MEIF investment will be used to grow Stok.ly sales and customer service teams, and invest in business development
The firm, which was initially established in 2015, specialises in providing ePos, stock control and multi-channel solutions for UK retailers. Stok.ly was founded by Managing Director Iain Coplans and Technical Director Dan Preece who came together to develop a proficient and easy-to-use software platform.
Stok.ly provides a solution for large and small retailers that have struggled to integrate ePos and stock management systems from different vendors with their own websites, Facebook, eBay and other online retail channels.
The funding is to be used by the firm to implement its growth strategy, with investment being made into expanding its sales and customer services team alongside its business development function.
Iain Coplans, Managing Director of Stok.ly, said: “We found the process with Midven very professionally managed and thought provoking. Many helpful ideas emerged regarding our company structure and commercial strategy through our conversations with Gio and the team.
“We intend to use the funding to grow our sales and customer services teams and invest in business development to acquire new sales leads. We are very focused on expanding our customer base while continuing to help our existing customers get more out of Stok.ly.”
Along with its investment, Midven has introduced an experienced financial manager to bolster the Stok.ly team.
Giovanni Finocchio, Investment Director at Midven, said: “I was initially intrigued by why and how an early stage business based in Hereford was winning the custom of both large and small retailers. I quickly realised the founders knew their market, issues that retailers faced with the traditional software offerings and aimed to resolve this with a fully integrated cloud-based solution.
“I was also impressed with the ease of use of its comprehensive software, and after reviewing the company’s growth strategy, I was convinced that this would be a good investment for our MEIF equity fund to make. I’m looking forward to working with the team and supporting the company as it grows.”
Ken Cooper, MD at the British Business Bank, said: “Supporting businesses like Stok.ly to build and expand key areas such as sales and business development, are such important steps to growing a business and a key objective of the fund.”
Paul Hinkins, Chairman of the Marches Growth Hub which supports MEIF in the region, said: “The economic prosperity of this region depends on companies such as Stok.ly being able to access the finance they need to thrive and expand. The Marches Growth Hub and the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership have made this a key priority and I am delighted to see it bearing fruit in this way.”
The Midlands Engine Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank
Photo left to right Giovanni Finochhio Investment Director at Midven, Frank Myers LEP Board Member and Chairman of Hereford Business Board, Dan Preece Director Stok.ly and Iain Coplans Director Stok.ly.
Iain Caplan, Managing Director
David Callaghan , Digital Glue
0121 389 2499
Founded in 2015, Stok.ly offers a cloud-based Stock Control, ePos and Multi-Channel solution to UK retailers who are selling in-store and online. Its features include listing tools, stock and inventory, couriers and a stock app to help retailers of varying company sizes proficiently integrate these systems to their own websites and retail channels and applications.
For more than 25 years, leading Birmingham-based venture capital firm Midven has been supporting Midlands SMEs, investing more than £60m into the region and raising £200m co-investment into their portfolio. Midven’s ‘more than money’ approach helps to build strong and successful companies and support businesses every step of the way. Midven continues to extend its reach to invest in the Midland’s most ambitious entrepreneurs through its recent appointment to manage the £35 million equity portion of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF), as well as the launch of the firm’s first Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) fund. For more information about Midven, please visit www.midven.co.uk.
About the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF)
- The Midlands Engine Investment Fund, supported by the European Regional Development Fund, will invest in Debt Finance, Small Business Loans, Proof-of-Concept and Equity Finance funds, ranging from £25,000 to £2m, specifically to help small and medium sized businesses secure the funding they need for growth and development.
- The Midlands Engine Investment Fund is operated by British Business Financial Services Limited, wholly owned by British Business Bank, the UK’s national economic development bank. Established in November 2014, its mission is to make finance markets for smaller businesses work more effectively, enabling those businesses to prosper, grow and build UK economic activity.