Business Technology

Tech business Chirp overfunded on Crowdcube to almost double investment target

4 min read

02 July 2015

Deputy editor

After launching a crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube in May, mobile tech company Chirp has beaten its £400,000 investment target with a 188 per cent overfund to enhance its “internet of sound”.

With 365 investors parting with their cash for access to a 16.7 per cent equity share, angel and venture capital investment firm GuanQun Investment UK was responsible for the largest deposit at £215,000. Together the pair will seek to break the bustling Chinese market and introduce Chirp’s technology to businesses and consumers alike.

Its platform, which takes the form of Android and iOS apps, allows people to transfer files to each other without the need for an internet connection or Bluetooth, using sound instead.

A software development kit (SDK) has been in development too, designed to let third party app owners use Chirp’s tools to add sound-based sharing to their own content – pictures, videos etc. Developers have been held on a waiting list to access the SDK and Chirp will likely begin the launch now that the crowdfunding campaign is over.

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“We’re a small company with big ambitions – we’re building an internet made of sound. We’re delighted how people have embraced Chirp to share information.

“It’s even more exciting to have a long waiting list of developers wanting to get their hands on our SDK, so their apps can sing too,” Chirp founder Patrick Bergel said at the time the Crowdcube campaign went live.

The original funding target was set at £400,000, which the Boris Johnson-backed London Co-Investment Fund (LCIF) pledged to top up with £100,000 if it was met. The final Crowdcube investment figure reached £752,530, which the firm will use to scale commercially and the SDK is the first step of the plan.

Before the campaign ended, Chirp was able to generate significant exposure, which resulted in interest from prospective partners – connected device provider BleepBleeps, a creator of products to make parenting easier, became one of them.

The pair struck a partnership in June, which will see Chirp technology used in a future device – ideas on the table include sleep aids, location trackers and more. Currently BleepBleeps is best known for the Sammy Screamer, a portable motion alarm that sends a remote notification and audible bleep to the user’s phone when the device is moved.

Bergel said: “As well as being beautifully designed, insanely charming and highly practical objects, BleepBleeps have tapped into an exploding market for connected devices in consumer wellness.

“This is clever stuff, and very much aligns with our thinking on how connected objects will become a valuable part of people’s lives. We are looking forward to forthcoming BleepBleeps products chirping data securely and privately to parents’ phones.”