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Northern angel network invests £300k in website builder Shopblocks

A Northern network of angel investors have backed Miribase Limited, the company behind hosted e-commerce platform Shopblocks, to the tune of £300k.

A team of over 25 angel investors took part in the round, as part of Dow Schofield Watts Angels, a dedicated tech advisory network.This is the second investment they have made so far. 

The cash will be used to accelerate Shopblocks’ revenues by investment in new sales and marketing resources.

Currently, Manchester-based Shopblocks helps SME’s to launch their own online shop.

It aims to fill a gap in the market between inflexible, template-based platforms and custom-built websites which are typically developed by digital agencies at much greater cost.

Shopblocks was originally founded as a platform within a digital agency in 2011, when it was  known as Miribase. In 2015, it was spun-off as an independent company under the control of founder and CEO Kevin Jones. Seven years on and Shopblocks is a fully fledged platform that allows businesses to design, build and launch their own website.The business now employs a team of 15 at its Manchester HQ.

Jones explained where the company hopes to go from here: “We’ve had an amazing year with hundreds of new customers joining us in the past few months alone. Businesses across the UK are switching to Shopblocks from template-based platforms such as Shopify and Wix in order to get the benefits of our unique technology.

“Our mission is to become the leading website platform in the UK in the next 12 months, and in that time we’ll be exploring how to roll out the platform on a global basis,” he added.

Dow Schofield Watts Angels aims to bring together early-stage tech companies in the North of England with entrepreneurs who can provide investment, support and mentoring.

It now has over 70 investors in its portfolio and has received applications from well over 300 tech firms since it was launched in summer 2017.

David Smith, who heads the network, commented on the deal: “Shopblocks is a fantastic solution to a major problem which we face constantly in our portfolio and even in our own business – an affordable way of developing and maintaining your own website.”

He continued: “The solution which Kevin has created is excellent, and we cannot overstate his technical ability and personal drive. We’re looking forward to working closely with Kevin to make a success of this investment.”