Tech start-ups raise £1m in investment

The Welsh ICE Campus

Three tech-start-ups based at the Welsh Innovation Centre for Enterprise (Welsh ICE) have raised over £1m in investment between them in just 12 months.

All three companies were supported by the Campus which has now launched its ICE Space Programme, a scheme where other start-ups and small businesses can receive similar support including a full-time desk or office space, a tailored mentoring programme, creative workshops, one-to-one support and access to potential investors.

The three companies that have successfully raised significant investment come from a range of tech-based sectors including healthcare, online trading and retail support.

Signum-Health – £600,000

Signum Health is a cloud-based diagnosis and social prescribing service that enables medical professionals to electronically and remotely diagnose, triage and refer patients to a variety of public and private health, social care and well-being providers.

The company raised £600,000 in the last twelve months with 400,000 coming from an equity co-investment led by the Development Bank of Wales, and a further 200,000 coming from private investors.

Vicky Norman, CEO of Signum Health, said: “This latest round of investment will help us to take Signum Health to the next stage of its development. We are already helping GP surgeries around the UK and we can’t wait to see Signum Health used in every surgery in the country.”

ProfitSourcery – £225,000

ProfitSourcery is a market intelligence Software as a Service (SAAS). It analyses two million retail products each week that are selling at a cheaper than normal price, with the user then able to sell these items on Amazon at a net profit. In a nutshell, ProfitSourcery gives its users all the information they need to be able to run a profitable e-commerce business on Amazon, including what items sell well and where they can procure them cheaper

The company raised £225,000 in the last twelve months through the Development Bank of Wales and private investment.

Director of ProfitSourcery Ed Brooks said the business was growing both in terms of staff and customers: “We’ve grown significantly in the last twelve months and we don’t expect that to change in the near future. We recently took more office space at ICE to accommodate three new members of staff and we plan to create further jobs in the next twelve months. We are also expecting to increase our customer base as we further roll out new products and features, which is where much of the recent investment will be focussed.”

NearMeNow – £210,000

NearMeNow is an app designed to allow retailers, restaurants and any other high street businesses to alert users when they have free appointments or new stock to be sold, helping cut waste and improve opportunities for local customers and businesses.

Starting at a ‘Meet the Investor’ breakfast held at Welsh ICE in February 2017, the bi-lingual app has gone on to raise £210,000 in the last six months, £150,000 through the Development Bank of Wales and £60,000 from private investors.

Vicky Mann, Founder and CEO of NearMeNow said the investment has helped strengthen the foundations of the company: “The investment has been used to build the NearMeNow app and cover operational costs for twelve months. We’re now in the process of securing a second round of investment to complete in January 2019 and are looking for smart private investment. The Meet the Investor breakfasts at ICE were a critical part of our investment funding journey, providing an informal environment to talk to influential individuals about a range of funding options.”

Campus Director at ICE, Jamie McGowan, said the investments were a testament to what can be achieved when businesses base themselves in the right environment: “We’re delighted to see three of our members secure significant funding and are excited by what they will go on to achieve. Every business and entrepreneur at ICE has a unique story, yet they all start at the same place – an idea. There is a quote on the wall at the Campus reception which says ‘small is the seed of greatness’ and it’s a mantra that runs through ICE like Blackpool through a stick of rock.

“Each founder that has gone on to achieve investment started small, and through hard work and determination, grew their idea into a business – starting right here on the Caerphilly Campus.

“We’re now looking for the next Vicky or Ed to get in touch and see how we could help them turn an idea into an investment. The ICE Space Programme is open to applicants now, and we would encourage anyone running or thinking of starting a business to get in touch.”