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Rhiwbina man’s venture is a crowdfunding hit

Rhiwbina resident Phil Murphy, and co-founder James Kilford, have launched a new service offering a cloud-based practice management system for accountants.

The startup, Senta, has just raised over £85,000 on the crowdfunding platform Seedrs, hitting its original investment target in just five days, though they are still open to further “overfunding”.

The founders joined the summer 2014 programme of WebStart Bristol, a tech incubator based in Bristol’s Enterprise Zone, to kickstart the project. As co-founder James tells us, “We started Senta with a really simple concept: to build a great cloud service to help accountants run their practice. We want to give accountants the time and tools they need to grow their practice and work with more clients.”

The project is clearly getting noticed. Crowdfunding platform, Seedrs, announced on Monday that Senta was the week’s “Biggest Mover by Percentage”, “Biggest Mover by Amount Raised” and “Biggest Mover by Number of New Investors”.

So what do the founders think they can offer that’s different to current practice management offerings?

“We’ve built Senta in the cloud from day one,” says Phil. “We’re building a service that’s quick and easy to use, and we’ve concentrated on the things that accountants have told us are their biggest problems: managing the thousands of client tasks that need to be done every year, improving security and communication with clients, and helping practices with their own marketing.”

Phil Murphy

Equity crowdfunding is a comparatively new way of raising money. The company is offering its shares for sale through the crowdfunding platform, Seedrs. Because they’ve reached their initial investment target, money is assured, but it’s not a certainty for everyone. According to Seedrs, only around 40% of investment campaigns go on to complete their investment round successfully. So why did Senta choose such an uncertain method of raising investment? James says it’s the way that individual investors can get involved:

“Although there are a multitude of ways to raise money, working with Seedrs brings some major benefits. One of those is the way in which individual investors are so committed to what we’re doing. During the last few days we’ve had many offers of help, advice and expertise from investors and we really appreciate those very much.”

“And we love the idea that anyone can invest, whether that’s clients, suppliers or partners. With crowdfunding, anyone can join us — they can invest £38 and they’ll own a little bit of Senta.”

You can find out more about their investment round and watch the Senta investment video here

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