Boundary Capital AngelPlus EIS
The Boundary Capital AngelPlus fund is an opportunity to invest in early-stage, high-growth technology companies alongside experienced entrepreneurs. Co-investment alongside business angels is a central theme of the offer.
- Early-stage technology companies
- Investors will hold 4 to 8 portfolio companies
- Co-invests with business angels, entrepreneurs and professional investors
- Expected exit in five years – not guaranteed
- Potential for some SEIS investment – not guaranteed
- Full allotment anticipated over 18 months – not guaranteed
- Minimum investment £20,000
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Boundary Capital Partners LLP is a venture capital firm investing in early-stage technology companies with a particular focus on Information and communication technology and electronics, green/clean tech, materials and chemistry, and healthcare and life sciences. Established in 2009, Boundary Capital collectively has 60 years of venture capital experience. It has a network of 300 investing directors. Managing Partner Dan Somers has founded several IT companies including video conferencing business VC-Net and predictive analytics company Warwick Analytics. Mr Somers holds an MA in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University and a Diploma in Business studies.
Watch a video interview with Dan Somers, managing partner:
Boundary Capital aims to invest in technology-based or knowledge-intensive companies which are capital-efficient and have the potential for high growth. It believes the risk factors in such companies often revolve around their ability to execute commercially, get product market fit and scale. Supporting these companies, which often have technical founders, with the right expertise is one way to mitigate these risks.
As well as providing capital, Boundary offers expertise in the form of ‘Venturers’ to the companies in which it invests. Boundary has access to an extensive proprietary network of entrepreneurs and executives. Boundary will only invest if an appropriate ‘Venturer’ is willing to co-invest on the same terms and take a seat on the investee company’s board. This helps align interests and qualify the investee company’s management team, as well as mitigate some of the risks.
Investors will invest in between four and eight investee companies, with the aim to exit after the fifth year, which is not guaranteed. Potential exit routes include trade sales, IPOs, MBOs and company buybacks.
Boundary Capital sees 500 to 600 deals every year. Of those, 100 make it to investment committee level where they are given a full review. Around 40 companies’ management teams are then interviewed and an appropriate Venturer sought. Four to eight companies are selected for investment.
To receive investment, a company must have:
- Strong and committed management team (any gaps may be filled by later recruitment or a Venturer appointment)
- Disruptive and potentially global protectable technology with a defined market need
- Evidence of customer traction
Additionally, Boundary tends not to invest if it deems the business to be too capital intensive, if a stake of less than 5% is available or if there is no plan B (i.e. it is an ‘all or nothing’ proposition).
Fund investors are offered the ability to top-up their investment by co-investing further on the same terms as the fund. Boundary aims to leave some investment headroom for a limited period for its own investors to decide whether they would like to make further investments in a particular investee company. The availability of this option depends on the situation and the value of the investor’s original investment.
The chart below shows the net return of investing £100 in the fund in the tax year indicated. For example, £100 invested in 2013/14 would have returned £153. For later versions of the fund, there is no published change as yet due to the limited valuations available on unlisted securities.
The table below shows the annual value of £100 invested for each fund to April each year.
|Fund launch date||Apr 14||Apr 15||Apr 16||Apr 17||Apr 18||Apr 19|
|2013/14 (Apr 13)||100||100||151||151||182||153|
|2014/15 (Apr 14)||n/a||100||100||198||229||241|
|2015/16 (Apr 15)||n/a||n/a||100||100||101||101|
|2016/17 (Apr 16)||n/a||n/a||n/a||100||100||53|
|2017/18 (Apr 17)||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||100||78|
|2018/19 (Apr 18)||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||100|
Examples of previous investments
Image Scan Holdings (exited)
Image Scan Holdings, whose main trading subsidiary is 3DX-RAY, manufactures x-ray devices for security and industrial applications, particularly portable security devices. Boundary invested in September 2014. Bill Mawer was an experienced executive in the security X-Ray market having lead Smiths Detection. He was originally a Boundary Venturer and became CEO of the firm.
He set out to refresh and rationalise the product range. The company engaged with a new set of partners to improve technical capability, supply chain, and distribution to streamline operations. Boundary achieved an exit in November 2017, just over three years since initially investing. The return was over 4x to investors. Remember past performance is not a guide to the future.
In August 2013, Boundary Capital invested in Desktop Genetics Limited, an award-winning genome editing software company. Desktop Genetics enables scientists, particularly those involved in the CRISPR genomics revolution, to design and execute experiments and interpret the resulting data. The company was formed by three postgraduates from the University of Cambridge.
Dr Darrin Disley put himself forward as the ‘Venturer’ and became Non-Executive Chairman. Dr Disley co-invested on the same terms as other investors, with additional share options to cover his active involvement. He is a serial entrepreneur and the CEO of Horizon Discovery plc, one of the fastest-growing newly listed British life science companies. Along with Dr Disley, strategic co-investment came from other experienced angels including Dr Jonathan Milner, founder and CEO of Abcam plc.
AB-Polyblok has developed technology with the potential to treat and partially reverse the effects of Alzheimer’s Disease, the largest cause of dementia. It is estimated that 50 million people worldwide live with dementia (2017) and that this number will almost double every 20 years, reaching 82 million in 2030 and 152 million in 2050. There are several drugs to temporarily relieve symptoms and a huge amount of R&D although all are long-term projects with few breakthroughs to date.
The inventor of the technology was looking for help to develop and commercialise it. Boundary provided investment as well as the support of Venturer Dr Adrian Parton OBE, a serial entrepreneur and specialist in life sciences. The typical challenge with life science therapeutics is the huge investment required in laboratory work and trials. Dr Parton planned a series of experiments and R&D to prove efficacy and generate data to then file the appropriate IP.
The company demonstrated efficacy in both in-vitro and in-vivo experiments: its drug shows the potential to reverse the effects not only of Alzheimer’s but also Parkinson’s and Huntingdon’s Chorea.
As is to be expected, not all investments work out. MIRACL is one example. It was a cyber security company which provided open-source encryption libraries, security authentication, and an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) solution for the internet of things (the interconnection of everyday objects via the internet).
MIRACL faced issues with its business model, the length of time it took to make sales and the unwillingness of potential customers to adopt new technology. These factors had a significant effect on MIRACL’s ability to raise further capital. As a result, in 2019 the company could neither secure further funding nor find a buyer. MIRACL has now appointed administrators, and the company will be placed into liquidation.
Risks – important
This, like all investments available through Wealth Club, is only for experienced investors happy to make their own investment decisions without advice.
EIS investments are high-risk so should only form part of a balanced portfolio and you should not invest money you cannot afford to lose. They also tend to be illiquid and hard to sell and value. Before you invest, please carefully read the Risks and Commitments and the offer documents to ensure you fully understand the risks.
Tax rules can change and benefits depend on circumstances.
This EIS fund invests in early-stage businesses which are more likely to fail than larger ones. So you should expect a number of failures in the portfolio.
It may take some time for investments to be allotted. The Information Memorandum suggests investments may be allotted within 12 months, however Boundary have confirmed it might take longer.
Charges & savings
A summary of the main charges and savings is shown below. Some of these will be payable by the investor, others by the investee companies. The investment may have additional charges and expenses: please see the provider documents, including the Key Information Document, for more details.
|Full initial charge||—|
|Wealth Club initial saving||—|
|Net initial charge through Wealth Club||—||Annual management charge||—|
|Performance fee||20%||Investee company charges|
More detail on the charges
This is an interesting EIS. It invests in early-stage companies with high growth potential but also high risk. The co-investor model has benefits, and the individuals involved have strong credentials.
Read important documents and apply
Wealth Club aims to make it easier for experienced investors to find information on – and apply for – tax-efficient investments. You should base your investment decision on the provider's documents and ensure you have read and fully understand them before investing. This review is a marketing communication. It is not advice or a personal or research recommendation to buy the investment mentioned. It does not satisfy legal requirements promoting investment research independence and is thus not subject to prohibitions on dealing ahead of its dissemination.
- Target return
- 25% per annum
- Funds raised / sought
- £550,000 / £5.0 million
- Minimum investment