in the United States and in Asia Pacific. Our competitive advantage comes from our international network and the strength and breadth of our relationships in business. These underpin the value that we deliver to our portfolio and to our shareholders.
In the 6 months to 30 September 2005, 3i achieved realisations of over £1bn and invested £835m, including co-investment funds, of which 3i's Venture Capital business invested £58m in early stage technology companies globally across four specialist sectors: communications, software, healthcare and electronics, semiconductors and advanced technologies ("ESAT"). During 2005, 3i's VC healthcare team invested in Carmel Pharma, Ulthera, Endosense, Triage wireless and elbion. It has been a strong year for successful realisations with trade sales of Arakis, NeoPharma, PharMetrics, SpineNext, Arexis and KuDOS Pharmaceuticals and IPOs for ProStrakan, Arpida, Paion, Jerini, Phoqus and Ardana.   For more information, go to:http://www.3i.com/.