We did it!
This was the story as reported in Hollywood trade publication Variety once we crossed our £500k target. As we come to a close, it's looking nearer £550k raised from over 500 investors.
As I said in an update on the Crowdcube forum, raising money this way was a roller coaster ride of contrasting emotions but a worthwhile experience as we used the fundraising process to improve the proposition.
The improvements in the offer as a result of interacting with prospective investors included lowering the valuation of the company and an agreement by the founding shareholders to waive the first dividend so that minority investors could get 50% of their investment back before anyone else. It was bold and a Crowdcube first.
We were doing something different at all levels. We were raising money for a company that had no turnover, no history and no EIS relief. We were crowdfunding a slate of movies and saying to investors that there would not be an immediate return on this investment. We were also introducing a new model for the movie business and using the crowd to get it going. Along the way we found amazing investors who backed us. And to them, we are so grateful. If you are one of them, thank you again!
I said on the Crowdcube forum and I will repeat verbatim on this blog, one of the joys of raising money this way - over many weeks - was building a closer bond with Cassian Elwes.
I rarely meet anyone as driven as me but in Cassian I met my match. This is reflected in the 100s of movies that Cassian has worked on. It's a miracale to get one movie made. Cassian has been associated with nearly 400 of those miracles. I am excited at getting into the miracle business with him.
As I said on my Crowdcube update: "My gratitude to him is that he is one of the few producers who gets the spirit of this business: the risk taking, the breaking of new ground, the championing of women and diversity, the stories."
So, onto Utopia Road - the first movie out of the Movie Collective stable. I cannot wait to see what this amazing cast will bring to it. And in Rosson Crow, I believe we are launching a very exciting female director with a unique vision of the world. And when it comes to drive, she has got more than Cassian and I put together. So it is with great pleasure that I pass the baton onto Rosson! Go Rosson Crow! Go!