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PS600,000 investment to Raise platform's profile; We also have some exciting products in the pipeline to help the business community and event challengers to raise money.

Byline: GROWTH BUSINESS WRITER robert.gibson@ncjmedia.co.uk

NEWCASTLE-BASED fundraising platform GoRaise is set for growth on the back of a PS600,000 investment.

The much-lauded start-up, which was among those to triumph in Tech North's Northern Stars competition last year, secured half the funds from Northstar Ventures' Business North East Accelerator Fund and half from angel investor, Sebastian Gray.

As it looks to expand into the USA, Australia, France and Germany, the company will use the money for marketing, new hires and product improvements.

Founded in 2015 by Gary Thompson, GoRaise is an online charity cashback platform that facilitates fundraising opportunities for both individuals and organisations.

It makes use of affiliate commissions to reward consumers with a donation to their chosen cause every time they shop online.

Despite being an early stage startup, the company, which has been through Newcastle's tech accelerator programme Ignite, has already attracted retailers such as Ebay and John Lewis to its platform.

GoRaise distinguishes itself from competitors by providing fundraising opportunities for personal challengers in addition to established charities and causes.

Those running individual campaigns can register their event and invite friends to support it.

From then on, each time a supporter shops online with a participating retailer, a donation to the cause is made.

Mr Thompson said: "The capital of Northstar's investment will be deployed to raise awareness of the platform and to ensure that the product continues to be an incredibly simple and frictionless process for all users.

"We also have some exciting products in the pipeline to help the business community and event challengers (such as marathon runners) to raise money.

"We're currently on the lookout for new hires to fill roles in marketing, web development and community management. GoRaise will also be rolled out in the USA, Australia, France and Germany."

Richard Charnley, investment manager at Northstar Ventures, said: "We've been speaking to GoRaise since they joined the Ignite programme early last year, and during this time we've been impressed with Gary's ability and undoubtable knowledge of the sector.

"He's also a great example of an entrepreneur that wants to have a global and social impact.

"Given GoRaise's overlap with Northstar's own core values, we are looking forward to working with the team to make it an even bigger success."

Based in Newcastle and Darlington, Northstar Ventures is a venture capital firm with over PS95m under management.

The Finance for Business North East Accelerator Fund invests in high growth, innovative early stage businesses, with individual investments ranging from PS100,000 to PS750,000 in a first round of finance, and up to PS2m in any one company overall.

>Gary Thompson, founder and CEO of GoRaise. Below, GoRaise makes use of affiliate commissions to reward consumers with a donation to their chosen cause every time they shop online

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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jul 12, 2016
Words:468
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