London Co-Investment Fund announces 100th investment 

Capital Enterprise are proud to announce that the London Co-Investment Fund (LCIF), co-founded and co-managed by Capital Enterprise and Funding London, has now invested in 100 startup businesses.
LCIF, founded in 2015, has invested more than £100m into the capital’s startup scene and has created over 1,000 jobs. We look forward to continuing to work with Funding London and London’s innovative startups through LCIF.

Capital Enterprise Annual Report 2017

Foreword to the Annual Report, by John Spindler, CEO of Capital Enterprise

In most respects, 2017 has been an amazing year for Capital Enterprise and the entrepreneurs and member organisations we serve. Due to the hard work of our team and the continuing support of our members and partners, we can proudly report that Capital Enterprise has never been in such a good position to deliver on our twin missions of enabling entrepreneurs in London to start and scale a business, and supporting our members (accelerators, universities and colleges, co-working spaces, enterprise agencies, innovation institutes and public sector organisations) to make an even greater impact on London’s startup ecosystem.

In 2017, Capital Enterprise has been managing the delivery of two European Regional Development part-funded programmes. The Capital Accelerate and Scale Tech Startups (CASTS) programme involves directly and indirectly 15+ Capital Enterprise members, supporting over 600 tech startups to reach important commercial milestones, raise over £30m of investment, and create over 100 jobs. The CAP-AI project, in partnership with Digital Catapult, Barts Health Trust and with the support of Tech City UK and the Alan Turing Institute, is pioneering new ways to help London’s world beating Artificial Intelligent startups to improve and expand their research and development capacities.

As well as managing these £12m + projects, Capital Enterprise is managing the Shoreditch based innovation space “IDEALondon” for UCL, CISCO and EDF Energy, and in 2017 Capital Enterprise is managing the origination and syndication of deal-flow for two seed stage investment funds: The Mayor of London financed London Co-Investment Fund, and the new SEIS/EIS financed AI Seed Fund. These funds will collectively invest in the seed rounds of around 50 tech startups. With our “Green Light” investment readiness and brokerage programme supporting almost a further 100 startups to raise investment, we estimate that almost 50% of all those that receive seed rounds in London will have been supported by Capital Enterprise.

Going forward, there are many challenges facing entrepreneurs in London and those that serve them. In 2017, under the working title “Entrepreneurship for All”, Capital Enterprise has been developing new initiatives and piloting new programmes. The challenges we are looking at include:

– Affordability – With London businesses bearing the vast bulk of the rise in business rates and the evidence of general rent rises in parts of London that have, until recently, catered for “cash strapped” startups, there is a justifiable fear that London might get “too expensive” for early stage businesses. To address this, Capital Enterprise secured some funding from the Mayor of London to research and devise measures to mitigate the impact of business rates on spaces that exclusively serve startups and to secure more affordable premises.

– Diversity – Only 9% of the tech startups that secure seed stage investment are led by women. Although the rate is better for funds that Capital Enterprise help manage, the fact remains that female entrepreneurs are finding it harder to secure the funding for ambitious scalable businesses. In partnership with City Corporation, Capital Enterprise is funding Accelerator Network to run a pre-accelerator programme for women and BAME would-be-entrepreneurs who want to set up a Fintech startup. Other measures such as “Female Founders Pitch Events” are being piloted to try to address this persistent issue.

– Inclusion – Capital Enterprise is actively working with members such as the Princes Trust to secure more funding for new approaches to helping those in London without necessary confidence, social capital, and money to start a sustainable job creating business.

We hope that in 2018 we can turn these initiatives into a major programme in London. We also want in 2018 to explore the possibilities of replicating our success in supporting tech startups in other sectors, such as the creative sector.

Of course, the biggest cloud on the horizon for the London startup ecosystem is Brexit. Presently, virtually all the public funding for entrepreneurship and innovation support programmes in London is from the European Union via funds, such as the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Horizon 2020. If the money is to be replaced from the UK state via the new “Shared Prosperity Fund”, there is a good chance that London may be excluded. Capital Enterprise will join forces with anyone who will fight for London’s share of entrepreneurship and innovation funding.

London is home to almost 21% of the UK’s scalable high growth companies and 25% of its startups; this is one of the major reasons why the London economy is the most productive in the UK. The Government’s recently published “Industrial Strategy” and promise of more funding for innovation is potentially a great fillip to innovation focused startups, but it appears that the government and its funding bodies such as Innovate UK will look to prioritise funding projects and innovation to companies outside London.

The extent of the impact on Brexit in the London startup ecosystem is hard to predict, but already we are seeing that securing funding from Europe for programmes run by Capital Enterprise members is more difficult, that the European Investment Fund suspending its investment in new London based VC’s is making it harder for scalable startups to secure seed funding, and that securing technical and entrepreneurial talent is getting harder for scaling startups, now that less highly-talented EU citizens are coming to London to make their careers and fortunes.

The 6 pillars of a vibrant and successful startup ecosystem are talented people, access to a sufficient mass of early adopting customers, availability of “risk capital”, relative freedom from regulatory impediment, legal protection, and ease of access to high quality support and know-how. Capital Enterprise and our members provide the latter. We will continue to argue the case for recognition and support of our sector.


For access to the full Annual Report and information about our annual activity, please follow this link 


PAPIs Europe 2018

PAPIs is the 1st series of international conferences dedicated to real-world Machine Learning applications. Previous editions took place in Boston, Sydney, Barcelona, Paris, Valencia, São Paulo, and PAPIs is now coming to London!
Capital Enterprise are proud to be a co-organiser of PAPIs Europe 2018.

The conference, from 4-6th April 2018, brings together engineers, scientists, researchers, hackers and managers who meet to share experiences and discover the latest innovations, techniques and tools to build ML applications.

PAPIs also hosts the world’s 1st Startup Competition (powered by PreSeries), where participants are judged by an AI on stage—not a human jury.
Winners of the Battle will win a £100k investment from our fund the AI Seed Fund.

More information and tickets can be found here.

Introduction to GDPR and Doing Business Online Securely
Another great networking opportunity and evening seminar brought you by The City Business Library this time partnering with Yejide Adeoye and e-Careers.
The talk is aimed at business owners who want to find out more about GDPR and how it will affect them. It will provide details of the key areas small businesses need to think about when obtaining, accessing and storing data. It will also provide some guidance and tips on how to start taking effective measures to become GDPR compliant.
During this event Yejide Adeoye will also cover;
–  The common risks of doing business online
–  Ways to maintain a safe and secure online presence
–  Intro to Cyber Essentials a government-backed, industry supported scheme to help organisations protect themselves against common cyber attacks
–  Next steps – Actions delegates can take to do business online securely.
Please follow this link to register your place.
Where: City Business Library, Guildhall, Aldermanbury, London EC2V 7HH
When: Tuesday 20 March 2018, 17:30 – 20:00

Entrepreneurial Spark Applications – Now Open
Powered by the Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank, Entrepreneurial Spark is the world’s largest free business accelerator for start up, early stage and growing businesses from all sectors. RBS provides entrepreneurs who are selected as part of the Entrepreneurial Spark programme with free facilities and Wi-Fi, access to the banks networks and suppliers, and free business advice.

EU-Startups Summit 2018
On Tuesday 24th April, EU-Startups are hosting the EU-Startups Summit in Barcelona!
The EU-Startups Summit 2018 will bring together about 750 founders, startup enthusiasts, corporates, angel investors, VCs, as well as media people from all across Europe.
The one-day event is a great opportunity for networking, and a meeting point for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors who are aiming to build international tech companies.

Grow Your Business Online with Google
Three leading experts on business growth, Google, Push and Strategic Growth for Enterprise, will share their insights into the future of modern business. Please note the session is aimed at mid-tier businesses having annual turnover of £1.5M or more. More information and registration can be found via the link.
When: Thursday 15th March, 10am-1pm

Accelerator Academy – Open for Applications
A successful, established 12-week high growth training and mentoring programme designed for domain experts who want to grow their business through training, mentoring and access to capital. If you are in your first year of trading and looking to raise £250k – £1M of equity investment, please visit the website and apply by 15th April 2018.

Introduction to Emerging Technologies: The IoT Academy
Want to know more about the Internet of Things or have an idea involving hardware? Check out the 6 week evening course run by UCL Engineering at IDEALondon, that will give an intro to the Internet Of Things and related tech such as 5G, Machine Learning and blockchain