The Growth Stage launched this week as the world’s first funding platform for private growth companies to directly raise investment capital from regulated institutional investors and so bypass investment banks. A unique platform authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, The Growth Stage has been designed for primary and secondary equity and debt investments.

Directly challenging the traditional model by removing the barriers to accessing alternative sources of financing, The Growth Stage has no joining fee for private companies or institutional investors and charges only 1% of funds raised – a highly competitive rate compared to alternative approaches to fundraising.

The company has signed up with investors with over $4tn of assets under management, from pension funds, retail funds and hedge funds through to sovereign wealth funds and family offices.

Ambitious SMEs seeking investment to fuel growth and expansion plans will also have access to 10 of the world’s leading professional advisors who have partnered with The Growth Stage at launch. As well as WorldFirst‘s expertise on international transfers and unique international account capabilities, members will also be introduced to the following:

  • Acuris Risk Intelligence
  • EY
  • Gallagher
  • Merrill Corporation
  • Sage
  • The&Partnership,
  • Travers Smith
  • WeWork
  • WSGR

Simon Stewart, Co-Founder and CEO of The Growth Stage, said:

“Traditionally, it has been very costly and difficult for private growth companies to get access to institutional investors to help finance the next stage of their growth. Institutional investors don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to invest in the leading private high-growth global companies of today and tomorrow. A global platform enabling institutional investors and private growth companies to meet, and funds to be raised at low cost didn’t exist, and this is exactly why we have created The Growth Stage. After two years of developing the business with our institutional investors and professional advisors, we are delighted to launch The Growth Stage today.”

Nick Aston, Chief Enterprise Officer of WorldFirst, commented:

“The Growth Stage is an exciting and ambitious project and one that we’re delighted to support. We know that overseas expansion is a common route for SMEs targeting growth and so we’re really looking forward to bringing our unique experience of global trade and technological capabilities to the party to help these businesses break into new markets using solutions that are faster, easier and cheaper than they can access from more traditional financial institutions.”

Margot James MP, Minister for Digitial and the Creative Industries, said:

“The Growth Stage has developed a brilliant solution to match some of the world’s most exciting and high growth businesses to the long-term institutional capital and advisory network they need to fulfil their growth potential. The firm is exemplary of the innovation in finance and technology that the UK excels in and highlights its central role in the global investment community .”