The Start-Up Series SEIS Fund

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  • £20,000.00
    Min. investment
  • Generalist
  • SEIS
    Investment type

The Start-Up Series SEIS Fund is an evergreen offer investing in qualified winners of the Start-Up Series, a UK-wide monthly competition delivered by commercial advisers Worth Capital.

The Start-Up Series is a series of monthly competitions run by Worth Capital and promoted by & - owned by Bonhill Group Plc. The titles provide insight and guidance to entrepreneurs and small business owners who are looking to start, grow and fund their businesses.

The Fund invests in B2C or B2B companies with innovative products or services that can create new consumer behaviours, in growth markets, with teams that demonstrate compelling marketing & communication skills and with a clear route to exit.

For every investment that the Start-Up Series Fund makes one of the founding partners of Worth Capital - Paul or Matthew - take a position on the board. This provides oversight and protection for investors and uses their experience and battle scars to anticipate and manage risks.

Investors will normally hold a ‘mini-portfolio’ of 3 to 4 investments to diversify risk. The Fund is structured as an Alternative Investment Fund (AIF) and plans to conduct serial closes throughout each tax year. There will therefore be several different tranches of investments and the type and degree of diversification will depend on which tranche(s) an investor is invested.

Application Process Update

In light of events happening around the world, managers have been revising their application acceptance procedures in close co-ordination with Custodians to ensure applications and funds are processed efficiently. Applications no longer need to be sent in the post to process wet signatures. Once you've submitted your application through CoInvestor, a member of staff will contact you directly with the managers simple instructions on who to send your scanned application to.


  • Investing in product & service start-ups in growth markets showing innovation with the potential to create a loved brand businesses
  • Selected by real world, commercial entrepreneurs with deep brand, marketing, retail & innovation expertise - Worth Capital
  • Experienced fund manager, authorised & regulated by the FCA - Amersham Investment Management
  • An exclusive source of deal flow, attracting a diversity of entrepreneurs, from a monthly competition promoted by
  • Ongoing oversight from experienced investor directors skilled in helping accelerate growth & reducing risk
  • Investments in ‘mini-portfolios’ of typically 3 or 4 businesses qualifying for attractive SEIS tax reliefs

Market approach

Worth Capital have deliberately designed a dealflow origination process based around a competition to achieve 4 ways to enhance the possibility of increased returns and to reduce the risks of smaller company investment.

Competition reach > delivering a high volume of entrants

• A high profile search for talented entrepreneurs

• The attraction of real and substantial funding

• Promoted by the ‘go to’ place for start-ups to look for advice

• Wide social media coverage

Sophisticated Distillation > surfacing superior entrepreneurs at attractive valuations

• Several stages of the competition – getting deep into the ideas and getting to know the entrepreneurs

• Teams and business plans interrogated by the Worth Capital team – commercial and technical due diligence

• Realistic valuations and appropriate investment funding based on maturity of the business and sector

Expert oversight > fast tracking progress and reducing risks

• Investor directors experienced in brand building, retail & innovation

• Entrepreneurs committed to investor director oversight from the entry process – ensuring the competitions attract entrepreneurs that value challenge, provocation and expert insight

Multiple investments > creating a tax efficient portfolio & predictable results

• target 4 to 6 SEIS investments per tranch (circa. per quarter)

• Selection of businesses across consumer sectors for a diversified portfolio

• All investments certified SEIS compliant

Investment strategy

The Fund invests in product and service businesses that are in attractive markets, have innovative products or services that can create new consumption behaviours, demonstrate the marketing and communication skills to build strong brands and have potential routes to an exit at a high multiple.

The Fund’s investments are sourced from the winners of the Start-Up Series – a monthly competition promoted by & These SEIS investments are very young businesses and consequently carry high risk as well as potentially offering the prospect of high returns.

Typically, the Fund invests £150,000 in each Portfolio Company at a pre- money valuation of £350,000 to £1.5 million.

An investor may hold a ‘mini-portfolio’ of 3 to 4 of these SEIS investments to diversify risk. The selection of these holdings is at the discretion of the Fund Manager. A mini-portfolio is likely to be funded two to three times per year or possibly around each quarter.

An investor may invest in one or more portfolios over time.

Key team

PAUL SOANES - Founding Partner

An entrepreneur since leaving university, Paul founded iD in 1994, growing it into a top ten UK experiential marketing agency. He subsequently founded Brandspace, Europe’s largest promotional space media agency and returned initial backers 17 x their original investment within 5 years.  He is now a highly experienced seed investor and has invested in over 25 businesses since 2008.

Marketing - founded iD in 1994, grown into a top 10 UK experiential agency with clients including Nespresso, Unilever & Britvic.

Brand - founded Brandspace in 2004, exited to private equity after 4 years for £4.9 million.

Investor - since 2006, with significant exits including iChild (18 x return) and Yocuda (4 x return).

MATTHEW CUSHEN - Founding Partner

An experienced leader in large businesses including Kingfisher & John Lewis. Then a retail consultant and subsequently a director of “?What If!”, the global innovation consultancy. For 5 years, working across sectors with the leadership teams of business such as IKEA, Waitrose, Paddy Power & AB InBev. An experienced and, so far, successful angel investor in a dozen businesses.

Retail - senior positions in Kingfisher & the John Lewis Partnership.

Innovation - recently on the European Management Board of ?What If!, a global innovation consultancy. Still advising the leadership teams of global businesses including Waitrose, IKEA, ABInBev & The Restaurant Group. 

Investor - 15-year track record of angel investing, including a £376k return after 4 years on first £58k invested.

HAYLEY ETHERINGTON - Business Operations Director

Hayley has 15 years’ experience in strategic client management and relationship development for brand and media partnerships, most recently at a leading marketing agency. She has worked with the Worth Capital founders for over 13 years.

Exit strategy

Investee candidates must be able to demonstrate credible exit potential. Exits may require up to 5-7 years to achieve. Flexibility is key, therefore Amersham will assess any opportunity likely to capture a positive exit even prior to expiry of the 3 year SEIS period, provided an early realisation is in investors' best interests.

Either a sale of investee companies or a sale/refinancing of assets owned by investee companies could facilitate returns to investors.

Fee summary

No initial charge on investor subscription. Initial adviser charge facilitated subject to agreement between investor and adviser. On termination of Fund, 0.65% of holdings. Other fees are as agreed with investee companies. Fees charged to investee companies indirectly affect investors’ returns.


Investors need to be aware that their investment would be risk capital into early- stage companies. Investing in this fund should be considered in the light of an investor's personal circumstances, experience and knowledge as well as in the context of an entire portfolio.

Past performance is no guide to nor indication of future performance and early-stage companies are exposed to many factors influencing likely success or otherwise. The value of shares can go down as well as up and investors may get back less - or even none - of their original investment.

SEIS shares are normally illiquid and therefore difficult to sell, if at all. SEIS shares must be held for at least three years to qualify for tax reliefs that are available dependent on personal circumstances and also subject to changes in HM Government/HMRC policy.

Please see the fund's Information Memorandum for a full summary of the risks.


Only registered investors can access the documents. Receive access by registering for an account.

Invest now

To digitally invest in this opportunity, review the documentation and start your application below.

The content above has been provided by Worth Capital, an Appointed Representative of Amersham Investment Management who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority under firm registration number 507460.