London Brief #26: Virgin or The Pope? A dying unicorn and business as usual
Barclays Rise is open for business, so if you are into FinTech, head up to Shoreditch. Read more in this issue.
The Pope. We never mentioned the Pope here, but consider it fixed now. If you are bored of London, The Pope has just made Stephen Forte (Fresco Capital) launch an accelerator at the Vatican. Apply here.
If you would rather stay in the UK, though, Sir Richard Branson launched Voom Pitch, a nationwide pitch contest with regional awards of £5,000 and a grand finale prize £1m, which you can get after a successful pitch to the boss of Virgin.
In the news
Ve Interactive, formerly believed to be a unicorn, has been saved from bankruptcy by its management. The value of the buyout was just £2m, but the company reportedly owes £1.3m in taxes.
11 startups presented themselves at Startupbootcamp InsurTech Demo Day
Business as usual
- MPP Global, a digital content monetisation platform, has raised £12m Series B funding from Albion Ventures and Grafton Capital.
- VST Enterprises, a FinTech startup from Manchester offering a VCode technology, has raised £11.2m from private investors.
- Decibel Insight, a digital customer behaviour analytics company, has closed a $9m Series A led by Eight Road Ventures.
- Yieldify, a MarTech platform, has raised $6m in a round led by a new Russian fund, Binomial Ventures.
- YourWelcome, a startup offering Airbnb hosts a device and a platform to upsell additional services, has raised £1m in a round led by Flux Group.
- Ubamarket, a shopping app, has raised £875,000 from 35 high-net-worth individuals, including Nick Stenning, a former SVP at Unilever.
Number of the day
£2m — This is what is left from the £1.5 billion valuation of Ve Interactive.
London Brief is a weekly selection of essential information about startups, technology and the business scene in London. Got news? Give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On behalf of the London Brief Team