In Conversation with Ken Hunnisett from Triple Point, by Finance & Leasing Association
14 August 18
14 August 18
EIS funding will help MWS double its workforce and grow its highly scalable SaaS platform for apprenticeship training providers. Investment categorised in the children and young people sector, qualifying for Triple Point’s Impact EIS Service
14 August 2018, London: Triple Point, which provides innovative and compelling investment solutions for private and institutional investors, announces the first investment of its Impact EIS managed service of up to £250,000 in MWS Technology (MWS) , a company that is transforming the efficiency and compliance of organisations that deliver apprenticeship training through its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform Aptem.
Today’s investment will support the growth of MWS, significantly increasing its workforce and helping to develop Aptem, the only end-to-end technology platform software that can deliver the functionality required for forward-thinking training providers.
Aptem provides advisors and operations managers with all the tools they need to manage and efficiently deliver contracts, reducing complexity and costs by incorporating different business processes such as funding systems, learning delivery systems and client relationship management software into one easy to use platform.
In May last year, the Government committed to increasing apprenticeship numbers through the Apprenticeship Levy, a payroll tax of 0.5% for all employers with a wage bill of in excess of £3 million. Forecasts suggest that funding for apprenticeships will increase from £1.5 billion per annum in 2017 to £3 billion in 2018, and employers are incentivised to spend the levy as it attracts a Government subsidy of 10% that is lost if not spent within 24 months.
There is an excellent opportunity for apprenticeship providers to utilise advancements in technology to help adhere to the Government’s compliance and changing delivery requirements as well as GDPR which has focused attention on data location and security.
Currently, many training providers take a fragmented approach, using different software for different business processes. The unified product advantage of Aptem can help MWS capture a significant share of the apprenticeship delivery market, by helping providers adhere to the requirements of numerous employers, eliminating the need to reconcile multiple outputs from different systems.
SaaS and cloud computing infrastructure are underpinning high levels of investment and continue to enter mainstream markets thanks to their flexibility and ease of use compared to traditional software distribution models. With its recurring revenue model, SaaS platforms can offer superior returns because they operate a subscription-based service and do not rely on upfront fees, rendering platforms measurable and built to scale with predictable revenue growth. The global SaaS market is currently worth $105 billion and is expected to reach $133 by 2020.
There is a basic social need, recognised by the government, to improve and expand the access to quality vocational education, in order to tackle unemployment and address the skill shortage facing the UK.
Skill shortages are the biggest domestic risk to UK growth and competitiveness. The most recent CBI education and skills survey found three-quarters of firms expect to increase their number of high-skilled roles over the coming years, with 61 per cent concerned about a lack of sufficiently skilled people to fill them.
MWS helps providers manage programmes directed at young people who have a vocational training need, who may not have had prior educational or parental support. By supporting opportunities of advancement to young people, today’s funding into MWS fits in with the Triple Point’s Impact EIS investment philosophy of targeting commercially successful companies that qualify for EIS tax relief and make a positive impact on society, but do not compromise and in fact seek to maximise the financial returns generated for investors.
London-based MWS is led by serial entrepreneur Richard Alberg, who previously established, grew, and successfully exited PSL, a niche technology SaaS company that was sold to Kenexa, a NASDAQ HR solutions provider, later acquired by IBM.
Belinda Thomas, Partner at Triple Point, commented: “We are delighted to invest in MWS Technology. The highly skilled management team, led by Richard Alberg, has proven experience delivering shareholder value by growing similar businesses and we recognise a clear strategy that render the company a compelling growth prospect. The apprenticeship training sector looks set for significant expansion and MWS technology has identified a gap that will enable providers to upskill young people helping them to realise their ambitions and career potential. We look forward to working with him and the team over the coming months and years.”
Richard Alberg, CEO, MWS Technology, commented: “Aptem is unique in that it contains all apprenticeship delivery functionality within one user-friendly platform, allowing apprenticeship providers across the UK to support the next generation of talent. We’re very excited to bring the experience and expertise of Triple Point on board to help us maximise our growth potential and expand our footprint.”
The Triple Point Impact EIS offers investors a portfolio of between 8 and 12 fast-growing companies across four key sectors – the environment, health, children and young people, and inequality. The funds raised provide scale-up capital for revenue-generating companies, which have the potential to achieve returns of 5-10x.