Doug Richard’s School for Creative Startups and Ascension Ventures, the investment arm of creative and digital sector investment and business services group Ascension Media Group, today announced a tie-up which will see successful graduates of the School receiving funding and business support to get their new enterprises off the ground.
Founded in 2011 as an offshoot of his School for Startups, School for Creative Startups is a unique programme designed to teach creative people how to actively build successful start-ups and live from their endeavour. A hands-on teaching programme for early stage creative businesses, the School provides tuition in the form of bootcamps, workshops, surgeries and throughdigital tools and advisor support.
Under the terms of the tie-up, Ascension Ventures, which recently opened the first Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS)* fund in the UK, will have an option to invest in the new businesses founded by the School’s graduates which have been developed and prepared for investment by Doug Richard and his team.
Announcing the partnership, Doug Richard, Founder and CEO of School for Creative Startups said: “SEIS is potentially one of the most extraordinary incentives ever created and could drive the greatest surge of new businesses in Britain’s history. Our tie up with Ascension Ventures will be a powerful and important one because it will result in creative startups that are now skilled and empowered to succeed by giving them vital funding to grow their businesses.
“We already have a number of excellent businesses signed up to the School for Creative Startups programme this year that could really benefit from external funding. School for Startups is focused on helping to drive growth through training entrepreneurs to avoid the pitfalls that can result in business failure, and Ascension Ventures will help us to achieve this goal.
“Through this partnership, we hope to accelerate the investment in creative businesses that have the potential to become great brands,” he added.
Sanjay Wadhwani, CEO and Founder of Ascension, said: “I am delighted to be working with Doug and School for Creative Startups. Doug and I share the same vision for encouraging and developing entrepreneurship in the UK, providing talented creative entrepreneurs with the skills, knowledge and expertise that they need to maximise their chances of success. I have been a mentor on his excellent programme this year and have already identified at least one exceptional opportunity in addition to the others we have alreadyearmarked for investment. This partnership establishes another proprietary pipeline of opportunities that Doug and his team will oversee, knowing that when they receive investment from us they will continue to be in good hands.
“The SEIS will be a fantastic boost to new enterprise. An investment of the maximum amount of £100,000 after initial tax reliefs has a net cost of only £22,000. If that £100,000 investment doubles in three years, the gain will be CGT-free and the post tax return on £22,000 is over nine times the original investment.
“As a result of this exciting tie up we are keeping our funds open to new subscriptions to enable us to accommodate the expected expansion in our pipeline”.