Risk Warning: Investing in early stage businesses can mean loss of investment, dilution and illiquidity. The Start-Up Series Fund is exclusively for sophisticated investors who understand these risks. Please click here to read the full risk warning.


Whilst seed investing is not an asset class for all, increasingly IFAs & Wealth Managers are including SEIS & EIS funds into their clients’ portfolios. The Start-Up Series Fund allows investors to hold equity in a portfolio of SEIS & EIS qualifying businesses – the winners of the Start-Up Series competition. We have deliberately constructed the Fund to help mitigate the risks of investing in illiquid securities.

How do we gain access to potential investments?

Each investment is a monthly winner of the Start-Up Series. This is a competition run by us and promoted by startups.co.uk, not surprisingly the ‘go-to’ place for start-up businesses looking for advice. With over 400,000 monthly users, the competition attracts an average of over 85 entries per month. This is the deal flow that we assess and distil down to one winner.

Who decides on the investments?

The Start-Up Series distillation process is conducted principally by the two co-founders of Worth Capital, experienced entrepreneurs with expertise in brand, marketing, retail and innovation. The process takes six weeks and gets progressively more intense for the entrepreneurs. It includes half a day with each of the finalists, digging deep into the business proposition, strategy, plans, financial projections and the strength of the team. A winner is recommended to Amersham Investment Management, who then conduct additional technical due diligence before their decision to invest.

How do we ensure investors are buying in at a sensible valuation?

Before getting to the final stage of the competition, we agree a fair valuation with each finalist in the event an investment is made. It’s important that this fairly balances the attraction for investors and the progress made by the founding team. We benchmark using tools such as Beauhurst and from having our ears to the ground on many private fundraises. As part of the final half day together the entrepreneurs get to understand the value of having us involved, which helps them to maintain perspective on valuations we suggest. Having access to a deep well of deal flow and quality businesses, we don’t find ourselves backed into a corner when agreeing a valuation just to get a deal done.

How do we diversify investment across companies and sectors?

Investing in start-ups is inherently high risk, so no investor should invest in just one or two businesses. The Fund is invested in tranches, with each tranche designed to make three to six investments. So each investor immediately has a ‘mini-portfolio’ to diversify risk, and if invested across a whole year, they could end up with a portfolio of 12 plus investments. The competition series is open to entrepreneurs with compelling new consumer and B2B products & services – i.e. young businesses that have the potential to build significant brand awareness and new consumption behaviours. ‘Tech’ is not being targeted specifically, although technology based disruptions are to be expected and encouraged when rooted in strong consumer insight.

how else can we help you?

Our founders are experienced and successful investors who have benefited from SEIS & EIS investing. We’re ready to help IFAs and Wealth Managers to spread the word about how your clients can do the same.

EIS & SEIS trainings


Team briefings and training on EIS & SEIS, be it face to face or via webinars and conference calls.


Extensive materials explaining The Start-Up Series Fund; suitability letters and wording.

EIS & SEIS seminars


Client seminars on SEIS & EIS investing and the different routes in, covering other options besides our products.

Start-Up Series SEIS Fund One Hardman&Co review


Independent review of our Fund carried out by industry experts Hardman & Co & MICAP

The benefits of SEIS & EIS investing

The Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) and the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) offer attractive tax reliefs to investors that are designed to mitigate some of the risk of investing in start-up businesses.

To explore more and compare both schemes, please download ‘SEIS & EIS at a glance’ – our one page summary. If you find it useful, please feel free to use it with your clients regardless of whether you are considering our products or not.