Crowdcube has raised £10 million led by Circle Internet Financial, owner and operator of SeedInvest, a leading startup fundraising platform in the US.
The investment aligns two of the most prominent and pioneering platforms in their respective markets: Crowdcube is the largest equity crowdfunding platform in Europe with 1.2 million members and £1 billion invested.
The strategic partnership will help pave the way to a global marketplace at every level of private fundraising, from seed stage to public offering.
Historically, the UK and the US have been the most developed markets for equity crowdfunding but that all changed on November 10th with new European-wide regulations. The investment will enable Crowdcube to accelerate its launch into Europe, capitalising on the recent regulation that provides uniform rules across Europe for capital raising and retail investment services.
The investment, in which existing backers Molten Ventures (formerly Draper Esprit) and Balderton Capital also participated, supports Crowdcube’s goals to enable entrepreneurs to raise capital from their dedicated communities wherever they are in the UK or Europe and is Circle’s largest strategic investment to date in the European market.
“Combining Circle’s strategic investment with our decade of knowledge and experience of capital raising in Europe, Crowdcube is extremely well positioned to capitalise on our first-mover advantage into Europe’s high growth investment market,” said Darren Westlake, CEO and co-founder of Crowdcube.
“Capital raising and private company investing have never been so exciting. In the first instance, we’re considering a crowd round to offer Crowdcube’s community of investors the opportunity to participate in our round, alongside Circle, supporting our growth as Europe’s preferred private investment marketplace.”
Ryan Feit, director of Circle and CEO and co-founder of SeedInvest, added: “Private capital online fundraising is at a pivotal moment of maturation. We are thrilled to work with Crowdcube to roll out online fundraising across Europe and are confident this will be a significant milestone towards the inevitable global future of the industry.
“Expanding online fundraising to new markets creates a massive opportunity for internet native capital formation where individuals and businesses can connect and transact digitally from anywhere.”
With the recent regulatory changes, companies in the UK and EU will now be able to raise up to €13m from retail investors in a single offering of either primary or secondary shares (€8m from UK investors and €5m from European investors).
Crowdcube announced earlier this month that it will be the first platform with pan-European and UK regulatory approvals.
Feit will join Crowdcube’s board and Jeremy Allaire, CEO and co-founder of Circle, will be an observer.
Crowdcube recently achieved a record year of growth with £200 million invested (+21% YoY) and over 208,000 investments made. Its community has grown this year, with 174,000 new members bringing the total to 1.2m.
The FinTech has raised around £30m in total from both institutional and retail investors.Crowdfunding