Car Finder Wins £450,000 Start-Up Funding

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A new technology start-up has won funding from the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) and a local authority finance scheme.

FindsYou.com offers consumers tailored personal searches across multiple markets – with the first launch in the motor trade.

Motorists looking for a new car no longer have to search dozens of web sites for a short list of suitable vehicles.

Instead they feed their list of wants and needs into FindsYou and dealers come back with a car closely matching the spec the buyer is looking for.

Entrepreneur behind the scheme, Guy Walker, says his platform works more like a tender process than a comparison search engine.

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He has raised £450,000 for his start-up business from Birmingham City Council’s funding arm Finance Birmingham – with a further £100,000 set to follow as a SEIS from Ascension Ventures.

The £450,000 investment will raise £100,000 from the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) to add to £450,000 injected by Birmingham City Council’s funding group Finance Birmingham.

Walker told specialist start-up business web site SEIS.co.uk: “Online shopping has brought everyone a massive choice of goods and suppliers, but it can still take a long time to search through all the options to find what you really want at the best price.

“Our service lets consumers access technology that cuts out the web searches and should only return relevant responses to their request for a car from dealers who have the vehicle that they are looking for.

“The investment will go towards rolling the technology out in other sectors in the coming months. More than that, it will help create jobs and keep Birmingham at the leading edge of online innovation.”

SEIS tax breaks

Ascension Ventures confirmed they found the FindsYou concept exciting and easy to back.

“FindsYou is led by a seasoned entrepreneur with a disruptive technology in the search market accessible across multiple markets which leads rather than follows the competition,” a spokesman told SEIS.co.uk.

SEIS funding offers investors in fresh start business some attractive tax breaks.

In return for their cash, they are given an equity stake in the firm.

With that stake comes a 50% income tax reduction regardless of the rate the investor pays tax.

Other perks include relief on capital gains if assets are sold to raise the cash for a SEIS investment in the same tax year.

Gains when the equity stake is sold are also capital gains free – and if the disposal realises a loss, the full amount can be set off against other income.

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