The MBM Commercial and Silicon Valley Bank conference Series B and Beyond attracted almost 100 people interested in gaining insights into raising significant “Series B” investment to scale a business. The high calibre speakers’ invaluable deep industry knowledge and hands on experience illuminated areas including securing funding, deploying investment funds and key trends. The conference was held at Silicon Valley Bank’s fantastic rooftop conference facility at Finsbury Square in London.
A common (and encouraging) theme was the availability of Series B funds in the current market. Speakers also emphasised the importance of proving that the business is scalable. Insights from the speakers included:
Erin Platts (Silicon Valley Bank) said that for UK businesses financing for a Series B round is more likely to come from the UK or Europe and less likely to come from the US, in large part because of the competition on the US and the availability of European funds.
Stuart McKnight (Ascendant) discussed the availability of capital and the (sometimes blurred) categories of Series A, B, C and so on financing.
The importance of knowing your investors and being smart in negotiating deal terms was emphasised by Husayn Kassai (Onfido).
Martin Brennan (Scottish Equity Partners) discussed the importance of data in backing up a business’s strategic journey.
For Evan Iannuzzi (CloudHealth) it is all about the metrics for a Series B round; the business emphasis needs to be on becoming a market leader
Understanding your investors and their goals and their relationship with the existing shareholder base is key according to Tracey Ginn (MBM Commercial) as is the project management of the investment round. VCT funds now entering the market was also noted.
James Varga (MiiCard) shared the interesting statistic that 71% of millennials would rather go to the dentist than open a new bank account, emphasising the importance of online security.
Rob Jones (FanDuel) discussed the challenge of sharing core values and culture and maintaining them as a company scales (and who knew that Snoop Dog can help to scale companies?!).
The Fireside chat teased out the challenges of raising investment and useful insights and tips from our entrepreneurial speakers, Tom Butterworth (Silicon Valley Bank), Robert Rickman (Rockley Photonic), Mike Reid (Frog Capital) and Evan Iannuzzi (CloudHealth). Key factors identified in a company’s growth journey were cultures and values team building and management, board culture and support, focus of customer acquisition and having a global focus.
Mark Thylin (Silicon Valley Bank) provided introductions and Stuart Hendry (MBM Commercial) was a great chair and summarised the key themes of the day.
We are delighted that we were able to work once again with Silicon Valley Bank on this event as part of our respective commitments to help grow serious companies of scale throughout the UK.