Multichannel Podcast – Brand CEO Alan Green discusses EIS & SEIS with Neil Butland of Sentient Capital

Brand CEO Alan Green discusses Sentient Capital, it’s aim’s, unique approach to investing into growth companies and future steps with director Neil Butland. Neil also explains EIS and SEIS tax breaks for investors as well as Sentient’s fundraising rounds for DragApp and Fedr8.

Link to DragApp page here

Link to Fedr8 page here

Sentient CapitalMultichannel Podcast – Brand CEO Alan Green discusses EIS & SEIS with Neil Butland of Sentient Capital
read more

Fedr8 CEO Damion Greef talks to Alan Green about the company’s machine learning technology and the current round of fundraising

Brand Communications CEO Alan Green talks to Fedr8 CEO Damion Greef about Green Rain, the company’s proprietary machine learning engine. Damion explains how Green Rain interrogates software code at a granular level and how the process solves the challenges faced by major institutions when moving legacy applications to the cloud. Damion discusses the the decision to move the current fundraising activities to FCA regulated technology funding specialists Sentient Capital.

Back to Fedr8 page

Sentient CapitalFedr8 CEO Damion Greef talks to Alan Green about the company’s machine learning technology and the current round of fundraising
read more

Growth Company Multicast – Alan Green talks to Nick Timms, CEO of DragApp

Brand Comms CEO Alan Green talks to Nick Timms. Nick is co-founder and CEO at DragApp, a mailbox application that organises your inbox in much the same way that a CRM system organises and segments a company marketing database. In the past year DragApp has amassed over 30,000 users in nearly 200 countries, and already boasts blue chip names such as Uber, Netflix, Spotify and AirBNB on its client list. A highly successful marketing strategy sees DragApp currently generate $36 from every $30 spent. The company are currently raising £600k through FCA regulated Sentient Capital to further accelerate global growth. Info on this and investment documents can be found here

Back to DragApp page

Sentient CapitalGrowth Company Multicast – Alan Green talks to Nick Timms, CEO of DragApp
read more

Proactive Investors – Fedr8’s Green Rain: Cloud-ready solutions from complex legacy software applications

Fedr8 Sales Director Richard Beckensall & advisor Derek Ward talk Proactive’s Andrew Scott through Green Rain, the business strategy and current fundraising via technology partners Sentient Capital and Crowdcube.

”Fedr8 came to market in 2008, initially as a consultancy firm, helping technology partners and resellers in the industry understand a bit more about cloud – how it was going to impact their revenue models”, Beckensall says.

”We’ve grown through automation of process and because of that journey we stumbled somewhat across the ability to automate the discovery process for applications”, he adds.

Discussing why Ward chose to get involved with Fedr8, he says: ”I’ve had a privileged opportunity to look at tech around the world .. and those positions lead me to being able to see what UK tech could do”.

”I got involved with UK tech particularly helping organisations I felt had brilliant ideas, really smart people and importantly people running them who’ve got the credentials of having taken businesses and scaled them”.

”In this cloud market place … the people who will win are the people who can accelerate the growth”, Ward says.

Green Rain, which launched back in September 2017, automates application discovery and helps support customers to make fast decisions, at scale and with greater efficiency.

Back to Fedr8 page

Sentient CapitalProactive Investors – Fedr8’s Green Rain: Cloud-ready solutions from complex legacy software applications
read more

Workgaps Investor Update Winter 2016

workgapsInvestor Update Winter 2016

This is our third newsletter, which provides an update on our progress. It’s a welcome back to many of our investors, and a warm welcome to our new investors.

It has been 18 months since we last sent an investor newsletter and we know that it’s overdue! It’s probably good that we’ve been focusing on the business and not on writing newsletters. It’s hard to believe how quickly time has passed and writing this made us realise how much progress we’ve made.

It’s an exciting time for the business and we have plenty to share. We’re bringing on customers, receiving great feedback and are proud of the product we have to offer. Importantly, we have a fantastically talented in-house team who are all passionate about the work they’re doing, which means it’s only going to get better. That is not to say that there haven’t been tough challenges since we last spoke, some of which we share here.

As we end the year, we’re confident looking forward to 2017 so for now, we wish you and your families a happy and healthy festive holiday and hope you enjoy the update.

Yours sincerely,

Jon & Simon

Link to Investor Newsletter Winter 2016 FINAL report

Back to Workgaps page

Sentient CapitalWorkgaps Investor Update Winter 2016
read more

Workgaps December 2016 update

workgapsEnd of Year Update

WorkGaps is closing 2016 in a strong position, is positively geared, and looking forward to a very successful 2017. As a general update to interested parties, we are releasing the following information.

Team

We accelerated the shift from outsourced development with a UK partner to 100% in-house production and reorganised the team accordingly. We now have a balanced and effective production team incorporating design, development and testing. We believe that bringing these in-house has given us greater control, improved capability, and better responsiveness to adapt the user experience and features based on direct customer feedback. It has also meant a significantly more cost effective approach. We will look to grow our technical team next year as sales increase and the demand for new features and custom integrations grows.

In other news, a former CTO of Betfair and Uswitch has joined the WorkGaps team. Tim Reeve sees great potential in our business model and we’re delighted to be able to benefit from his experience and prior success in the tech sector.

Product

In simple terms, our early product releases included all the features we set out to build, however we felt that from a user perspective the software was not simple and intuitive enough, which was borne out through testing and feedback. We included so many features the software became complicated. We knew we were on the right track as early customers believed in us and the benefits the product could bring. Even when it was only in beta testing, they still wanted to use it. Those early adopters remain users of the software and their feedback has been invaluable in the product

Improvements we’ve made.

During the second half of 2016, we’ve taken the entire product to pieces and reassembled it – we’ve radically improved usability and the code base to allow for new developments to be added with more speed. A mid-year re-build and selling ‘pause’ was the right thing to do to deliver a better feature set and put us on the right path for the future with all of the IP and knowledge held in our in-house team. It also allows for a much better new user experience.

Before the end of the year, we plan to place a short video on our website that will showcase the key features and use cases.

Sales

We are now taking those sales leads we had on pause during our re-build and are re-engaging them. We have a further £13.5k committed from Origin Enterprises, an Irish based agrichemical supplier that wants to use it to manage shift workers in IT and Logistics, and pilots running now which will add £90k of revenue when they successfully complete, and the signs are all very positive. The pipeline is an order of magnitude larger than that, but we are now focused on successfully converting these pilots, and ensuring we deliver the product they want.

We have a mix of organisation types and industries in pilot from Idea Store (education), Read College (education), Luna Boutique (retail), to Scrubbers (cleaning). The pipeline covers staffing across the aviation sector, recruitment businesses, education, retail, leisure and people outsourcers.

One of the more interesting aspects about our education sector conversations is that there has been a request to put their students into the tool to manage their timetables, which we’ve been told can especially help with last minute changes such as room or time changes. This is being actively used as an approach by Read College currently, who have now placed all their tutors and students on the system. We think the wider education market represents a big opportunity for us; the CEO of Idea Store acts on an advisory board for the London area looking at how to improve standards and technology for tutors, administrators and students. She has told us that WorkGaps has an excellent fit into the wider education market and wants to introduce us to other education providers when we have completed the rollout for their 250 tutors.

We are well advanced into an engagement with AY Aviation who want to expand their reach across the Heathrow ecosystem and rapidly grow their current 300 strong workforce by increasing their capabilities to manage relationships and data with a much bigger workforce and by allowing clients to access that workforce and book them directly through WorkGaps. This engagement has much wider implications for sales into larger facilities management and outsourcing businesses.

One of the bigger surprises has been the speed with which we could develop senior level sales conversations through the experience and network of the management team. However, this became a challenge as the product was not enterprise ready at the time of those conversations. We now have a significant number of the components in place for enterprise customers, however we have decided to focus on the SME space for the first quarter of 2017 before returning to those larger engagements we have warmed up. In the SME sector, we’ve set up meetings with several leisure centres (Lime Kiln and Taro), as well as Richmond Hill Hotel. Expressions of interest have come in from other hotels & restaurants (Taplow House, Oxford Thames, Millstream, The Grove, The River Café) and a care home (The Old Prebendal).

We have now had serious engagement with a number of larger organisations including Verizon Enterprise solutions, who started a review with regard to switching out for SAP Fieldglass with potential savings for them are in the region of £200k annually in the UK alone. Mitie remain interested in the potential for several of their business divisions from landscape gardening to pest management, as well as a potential sell through to the wider market via their services business.

Alongside the opportunity to grow the network in terms of absolute users, we have opened discussions with an international recruitment business on how they can use it to manage their broad network of flexible workers and simplify their management of contract, part time and temporary workers.

Roadmap

The feature set we have is now strong and allows any organisation to save time and money managing their staff. This is not our opinion, but from direct feedback from early adopters and those who have seen the tool. Our roadmap for the next 6 months is laid out and the priority list currently being defined through a blend of market analysis and customer requirements.

The roadmap contains some exciting features that we are sure will facilitate in rapid growth in 2017. We have decided to bring forward internationalisation as a priority, this is as a result of an approach from North America to run WorkGaps sales for that region. Coupled with interest we have received for operating WorkGaps in Hong Kong, Singapore, and France, as well as the international set up of some of the businesses we are now talking with, the ability to manage locations, currencies and differences across countries has grown in importance. This will substantially open growth potential without committing us to overseas office and spend.

The introduction of an open API layer to facilitate third party integrations, be that client reporting or payroll feeds, or suppliers of value-adding services such as e-learning or people checking services (background and right-to-work) is high on the list because of the opportunities it opens.

Client specific requests include enhanced tracking features that can better support logistics and security industry requirements. This includes ‘geo-fencing’ allowing for smarter monitoring and management of a workforce. The provision of an extended ‘client’ layer to allow organisations to give access to people outside of their business – their customers – has also been requested in a number of sales conversations. In effect, a large organisation uses WorkGaps to manage and present their workforce, and allows their clients visibility and limited system access to directly manage those people.

Other roadmap items include integration with smart assistants (Google, Amazon Alexa etc.) and the introduction of machine learning to improve matching algorithms throughout the site. Continued mobile application improvements are a priority ensuring that we’re adding the web-based features in a mobile environment, and the advances in application development technologies (Instant Apps, Progressive Web Apps etc.) for mobiles make this an exciting prospect and one that we are well placed to realise benefit from.

To summarise, we’re very excited with our roadmap and the growth opportunity in front of us. We’re confident we have the team in place to deliver success for both our customers and investors.

Jon Rhymes

Chief Executive

Back to Workgaps page

Sentient CapitalWorkgaps December 2016 update
read more

Multichannel Podcast – Brand Communications CEO Alan Green discusses Fedr8 Green Rain with Neil Butland of Sentient Capital

Multichannel Podcast – Brand CEO Alan Green discusses Fedr8 and #GreenRain IT archaeology with Neil Butland of Sentient Capital.

Neil discusses Sentient Capital’s role in identifying high potential growth company investment opportunities for their HNW client base.

Looking at Fedr8, Neil explains how Green Rain works to analyse thousands of legacy applications, and how it saves a huge amount of time and money. He compares a typical coding task: a contractor on daily rate can take 40-50 days to complete analysis and coding requirements for a single app, in comparison to Green Rain, which takes just 24 hours and can run thousands of tasks simultaneously. These factors have resulted in Sentient Capital successfully completing two fundraising rounds for Fedr8 prior to the current Crowdcube fundraising campaign.

Back to Fedr8 page

Sentient CapitalMultichannel Podcast – Brand Communications CEO Alan Green discusses Fedr8 Green Rain with Neil Butland of Sentient Capital
read more

NAC Industrial – Trading Update 31st January 2018

nac-logo                                      NAC address

TRADING UPDATE 31ST JANUARY 2018 YEAR ENDED 31ST DECEMBER 2017

  • Sales £1,933k, 90% increase on 12 months to Dec 2016, gross margin maintained at 37.74%. Sales were held back by lack of manufacturing capacity through the final quarter. Some products out of stock in key markets.
  • 91.3% sales exported during year up from 73% in the 12 months to Dec 2017.
  • Sales growth has occurred across all existing markets as brand awareness, customer recognition and performance of NAC products become better known.
  • Largest market is the USA where growth has been significant both online and direct to regional distribution.
  • Online sales B2B and B2C remain dominant and a large area of growth as customers continue to switch to online purchasing. This trend we expect to continue.
  • 170 NAC product variants delivered and launched into market by Dec 2017.
  • NAC products were available in the UK, European Union, Australia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, USA, Canada and Mexico by Dec 2017.
  • Business restructured to improve unit performance and structure for possible list or trade sale albeit no timescales are established on this.
  • Distribution and supply chain were the key problems in 2017 as sales growth driven predominantly by online marketing and new markets outstripped manufacturing capacity.

2018 FORWARD LOOKING

  • FACTORY MOVE – Contracts being finalised now for move to new factory in Milton Keynes. Completion 1st March 2018. Factory is significantly larger than existing facility and will enable business to expand and alleviate current supply chain problems. Facilities to load 48 feet containers onsite.
  • Three new machines have been evaluated for siting at factory to offer further variants and accelerate manufacture to meet demand.
  • 1st Feb 2018 launch of further range of NAC Safety floor products into market. Products designed to our specifications, certified to US, EU and UK standards. Further range currently in finalisation.
  • 1st Feb 2018 launch of South American online market place. Employee recruited with local market knowledge
  • Evaluation of other key markets and online B2B and B2C portals ongoing with particular focus on the Middle East market.
  • Work underway to ensure bottleneck of products that have been designed, tested and are awaiting marketing and launch are cleared and are available in all markets prior to further development. We expect this to generate in excess of 500 product variants by DEC 2018, an increase of 294%.
  • Jan 2018 Finance Director recruited. Initial responsibility to implement process, automation and good practise in the online trading and manufacturing businesses followed by trading data review and profit maximisation.
  • Key priority for the business in 2018 is to ensure effective business control processes are in place and automation, review, feedback and action is quick and efficient.
  • Overall managing growth effectively we expect will be the key issue for 2018.

Back to NAC Industrial page

Sentient CapitalNAC Industrial – Trading Update 31st January 2018
read more