Wednesday, 3 May 2017

The search for the truth goes on and we didnt find it here.

Seedrs facilitated Hokkei in raising around £250k in 2015.
Seedrs facilitated Hokkei in raising around £319k in 2015. 

Take your pick. 

If you havent read the post on Hokkei below - this one wont make any sense. It may not make any sense anyway. 

Having written the post below we were contacted by the Seedrs PR department. Every equity crowdfunding platform seems to need a PR department.

They asked us to correct an error in the post, which said that the platform had not raised £319k but had, despite its claims, only raised £250k. We posed the Q, where did the extra money come from? Seedrs explained -

'' Consistent with Seedrs longstanding policy, we allow investors to hold shares directly rather than through the nominee if the company consents. In these cases the nominee managed amount will not represent the full amount invested in the business through the platform.''

We asked them a very simple question. Did you get paid commission on the difference between £319k and £250k. We got a very simple one word answer  - NO. No explanation, just NO.

As it turns out, one investor put in the difference but not via the platform. According to Seedrs PR, this individual used the site to assess the investment opportunity and then invested off platform with Seedrs agreement. We have no reason to think this isnt true. But the statement above is clear - 'invested in the business through the platform'. This did not happen. That is a fact. So the amount invested through the platform was as a we stated - around £250k.

This matters because the equity crowdfunding platforms, or the two retail facing ones, use these figures on completed raises to boost their image. If it could be shown that these figures included sums raised off the platform - as was the case with Crowdcube and £800k of the £1m raise for Waterbabies the Musical - then the FCA might want to take a look. Only a peek mind.

So just how long is a piece of string. Well the answer seems to be just as long as you would like it to be. If anyone else wants to know how long it is, we can tell them but you will just have to take our word for  - it's our piece of string and we make up the rules. 

All in all not very helpful and not what we were expecting. Our chat with Seedrs PR ended with them accusing me of being overly combative. Moi? Must be some misunderstanding. It's what happens when the truth becomes a little blurred.

No comments:

Post a Comment