Joe Cusdin, front, with, back left to right, Taming the Dragon event organiser Russell Copley, Ed Capes of Fraser Brown, Pat Doody and Samantha Harrison of Greater Lincolnshire LEP, and Lewis Stringer of the British Business Bank
A Lincoln entrepreneur who developed a software platform for event organisers after working on the London Olympics and other international events has secured a £250,000 investment to further develop his system.
Joe Cusdin secured the funding from the MEIF Proof of Concept & Early Stage Fund, which is managed by Mercia and part of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund.
Cusdin developed his software, Iventis, three years ago and it is now being used by a number of global clients. The investment will allow the company, which currently employs four people, to further develop the system and create three new jobs for technical and marketing staff.
After starting his career in transport planning for the London Olympics, Cusdin went on to work with a series of festivals, athletics events and the European Games in Azerbaijan. As a geography graduate, he recognised that event organisers lacked effective mapping technology and planning systems to co-ordinate the different aspects of their operations.
Iventis allows event organisers to plan and share information on one platform – from architectural drawings to the location of food concessions and details of transport and security. The system also has potential for use in other industries such as construction, city management and transport.
Cusdin was the winner of the Taming the Dragon VI in November 2018, a Lincoln-based Dragons’ Den-style competition, supported by Lincolnshire Investment Network, Streets Chartered Accountants, Fraser Brown and NatWest.
Joe Cusdin, CEO of Iventis, said: “Organising a major event requires hundreds or thousands of people. It’s hard to keep everyone updated, many are local staff without previous experience, and teams lack the tools to share information. I set out to create an easy-to-use system that would allow everyone involved to co-ordinate plans and deliver the event more efficiently. The funding will allow us to enhance the platform and make it even more powerful.”
Sandy Reid, Investment Manager at Mercia, added: “We have been very impressed with Joe’s achievements. Not only has he managed to develop the Iventis platform on a limited budget using his own funds, but he has also attracted some major clients. This funding will allow him to transform the business from a successful events consultancy to a thriving software firm.”
Ed Capes of Fraser Brown provided legal advice to Mercia on the deal.
The Midlands Engine Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.