Parkwalk Advisors has led a funding round for University of Cambridge's graphene technology business Paragraf, which will use the money to increase its headcount.

Paragraf, a UK-based graphene technology spinout from University of Cambridge, has attracted £12.8m ($16m) in a round led by Parkwalk Advisors, the fund management arm of commercialisation firm IP Group, the Telegraph reported today.

Founded in 2015, Paragraf has devised a manufacturing process to produce commercial quantities of graphene, a two-dimensional carbon structure with physical and energy-conductive attributes suited to computing, energy storage and water filtration.

The company is now working on products made from graphene which include a magnetic field sensor due to launch later in 2019. Paragraf will use much of the fresh capital to recruit additional employees, as it looks to build out the business.

Paragraf’s founding research was led by co-founder and chairman Colin Humphreys, a professor in the Centre for Gallium Nitride in University of Cambridge’s materials science department. Humphreys’ equity stake has reportedly reached a $1.3m valuation following the latest round, which brought Paragraf’s overall total to at least $20m.

University of Cambridge’s commercialisation arm, Cambridge Enterprise, led a $4m round for Paragraf closed in May 2018 that featured Parkwalk Advisors, Amadeus Capital Partners, IQ Capital Partners and assorted angel investors.

Paragraf’s other shareholders include Sir Michael Marshall and the Marshall family, the owners of aerospace, defence and property group Marshall of Cambridge.