Venture capital from smart entrepreneurs

We invest seed and scale-up early-stage venture capital into innovative UK businesses led by talented founders

Who we are

DSW Ventures is a national firm of seed and early-stage venture capital investment specialists focusing on regional UK growth businesses. We invest in technology and tech-led scale-up businesses with talented founders, a defensible position and evidence of product-market fit.

Our typical investment is for £300,000 to over £1 million, as part of rounds of up to £2 million, and is EIS or SEIS qualifying. Investments are funded by the Dow Schofield Watts team, our network of high-net-worth individuals, family offices and institutional investors.

Our team of highly-experienced investors are passionate about providing UK regional entrepreneurial talent with the right funding and the right people to enable them to flourish. We go beyond being just ‘the money’ adding genuine value to our investments via our extensive network of commercial, finance
and technology professionals; our group of over 100 angel investors, many of whom have exited successful businesses of their own; and our team’s experience in helping founders create healthy corporate environments with a scalable platform for growth.

We invest in entrepreneurs like…

Kasia and Joe Bromley

Founders of ACAI
 
“Keith and David’s vast experience and knowledge was evident throughout the process – they had our best interests at focus while also securing a good deal for their investors. We highly recommend DSW Ventures – they will greatly enhance your business.”

Kevin Jones

Founder of Shopblocks
 
“The DSW Ventures team has introduced us to a great network of business angels, senior executives and two major channel partners – adding significant scale and capability to our business.”

Peter Jones

Founder of Avanite
 
“DSW Ventures has been an invaluable source of business expertise since our first meeting – providing considered and analytical advice. I would not hesitate in recommending DSW Ventures as an expert investor with a good eye for detail and very personable approach.”

Eugene Shestopal

Cofounder of Poptop
 
“DSW Ventures was professional and supportive through the fundraising process and beyond: very diligent, well organised, always there to give a piece of advice and guide when required.”

Chris Dawson

Cofounder and CEO of One Utility Bill
 
“Alongside a significant capital raise, the DSW Ventures contribution since our first meeting has been valuable. We successfully completed the investment early in the Covid-19 outbreak – David and Keith formed a critical part of the team working with us at a strategic level. Since the investment, the One Utility Bill business has benefited in many ways – a stronger balance sheet, more robust operations and experienced leadership support.”

Nick Richardson

CEO and Founder of The Insights People
 
“We are delighted to be working with DSW Ventures. I have enjoyed their collaborative and straight forward approach, and am confident that they are the ideal partner to help us achieve our goals. And I very much look forward to working with David, Keith, Ellie and the rest of the team to make our goals a reality.”

Investing in Women Code

DSW Ventures is a signatory to the Investing In Women Code. Alongside HM Treasury, we have committed to support the advancement of female entrepreneurship in the UK by improving female entrepreneurs’ access to tools, resources and finance from our firm and the broader financial services sector.

In numbers

Investment rounds of up to

£2m

Typical investment

£4.5m

 

Capital deployed

100

Network of investors

80

Group investment & advisory professionals

Value-added early-stage venture capital

We back founder teams to scale-up early-stage companies. Our primary focus is on software, digital and other technology businesses; but we will invest in businesses in other sectors with a scalable model, protectable market positions and talented founders.

Having established commercial proof with early adopters, our investments provide entrepreneurs with the capital to fund expansion in management and team capability, working capital, geographical footprint and development of technology.

The DSW Ventures team is supported in assessing and validating investment opportunities by our Investment Committee, a group of highly experienced UK technology entrepreneurs, investors and senior executives. Together with our network of over 100 investors, this gives our founders unrivalled access to a huge pool of contacts, capability and experience across a multitude of markets.

Our investor network is open to High-Net-Worth individuals and Family Offices looking to invest in regional start-ups and scale-ups on an EIS or SEIS basis.

There are no sign-up or membership fees for individual investors in our network. Investors are not obliged to invest in our transactions.

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