SSi Forum

Do we have 2 or 3 possible investors in here? :-)


#1

Our current state of play is that our advertising is going really well, but it requires us to be able to go negative for about 5 or 6 months (sometimes less, depending on the ad) - in both Welsh and Spanish - so we can’t grow as fast as we’d like to because we’re under-capitalised.

We’ve taken on £100k in investment this year, and have just agreed another £100k - we’re also talking to two different potential institutional investors (one of which has said that they intend to come on board), and have a strong bid in place for the Wales Development Bank (just waiting to get our historical P&L in a format that is familiar for them before we push on with that).

We’ve decided that the best way forward now is to aim for a round of about £500k so that we can move faster with growth and also invest more in our core tech (to be able to produce more languages, faster). The organisations we’re talking to can get us there, whether as part of a portfolio or with a lead offer.

But…

We’ve had two internal investors from within our team/community this year - Jesse and Jeff - and we’ve discovered that the skill sets and connections and ideas they bring with them are at least as valuable as the actual investment.

So we’d like to see if there are another 2 (or absolute maximum 3) people out there who can afford to invest at £100k or above, and would like to play a part in helping to shape the future of the SaySomethingin project (and our aim to revitalise Welsh as a community language AND provide a course for every language humanity has left).

Our intention is to make an equity offer of up to 5% (divided between the investors if there’s more than one) - and we’re planning to set dividends as a % of turnover, because we want to stay in private ownership rather than exit at any stage (so this is likely to be a strong consistent income for you rather than a lottery ticket).

If you’re interested, please drop @justineabbott a private message or email admin@saysomethingin.com - Stine will be able to give you all the crunchy details about our advertising and business plans and so on, and then you and I can have a chat if you’d still like to after you’ve waded through the details… :slight_smile:

Our absolute ideal here would be 2 people at a little higher than 100k - it’s important to me that you really become part of the ideas team, so the fewer people the better that focus will be - we’ll be keen to close up on this as soon as we have a couple of people who are a good fit - but if we get 3 at about the same time, we’ll make that work.

(Beyond 3 right now would mean we’d struggle to give you the attention/involvement we want, so if that happens we’ll put you on a private list to keep you in touch with the numbers around what goes on in 2020, just in case it makes sense to open up to a few more investors later on - although for transparency’s sake, I’ve got to say that we don’t currently think that’s likely - we think this round is probably going to be the last we need :slight_smile: ).

I’m really looking forward to seeing if we have anyone who’s a good fit for this. Jesse and Jeff have made a transformational difference to what we’re doing, so I’m pretty excited at the thought of finding another couple of people who can have that kind of impact. :slight_smile:


#2

Hi Aran,
I’m afraid I don’t have capital behind me so here’s a few ideas :
Have you looked into crowd funding? Lots of Entrepreneurs are using it to get their design ideas into production. People there are usually pledging an amount of money to buy a product. When enough is raised the idea goes into production. Maybe this idea could be adapted to add to your total so you don’t need such big lump investments. Also SSi paraphernalia could be sold to make some contribution towards it if it were available.
Regards,
Gareth


#3

Hi Gareth - yup, that’s good thinking, diolch! :slight_smile: - we’ve chewed crowd-funding over, and think it will be a better fit when we’re rolling out more languages and can ring-fence funds for particular languages - at the moment, we want to be talking to as few investors as possible, so really only an extra couple beyond our organisational investors would be ideal… :slight_smile: :slight_smile:


#4

Delighted to be able to say that we’re already having one conversation about this, even before we spread the news to our wider community via the weekly email and other channels - so we might just need to talk to one more person… :slight_smile:

And the acceleration this is going to lead to will, I think, be a lot of fun for all of you, in whatever way you support/care about SSi… :star: :star2:


#5

Aran, is that £100K each from two or three people, or that amount split between two or three people?


#6

Hi Neil

It’s the same amount from everyone, ie £100k to be ‘in’. Hope that helps clarify. Best wishes, Stine


#7

Thanks Stine - I suspected that but wanted to double check. I am very sympathetic to what you do, and think you have developed a brilliant methodology. Unfortunately, I just haven’t got that amount of capital to be able to put in. If you ever did crowdfund, I would definitely be interested (or if you become open to smaller amounts of investment).


#8

Thanks for the kind words, Neil - much appreciated! As Aran says above, we certainly haven’t ruled out crowdfunding in the future, so any such opportunity would be announced on the forum in due course. I do appreciate that our current call is beyond the reach of many.

We count ourselves very fortunate that whatever opportunity for investment or help we have available at any one time, we have learners able and willing to get involved. And that’s whether it’s for something as big as the current investment opportunity, or crowdfunding, or stepping forward with their skills for free for events such as the Parti 10. It’s such a lovely community to be part of!


#9

Thanks Justine. I am happy to support in any way I can!


#10

Thanks, Neil. That’s really good to know! Best wishes, Justine


#11

That’s really kind of you, Neil, diolch yn fawr iawn - I think a more crowd-sourced approach may be a step for a little further down the line, when we’ve got a bit more capacity for dealing with higher numbers - and/or a good tech solution… :slight_smile: :star: :star2: