Support for Leith firm's expansion

Par Equity funding just the ticket for Red61

Red61 Davey and McNaughtTicketing software firm Red61 has secured £572,000 in funding from Venture Capital firm Par Equity to support its growth strategy.

The business, which licenses its VIA system and runs ticketing operations for many large scale events in the UK, recently announced record revenue of more than£1million. It is now targeting live event ticketing clients across the UK and abroad.

Red61’s work with the Edinburgh Festival Fringe has seen it build a portfolio of clients across the UK and break into several overseas markets including Australia, Canada, South Africa and the UAE.

Chief executive Tony Davey, says the recent successful round of funding will allow the business to expand.

Mr Davey said: “We were absolutely delighted to secure the funding from Par Equity as not only will it allow us to accelerate our growth plans in the UK and abroad, but it is also reassuring to know that the experts agree with us and believe our growth plans are realistic and achievable.

“Until now our success has been without any proactive sales effort with most of our growth coming from client referrals and word of mouth. This investment will allow us to accelerate this growth by adding a more direct route to market.

“We’re strengthening the company and adding staff across all departments in preparation for significant growth over the next few years. We have some exciting plans for e-ticketing and the disruption of the traditional ‘box office’ service.”

Red61 was founded in 2002 by Mr Davey and his business partner, software developer Peter McNaught. The pair were joined by Systems Architect, Will Tatam, in 2006.

Edinburgh FestivalVIA processed two million tickets for this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe and the firm now employs 85 seasonal staff to run the ticketing operation for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society.

One of the immediate benefits of the funding was the move into a 4,000 sq ft Edinburgh Headquarters with the headcount growing from 15 to 25 full-time equivalents.

The firm is planning to open an office in Melbourne in the near future to allow it to deliver on its various commitments in Australia and New Zealand, looking to increase the scale of work gained through its distributor partners in South Africa and Canada, while also developing similar partnerships in Belgium, France, USA and India after receiving several strong enquiries from each.

Mr Davey continued: “We’ve secured contracts with the National Arts Festival of South Africa – Africa’s largest arts and culture festival, the Abu Dhabi Science Festival and The Garden of Unearthly Delights – the largest entertainment hub within the Adelaide Fringe.

“We’ve also seen a steady rise in the amount of business from England where we’re now working with the Camden Fringe, Brighton Fringe, Hullabaloo in Stratford Upon Avon, are based full time at Pleasance London and Riverside Studios and also work with a company called Exhibitours who are doing large scale exhibitions such as Art of the Brick – amongst others.

“It’s been a remarkable journey so far and the opportunity we now have through this investment makes it a key point and exciting time in the history of the business.”

Marcus Henderson from Par Equity said Red61 fits exactly the type of venture it likes to invest in and believes the VIA software has the unique functionality required to make it a global success.

He said: “We’re always very keen to help promote technology businesses that improve the sector they work in and that is definitely the case with Red61.”

Richard Lewis has joined the Board of Red61 as a Par Investor Director, bringing more than 25 years of experience in the technology sector, specifically significant success at Board level in aggressively growing businesses both domestically and internationally.

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