Len Burgess, founder and CEO of miBoodle, tells how, with help from Shipleys, he secured investment for his new online publishing platform miBoodle is an online publishing service aimed at individuals and businesses that not only builds websites but also works to attract revenue from advertising on those websites.
Len explains: “The sites are built using set, templated designs we provide and then you can load your content – text, pictures and videos. The sites will be completely personalised, with your own domain name etc. Then, leveraging our advertising contacts and expertise, we manage the relationship with advertisers so you’ll get paid for the content you’re publishing.” It’s an arrangement, he says, that allows individuals and businesses to focus on creating content: “We open up more advertising doors and it’s a headache you don’t have to deal with.
For advertisers, we are introducing them to a broader audience that they might not have been able to reach before.” There’s no fee or subscription to pay – instead, miBoodle gets a small monthly percentage of any advertising revenue.
Proof of concept
miBoodle is currently completing a beta testing stage. “What that means, “ says Len, “is that we’re ironing out any glitches by running our own network of sites first.” There are around 10 sites – on subjects including crypto currencies, business and politics and technology – publishing 30-40 articles per day and generating advertising revenue through the platform.
“It provides proof of concept – we wanted to make sure we could make money before opening it up to the general public, which we plan to do in the next six to eight months.”
Len started the business three years ago and, for the moment, his small team numbers himself and three developers. He reveals: “Getting the platform from a standing start to where we are now, making some money, is a big success. We’ve still got a long way to go, but if we look back to where we’ve come from, we’re in a fantastic position.”
The biggest challenge was getting outside investment into the product: “I knew from previous experience that to get investors, both private and institutional, to believe in the product just from a business plan would be nigh on impossible. That’s why we put time and what money we already had into developing a working model to show investors how it would work.”
Managing capital from investors
He continues: “When we were looking for outside investment, we had a huge amount of help from Ben Bidnell’s Shipleys team. They put us forward for and managed the process of securing SEIS and EIS status. They also put us in touch with numerous potential private investors. “I can talk about the profit and loss of the business model, but I’m no expert in accounting practice.
In the past year, Shipleys has helped us manage the capital that we’ve received from investors to make sure our accounts are certified and audited, so we can go back to investors and show them where the money is being spent.” Looking ahead, Len says: “We expect to be quite a large publisher, making money with up to 30-50 of our own sites by the end of 2020. We will be in a fantastic position if the consumer side of the business takes off too.”