Research agency Beauhurst just released their latest report on the private equity investment market. ‘The Deal 2016’ shows that crowdfunding outperformed private equity investment into non-listed high growth companies in the UK between January 2016 to February 2017 – with Seedrs topping the table as the most active investor.

Seedrs funded 134 deals in 2016, with our nearest rival funding just 124. Over £85M was invested through Seedrs from 45,000 investments – £20M more than 2015 – bucking the market trend of a slight decline in crowdfunding numbers. Together, Seedrs and Crowdcube were responsible for 86% of all crowdfunding activity and 21% of all equity investment in the UK.

The report demonstrates crowdfunding’s more recent emergence as a real alternative for companies raising investment at a later-stage of growth. There was a 10% increase in growth-stage crowdfunding signifying an increasing maturity in the market, with 80% of these later-stage companies raising via crowdfunding for the first time.

Seedrs Alumnus and UK challenger bank Tandem raised £2.2M from 1,715 investors last year and are an example of one of these companies turning to crowdfunding for the first time. Hitting their funding target in just 15 seconds, they were marked as ‘one to watch’ in 2017 by Beauhurst with over £52.3M raised across eight funding rounds. The fintech business recently announced a £35M investment from House of Fraser who are partnering with the brand to develop an app-only banking service to customers.

The post-Brexit half of 2016 marked the strongest period to date for Seedrs. Over £20M was invested into campaigns on the platform in October alone which supports Beauhurst’s findings and their suggestion that Brexit has had little to no short-term impact on equity investment. This period saw the likes of Perkbox, who raised £4.3M in just two weeks, and WeSwap who closed their campaign with almost 3,000 investors (the largest number investors in equity crowdfunding history), join the Seedrs portfolio.