Nous beats expectations, raises £500,000 (US$750,000) from Angels and crowdfunding, to bring an ultra-low-risk trading service to millions of customers around the world.
London-based start-up Nous Global Markets was created to educate people about the enjoyment and the challenges of financial markets. Originally aiming to raise £350,000, it quickly reached that target and chose to halt over-funding at £500,000. The money was raised from a combination of Angel investors, Venture Capital and crowd-funding.
The investment is an important validation both of Nous’s traction since going live in 2014, having reached over 300,000 users at very low cost, and of their future plans. Nous will use the funds to release a revolutionary new trading application designed specifically for individuals that are excluded by current products.
Nous’ first round of funding was raised from private investors, predominantly senior finance and technology professionals at global investment banks. This second round brought crowd-funded investment via Syndicate Room‘s platform; as well as strategic investors such as Tantalus Capital, and K.V. Rao, CEO of California-based predictive analytics firm Aviso.
Justin Short, CEO of Nous, says:
“With the great success of our Spark Profit application we realised that there were millions of people with discretionary capital and the desire to trade in financial markets, but no way for them to do that economically. We will put the world’s most consumer-friendly trading system into their pockets: low-cost; ultra low-risk; and with up to 20x returns.”
Nous Global Markets was founded in September 2012 by Justin Short and four other former high flying Merrill Lynch traders and technologists. Originally based in Tokyo it has since relocated to London and has received EIS Advance Assurance.
In January 2014, Short and his colleagues launched their free-to-play virtual trading game — ‘Spark Profit’ — which enables players to predict financial market movements with no risk, in return for cash prizes. Spark Profit’s uniquely visual, beginner-friendly interface and weekly cash rewards have already attracted over 300,000 users in 200 separate countries.
At the beginning of 2015, while learning more about their customers’ needs, they found that 95% of regular players wanted to trade their own money, preferably inside Spark Profit itself. A thorough review of the competition showed that there was indeed a very large opportunity to create a simple, low-risk way for people to trade — which would be a natural progression of the existing app and a validation of Nous’ “profit together” ethos. The new trading application will feature a unique combination of consumer-friendly features unavailable elsewhere. It is due for soft-launch in Q1 2016.