Programme: Future Fund
Vaix was in the middle of its venture capital fundraising when the COVID-19 pandemic put a stop to discussions with investors. With a £125,000 funding gap threatening its ability to operate, the company reached out to the Future Fund for a solution.
Read what it had to say in this Future Fund case study.
British Business Bank: Can you tell us what your company does?
Andreas Hartmann, co-founder and CEO of Vaix: We provide artificial intelligence research and development services for the iGaming industry using deep-learning recommender systems, personalisation, predictive marketing, customer lifetime value and user classification models.
The coronavirus has affected a huge number of businesses across the UK. What problems were you facing as a result of the outbreak and what made you apply to the Future Fund?
We’re building artificial intelligence solutions for sports sites and sports betting operators. The coronavirus-related quarantine stopped the majority of sports events worldwide, which meant users weren’t betting. That caused the revenue of our customers and prospective customers to fall by up to 90%.
This led to delayed or frozen contracts, and even bankrupted some of our prospective customers. It eroded the growth we needed to see in our revenue to stop cash burn and bring us to the break-even point. Additionally, a fundraising agreement we signed in early March and were set to execute in mid-March fell apart when the venture capital firm pulled out as a consequence of the coronavirus crisis. That left us without the £125,000 funding we needed to operate and grow.
How long did the application process take? Did you need any support?
Preparing the application took a few days, but we were able to fill it out in under 30 minutes. We didn’t need any support.
The Future Fund investment allowed Vaix to stop worrying about how to finance expansion, but focus on what we do best – build and ship product.
Andreas Hartmann, co-founder and CEO of Vaix
What advice would you give to other businesses that are applying to the Future Fund?
If your company is affected, get the funding. It frees your mind of financing worries and lets you focus on your business.
How has the Future Fund helped your organisation to weather the outbreak? And what might have happened if you hadn’t received the money?
We had financing issues to bridge the delays in contracts caused by the lockdown and the fact that we were not able to extend our offering to new markets. The Future Fund investment allowed us to stop worrying about how to finance expansion, but focus on what we do best, which is build and ship product.