JamJar Investments £ 48m to encourage UK startups with taxpayer support

A £ 100 million venture fund launched by the founders of Innocent Smoothies has secured মান 48 million in public money to invest in next-generation UK consumer brand businesses.

John Wright, Rich Reed, and Adam Ballon have invested up to 5 5 million a year in startups, such as Deliveru and Babylon Health, since 2013, based on income from Innocent sales to Coca-Cola that year.

Their team at JamJar Investments, which includes partner Katie Marraché, has now raised a second fund of over £ 100 million, including £ 48 million of British Business Bank’s Enterprise Capital Fund – making JamJar the largest fund ever.

Reid, 49, said: “At the heart of the fund – half the money – is the great British taxpayer. The UK will return a profit to the taxpayer. Anyone who thinks so deserves the title of Knight because it is a good idea. “

He added: “Why us? We have a track record of doing this with our own money. We showed them the performance of our funds, the method. I can say this on behalf of the great British taxpayer, no one has let us down through the process of perseverance more than the British Business Bank.

“They really, really, deeply examine what you’re saying; you’ve delivered what you’ve said; they talk to a lot of people on your network to make sure you’re honest, hardworking and reliable. They don’t sit there and listen to the pitch. It’s an 18. The month had a proper labor process, as well as it should be.

Jamzer was the initial investor in four unicorns – the company valued at more than $ 1 billion – such as Deliveru, Babylon Health, Otley and Manipets, pet insurer’s new name BoughtbyMany. It also backed Tails.com, a subscription dog food business that sold a majority stake in Nestl 2018 in 2018 for “handsome” money.

Reid said he was the second-largest investor in Ballon & Wright Fund, then founder of the previous JamJar investment and friends and family through a £ 2.4 million increase in crowdfunding site Seedrs.

“If you want stress, you have to put yourself under pressure,” Reed said. “You get money from the British Business Bank, your own money and then all your friends and family and co-workers. It focuses your mind. “

JamJar will invest between ,000 500,000 and 3 million to look at promising businesses from start-ups to early expansion stages. However, Reid said the size of the new fund gave it the firepower to participate in the follow-on round of investments, which it could not do with its previous fund.

As an entrepreneur, Reed said, Jamzer has been given a loan compared to other professional investors who had less operational experience.

“Unless you build and run a business, go through all the hot, sweaty nights and nightmares and then the ups and downs and everything in between, I don’t think it’s something you can learn: it’s something you have to do.”

He said Jamzar’s vision for working with the founders was “either to exploit them or to get out of the way.” The team has a four-pronged approach to evaluating whether to invest, the strengths and motivations of the people involved, the qualifications of the product or service, the value and size of the investment, and whether they will be “proud”. Business

Reid says JamJar’s investments that didn’t work include Gojimo, a GCSE revision app that was acquired by Telegraph Media Group in 2017 for unpublished money, and SuperCarers, which was launched in 2015 and was bought with unpublished money by home care provider Home instead. In 2020.

“We’re still wrong,” he said. “Investing is often foolish. You say ‘no’ to things you should have said ‘yes’ to, and say ‘yes’ to things you should have said ‘no’ to. Even when you say ‘yes’, you realize that you should have invested more. “

Coca-Cola acquired Innocent in a deal that valued the smoothie maker at an estimated 320 million.

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