Don't invest unless you're prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment and you are unlikely to be protected if something goes wrong.
Risk Summary

Estimated reading time: 2 min

Due to the potential for losses, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) considers this investment to be high risk.

What are the key risks?

  • You could lose all the money you invest
  • Most investments are shares in start-up businesses or bonds issued by them. Investors in these shares or bonds often lose 100% of the money they invested, as most start-up businesses fail.
  • Checks on the businesses you are investing in, such as how well they are expected to perform, may not have been carried out by the platform you are investing through. You should do your own research before investing.

You won't get your money back quickly

  • Even if the business you invest in is successful, it will likely take several years to get your money back.
  • The most likely way to get your money back is if the business is bought by another business or lists its shares on an exchange such as the London Stock Exchange. These events are not common.
  • Start-up businesses very rarely pay you back through dividends. You should not expect to get your money back this way.
  • Some platforms may give you the opportunity to sell your investment early through a 'secondary market' or 'bulletin board', but there is no guarantee you will find a buyer at the price you are willing to sell.

Don't put all your eggs in one basket

  • Putting all your money into a single business or type of investment for example, is risky. Spreading your money across different investments makes you less dependent on any one to do well. A good rule of thumb is not to invest more than 10% of your money in high-risk investments. Learn more here.

The value of your investment can be reduced

  • If your investment is shares, the percentage of the business that you own will decrease if the business issues more shares. This could mean that the value of your investment reduces, depending on how much the business grows. Most start-up businesses issue multiple rounds of shares.
  • These new shares could have additional rights that your shares don't have, such as the right to receive a fixed dividend, which could further reduce your chances of getting a return on your investment.

You are unlikely to be protected if something goes wrong

  • Protection from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), in relation to claims against failed regulated firms, does not cover poor investment performance. Try the FSCS investment protection checker.
  • Protection from the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) does not cover poor investment performance. If you have a complaint against an FCA-regulated platform, FOS may be able to consider it. Learn more about FOS protection here.

If you are interested in learning more about how to protect yourself, visit the FCA's website here.

For further information about investment-based crowdfunding, visit the crowdfunding section of the FCA's website here.


Serving up £2.6 million for guest self-service platform

Growth Capital Ventures has recently co-invested alongside funds managed by leading private equity manager, MAVEN Capital Partners, in a funding round that exceeded its initial target and resulted in a fund-raise of £2.6 million.

Founded in 2011 by entrepreneurs Daniel Rodgers and Ronnie Forbes, QikServe is the enterprise platform for guest self-service in hospitality. 

Using any channel from kiosks and tablets to web and mobile apps, hospitality operators can provide powerful in-store solutions from ordering to payment, giving guests the convenience to order and pay for their food and drinks whenever and however they want.


How did GCV support QikServe?

Built on the understanding that we’re moving further and further into a cashless society – and that the mobile order market is reported to be worth £27 billion – QikServe have seen considerable success to date, including with some of the world’s largest food and beverage organisations.

Being piloted in hotels, casinos, stadiums and other facilities, QikServe are proving how their products and services are suitable across several sectors using a variety of different outputs, and the immense potential within the industry.

GCV supported QikServe in their latest investment round that initially targeted £2.5 million in exchange for a 21.8% equity share in their business at a pre-money valuation of £10 million. 

The growth investment capital will go on to be used to capitalise on their market opportunity and accelerate the roll-out of their solutions across the travel concessions sector.

The funding round which was launched on GCV’s online investor platform, exceeded it’s target and raised £2.6 million.

Investment consisted of institutional and professional investors, including Maven Venture Capital Trusts, who are following on their investment and increasing their shareholding from a previous round. 

Moreover, the round also benefited from a VCT clearance, allowing a smooth transaction for the VCT and institutional investors.


How does QikServe make a positive difference? 

Hospitality businesses need a quick and effective method for ordering and paying for food and beverages, when on the move. QikServe provides a fully integrated solution that removes complexity brought by integrating multiple back-end systems.

Whilst many of the leading hospitality businesses have adopted kiosks for the first step in their digital journey, they recognise that in order to future proof themselves and avoid duplication of effort they need a partner that can cater for all their channel requirements, including mobile and web, which will replace or co-exist with kiosks.

Primarily QikServe was designed to enhance the guest and customer experience, by shortening queue times, speeding up transactions and allowing customers to pay any way they choose.

By encouraging repeat visits and harnessing loyalty programmes, this has enabled hospitality outlets to understand their customers like never before. 

The impact this has on the customers has not only boosted the experience but in turn seen an average transaction increase by 20% for the outlets now utilising QikServe.

The speeding up of transactions will also see more hospitality outlets able to reach a higher capacity, increasing revenue and the creation of further jobs in the hospitality market.


Daniel Rodgers, CEO at QikServe, said: “A dramatic global shift in hospitality economics is resulting in increased uptake of digital self-service technology. Mobile ordering and payments are now pressing concerns for businesses across the global hospitality sector as they seek to improve service, reduce costs and meet the expectations of the modern consumer.”


QikServe works with a full range of brands from small independent operators to international household names that operate thousands of sites globally including Burger King, Greggs, and Merlin Entertainment group to name a few.

Find out more about QikServe


Driving Growth.
Creating Value.
Delivering Impact.

Backed by

Growth Capital Ventures (GCV) is backed by funds managed by Maven Capital Partners, one of the UK’s leading private equity and alternative asset managers.