British tech company POD Point secures investment to power surge in electric vehicle ownership

Posted by Isabella Cookson, 20 Feb 2017

Innovative electric vehicle charge point supplier, putting infrastructure in place to fuel EV boom in the UK and overseas ● POD Point launches new crowdfunding round as part of £9m fundraise led by Draper Esprit ● Investment to expand vital charging infrastructure for electric vehicles across UK ● Mission for EV charge point everywhere people park for more than hour by 2020   LONDON: POD Point, the UK electric vehicle charge point supplier, has launched a new £1.5m crowdfunding round, part of a larger £9m fundraise led by Venture Capitalist Draper Esprit. The funding round sees Draper investing £3m for new shares and £2m for secondaries alongside Barclays Capital who are providing £2m of venture debt and £550k additional equity investment has been secured from angel investors. POD Point has made £1.55m worth shares available to the public through Equity Crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. Over the past two years, POD Point has already successfully raised £3.3m in two crowdfunding rounds, through Seedrs and Crowdcube.* The new investment will be used to expand​ the vital charging infrastructure necessary for widespread adoption of electric vehicles in the UK. POD Point’s target is to double turnover to £9m in the 2016/17 financial year and benchmark market growth thereafter. POD Point​ is already a well established, leading player in this country’s EV sector, having manufactured and sold over 27,000 charging points since it was founded in 2009. This new investment is intended to fund the next stage of business growth, directly creating 50 new jobs in the UK, and helping to lay down the bedrock EV charging infrastructure to fuel the expansion of the market both here and in Europe. Following recent partnerships with Barratt Homes, Holiday Extra and Hyundai, POD Point intends to have one of its stations installed everywhere people park for an hour or more by 2020. Globally, the Electric Vehicle market is going from strength to strength, driven by advances in technology, infrastructure developments and cost efficiencies. Here in the UK, over 38,000 plug-in vehicles were registered in 2016, compared to just 1052 over the same time period in 2011, a five-year growth rate of almost 3500%.** Tesla, the most world renowned player in the EV space, recently announced its Model 3, entry level offering for EV drivers, has already attracted over 400k+ deposits. According to some reports, electric and hybrid vehicles are expected to make up over 7% of all new vehicle sales by 2020, and environmental pressures are already boosting this growth. Policies in the UK are set to create clean air zones in at least five cities by 2020, and in Europe the German Parliament has even moved to ban sales of new combustion engine powered vehicles by 2030. Little surprise then that investors are moving to capitalise on an industry that, ​globally, has a positive outlook for the coming years. “This is a significant milestone for a sector that has been gathering momentum for some time,” said Erik Fairbairn, CEO, POD Point. “The way people use cars is changing and how they are powered is at the epicentre of that. Travel shouldn’t damage the earth, which is why we are building the most advanced intelligent charging network in the UK, the POD Point Open Charge Network.” Simon Cook, CEO of Draper Esprit said “​POD point is leading the charge in the EV infrastructure market in the UK and Europe. We not only think that the EV market will develop at pace over the next decade, but that POD point is set to play a significant role in enabling adoption. We are proud to be backing a company who are committed to creating cleaner cities and mitigating climate change." Sean Duffy, ​Head of Technology, Media and Telecoms at Barclays, said: “We’re very attracted to POD Point. It’s a very good company; it’s a high growth business in a high growth market.” Luke Lang, CMO and Co Founder at Crowdcube said: “POD Point is a perfect example of co-investment, with crowdfunding forming part of a larger investment round alongside VCs and institutional investors. We’re seeing more of this at Crowdcube, especially with businesses coming back to the platform for follow-on funding rounds.” Crowdcube Risk Warning:- Investing involves risk and should be done only as part of a diversified portfolio. Investing equity in startups and early stage businesses involves risks, including illiquidity, lack of dividends, loss of investment and dilution. Crowdcube is targeted exclusively at investors who are sufficiently sophisticated to understand these risks and make their own investment decisions. Approved as a financial promotion by Crowdcube Capital Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (No. 650205).   - Ends - Notes to Editors: * POD Point funding timeline: December 2014 - £1.45m via crowdfunding platform Seedrs January 2016 - £1.81m via crowdfunding platform CrowdCube November 2016 - £x.xm in via crowdfunding platform Crowdcube, venture capital (Draper Esprit) and debt finance (Barclays) February 2017 - £9m in via crowdfunding platform Crowdcube, venture capital (Draper Esprit) and debt finance (Barclays) ** The number of plug-in vehicles sold (year to date) in 2011 totalled 1052, compared to 2016 at 30,489 to date. This has created a growth rate of 2898%


Draper Esprit expands team in Ireland with appointment of Nicola McClafferty

Posted by Isabella Cookson, 13 Feb 2017

Draper Esprit (AIM: GROW, ESM: GRW), a leading venture capital firm involved in the creation, funding and development of high-growth digital technology businesses announces the appointment of Irish online entrepreneur and venture capital investor, Nicola McClafferty.  Nicola will join Brian Caulfield in the Company’s Dublin office to focus on identifying and investing in the next generation of Irish tech success stories. Most recently, Nicola was CEO of, a leading online retailer of pre-owned luxury fashion, offering women a hassle-free way of selling on the designer items from their wardrobe. She co-founded the company in 2011 and in 2012 Covetique received investment from ASOS plc, the UKs largest online fashion retailer, who subsequently acquired the company in 2015. Born in Ireland, Nicola graduated from University College Dublin, with a first class honours degree in International Commerce and French.  After moving to London, she joined leading investment bank Jefferies International where she worked as an Analyst in the Technology team with a focus on consumer internet and digital media.  Nicola left to begin a successful career in Venture Capital, investing in and developing early-stage technology and media start-ups, first with Balderton Capital and latterly with Ravensbeck. Nicola wants to empower the next generation of founders and has been a mentor on the Enterprise Ireland Retailer Ready programme and in 2014 she was shortlisted for the Female Entrepreneur of the Year award at the GP Bullhound Investor Allstars. She has also frequently been a speaker at events including Google Campus, London College of Fashion’s Digital Fashion Conference, London Women’s Forum and Dublin’s Archipelago. Her appointment forms part of Draper’s plans to build an executive team to support their growth internationally and particularly their focus and commitment to Ireland, given its importance as a leading location in the technology sector, and its growing importance as a global tech hub. Brian Caulfield, Managing Partner, Draper Esprit PLC in Dublin, commented: “Nicola has great experience both as an investor and importantly as an entrepreneur in her own right. I’m absolutely delighted that she has joined us.  We have already experienced much success and the expansion of our Dublin team reflects our commitment to continue to back the best Irish entrepreneurs with patient venture capital to generate future global success stories out of Ireland.” Nicola McClafferty added: “Draper Esprit has been redefining the venture capital industry and having been both an investor and an entrepreneur the benefits of their patient capital model really appealed to me.  I look forward to working with Brian and the wider team to help to create more Irish technology success stories.” -ends- Photos available on request please email: For more information please visit or contact. DRAPER ESPRIT Brian Caulfield                        +353 (0)1 645 2324 Nikki McClafferty BELVEDERE COMMUNICATIONS John West:                              +44 (0) 20 3567 0510 Kim van Beeck