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.

Portfolio News

Steven Brown on the importance of efficient access to business finance

Further to the launch of our live EIS eligible investment opportunity with Business Finance Market (trading as Finance Nation), we asked their Chief Distribution Officer and Co-Founder, Steven Brown, about how and why they will offer more straightforward and efficient access to business finance than ever before.


If you’re a small or medium business, getting a loan is complicated. Much more complicated than it needs to be. Regrettably, it’s not just a case of “I want to borrow - you want to lend” and everyone lives happy ever after.

More often than not a business approaches their own bank - which is still typically one of the traditional high street banks - only to find that they are not interested due to narrower and more constricted lending criteria than ever before.

So, these days if you’re a business, the chances are you’ll either give up completely or end up consulting a commercial finance broker if you want a loan.

And if you’re a commercial finance broker, things can get complex. On the one hand you have multiple customers with varying requirements and on the other you have hundreds of lenders – all with different lending criteria and varying deals.

Consequently, every time a broker makes an application for one of their customers, life can get pretty busy!

Applications are made up of fragmented pieces of what brokers know about their customers and disconnected data feeds that don’t even talk to each other.

In fact, it’s kind of all over the place.

But that’s ok, because what seems like chaos contains everything a broker actually needs and that creates possibilities: potential opportunities for businesses, brokers, and lenders; insights; indicators of the best, fastest and most flexible route for customer finance deals.

There are 5.9 million small and medium-sized businesses operating in the UK and, with even more founded during the pandemic, it might seem odd that the high street banks don’t make more of an effort to court this client demographic. Unfortunately, they are content to keep taking cost out of their models and to stay out of the spotlight by delivering an average proposition. And that’s good, for them.

But it’s not good for those businesses in need of finance. Post-Brexit and as the UK recovers from Covid, businesses need confidence to invest for the future.

To take advantage of this, we need a little imagination and tons of hard work - but we also need technology that puts all this data and our commercial broking and banking experience to good use and builds things that work for us, our customers, and the lenders. Technology with a human touch.

Welcome to Finance Nation, one intuitive place to manage applications for loans for customers.

Finance Nation has created a new kind of business lending platform that adapts to lenders' needs and our experience. It’s faster, more efficient and has a higher percentage success rate on deals than ever before. And the lenders love this idea, too, so everyone’s happy.

This is an easier way for small businesses to get the funding they need. Finance Nation works with multiple customers and their trusted advisors as well as hundreds of best-in-class lenders all looking for the same thing: one place to exchange the lending requirements of the 5.9 million small and mid-sized businesses in the UK, delivering detailed, accurate and focused client applications and giving them more time, reduced errors, and a higher proportion of successful deals.

Finance Nation’s platform not only makes time spent on applications more productive, but gives peace of mind that every deal application made through the platform leads to a much higher likelihood of finding the best and most appropriate finance for their customers and more value for everyone in the long run.

Brokers and lenders spend a huge part of their lives doing deals, so for them, Finance Nation automates the time-consuming, repetitive tasks so they can spend their time on meaningful, profitable work. In fact, it’s a hidden platform, so everyone can get on with doing what they do best - their business.

There you have it. Finance Nation is bringing commercial finance into the 21st Century, with an intuitive, simple, and easy to use interface powered by incredible computing power.

Whilst the need for human relationships and business savvy ‘gut feel’ will never go away, our platform will deliver faster, better finance for small and medium sized businesses; a simple, less hassle way for a broker to do business, and much more efficiency and deal accuracy for lenders.

Discover the full details of the company's live EIS-eligible investment opportunity here.

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.