BrewDog’s James Watt says goal of his new startup is “becoming a unicorn”

The entrepreneur behind BrewDog says the aim of his new venture Social Tip is to become a unicorn, as it doubles its crowdfunding target.
BrewDog’s James Watt says goal of his new startup is “becoming a unicorn”

BrewDog’s James Watt today said the goal of his new startup, Social Tip, is “becoming a unicorn”, as the startup doubled its crowdfunding fundraising target, hitting the £2m mark, in just over a day.

“Our goal", Watt tells, is “becoming a unicorn”.

A unicorn is a private company valued at over $1bn.

Social Tip has currently raised just over £2m at a £13m pre-money valuation on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. 

The crowdfund went live yesterday (Thursday), at 9am.

Asked about the £13m valuation? Watt said:

"The valuation is validated by some fantastic 3rd party investors who have invested at the same valuation.

“The valuation is based on the technology we have built, the strength of the concept, the quality of the leadership team and the fantastic partner brands we have signed up so far."

Social Tip, founded by Watt, who co-founded brewer and pub chain BrewDog in 2007 and was CEO of the business until he stepped down in May this year, is an influencer marketing venture, which gives a financial reward to people who post about brands.

Watt said:

“Initially, our strategy involved securing funds from VCs and founders within my network, followed by contributions from our community. 

“The first million was invested by VCs and founders. 

“This step was crucial to ensure the valuation was validated by a third party before we opened the investment to our community. Community is huge at Social Tip, so crowdfunding was an obvious choice for us.”

Social Tip has set a £2.5m cap on its Crowdcube fundraiser.

Watt has recruited Social Chain founder and TV Dragon Steven Bartlett as an investor and advisor.

Social Tip released a strategy document in which it says that by next year it plans to get a foothold in the UK and US markets, with around 100,000 customers and 1,250 B2B partners. 

It is also targeting to be in Europe by 2026.

Early investors include UK tech fund Haatch, which has invested £310,000, the British Investment Bank, MiniClip chief executive Rob Small, early BrewDog investor Keith Greggor, and active early investor Ryan Peterson.

Its launch brand partners include BrewDog, Huel, PureGym, Slug & Lettuce and Virgin Pure.

The founding team includes Thomas Matecki, previously chief technology officer of BNPL fintech Zilch, and Georgia Lee, former managing director of food delivery service Supper.

BrewDog, which has faced several controversies over its treatment of staff, is worth some $2 billion according to a 2020 valuation.

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