SyndicateRoom

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SyndicateRoom
Type of site
Venture capital fund
Available in English
Headquarters ,
United Kingdom
Website www.syndicateroom.com
Commercial Yes
Launched 21 September 2013

SyndicateRoom is a UK online equity investment platform,[1] providing multi-sector private investments and running the first passive Enterprise Investment Scheme fund.[2] The company is headquartered in Cambridge, and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (formerly the FSA).[3]

SyndicateRoom initially launched itself as a crowdfunding platform for high-net-worth and sophisticated investors, inventing and operating through the investor-led model of equity crowdfunding. Notable companies that have raised on the platform include: Gun Shy, the first-ever equity crowdfunded Hollywood film, directed by Simon West;[4] Mill Residential REIT, the world's first crowdfunded IPO; and Axol Biosciences, which uses Nobel Prize-winning technology to produce stem cells from human blood and skin cells that can then be turned into cells for scientific research, potentially removing the need for animal testing.

In 2016 SyndicateRoom was the first crowdfunding platform to offer public market investment opportunities after being accepted as a member company of the London Stock Exchange,[5] although it has since closed down the public markets area of its platform.[6][7]

Approximately a third of the companies that list on SyndicateRoom are from the life sciences industry,[8] an unusual statistic given that the vast majority of crowdfunded businesses tend to be B2C (Business to Consumer).

Investor-led model

The investor-led crowdfunding model differentiates itself from the usual company-led model by necessitating the participation of an experienced business angel or angels in every round. This 'lead investor' conducts due diligence on the investment opportunity and negotiates the economic terms of the investment before contributing at least 25% of the round. The intended benefit is that any less experienced investors will 1) have the reassurance of knowing that an experienced investor has already assessed the round and 2) invest on the same economic terms as the lead investor.

Investment portfolio

Between 2013 and April 2019, SyndicateRoom's members helped raise over £215 million for over 170 companies in thirty sectors.

Notable businesses within SyndicateRoom's portfolio include Cambscuisine, Beulah London, Camallergy, Cambridge Nutraceuticals, Axol Bioscience, Engenie Limited, Lightpoint Medical, Mayku, Pekama, Itchy Fish Film (Bromley Boys), LuckyTrip, Supapass, Liopa, Bockatech and Recycling Technologies.

Research

The business regularly publishes freely available studies, guides and reports, as well as a quarterly member magazine, The Syndicate. Much of this research draws on data from the SyndicateRoom platform and that commissioned from independent research agencies such as Beauhurst, centring on the performance of UK startups and investor behaviour.

History

SyndicateRoom was founded by Gonçalo de Vasconcelos and Tom Britton on 21 September 2013.[9] The pair met by chance at a networking event in Cambridge. Both de Vasconcelos and Britton studied at the Cambridge Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge where they were awarded their Master of Business Administration in 2010 and 2012 respectively.

In July 2019, Gonçalo de Vasconcelos stepped down as CEO and was replaced by Graham Schwikkard.[10]

In October 2019, the company announced that it would adopt a new fund-first investment model, and would no longer offer individual equity crowdfunding investment opportunities.[11]

Awards

  • Crowdfunding Platform of the Year, AltFi Awards 2018
  • The Experian Data Excellence Award Finalist, Lloyds National Business Awards 2018
  • Alternative Finance Provider of the Year, High Potential Business Awards 2016.[12]
  • Best Investment Platform, Growth Investor Awards 2015.[13]
  • Alternative Finance Platform of the Year, AltFi Awards 2015.[14]
  • Crowdfunding Platform of the Year, AltFi Awards 2015.[14]

References

  1. ^ "Startup of the year 2014: SyndicateRoom". the Guardian. 2015-04-14. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  2. ^ White, Lucy (2018-03-07). "World's first passive startup fund has fully invested its £4.5m total". Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  3. ^ "Financial Conduct Authority". register.fca.org.uk. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  4. ^ "Gun Shy is the first Hollywood movie backed by 'equity' crowdfunding". This is Money. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  5. ^ "SyndicateRoom raises $4.5M Series A to push for growth in equity capital markets – TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  6. ^ Fedor, Lauren (2016-03-14). "A crowdfunding platform has joined the public markets". Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  7. ^ "'Crowdfunding is growing up': SyndicateRoom just partnered with the London Stock Exchange". Business Insider. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  8. ^ Ward, Andrew. "Biotech entrepreneurs embrace crowdfunding". FT.com.
  9. ^ "CEO Gonçalo de Vasconcelos: 2016 Was a Phenomenal Year for SyndicateRoom | Crowdfund Insider". Crowdfund Insider. 2017-03-08. Retrieved 2018-05-14.
  10. ^ "Crowdfunding pioneer Goncalo de Vasconcelos steps down as SyndicateRoom CEO - AltFi News". AltFi. Retrieved 2019-07-24.
  11. ^ Alois, J. D. (2019-10-31). "SyndicateRoom Email Indicates Shift to 'Fund First Approach' to Investing". Crowdfund Insider. Retrieved 2019-12-14.
  12. ^ "Past Winners – High Potential Business Awards". awards.highpotentialbusiness.com. Retrieved 2017-11-15.
  13. ^ "SyndicateRoom wins at Growth Investor Awards 2015". www.syndicateroom.com. Retrieved 2017-11-15.
  14. ^ a b "AltFi". www.altfi.com. Retrieved 2017-11-15.

External links

  • Official website
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