Case study - Bidvine raise £3m from Guinness Asset Management

Sohrab Jahanbani is an entrepreneur and startup enthusiast who’s spent 22 years working at more than ten startups across five countries and four sectors. He’s founded six businesses in the UK and Middle East, including Bidvine: an online platform that allows people to easily hire trusted service professionals. Sohrab recently worked with the PwC Raise | Ventures team on his Series A, where he successfully raised c.£3m in a round led by Guinness Asset Management.

Sohrab Jahanbani

How did you find out about PwC Raise | Ventures, and did you expect PwC to be working in the sector?

The PwC Raise | Ventures team contacted me via email having tracked my business’ growth for some time prior to getting in touch. The team mentioned they wanted to speak to me to understand my business better and to see if I was planning on fundraising - as I was, I thought I would take a call to see what the team had to offer.

What were you expecting from your engagement?

Quite frankly, I did have a number of initial concerns, as I wasn’t aware PwC operated in the early-stage investment space. However, meeting Rich and the team really put me at ease - they were clearly high-quality professionals offering a best in class service, whilst being nimble and agile enough to support early-stage businesses such as mine. Furthermore, the success-based commercial model really made me believe that we were really in this together; this was the start of a strong working partnership.

How did the PwC Raise | Ventures team help you and your business?

The PwC Raise | Ventures team are really “in the trenches” with you and in many ways became an extended part of my team, adopting the culture and spirit of start-up. To start with, they provided great feedback on my investor materials, being an excellent sounding board to help us get our materials optimised very quickly. PwC Raise | Ventures really do have excellent knowledge of what the audience wanted to see.

The team has a strong and deep investor network, and they really take the time to understand the investors’ theses to ensure you are well matched, with the underlying quality of the network being a huge advantage.

When it came to reviewing and negotiating term sheets, the team’s experience was absolutely vital, as they really know the market well having negotiated so many between them. The team was readily available and very responsive - we had a few late nights on the phone trying to squeeze through the last minute details!

What was the end result for your business?

It was a successful outcome for us - we raised the amount of investment we needed to scale up our operations, on great terms for both us and our investor!

Would you recommend PwC Raise | Ventures to others in your network? 

I couldn't recommend PwC Raise | Ventures more highly - I don’t think we would have raised our Series A if it wasn’t for the team’s guidance and support.

How would you like to develop your future relationship with PwC Raise?

We have definitely benefited from our continued relationship with the team. Given the uncertain times we live in, they have continued to give us guidance on how to absorb changes and opportunities (for example, around government incentives) as well as their regular market insights. Additionally, our relationship has really helped us with wider business development through the presence of the wider PwC network.

Any other comments on PwC or the Raise | Ventures team?

The PwC Raise | Ventures team completely exceeded my expectations. They really went above and beyond the call of duty, and remained a constant presence in the process no matter the adversity, keeping us focused on a successful outcome.

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