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Seedrs sees GBP85m invested in 159 deals in 2016

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Seedrs, the investment platform backed by Neil Woodford, saw more than GBP85 million invested into campaigns on the platform and 159 deals funded in 2016.

The British fintech company has been live for four-and-a-half years and recently surpassed GBP190 million invested into campaigns with more than 450 deals funded since its launch.
 
October marked the platform’s biggest ever month with almost GBP20 million invested into campaigns, GBP4.35 million of which was invested into employee and customer engagement provider, Perkbox, becoming Seedrs’ biggest fundraise since launch.
 
In the same month almost 3,000 Seedrs investors backed peer-to-peer travel money platform, WeSwap, raising over GBP2.4 million and setting the record for the most investors in a single campaign.
 
2016 was also the year of co-investment, with a host of institutions or strategic partners investing alongside the crowd. These included Draper Esprit into Perkbox, Ascot Capital into WeSwap, Zoopla into Landbay, Unilever Ventures into blow Ltd, JamJar Ventures into SuperCarers. Other campaigns received investment from Passion Capital, IW Capital, Techstars, Seedcamp, Tesco Backit and TrueStart, among others.
 
Simon Cook, CEO, Draper Esprit, says: "We are strong believers that VCs, angels and the crowd can work together to provide the right long term patient capital to the best entrepreneurs, empowering teams to build global companies that last."
 
2016 also saw Seedrs release a portfolio update with methodology validated by EY and following International Private Equity and Venture Capital (IPEV) guidelines. It provided an analysis of all Seedrs deals and their performance. 
 
From the 375 Seedrs deals across 15 sectors that had been completed between launch and 30 September 2016 (the period covered by the most recent version of the report), the data showed a platform-wide IRR of 14.4 per cent (non-tax adjusted) and 49.1 per cent IRR (tax adjusted).
 
Seedrs investor Robin Vaudrey, head of CEE region at the European Investment Fund (EIF) says: “My work at the EIF, the largest investor into European venture capital, has brought me close to the cutting edge of European technology and innovation, but until I came across Seedrs the opportunity to personally invest in such exciting new ventures did not exist given the traditional barriers to investing in private companies. I find the investment propositions attractive even without any additional tax incentives, as I am resident on the Continent and not a UK taxpayer. I find the level of professionalism of other investors, fundraising entrepreneurs, and the platform itself, to be very high. I’m particularly pleased Seedrs uses private equity industry best practice for valuations.”
 
Jeff Lynn, CEO and co-founder of Seedrs, says: "2016 has been the biggest year ever for Seedrs with an unprecedented amount of capital invested into 159 inspiring deals. In late summer, we continued our European expansion, despite the outcome on Brexit, opening offices in Berlin and Amsterdam. In September we released our inaugural Portfolio Update to illustrate to our investors the performance of their early-stage investment portfolio and in November we had the first ever IPO for a Seedrs crowdfunded business, by FreeAgent.
 
“The ongoing success of many of our portfolio companies is exactly why equity crowdfunding is instrumentally important to the future of the early stage investment and why sophisticated investors should be looking at this asset class as a part of their broader investment portfolio in 2017.”

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