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SEIS Has A Sting In The Tail For Plan Bee

Plan Bee found their plan A came together when they set out to raise £130,000 through the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS).

Plan Bee is a fresh start business managing bee-keeping for businesses keen to promote their green credentials.

The firm looks after 50 hives leased to businesses in and around Glasgow.

The aim is to combat the nationwide decline in the number of bees, which scientists say are vital to biodiversity and the pollination of flowers.

Now the firm wants to expand to site 160 hives around Scotland.

Honeytrap for sponsors

In return for hosting the hives, the sponsors are gifted a case of honey in jars carrying their branding.

Plan Bee raised £65,000 from Kelvin Capital, matched by the Scottish Investment Bank.

Company boss Warren Bader explained that placing a hive on a small plot was a quick way for a business to go green.

“The move generates good publicity, shows involvement in the local community and generates traceable, natural products for sale,” he said.

Sponsors include Caledonian University, Glasgow; Holiday Inn and the Royal Troon Golf Club.

Meanwhile, another round of investment underway in Scotland is to crowd fund a new sports radio station.

Eklipse Sports Radio is pitching for £40,000 on Crowdcube.

SEIS tax breaks

The cash will add working capital to funds already injected by the directors.

The drive for funds is headed by Scots journalist Spencer Pryor, and is for a 20% share in the business.

The station will focus on football, but offer coverage of up to 20 other sports, including rugby, ice hockey and basketball along with a mix of music.

Eklipse has also gained pre-approval under SEIS, so investors can pick up advantageous tax breaks.

“Banks may pat themselves on the back for the way they believe they help start-up businesses, but the reality is they are not interested, regardless of the type of company,” said Pryor.

“Raising funds directly from investors is really the only way forward, which is why we are tuning into the benefits of SEIS and crowd funding.”

Tech City boost

London’s Tech City has hosted more than 15,000 start-up companies in the past 12 months.

The area around Old Street saw fresh businesses open at a faster rate than anywhere else in the UK, according to figures from accountancy group UHY Hacker Young.

The area has benefitted from government cash and encouragement to promote the zone as a hub for internet and technology businesses.