CROWDFUNDING platform Seedrs raised a record-breaking £195m in 2018, during a year which saw the equity investment site become more and more popular with peer-to-peer lenders.
Seedrs reported that it saw 186 successful pitches in 2018, including 28 fundraises in excess of £1m – two of which were made by alternative finance brands. These included a £1.6m equity fundraise by property lender Landbay, and a £1.2m campaign by ethical P2P platform Abundance, which ended up raising almost £1.6m.
“The past twelve months have been sensational for Seedrs,” said Jeff Kelisky, chief executive at Seedrs. “We’ve seen record levels of investment on the platform, while increasing our momentum in delivering real product and service innovation to the market.
“These efforts continue to solidify our leadership in early-stage private equity at a pan-European level.”
In 2018, investors from 60 countries made more than 72,500 investments via Seedrs, while the Seedrs Secondary Market delivered 5,800 exits to investors in 306 different companies.
Meanwhile the Seedrs Anchor Investor Service – which helps businesses to find institutional funding – secured more than £17m in investment offers for 15 businesses.
In September 2018, Seedrs issued a portfolio update which showed an average internal rate of return of 12.02 per cent for deals funded between July 2012 and December 2017. When SEIS and EIS tax-reliefs were taken into account, this figure rose to 26.42 per cent.
Over the past year, Seedrs has been used as a fundraising platform for an increasing number of P2P lenders. In September, Crowdstacker passed its £800,000 fundraising target while in November, property investment platform Brickowner overshot its fundraising target of £150,000.
Kelisky added that the firm has “big plans for 2019”, including the launch of the Seedrs EIS100 Fund in the first quarter.