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Andy Murray Ploughs Winnings Into UK Start-Ups

Tennis champ has built a portfolio of 17 UK start-ups via strategic partnership with a crowdfunding website.

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Tennis champ has built a portfolio of 17 UK start-ups via strategic partnership with a crowdfunding website.

People

Andy Murray Ploughs Winnings Into UK Start-Ups

Tennis champ has built a portfolio of 17 UK start-ups via strategic partnership with a crowdfunding website.

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Tennis ace Andy Murray has dipped into his considerable career winnings to invest in two fast-growing UK tech start-ups via the Seedrs crowdfunding platform.

Murray’s latest investments, the value of which were undisclosed, add to his growing portfolio of investments in promising British tech firms, which now total 17 on the crowdfunding site alone.

They include Perkbox, a perks and benefits scheme, which surpassed its £1.5 million target on Seedrs and at time of writing was overfunding by 270% with more than £4 million raised through 230 investors in four days.

Murray joins VC firm Draper Esprit which led the round with £2.5 million investment, alongside Zoopla’s Alex Chesterman.

The start-up, which launched in January 2015 and has more than 300,000 paying members including British Gas, BUPA and Deliveroo, has generated more than £14 million in revenues.

The company bills itself as the go-to solution for combatting staff turnover and low productivity in the workplace, encouraging managers to reward team members.

WeSwap claims to be the world's first peer-to-peer travel money platform and has so far raised £1.8 million from over 2,200 individual investors including Ascot Capital, overfunding by 185%.

In the past 12 months the start-up has grown by 204%, with more than 200,000 new users joining the WeSwap community.

Dubbed “the people’s currency exchange”, WeSwap exchanges currency directly between real people, so users receive the fairest rate by cutting out the middleman.

Talking about his new investments Murray said: “I’m continuing to grow my portfolio through Seedrs and have tried to choose companies from different sectors as much as possible.

“I was interested in Perkbox as I employ a number of people through my own sports management company, the 77 Group, as well as a number of independent contractors like physios, coaches and trainers.

“WeSwap was interesting to me because I travel so much around the world. I thought this was a really clever idea and could immediately see the gap in the market for this business to work.”

Murray is not the only famous sportsman to back UK start-ups, however. In August, former world champion boxer David Haye revealed an investment in Syft, an app allowing people to apply for work in hospitality and events organisations.

The app is used by candidates to agree dates and specify the number of shifts they want to work.

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Andy Murray Ploughs Winnings Into UK Start-Ups

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