As seen in the FT: the weird and wonderful world of EIS investments
Archived article: please remember tax and investment rules and circumstances can change over time. This article reflects our views at the time of publication.
At the weekend, the FT ran a double-page feature on EIS investments. If you haven’t seen it, you can download a PDF.
The article covers three EIS opportunities: Firglas, which aims to mass-produce proteins from algae, Acamar Films, the production company behind children's TV success Bing, and Oxford Space Systems, a UK space technology start up, one of Foresight Williams Technology EIS Fund’s investee companies.
Wealth Club is the only service giving experienced investors access to all three EIS investments.
An investment in the “food of the future”?
You don’t normally associate algae with food. Yet, these slimy green organisms can contain three times as much protein as beef, plus compounds such as omega-3 and iodine. This means microalgae could potentially be used as an ingredient for a wide range of products, from fish feed and meat-free burgers, to dietary supplements and cosmetics.
Whilst the prospect of eating algae may not be mouthwatering, investors might find the size of the opportunity attractive. The fish feed industry alone is worth $42 billion. The estimated size of the overall markets that can be addressed by microalgae has been put in the trillions of pounds.
Firglas is raising money under EIS through Wealth Club to build and operate two algae production plants – in the Netherlands and in Spain.
The Firglas team has been running a pilot plant for the past five years and it believes it can produce greater volumes at a higher quality and lower cost than its competitors. Initially, Firglas will focus primarily on the fish feed market as well as servicing the existing higher-margin food supplement ingredient market.
There is just over £1 million capacity left. The next planned share allotment date is in just three days, on 31 August.
Two more opportunities mentioned in the FT
The second company mentioned in the FT article is Oxford Space Systems, a UK space technology startup, which produces the technology to make spacecraft and satellites faster, lighter and more efficient.
The Foresight Williams Technology EIS Fund has recently invested £2.1 million.
The final company featured in the FT article is Acamar Films, the independent production company behind the BBC CBeebies number one preschool children’s show, Bing.
Investors were able to invest mid-stream in an already successful concept with significant further growth potential.
This is quite uncommon. Usually, if a concept has been proven, private investors don’t even get a look in. However, there are exceptions.
The offer, only available through Wealth Club, was oversubscribed in just 34 days – 126 clients invested a total of just over £3,000,000.
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