Livingbridge today announces two investments in Labrador and YourWelcome. The growth capital investments have been made using funds from the Baronsmead Venture Trusts.
Founded by CEO Jane Lucy in 2016, Labrador is the UK’s first company to leverage smart technology to automate and personalise energy switching for life. Labrador provides a fast and highly efficient switching service completely free to the consumer using more accurate energy consumption data, making switches highly accurate. Once a customer is registered with Labrador, the household tariffs are automatically monitored against available market tariffs, ensuring consumers are on a cheap energy tariff for life.
It is estimated that 13m customers still use their supplier’s standard variable tariff, with the potential to save a total of £4bn if they were to switch to the cheapest tariffs available. The price caps on standard variable tariffs that OFGEM has announced will come into effect from April 2019 are anticipated to save consumers on average £74 a year. By contrast Labrador can already save consumers up to £537 a year by automatically monitoring the market. Labrador research shows that using estimated consumption data can lead to consumers receiving an incorrect tariff recommendation more than 50% of the time.
YourWelcome supplies tablets and associated software into vacation rental, Airbnb and corporate letting properties, with their proprietary software improving the guest experience through an information portal, providing tips and recommendations on the local area and a guest communication tool. The software also allows customers to order services such as taxis, food orders and tickets directly from their property. Since the start of 2018, YourWelcome has significantly increased their distribution and are now in over 9,000 properties globally. YourWelcome have added high profile clients including Jeeves Vacation Rentals and Made Comfy.
Livingbridge are experienced investors in the vacation rental market having invested in Sykes Cottages in 2015. This investment will enable YourWelcome to open a new office in Florida to develop its sales distribution in the US. It will also support the launch of the company’s second product, YourWelcome Advance, a powerful advance check-in tool for guests that helps owners verify contact details and ID, alongside up-selling room upgrades, airport transfers and more.
Steve Cordiner at Livingbridge, said:
“Both of these businesses sum up what we look for when Livingbridge invests, they’re high growth disruptors in static markets with huge potential. We’re incredibly excited to be working with Labrador and YourWelcome over the coming years on both of their respective growth journeys.”
Jane Lucy, CEO and founder at Labrador, said:
“We are thrilled to have Livingbridge on board, bringing their valuable expertise with them. With so many in the UK paying far too much for energy, we are confident that this support from Livingbridge will allow thousands of households to start saving with Labrador.”
Henry Bennett, CEO at YourWelcome:
“We’re delighted to receive the backing of Livingbridge who are experienced investors in both the vacation and technology space. We are looking forward to working together to deliver on our global ambitions.”
Livingbridge Growth invests equity of up to £5m and supports founders with bold ambitions for the future, investing in exceptional entrepreneurs and providing transformational capital and expertise to accelerate business potential.