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16 November, 2018 - 18:50 By Kate Sweeney

Law firm advises on new venture enterprise fund

Cambridge-based law firm Mills & Reeve advised Haatch Ventures LLP on the structuring and creation of the Haatch Ventures Enterprise Fund, a new venture capital fund structured to allow individual UK taxpaying investors to take advantage of Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) reliefs while investing in early stage digital enabled companies. 

These attractive tax reliefs are designed to encourage private investment into growing businesses.

Haatch was founded by Scott Weavers-Wright and Fred Soneya in September 2013. As an early stage investor, Haatch backs entrepreneurs who build disruptive companies, particularly focussing on software-as-a-service in the retail sector. 

Haatch also prides itself on providing experienced support, mentoring and networking opportunities for these businesses via their Smart Money approach to investing. Mills & Reeve have acted for Haatch for the last five years, representing them on about a dozen investments. 

Dona Ardeman, principal associate at Mills & Reeve said: “It has been a pleasure to assist Haatch in expanding its investment activity over the last few years and we’re pleased to see the team take the next step in setting up a venture fund which can support more early stage businesses in this vibrant sector.” 

Fred Soneya, co-founder and partner at Haatch said: “We’ve been impressed with Mills & Reeve’s expertise in early stage investment funds. They were instrumental in helping us structure and create the fund, not just advising on the legal side but providing strategic support and introductions to collaborators.” 

The new fund will allow Haatch to place and leverage private EIS investment alongside their own. As a rolling fund, investor subscriptions will be accepted bi-annually, with a first close target of October this year. 

In establishing the Fund, Haatch will act as fund advisor to fund manager Sapia Partners LLP (part of the Lawson Connor Group) and fund administrator Reyker Securities. To support the Fund, Haatch has welcomed Simon Penson (founder of Zazzle Media) and Mark Bennett (director of hardware partnerships for Google) to the team as partners. 

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Mills & Reeve’s Cambridge headquarters

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