A Snapshot of Success: Top Takeaways from the NorthInvest Annual Report 2018

by Charlotte Scott|25th April 2019

Following a year of growth, the NorthInvest team have released our very first Annual Report to celebrate our impact in 2018. From showcasing successful start-ups in investment to growing our investor community to over 100, we want to thank all of you for your support and invite you to share in our success.

Read on for our top takeaways from the report – we know you’re busy people! – or download the full report below👇

Our Founder (and team) is as fearless as ever 💪

Our community know all-to-well that no organisation will succeed without a strong team. Our Founder, Professor Adam Beaumont, and our Director of Operations, Helen Oldham (both Angel Investors besides), have shaped NorthInvest from a seed of an idea after a conversation with George Osborne to a seed-funding tour de force. In one year NorthInvest has grown to an operations team of four (with a fifth on the way – watch this space!), a board of eight, and 16 corporate partners and supporters.

This hard work was recognised by Digital Leaders Week in June 2018, where the team were shortlisted for Digital Team of the Year for ‘delivering a Digital Transformation who have demonstrated an exceptional digital culture and impact.’ Hats off to that! 👏

“My founding vision for NorthInvest was to create an organisation which could sustainably and autonomously scale to support and assist a growing number of start-ups across the North, with a view to driving grassroots economic growth.”

Professor Adam Beaumont, Founder of NorthInvest

Community is at our core (and it isn’t just restricted to Northern lads)

It seems diversity is making headlines everywhere these days, and never so much so than in the digital sector. As our technology advances and continues to integrate seamlessly into our everyday lives, there is more need than ever for a diverse community of business leaders to direct change that benefits everyone. At NorthInvest, we made a commitment from the onset to be a welcoming, inclusive community and we’ve honoured that by bringing together Angels from all backgrounds. In 2018, 11% of our angel investors were female, and you came from all over the UK – from Kent to Aberdeen.

In November 2018, we took that commitment even further by partnering with the UK Business Angels Association (UKBAA) and Growth Capital Ventures to get our strategic heads together on best practice for promoting diversity in investments in the Northern Powerhouse region.

This year we want to increase this figure even more – so if you know a female founder or investor who might benefit from our community and wants to push forward for positive change, make sure to bring them along to our June event (and don’t forget to sign up yourself!)

We wanted our community to have a home too. In March 2018, we launched our Angel Investor Hub in collaboration with UKBAA. The Hub, located in Bruntwood’s sparkly office space above Leeds train station*, Platform, provides our Angels with a free co-working space and an opportunity to drop-in for a chat with our team.

*Honestly the coffee-making iPads are reason enough to pop in before your train..

Our impact is far more than financial 💸

Investment companies might conjure images of wads of cash and Wolf of Wall Street antics, but NorthInvest’s culture couldn’t be further from it. Our Angels and Entrepreneur Coaches value startups whose mission is to improve lives through technology, whether in the HealthTech or AI and cyber space.

In 2018, eight angels banded together to invest in Renephra, a startup pioneering a new Transdermal Fluid Removal System created by doctors who work on the front line and saw the effects of chronic fluid overload, including in the debilitating medical condition, Lymphoedema.

After a six-figure sum was committed by our Angels, Renephra has moved forward to conduct clinical trials for their technology to gain regulatory approval – one step closer for patients to take control of their own treatment from the comfort of their own home.

Meanwhile back in hospital emergency rooms up and down the country, NorthInvest-backed startup MedCircuit is developing a technology to reduce waiting times – technology that will save lives.

Going even further to fuel positive social and economic change, we’ve teamed up with charities Leeds Community Foundation and Eden Project’s The Big Lunch to support their respective causes with any operational surplus at the end of each year.

Our entrepreneurs are a top-notch bunch

Before we introduce startups to our Angels, we give each entrepreneur who meets our investment criteria the time of day. Through one-to-one meetings with our Entrepreneur Coaches to help build their pitch deck and clarify their proposition, or by connecting them with a Mentor from our community who shares their specialist area of tech, we make sure all our entrepreneurs are investor-ready. In 2018 we delivered 112 entrepreneur coaching sessions and sculpted 73 pitch-perfect propositions that went on to be presented to investors.

And what happens after the pitch? We don’t leave people high and dry. Last year we facilitated 118 investor introductions and meetings. Five of which turned into deals at a total value of £1m with the investment process managed by our team and partners.

Feeling inspired and want to get involved? We host a programme of events throughout the year and always welcome angel investors and entrepreneurs to get in touch.

If you have a question or suggestion, please contact our Marketing & Events Manager, Charlotte Scott.


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