In Planning growth, Raising finance, Rapidly scaling

Ready. Fund. Grow. – Crossing the Funding Gap


  • Thursday, 01 February 2018
    18:00 - 20:30 (GMT)
  • Grant Thornton, The Lounge, London
    EC2A 1AG - View map
  • 2:30 hours
  • This event is free of charge
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In partnership with Crowdcube.

Are you in the food and beverage industry and looking to raise your Seed round to grow your business?

The UK funding landscape is ever changing and almost weekly a new alternative source of funding becomes available to small businesses. Do you need to cross the dreaded funding gap between funds raised through family and friends and Series A? How will you navigate this funding landscape and identify which source of finance is the right one for your business at this stage? And crucially, how do you avoid wasting your time chasing the wrong funders?

‘Ready. Fund. Grow.’, brought to you by G and Crowdcube, is designed specifically with your business and your fundraise in mind. G’s Growth Finance team are experts in raising funds for small businesses – they have helped to shape over 400 equity and debt fundraising transactions in the last five years. 87% of the businesses G has supported have been successful in getting introductions to funders. Crowdfunding has emerged as a significant source of finance for high-growth companies in recent years. Crowdcube is one of the UK’s largest crowdfunding platforms, with over £360m of finance raised and over 600 businesses completing a successful funding round on the platform to date.

Join the G and Crowdcube teams and some of their contacts from the food and beverage funding world in The Lounge on 1st February for an evening of unique insight from industry funders and experts.

The evening will cover:

  • Insights into today’s funding market in the UK.
  • How to create impact with Seed investors: hear first-hand from a panel of expert investors what they look for in an investment opportunity and how you can maximise your chances of success in securing Seed finance.
  • Hear from businesses in the food and beverage sector who have successfully raised Seed funding.
  • This will be followed by an evening of networking with other like-minded business leaders plus the opportunity to book onto one-to-one funding clinics with G’s Growth Finance team and ‘Expert in Residence’ drop-in sessions with the Crowdcube team.

Register for this event today to prepare to cross the funding gap and get ready for your next stage of business growth.

  • Panellists
  • Panellists

    Soraya Lavery, COO, CPG Executive Consulting Ltd

    Having started her first business at 16 and with over 25 years experience in senior leadership and director positions Soraya has helped hundreds of businesses scale to the heights they wanted. As an Entrepreneur with extensive skills in sales, leadership and talent development, Soraya loves to work closely with people to help them get the results they want and build the lives they have dreamed of. Soraya is friendly, enthusiastic and passionate about business and enjoys being around Entrepreneurs who love to create and live every day to its fullest.

    As part of CPG Executive Consulting Ltd Soraya has the support of a diverse international professional team of Consultants across Business Strategy, Sales, Talent Management, Training and Coaching.

    Matthew Cushen, Co-founder, Worth Capital

    During Matthew's career he has been fortunate to work with, learn from and help the leadership teams of some of the largest businesses in the world. Matthew grew up in retail – including senior roles in Kingfisher and John Lewis Department Stores. Most recently Matthew has been a Director of ?What If!, the global innovation consultancy, and still helps the leadership teams of some of the most recognisable companies across the globe, including IKEA, Waitrose, SABMiller and Tesco, to develop new strategies, new products, brands & experiences and to create the conditions for innovation to thrive.

    Matthew established and sold a retail business and made many angel investments – with one very profitable large exit and a, so far, healthy and high growth portfolio. A couple of years ago, Matthew and his mate from university, Paul Soanes, co-founded Worth Capital. They run The Start-Up Series - a monthly competition from which each month two winners are selected to receive an equity investment of £150,000 each. The funds come from their SEIS and EIS fund invested on behalf of investors in a high growth and tax efficient portfolio of the brightest start-ups with the smartest ideas.

    Russell Forster, Seed Programme Director, Just Eat Ventures

    Russell started his career as a self-taught data and software engineer during the dot-com bubble, who found himself growth-hacking for an early stage startup in the online auction space. He joined the "small", yet fast-growing startup; Just Eat in 2012 who went on to IPO in 2014 and is now in the FTSE100. Russell helped set up the Just Eat Ventures team in 2016 and is responsible for their FoodTech Accelerator Programme. He is passionate about his work with early-stage tech companies, helping them to discover and validate early signs of market fit. Father of 3 young, active boys; Russell’s weekends are full of outdoor activities whatever the weather.

    Chris Miller, MD, White Rabbit Fund

    Former Soho House Group Commercial Director, Chris, launched White Rabbit Fund in 2016, as a restaurant investment and advisory service. The business offers entrepreneurs funding, financial management, budgeting, property sourcing, operational expertise, legal assistance, expansion planning and debt structuring, supporting new and existing concepts to grow.

    Investments include Indian concept ‘Kricket’, Hawaiian grab-and-go brand ‘Island Poke’, and is soon to open a modern Chinese restaurant by Michelin stared Chef Andrew Wong. Previously Chris worked in Private Equity and Corporate Finance focusing on expanding hospitality and luxury brands.

    Darren Mulvihill, Senior Equity Fundraising Manager, Crowdcube

    Darren Mulvihill is a Senior Equity Fundraising Manager with Crowdcube, the world’s first and leading investment crowdfunding platform. Darren works with entrepreneurs who are looking to use the Crowdcube platform to raise investment for their businesses, enabling them to get the most out of the process as well as understand how to plan for successful campaigns.

    Prior to joining Crowdcube, Darren worked with an angel investment fund based in Ireland and established the Irish chapter of Startup Grind. He is a graduate of the Michael Smurfit School of Business at University College Dublin.

    Krisi Smith, Co-founder, Bluebird Tea Co.

    Starting off packing tea in their bedroom, building Bluebird Tea Co. from scratch has been Krisi Smith and her partner Mike Turner’s passion for the last four years. Driven by a desire to do business 'the right way' and to prove you can build a successful high street model in these challenging times, they used Crowdcube to raise over £350,000 (in just 48 hours) to grow their business in March 2017. In their earlier years they also utilised creative finance options such as a Start Up Loan and releasing Tea Bonds.

    The Brighton based Tea Mixology experts are leading the way in tea innovation in the UK with blends such as Rhubarb + Custard and Smokey Russian and their name comes from the term ‘Bluebird Day’ which is a day with perfect blue skies. They enter 2018 with 7 retail stores, 60 team members and a thriving international online store.