“Seed EIS Platform” is an online platform for business owners and investors corresponding with the UK Seed EIS tax scheme and that organizes meetings with start-ups personally.
Below is the full interview that we have conducted with Mr. ‘Insley” regarding his start-up company ”Seed EIS Platform”;
1. What is it exactly that you do and what “Seed EIS Platform” is all about?
Seed EIS Platform was created to help bring investors and business owners together; in what we believe to be the environment to provide the best ever opportunity for British Entrepreneurship to develop, expand and move forward… with investment via the governments ‘Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme’ announced in the Autumn Statement 2011.
2. When has “Seed EIS Platform” been founded? And what stage is “Seed EIS Platform” currently at?
Seed EIS Platform has been founded by a group of experienced investors in small cap and startup firms in 2011.
We are currently at the growth stage and learning along the way.
3. What is “Seed EIS Platform”’s business model and how does it work?
We have developed an online platform for business owners and investors- we provide them with a chance to discuss business proposals and investments.
It works via an online platform- www.seedeisplatform.com
4. How did your team meet? And who in your team does what?
Our team consists of:
Mark Insley- Managing Director.
Timothy Shimwell- Financial Support.
Ewan Boosey- Business Support.
Nicola Sewell-Marketing support.
5. What, exactly, makes you different from existing options, what will make your product and/or service stand out in the marketplace? In other words what’s unique about you and what’s new about what you make?
Were unique in the sense that our platform was hand developed and personalised to fit the need’s of business owners and investors.
We also offer a service that will help guide start-ups and business owners be pitch-ready when standing in front of investors.
6. What is your growth like? And what milestones has “Seed EIS Platform” achieved so far?
Our growth is incredible over the past few months, from 3 start-ups on our platform to over 100 business owners and investors.
We have also developed partnerships with The ICMA centre Reading and The London School of Economics.
Our start-ups have equally achieved incredible success, with one of the pubs we funded being named number one in the area.
Our biggest achievement so far was having a meeting in Parliment with Brooks Newman, an MP promoting the Seed EIS Scheme.
7. Who are your competitors? And what is “Seed EIS Platform”’s competitive advantage over them?
Our main competitors are local advisory firms who offer this as a service and Seeders.
What make’s us different is the platform we have developed and how we like to meet with our businesses personally: offering them something very different to our competitors.
8. What obstacles did you face and how did you overcome them?
The main obstacle faced was eduacting people around the scheme, as many have not heard of Seed EIS.
This is a gradual achievement, as were still trying to travel the country to spread the word!
A further obstacle was dealing with the demand- we all worked very late and under pressure to get this done and launched but it paid off.
9. What are the key things about your field that outsiders don’t understand?
-78% Tax Relief for all investors in a business under £150,000.
Never, ever before has the government supported such high tax relief and in a bid to get the country out the this awful recession we must help rebuild Britain.
What people don’t understand is that the scheme is incredible for a three-year period for investment and often has a fast exit strategy attatched to it, should this not be your main motive.
10. Why are you going to succeed?
We are going to succeed because we believe that it is the small steps that help contribute to overall confidence of a country.
11. If “Seed EIS Platform” succeeds, what additional areas might you be able to expand into?
We are currently building partnerships with many investors , wealth management companies and angel investors… the sky is the limit!
12. Why did you choose this idea and concept to build “Seed EIS Platform” based on?
I truly believed in the scheme when I heard of it and saw the potential it could do for others.
13. What have you learned so far from launching your idea?
We have learnt that both start-ups and investors come from all walks of life and have so many different interests, it’s facinating to see.
Therefore, when we see them combine together for the sake of business it is something that is truly brilliant.
14. Six months from now, what’s going to be your biggest problem?
If growth continues the way it has been… coping with demand!
15. What’s the benefit for the customer/user?
It is an incredible platform, forming the meeting place that is often hard to gain between business owner and investor.
16. How did customers/users find out about you?
Word of mouth.
17. Who are your current customers/users? Who are your target customers/users?
Our current users are business owners from all ages and walks of life, similarly with our investors.
18. Where do new customers/users come from and what makes new customers/users try you?
New business owners and investors typically come through advertising and word of mouth about our platform.
19. What do your customers/users say about your product and/or service?
They are very happy with the service provided and love the fact that were not just an online platform to them.
20. How are you going to scale?
We have over 100 business owners and investors on our platform at the moment.
21. What’s the biggest missing feature? The one thing customers/users keep asking for?
24hr support, it is impossible at the moment to achieve this but it is definitely a possibility for the future.
22. Are you going to internationalize? And if yes how are you planning to expand your start-up’s operations accordingly?
Perhaps with another business venture… as I said earlier the sky is the limit.
23. How big do you think you can get? Why? And how you are planning to achieve your goals?
We will grow bigger as company but the most important thing is how we get there- we don’t want to loose our company values along the way.
24. Are you looking to hire a new workforce? And if yes, what job vacancies do you currently offer and where can potential applicants contact you at?
Not at the moment. But we will look for workers in the future.
You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
25. Are you looking for partnership opportunities or funding from Venture Capitals (VC) or other funding sources? Or your business is self-sustainable? And if the first option applies where can potential partners / investors contact you at?
Contact us at email@example.com
26. What advice do you have for fresh entrepreneurs?
Research, Research, Research. Take an outsiders perspective- it will go a long way.
27. Finally, do you have any other comments that you would like to add?
Explore our platform for yourself! www.seedeisplatform.com