ShareIn are the UK’s experts in white label crowdfunding and compliance solutions.
Our white label crowdfunding solution provides our clients with a customised platform that fits their own brand and technical specifications, where they can raise direct investment – both equity and debt – from their crowd of investors.
As ShareIn are directly authorised by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) – we have held our authorisation since June 2014 – we are also able to offer an Appointed Representative (AR) service that allows our AR clients to use our crowdfunding umbrella service. This means our AR clients can operate their crowdfunding site in a compliant manner without the need to go through the time- and cost-intensive process of securing their own regulatory authorisation.
Our crowdfunding solution offers flexibility, giving our clients an off the shelf platform to get launched fast – normally in just 6-8 weeks – through to a fully tailored solution that fits their unique requirements. We pride ourselves on building platforms that are scalable, robust, and secure, utilising a cloud solution with monthly admin maintenance and support including issue logging and resolution.
On top of that, we also offer a full content management system (CMS) to enable our clients to control their own site, and we deliver in-depth training on how to use the CMS. This means that there is no need for our clients to have their own in-house development team. ShareIn handle integration with the payment service provider, database backup and storage, disaster recovery plan, website, database, document and image hosting, domain acquisition and maintenance and transactional email service.
Since December 2016, ShareIn have also been an authorised Innovative Finance ISA manager, which enables our clients to offer crowd bonds on their crowdfunding platforms within the tax-free IF ISA wrapper. We are currently working towards an authorisation to offer peer to peer loans as well.
ShareIn have been specialising in building property crowdfunding platforms for a number of years for various types of real estate, whether it’s residential, commercial, developments, buy-to-let, or build-to-let. Property deals can be equity, mezzanine, or straight debt, and our platform enables clients to make distributions or capital repayments back to investors’ wallets. That means there is no need to send cheques in the post, and investors can then reinvest easily and quickly in the future property deals on the platform.
ShareIn also have a growing roster of clients in the “ethical investing” space, including the crowdfunding platform for Triodos Bank– the first crowdfunding platform launched by a UK bank. We also provide both the technology and compliance solution for the Energise Africa platform, a joint venture between two of Europe’s leading social investment platforms: UK-based Ethex and Netherlands-based Lendahand.
ShareIn’s co-founders Jude Cook (CEO) and Andrew Pickett (CTO) met at an Edinburgh University Business School E-Club event in 2011, where they discussed the idea of using the internet to mobilise first round friends and family funding for early stage investment. At the time no investment based crowdfunding platforms existed anywhere in the world. It seemed an obvious thing to do!
From 2011 to 2014 two key insights informed their strategy to pivot from crowdfunding platform to white label provider:
(1) The winner doesn’t take it all.
Investment platforms don’t have the same characteristics as network platforms like Facebook or Google. There is a limited network effect with Investors. Investors are sector/product sensitive. Acquiring investors is costly and so they need to like all your deals. Successful platforms focus on a niche.
(2) Although a highly regulated industry there are e-commerce business model parallels.
Any new e-commerce play would not rush to build their own tool – the SaaS proposition is just too compelling. ShareIn offers a robust SaaS investment platform product at a price that stacks up: 20x cheaper than in house development, 10x faster to market – with the know-how and experience to go along with it.
ShareIn has been involved at the forefront of new developments in the UK crowdfunding space since our formation. We were founding members of the UK Crowdfunding Association in 2012, and in 2014 we became directly authorised by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), allowing us to branch out into offering regulatory compliance services to our growing base of clients.
Becoming an Innovative Finance ISA (IF ISA) manager in 2016 allowed our clients to start offering crowd bonds on their platforms, and with a steady stream of new clients coming in over the course of the following months we reached the milestone of moving from start up to scale up, recording a profitable year-end in October 2017.
Since marking this exciting transition from start up to scale up, ShareIn have celebrated further milestones, such as the launch of the Triodos crowdfunding platform in February 2018 – the first crowdfunding platform to be launched by a UK bank, offering eligible investors the opportunity to invest in both equity and bonds issued by established charities and businesses delivering positive social and environmental impacts.
In June 2018, Jude joined the board of FinTech Scotland, and ShareIn’s Head of Finance, Mark Howitt, was appointed Director of the UKCFA. In September 2018, we moved into the largest office space at Edinburgh’s CodeBase (itself the largest technology incubator in Scotland), with a steadily growing and very diverse team – currently standing at 25 members representing 13 different nationalities, with women making up more than half of not just the overall team, but of the development team as well!
Jude Cook – CEO
Andrew Pickett – CTO