Seedrs Announces Launch Of New Crowd-Funding Platform
Seedrs will enable entrepreneurs and start-up businesses obtain cash from interested investors.
Here is the press release:
7 July 2012 (thisismoney.co.uk) – A new online platform has been launched to enable investors to back start-up businesses from as little as £10.
Called Seedrs, and regulated by the Financial Services Authority, it will enable investors to invest in fledgling businesses while enjoying big tax breaks.
Most start-ups offered on Seedrs will allow investors to claim the generous ‘Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme’ (SEIS) tax relief that the Government recently introduced to encourage investment in early-stage businesses.
Under this, investors will be able to claim back up to 50 per cent of the money they invest in eligible start-ups – up to £150,000 – as a reduction in the income tax they pay in that year. One of the first companies to seek funding via Seedrs is Digital Spin, a company set up by Jacques Kotze, until a fortnight ago an investment banker at Barclays.
Digital Spin wants to raise £60,000 via Seedrs for the pioneering work it is doing in the field of ‘captchas’ – the system that websites use to detect spam email.
Traditionally, a visitor to a website will be asked to type into an empty box the letters of a random word but often these letters are difficult to decipher with the result that the visitor is then unable to proceed, much to the frustration of the visitor and website.
Jacques, 36, has designed far more user-friendly captchas – some of which provide the opportunity for companies to advertise against.
Jacques and his wife, Lauren, an accountant and a partner in the business, live in east London and have just had their first child, a two-week-old girl called Ava.
He says: ‘We’ve had a lot of interest in what we are doing from potential advertisers and websites. Hopefully, the funding we get via Seedrs will enable us to take the business onto a new exciting level.’
Jacques will pay a fee equivalent to 7.5 per cent of any money raised via Seedrs. Investors will pay 7.5 per cent on any gain above their original investment, whether it is received in the form of dividends or the proceeds from the future sale of Digital Spin.
Seedrs is part of a growing business phenomenon called ‘crowd funding’, where entrepreneurs or third-party platforms like Seedrs use the internet to attract equity funding.