15. Crowdcube

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Founders: Darren Westlake and Luke Lang
Founded: 2011
Website: www.crowdcube.com

Making our Startups 100 list for a record third time in a row is some feat, but Darren Westlake and Luke Lang’s equity crowdfunding pioneer is richly deserving of this milestone. Launched as one of the first such platforms in the UK, Crowdcube has grown into a true leader in the sector and a byword for UK crowdfunding in general. 2013 was another landmark year for the company, as the founding duo oversaw £12.4m raised across 54 separate successful pitches; a staggering increase of 562% from 2012, and more than the platform had facilitated in its entire existence up to that point.

This year has also seen Crowdcube team up with Strathtay Ventures to launch a new Venture Fund – the first of its kind, it allows Crowdcube’s army of armchair investors to participate in a professionally managed fund backing the platform’s array of listed businesses. Already with a base in Sweden, Westlake and Lang are also taking Crowdcube truly international in 2014, currently setting up in Brazil, Spain, New Zealand, Italy and Poland. Not content with all this, Westlake and Lang have revealed the existence of a new product (“currently under wraps”) which will be launching in the next two months. Watch this space!

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