Two Manchester University graduates have raised £400,000 for Twine, an online platform that connects companies to creative freelancers, including investment from Greater Manchester Combined Authority and angel investors.
Twine is a creative marketplace that connects companies to a network of over 195,000 freelance graphic designers, animators, musicians and filmmakers.
It helps small and medium size companies hire creatives to make high quality content to grow their businesses. Audio-visual content is essential for business growth, fundraising and a quality product.
Stuart Logan and Damien Shiells created Twine to make it simple to write a project brief and curate the best quality creative freelancers for a project.
Briefs can be anything from logo and pitch deck design to explainer videos. Unlike other niche marketplaces, the depth of Twine’s community means that businesses can get all the creative content they need in one place, from logos to explainer videos.
Creative freelancers can build a portfolio on Twine, find paid work and connect with interesting creatives to collaborate with from all over the world.
CEO Stuart Logan is a technology entrepreneur and software developer. Founder of the ad-tech company Amnis Technology, and the global creative collaboration platform, Twine, Stuart has a degree in Computer Science from the University of Manchester, building on a passion for the power of technology that began when he started coding as a 5-year-old.
He says: “We are very excited to continue our growth with this investment round. The northern startup community is booming and we are proud to be a part of it.”
“The potential market for Twine is huge. There are 52 million small and medium sized companies in Europe and the US. They spend £24k per year on marketing, 32% of which is spent on content marketing. This means around £400 billion is spent on content marketing per year. We want to help companies create the content they need.”
Damien Shiells, Twine’s CTO and co-founder, is a technology entrepreneur, software engineer and technology events developer. Damien has over ten years of development and engineering experience in technology business and tech startups, prior to founding global creative collaboration platform Twine.
A native Australian, Damien moved to Manchester in 1999 to study Computer Science, and became deeply passionate about the musical heritage of the city.
GMCA Lead Member for investment and finance, Councillor Kieran Quinn, said, “It would have been foolish of the GMCA not to take the opportunity to invest in Twine. As a creative network for almost 200,000 professionals it is a key organisation that will help us to meet our ambitions to grow the digital economy in the region and provide the high-skilled, highly-paid jobs that we need to ensure that Greater Manchester prospers.”
Herb Kim, founder of tech conference Thinking Digital Conference and executive chairman of Tech North, said “My decision to invest in Twine was driven by my belief in Stuart Logan’s integrity and ability, and do I think Twine are fulfilling a real need with a compelling solution? My answer is a resounding yes.”
At the end of 2015 they raised £350,000 round from angels and VCs including Seedcamp, AXM and Creative England. With this recent investment, this brings the total amount raised to over £900,000.