Crowd-funding is a boon for bike firm

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A Sheffield company that specialises in crowd funding has helped a new bike cleaning brand smash its £80,000 target - and attract investment from Olympic triathlon heroes the Brownlee brothers.

Mackenzie Spencer Corporate Solutions worked with Purple Harry, which makes ‘bike floss’ used to clean hard-to-reach places, to whip up interest.

Its campaign was so successful 153 investors piled in, including Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee, through the crowd funding website CrowdCube.

Purple Harry, of Derby, has grown rapidly since its launch in 2010, but founders Richard Hargreaves and Dean Perry found it hard to raise finance to develop new products and pay for marketing.

They used Mackenzie Spencer, based on Ecclesall Road, to produce the successful equity crowd funding pitch.

Richard, aged 43, said: “We were recommended through our bank and they were great putting together all the projections and financials for the crowd funding business plan. They have very good links with Crowdcube and know what’s required which was a major factor.”

Richard added: “Crowd funding appealed as we wanted to involve the cycling community. People are not just making a financial investment, but an emotional investment too because it is something that they feel passionately about.

“It is not just about getting the money. Successful crowd funding makes people realise you are a serious business.”

Chris Spencer, Mackenzie Spencer managing director, said: “It’s difficult, particularly for start-ups, to meet the normal criteria to raise money. If businesses are prepared to give away some equity to build capital, crowd funding can be transformational.