By Daniel Hunter
Indycube Ventures has made its first investment, leading a fundraising of £125,000 for rapidly expanding internet start-up Pwinty.
Pwinty, run by Cambridge University graduate Tom Gallard, 29, of Cardiff, has received £125,000 via Indycube Ventures.This includes £25,000 from both Cardiff Country Council and the Welsh Government’s Digital Development Fund.
Pwinty makes it easy for apps and websites to sell photographs, posters and other products and has delivered 100,000 photos to its customers since it was set up last year.
Pwinty’s “white label” system handles the whole process from start to finish, meaning the website owner can focus on running their own business.
Tom’s company already works with hundreds of companies which offer photo printing through websites and apps on iOS, Android and Windows, and he is also developing his own app for iOS and Android which will allow mobile phone and tablet users to print directly from their device, rather than having to upload images to a third party website.
Indycube Ventures was established last year by Angel investor David Hulston and Mark Hooper, who founded coworking business Indycube CIC (Community Interest Company) in 2010. The support from Ventures is available to Indycube CIC associates who work at one of its 13 coworking offices across South Wales.
Entrepreneurs interested in support from Indycube Ventures enrol on its targeted “Develop And Grow” programme, which offers management expertise, mentoring and support from industry-specific specialists who provide guidance on how a business can expand. Indycube Ventures then assists these business in pitching to potential investors.
The partnership between Indycube Ventures and Pwinty has also been supported by Capital Law, Wilkinson PR & Communications, KPMG and TG Bookkeeping Solutions.
“This practical and financial support from Indycube Ventures and support from the other partners has enabled my business to develop much quicker than it would otherwise have done so,” said Tom.
“Having a great business idea is just the start for entrepreneurs — having access to capital and expert help is key to business growth, and this is what Indycube Ventures and its network supplies.
“I will now be able to employ extra staff as Pwinty looks to grow and take advantage of the wider market both home and abroad.”
Mark Hooper added: “We are delighted that Pwinty has become the first business to benefit from the support Indycube Ventures offers.
“Tom’s drive to make a success of the business is very impressive, and it is businesses like his that we are looking to support.
“He is just one of the many people in Wales who have good ideas but who may need the business skills to make them a success. We are already in discussions with other businesses which may be able to benefit from the help we offer, and would like to hear from any other entrepreneurs who feel we could support them.”
Welsh Government Economy Minister Edwina Hart said: “This is a great example of the public and private sectors working together to support innovative young businesses and entrepreneurs, helping them to grow and retain a competitive edge.
“Pwinty operates in one of our key sectors which has high growth potential so I am delighted the Digital Development Fund is helping support the digital exploitation of creative content.”
Nicola McNeely, Partner in the Corporate and Commercial team at Capital Law, who acted for Pwinty on the deal, said: “It was a pleasure to help facilitate a seed funding round for Pwinty involving Indycube Ventures, Cardiff council and independent investors. Pwinty is a great business and we look forward to seeing it grow.
“As a law firm we have a commitment to early stage business and Pwinty is an excellent example of a bright young start up that has sought and seized every opportunity it has been given and thrived as a result.”
Jeremy Thomas of KPMG added: “KPMG is delighted to be providing support, advice and mentoring to the companies and individuals that are seeking or have secured investment from Indycube Ventures.”
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