Bridges Ventures Announces £2million Investment in cloud.IQ
London, 15 May 2012: Bridges Ventures, the sustainable growth investor, today announced that it will provide £2 million in funding to cloud.IQ, an integrated marketing technology specialist.
Over the last ten years cloud.IQ has developed market leading technology which allows organisations to manage their marketing communications simultaneously across multiple channels including text, phone, email, web, mobile web and social media, and via a single interface. The technology was previously part of Ad.IQ, the leading mobile marketing agency, and has now been spun off in order to make it available to a wider market. With the investment secured from Bridges Ventures, cloud.IQ will, in June, release an off-the-shelf, cloud-based version of this technology, accessible to SMEs and not-for-profit organisations. It will also be available to partners of cloud.IQ, who will be able to develop, design, and sell their own products using the technology.
The investment was made through Bridges Ventures’ Sustainable Growth Fund, which aims to deliver both positive financial returns and social and environmental benefits. Bridges’ investment in cloud.IQ supports one of its key impact themes: investing in underserved areas. cloud.IQ is based in Hackney, part of the Tech City cluster of technology, digital and creative media firms.
James Critchley, co-founder and CEO of cloud.IQ commented, We are extremely pleased to have received backing from Bridges Ventures. The old approach to digital marketing – using email alone – is simply no longer effective. These days fewer than 12% of emails are actually opened1. Over the past ten years we have helped many large organisations embrace integrated digital marketing, delivering over 100 million messages, across 12,000 individual deployments. Using our technology, firms have been able to increase their sales conversions by 10% and client retention rates by 35%. Now, with the backing of Bridges, we are delighted to be able to bring these benefits in a packaged solution to smaller organisations, including charities, for whom this type of technology has previously been too expensive. We are launching the service in private beta testing and we are currently recruiting both beta customers and partners.
It is important to us to be based in Tech City to be close to similar companies who we can collaborate with and learn from. As we grow, we look forward to providing jobs, training and mentorship to the young people of the area. Alistair Tillen, Investment Director at Bridges Ventures said, “cloud.IQ presents us with an exciting proposition to invest in proven technology in a large and growing market. Their technology has been rigorously tested over many years with some of the world’s largest organisations. By packaging it into a uniquely affordable, accessible solution, we believe that they will be able to introduce a whole new market of smaller players to the significant benefits of multi-channel communications.”
At Bridges, our founding principle is to invest in companies that achieve positive social and environmental impact as well as providing strong and sustainable financial returns for investors. cloud.IQ has the opportunity to be a driver of growth and development as part of the Tech City ecosystem, which we think – if managed well – will have a significant impact on the ongoing regeneration of Hackney.
Eric van der Kleij, CEO of the Tech City Investment Organisation, remarked, “We are delighted to see that an established and well-regarded firm like Bridges Ventures has taken note of the talent and investment opportunities in Tech City. Bridges’ investment in clouq.IQ will help the company make advanced marketing technology available to start-ups and entrepreneurs like themselves who might not otherwise be able to afford it. Furthermore, it is particularly encouraging that the Bridges and cloud.IQ team are committed to working closely with the Hackney community to develop talent and create new opportunities for local residents.”
For further information please contact: Claire Aslett / Hannah Randall Capital MSL
Notes to editors About Bridges Ventures Bridges Ventures LLP (“Bridges Ventures”) is a sustainable growth investor established in 2002 with a mission to use its commercial expertise to achieve focused social or environmental benefit, as well as attractive returns for investors. Bridges Ventures has raised six funds to date which total almost £275m: Sustainable Growth Funds I, II and III, the Bridges Sustainable Property Fund, CarePlaces Partnership and the Bridges Social Entrepreneurs Fund.
The Bridges Sustainable Growth Funds invest in growth businesses across the four impact themes of Underserved Areas, Education & Skills, Environment and Health & Well-being. The Funds typically invest up to £10m at a time in ambitious, entrepreneurial businesses including early stage, growth capital and buyouts / buy ins. Since 2002, Bridges Venture Funds have made equity investments totaling over £75m in 34 businesses.
For more information please go to www.bridgesventures.com
About cloud.IQ cloud.IQ’s philosophy is to make communication intuitive. Our hosted solutions combine the good bits from email voice, and mobile, plug into web and social networks, and are all packaged up as integrated marketing apps. The end result is that we help organisations and businesses talk and engage with individuals. This passion to create fluent communication stems from 10 years of experience running 12,000 blue chip campaigns for household name brands. cloud.IQ is based in Shoreditch, London and Sydney, Australia. For more information please go to www.cloud-iq.com
1 Source: MailerMailer Inc Annual Email Report July 2011 http://www.mailermailer.com/resources/metrics/2011/open-rates.rwp
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