OWN A PIECE OF AKT - THE DEODORANT BORN TO PERFORM
Don't invest unless you're prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high risk investment and you are unlikely to be protected if something goes wrong. Take 2 mins to learn more.
WHY ARE YOU RAISING MONEY?
1. We want to raise around £300k as a “buffer” in the UK. Although we don’t “strictly” need to raise for the growth we have forecasted, we want a buffer in case things veer off the forecast. It’s just sensible.
2. Broadway. We want to launch in New York, as a test run for the U.S. We’ll be utilising our network of performers and creatives on Broadway. With our brand heritage in the theatre, this is the natural next territory!
WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WITH IT?
Without going into TOO much detail, much of the money is to fund marketing and stock. Such is the life of a FMCG company.
But some of the projects we are working on are:
1. Reducing lead times for stock production
2. Reducing costs and improving efficiency across our fulfilment operations
3. Website optimisation for conversion rate
4. New product development
5. Brand activations like the film premier we just did in Leicester Square
HOW DID YOUR FIRST SEEDRS CAMPAIGN GO?
ED: The first Seedrs campaign was a little nerve wracking, even though it was our second time doing a crowdfunding campaign - (the first was before we launched where we did a kickstarter campaign in 2018).
ANDY: I felt pretty confident. With one go at it under our belts I knew where we could improve. And, of course, it was much better having a larger team (albeit only 2 others haha) to help with the workload. Crowdfunding campaigns require a lot of preparation!
ED: I think what also helped allay the fears (a little) was that we had pre-commitments from thousands of our customers before the campaign went live. We’d asked our customers: would you invest, and how much would you consider investing? We knew from that that if we converted 20% of them we’d be well on the way to reaching our target!
ANDY: And reach our target we did! In the first day! We managed hit our target of £600k and eventually went on to raise just over £1M with over 900 new investors — many of them current customers.
WHAT DID YOU DO WITH THE MONEY YOU RAISED?
ED: I bought a house in the Virgin Islands. BYEEEE! Jokes.
Well, one of the first things we did was bring on a Growth agency. One of our biggest tasks was to understand the data more, reduce customer acquisition costs (CAC) from our digital ads, and increase our subscribers customers.
ANDY: Every month we are bringing more customers to the website too, with better ads that focus more on user generated content (UGC), which works well for us.
ED: We also brought on a few new staff members, such as our CRM manager, Digital Marketing Manager and Brand Executive and Content Creator. We’re also about to bring on a new Chairman who has been instrumental is helping us solidify our finance function and stock forecasting.
ANDY: We’ve over doubled in growth since our last raise, thanks to our Seedrs investors. It’s looking to be a VERY good year at AKT.
DID YOU EVER ENVISION THIS IS WHERE AKT WOULD BE NOW?
ANDY: It’s sometimes hard to remember where we came from as we can get so caught up in the whirlwind of our new everyday lives. But it’s always amazing to meet friends from the theatre at our events who have followed our journey. They remind us, and are so proud of us.
ED: It’s hard to believe we used to make the stuff in our kitchen! I’m so proud of our achievements in our new lives as entrepreneurs. I think one of our main successes has been our willingness to learn. We have learnt SO MUCH just by doing.
ANDY: Obviously the stress hasn’t been kind to us! But we now have friends in the industry who help us with our skincare to keep us looking fresh and, ummm… young?
ED: I just think it’s so awesome how many awards our products have won. Like… did we ever think we’d win that many? Be featured in Vogue!? Be the favourite deodorant of some of our celebrity idols? NO WAY! It’s pretty surreal.
AS ENTREPRENEURS, DO YOU SEE MONEY AS A TABOO?
ED: I think before AKT we didn’t really understand money. We were both actors, earning maybe £20k a year if that. We both did every job under the sun: deliveroo, teaching, working in bars, promo work.
ANDY: It’s an amazing feeling to have created a company that can now give us and the rest of our team a wage. We only started paying ourselves a living wage last year after the Seedrs campaign, so it’s still pretty new for us! Before that we were just about covering rent.
ED: I don’t think we see money as a taboo, though. As they sing in “Cabaret”, “Money makes the world go around”. It’s nice to see the potential of what we can do with AKT. We hope we are able to give jobs to many more people and generate a return for our investors.
DO YOU HAVE A CLOSE RELATIONSHIP WITH SOME OF THE PEOPLE THAT INVESTED IN AKT?
ANDY: We do. We keep our Seedrs investors up to date every month on the performance of the company.
But we of course have friends who have invested. And new people who we didn’t know before who we can now call friends.
Particularly one of our investors who has been really helpful over the last eight months: we talk every week and we’ve invited him to be our Chairman.
IS THERE ANYTHING YOU WOULD HAVE DONE DIFFERENTLY?
ED: Not a thing. What I love most about running AKT, is that every day is a learning day. All the failures, stresses and misfortunes we have had have helped us to get to where we are. I wouldn’t have done a thing differently.
ANDY: Maybe set up a company with my ex-boyfriend?
ED: AH shush, you love me.
ANDY: Kidding! I do. I actually think the fact that Ed and I used to date has created a really strong business relationship. We are able to be really frank with one another and resolve any problems really fast. We understand one another so well that I know when to back off —
ED: Or when to strike!
ANDY: But like Ed said, although we’ve been through the ringer, we are finally in a really great place with the company. It feels like we can take on anything.
WHAT ARE YOUR TOP 5 REASONS WHY SOMEONE SHOULD INVEST IN AKT?
1. We are a fast growing company. In 3 years we’ve gone from £0 to £2.2M run rate revenue (revenue in the last month x 12).
2. You’ll benefit from being with us on the journey with over 900 other investors. As we grow… your investment grows.
3. There are tax benefits. Under the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) you’re eligible to claim 30% of your investment off your tax bill. So if you invest £1000, £300 could be tax exempt from your next tax bill (Tax treatment depends on individual circumstances and is subject to change in future).
4. Our metrics are consistent and measurable. Unlike many companies, because of our strong subscription base, we are able to accurately forecast our revenue retention. We know that when a customer subscribes we will see a guaranteed return over their lifetime as a customer.
5. Investor perks! Investors are given extra special perks in line with their investment amount. You can check them out below!
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Investing involves risks, including loss of capital, illiquidity, lack of dividends and dilution, and should be done only as part of a diversified portfolio. Please read the Risk Warnings before investing. Investments should only be made by investors who understand these risks. Tax treatment depends on individual circumstances and is subject to change in future. Seedrs or the fundraising business do not make investment recommendations to you and any investment decision should be made on the basis of the full campaign. No communications about any campaigns on Seedrs you receive from Seedrs or the fundraising business, through email or any other medium, should be construed as an investment recommendation.
This blog post has been approved as a financial promotion by Seedrs Limited on 04/09/2023 and is sent by [AKT London].
Seedrs Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Seedrs Limited is a limited company, registered in England and Wales (No. 06848016), with registered office at Stylus Building, 112-116 Old Street, London, England, EC1V 9BG.