Last year was a record-breaking year for Crowdcube, with 120,000 investments made into 325 pitches, generating £130m of investment. It was very difficult to put together a shortlist of these fantastic businesses, but we managed to narrow it down to 18 companies across six categories, including Funded Business of the Year.
Yesterday, we celebrated our 7th birthday, and invited our shareholders and some of the funded businesses to celebrate with us. We reflected on the achievements both Crowdcube and the Funded Club have made over the past year, and were proud to announce the winners of the Crowdcube Annual Awards.
Here are the winners:
Crowdcube Campaign of the Year - House My Dog
Just 36 hours after launching its campaign, HouseMyDog secured its £180,000 minimum target and sped into overfunding, eventually raising over £480,000 from 355 investors, nearly tripling the original funding goal.
HouseMyDog, a pet services platform connecting dog owners and sitters, was one of Crowdcube’s first Irish campaigns, proudly paving the way for future irish businesses to set their sights on crowdfunding. Here are just a few of the comments from voters:
“They are providing a real solution to a real problem, and a platform that has already proved it works well”
“I love their service and I think it's amazing they were able to blow their crowdcube campaign out of the water”
“Endearing brand, animation, video. Excellent use of satisfied sitters and dog owners. The personality of the business founders came through”
Crowdcube Campaign Video of the Year - Grind
Following their successful Crowdcube bond campaign in 2015, Grind raised over £1.9m at the end of last year with the support of 1,287 investors, overfunding to 255%.
Since its 2015 campaign, Grind has become one of the most exciting and fastest growing hospitality brands in London, expanding to nine locations across the capital. The company has also signed an exclusive deal to launch in airports and train stations this year. Here are just a few comments from the voters:
“The founders ambition came across strongly. Compelling video. He is a natural in front of the camera”
"They are a great business without whom my daily life would be less cheerful.”
"Very cool business, very cool rewards, in the exciting growth phase and reasonably priced shares.”
Entrepreneurs of the Year - Krisi Smith and Mike Turner, Bluebird Tea Co.
In April last year, the team at Bluebird Tea Co. more than doubled their original funding target, raising over £360,000 from 280 supportive investors.
Founders Krisi and Mike started Bluebird Tea Co., an award-winning tea mixology company, in their bedroom. Now, three years on, the couple have six stores across the country where you can sample and purchase over 70 types of loose tea, and grab a delicious mix of tea inspired drinks. Here’s just a few comments from the voters:
“They have happiness at their core and spread so much love to their community of tea lovers”
“They have both worked extremely hard over the last few years and turned an idea into a highly successful business that now has several stores throughout the UK. To achieve all of this at such a young age is highly inspiring”
“They've created a really innovative brand shaking up the way tea is sold, turning it into a real experience with unique blends and creativity whilst also being eco conscious in the modern world”
Industry Innovators of the Year - Freetrade
After completing their first Crowdcube campaign in July 2016, Freetrade went on to raise over £1m in February last year with the support of 1,113 investors, overfunding to a staggering 357%.
Freetrade, the challenger stockbroker offering free share trading on your phone, celebrated several milestones in 2017. These included receiving authorisation by the FCA and growing the waitlist for their app to 25,000 people. Here are just a few comments from the voters:
“Sharedealing is often considered expensive and only for the wealthy. To create a low cost alternative will encourage a new generation of investors which will be good for the future”
“Stockbroking is an industry that is resting on its laurels with inflated margins. Freetrade know that and are fixing this and widening the net to appeal to Millenials”
“The product has disruption at its heart – it disrupts an industry that profits from innovation in other businesses, but the sector itself has suffered a glacial rate of innovation. Freetrade opens up new opportunities for investors, enabling people who have been held back from trading stocks by high or opaque fee structures, to enter the market”.
Product of the Year - Cocoon
In March last year, Cocoon smashed its funding target, and went on to raise a huge £2.3m with the support of 1,065 investors.
Cocoon makes home security affordable for everyone. Founded by security experts, and backed by Aviva, its unique Subsound technology has been named “the future of home security”. The company is on a mission to make protecting your home and the people you love simple. Here are just a few comments from the voters:
“Incredible, affordable product with a transparent team dedicated to making home security smart and easy.”
“Simple and intuitive home security with no hidden costs and excellent customer service”
“They really have added something new to the market with a product in a very digital world. It is tidy, non intrusive and very smart. Hats off”
Funded Business of the Year - Monzo
Following on from its incredible initial funding round in 2016 where the company raised £1m in just 96 seconds, Monzo went on to raise over £2.3m in March 2017 from a huge crowd of 6,484 investors.
Challenger bank Monzo is this week celebrating its third birthday. The company has accomplished an incredible amount in this short time, which has included building a user base of 500,000 people, creating a current account and most importantly, in April they received their banking license in to become a fully authorised, unrestricted bank. Here are just a few of the voter comments:
“Monzo is at the forefront of using cutting-edge IT systems, in developing the bank of the future, with no branches, no cumbersome hierarchical structure, no arcane legacy computer systems, and no big corporation pre-conceptions that dictate what it is considered the customer will want! Monzo has used high design IT & innovative business concepts that constantly defy the status quo, to develop and deliver a customer-centric, bank of the future”
“Monzo represents a genuine change in the way a class of business is run. Their crowdfunding reflects their ethos and style”
“When I closed down my Halifax account for Monzo a few weeks ago, the guy at Halifax said 'Oh, you're the third person who has closed their account to switch to Monzo this week'. How's that for disruption!?”
To check out the companies currently looking for funding on Crowdcube, click here.
Investments of this nature carry risks to your capital. Please Invest Aware.