Wednesday, 11 March 2015

I give up



A current pitch on Crowdcube, The Idleman, states it is raising £750,000. It has done very well so far. With 30 days still left, the platform rejoices that it has raised £530,660 from 124 investors.

Hang on...............on another page it says in small type (easily missed if you are new to the platform) that the largest single investment is £449,990. This appears to be from the Private Equity Group, Foresight, who are 'leading this round'. So it was arranged before the Crowdcube pitch launched.

So in fact the crowd have so far invested £80,670 not the headlined £530,660. That is not nearly so impressive.

The pitch is in fact raising only £300,010 from the crowd, not the headlined £750,000. You could hardly in all honesty call a PEG 'the crowd'. The point is that the pitch has not raised £530,000 from 124 investors - it has raised £80,000 from 124 investors and £450,000 from one professional investment company. Instead of the very impressive 70+% it is showing as raised on this pitch, it has in fact only raised 27%. Anyone who has read our other blogs will see that this falls below the magic 30% line.

This sort of misinformation is exactly what is giving this market a very poor reputation. Surely it is not necessary or good practice to use such tactics. We cannot believe the FCA would sanction them. The pitch really doesnt need this kind of help, backed as it is by some substantial professional investors.

Wouldn't it be more open and honest  - the very values that ECF purports to promote, to say this pitch is raising £300,000 of which it has currently received £80,000 or 27%. The plan could then mention the PEG investment. 

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