A technology company dreamed up by a University of Cumbria business student has been snapped up for an undisclosed sum by a major American intelligence specialist.

Master of Business Administration (MBA) graduate Tim Royston-Webb has sold his technology usage data company, Pivotal iQ, to HG Data, which identifies software, hardware and cloud services used by millions of companies worldwide.

Mr Royston-Webb set up Pivotal iQ while studying for his MBA degree at the university’s business school. In the space of two years the London-based company has grown from three to 150.

Tim, who is originally from Derby, has become HG Data’s executive vice president of strategy, while fellow University of Cumbria business student, Manish Patel, who helped develop Pivotal iQ as its chief marketing officer, has become HG Data’s marketing director.

Pivotal iQ is now part of the Santa-Barbara based conglomerate HG Data, which has offices in London, New York, California and Hyderabad, in India.

Mr Royston-Webb said his time at the University had been crucial to his success.

“I have held senior roles at some of the world’s leading business intelligence companies and doing my masters’ in business administration gave me the motivation to start Pivotal iQ,” he said.

“The course was very inspirational and offered an opportunity to meet leaders from across the world and see how they achieved success while giving back to the community.”

It was a sentiment echoed by Mr Patel, who said his lecturer’s “real world” experience had been key.

“This is important because there is an element of honesty about learning from teachers who have run businesses and whose teaching is not just based upon untried theories,” he added.

Senior business lecturer at the University of Cumbria, Dr Grace Hurford, said that Mr Royston-Webb had studied ethics and sustainability as part of his MBA.

She added: “His inclusive and creative approach, as well as talent, was evident. We are so pleased to hear of Tim and Manish's success not just in business but in giving back to their communities, and we wish them both well in their endeavours.”