Adding exclusivity and profile to technology investment
Technology investment is in vogue, and everyone is getting in on the action. Apps like Robinhood are bringing the general public into investment, but the London Technology Club (LTC) has decided to add some exclusivity. Patrick Brusnahan interviews its founder.
Patrick Brusnshan (PB): What led to the founding of the LTC?
Konstantin Sidorov, founder of LTC (KS): I have over 25 years of experience in building, developing and restructuring businesses within the tech sector. Alongside LTC, I am the founder and chair of the board of directors of RRC Group, and co-founder and member of the board of directors of Inline Technologies Group.
In 2016, I sold the Eastern European division of RRC to the leading a US-based NASDAQ-listed distributor Ingram Micro.
Privately, I also invested in various tech companies including early investments in Lyft and Spotify. As a private investor, the structural opportunity to invest in late-stage, high growth technology companies was limited and set about increasing the opportunity for collective investing.
I quickly identified a number of barriers to entry for other potential single investors and family offices, primarily, insufficient knowledge of the market/products and inaccessibility of the best deals. This informs the average level of a single individual’s investment and by default precludes allocation, the minimum threshold to entry being quite high and typically limited to VCs.
This led to the creation of the London Technology Club, a community of private investors, family offices, top global VCs institutions and industry pioneers. The club provides a platform for investing, networking as well as the exchange of ideas and experience.
The club provides access to high performing tech companies funding rounds not typically available to private investors – the pooling of professional expertise and experienced investors completely turns this around, opening up a wealth of previously closed opportunities. I often co-invest with other members.
PB: Is tech set to be the go-to investment for decades to come?
KS: Tech investment has exploded over the last decade, and this trajectory is only set to continue as significant investment is made to adapt to the numerous changes society has faced from business disruption and the pandemic, the solutions technology can provide in reversing climate change and the advent of artificial intelligence and machine learning.
For example, data from Beauhurst, shows that UK investment into Fintech has increased by almost 400% in the last year, rising from £1.8bn ($2.4bn) to £8.6bn while investment into AI has nearly doubled. These sectors are seeing record levels of innovation – along with a technological transformation in regulation, insurance, and property technology, and therefore offer a wealth of opportunities for LTC to help finance fast-growing and disruptive companies.
PB: How can investing in tech become more accessible?
KS: LTC has helped open the door and create opportunities for a collaborative approach for private investors to invest in leading technology companies across a variety of fast-growing markets and high growth companies at growth and pre-IPO stage.
It has also created a diverse community, a pool of knowledge and expertise that private investors would not necessarily have access to otherwise.
PB: What have members of the LTC been attracted to in recent years? What do you see them investing in as a priority for the future?
KS: LTC members have collectively invested across a wide range of tech sectors. By leveraging the knowledge, expertise and connections of the club, LTC looks at global mega trends and where the major tech innovations have been across a range of sectors including biotech and fintech to food to mobility and even space.
LTC then presents opportunities to invest in high performing companies within those sectors. LTC also regularly hosts investment roundtables and develops sector reports (feeding into the club’s annual publication: Venture Magazine) on specific technology areas of interest, recent iterations have covered the space sector, fine wine, propetch, technology in fashion and the next generation of fintechs
LTC has gone on to invest in significant funding rounds for unicorns including Revolut, Airbnb, Klarna and Picsart as well as other exciting scale-ups such as Sharebite, Rapyd, Paysend and Outdoorsy.