Shard Credit Partners has provided financing of £3.5 million ($4.89m USD) in support of the growth of ‘Reg-Tech’ business PassFort Ltd.
PassFort, headquartered in London with 40 staff, was founded in 2017. PassFort (https://passfort.com) is a compliance platform designed to automate the collection, verification and secure usage of due diligence (“DD”) and documentation for banks and financial services customers. The product gives the user the ability to oversee digital ‘Know Your Customer’ (“KYC”) practices, Anti Money Laundering (“AML”) requirements and identity checks plus allowing ongoing risk monitoring all-in-one solution.
PassFort is a product whereby the customers can create their policies and rules as to how they undertake their compliance practices in a fully automated manner. Their platform enables compliance teams to build a contextual understanding about their clients through live and real time searches, onboarding and continued red flag monitoring.
The Venture Debt facility has been provided to assist PassFort with expansion of the sales team, and to assist with the strong growth the business is currently going through.
Donald Gillies, CEO of PassFort said: “We are delighted to extend our partnership with Shard Credit Partners as part of our $16.2m Series A. The $4.89m being provided by Shard Credit Partners will enable PassFort to capitalise on significant growth across the digital economy and the growing need for our automated compliance solutions. It is a testament to the efforts of our team and company culture to have come through the last 12 months in a position where our products and our customer base are growing so rapidly. We are grateful to Will and the rest of the Shard Credit Partners team for believing in PassFort to be the cornerstone investment for this new UK fund and we look forward to partnering with them as both our businesses continue to grow.”
William Chappel, Head of Venture Debt for Shard Credit Partners, commented: “We are delighted to have been able to provide financing support to PassFort and we are extremely pleased to announce this as the first deal of the new Shard Credit Partners UK tech-focused venture debt strategy. PassFort is a name that I have followed for many years, and Donald and his team continue to build a dynamic and exciting offering. We are looking forward to working closely with PassFort as they continue to achieve strong growth milestones.”
Shard Credit Partners’ strategy is to become a leading provider of capital to entrepreneur and management-owned companies, VC backed growth businesses and private equity-owned companies focused on achieving transformational growth and expansion in the UK regions. In the past two years, Shard Credit Partners has invested more than £130 million in supporting regional Management Buy-Out transactions and M&A buy-and-build acquisition strategies, as well as growth capital expenditure financing. This transaction represents the first Venture Debt transaction by Shard Credit Partners.
An introduction to Passfort:
About Shard Credit Partners:
Shard Credit Partners is an alternative investment fund manager focused on private credit strategies in the UK lower mid-market. Its funds seek to generate superior risk-adjusted returns from conservatively structured senior secured credit investments at low leverage, benefiting from robust documentation and a full suite of financial and non-financial covenants.
In January 2021, William Chappel joined Shard Credit Partners to launch the Venture Debt strategy which will be focused on senior secured loan investments in businesses in the Software as a Service (“SaaS”) and Fintech markets across the UK tech sector. Shard Credit Partners plans to hold a first close on its new Venture Debt Fund in Q4 2021.
Shard Credit Partners is currently investing from its debut direct lending fund Shard Credit Partners Fund I, which held a first close in October 2017 at £90 million. Shard Credit Partners plans to hold a first close on its second UK lower mid-market direct lending fund during the fourth quarter of 2021.
Shard Credit Partners invests in solid small to medium sized businesses with strong management teams, supporting them by providing transformative growth capital and event driven financing in support of innovation, growth and expansion. The fund invests in businesses across all sectors and throughout the UK.
The firm has a strong ESG focus; in particular, it is a strong supporter of female entrepreneurs and firms with meaningful female leadership, ownership and senior management.
Recent investments include the financing in support of the acquisition of The Technology Group by Gradwell Communications in March 2021, the MBI of JST Services Ltd in Scotland, the MBO and buy-and-build strategy of eQuality Solutions Ltd in the North-East of England, and the MBO of Chameleon Technology Ltd in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, each of which completed in December 2020.
In 2020, Shard Credit Partners ranked eighth in the Debtwire UK Direct Lender league table published by Acuris.
Tel: Elisabeth Cowell / Robin Tozer / Isabelle Smurfit
Shard Credit Partners
Investor relations: IR@shardcreditpartners.com