Interactive entertainment starts-ups urged to take advantage of new Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme

Ukie, today calls on UK games developers to take advantage of the Government’s new Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS).

SEIS is designed to help small, early-stage businesses raise money by offering a range of tax reliefs to individual investors. Each investor can input up to £100,000 in a single tax year through the SEIS. Investors can then receive income tax relief worth 50 per cent of the amount they invest – making investing in start-up businesses a considerably more attractive proposition. It can be applied to investments made on or after 6 April 2012.

Several criteria have to be met by the company receiving the investment. The company must:

  • have 25 or fewer employees
  • have no more than £200,000 in assets at the time the investment is made
  • be UK-based
  • be undertaking a new business (be a start-up)
  • not be listed on any recognised stock exchange
  • not have previously raised money under the Enterprise Investment Scheme or Venture Capital Trust scheme

The company must also not be owned by the investor which means people cannot use SEIS to gain relief for investing in their own businesses.
Each company can get a maximum of £150,000 worth of funding through the SEIS.
Ukie has produced an SEIS fact sheet giving further advice on the new scheme for games and interactive entertainment businesses, that can be accessed here.

Ukie CEO, Dr Jo Twist said: “Getting funding can be a real barrier for many games and interactive entertainment businesses at the start-up stage. The new Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme helps make funding these exciting new businesses more attractive to would be investors.
“This year we will be working hard to raise awareness of this scheme, as well as other ways small companies can access finance, and the growth potential of UK games businesses to the investment community. We recommend that any games or interactive entertainment start-ups that are looking for money, and fit the qualification criteria, should make sure that they discuss SEIS with any potential investors.”