LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dispersion Holdings (“Dispersion Holdings” or the “Company”), an investment company specialising in decentralised finance (DeFi) and established by the co-founders of Argo Blockchain plc, is pleased to announce its intention to apply for admission of its Ordinary Shares to trading on the Access segment of Aquis Stock Exchange Growth Market (AQSE) in London, UK.
The flotation is expected to value Dispersion Holdings at approximately £25m. The Company plans to raise approximately £10m before expenses, by way of a placing of 200 million ordinary shares at 5p each through Novum Securities, the Company’s corporate adviser, and joint broker alongside Tennyson Securities. First dealings in the shares are expected to commence later this month.
DeFi is a disruptive technology that uses the blockchain and cryptocurrencies to remove financial intermediaries from transactions creating a quicker, cheaper, more efficient and more secure way of providing financial services. Most DeFi applications are built on top of Ethereum, the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency platform. Decentralised applications utilise smart contracts, digital programmes which autonomously facilitate contracts and transactions.
Dispersion Holdings was set up to identify investment opportunities in this high growth sector. The Company considers that there is a sizable, and rapidly growing, potential market for the DeFi industry, with applications that include decentralised currency exchanges, lending platforms which use smart contracts to replace banks, and prediction markets which remove book-keepers. By August 2020, it was estimated that $7 billion was held in various DeFi platforms (source: medium.com).
The Board intends to address and mitigate some of the risks by using both its members’ extensive contacts in the DeFi space to search out those projects that, in the opinion of the Board, have best mitigated the risks associated with DeFi as well as a portfolio approach to the sector.
The Company will look to identify investment opportunities in the high growth FinTech sector within the UK, the USA and Canada. The Board intends to deploy the majority of the Company’s cash resources in the acquisition of minority interests in a number of different, yet to be identified, companies in the broad FinTech sector, and to apply expertise to the business operations and strategic plans of these companies.
The experience, operational skills and contacts of the Board are intended to act as an accelerator to start-ups and early-stage companies to maximise their profit opportunity. It is anticipated that returns to Shareholders will be delivered through a combination of an appreciation in the Company’s share price and through the adoption of a progressive dividend policy.
The Company’s Directors have an established track record, experience and networks in the crypto currency sector, digital assets management and decentralised finance, as well as the media industry to drive value creation.
The Board of Directors includes Michael Edwards (Chief Executive Officer) – the co-founder of Argo Blockchain (LSE: ARB), Guild Esports (LSE: GILD) and Cellular Goods (LSE: CBX) and Timothy Le Druillenec, a Director of NFT Investments Plc.
Other Non-Executive Directors of the Company include Mark Rutledge, CEO of Carraway Capital Corp., an investor with a decade’s worth of experience in the cryptoasset world and more than 25 years’ experience in structuring and financing technology start-ups, such as 20 Year Media, an early AI pioneer in chatbot technology; and Misha Sher, Vice-President of Sport and Entertainment at MediaCom, who brings a 15 year career in sponsorship, media and digital marketing, having negotiated in excess of $100 million in sponsorships and rights agreements across four continents.
Michael Edwards, CEO of Dispersion Holdings, said: “We are delighted and excited to be taking this bold step into DeFi, the new frontier of the FinTech sector, with Dispersion Holdings’ listing on a public market. In a rapidly growing and ever-changing sector, our team of experts – from the worlds of cryptocurrency to entertainment – has a wealth of skills, experience and contacts to guide DeFi companies towards a bright future. Our carefully considered sector, geographical and investment focus will enable us to create value for our shareholders in this exciting industry of the future.”
To provide eligible investors with the opportunity to participate in the fundraising, the Company has granted an option (the "Broker Option") to Novum Securities, subject to Admission, to subscribe for up to an additional 60,000,000 new ordinary shares (the "Broker Option Shares") at 5p per share, exercisable before 5:00pm on 23rd April 2021. Depending on demand, the number of Broker Option Shares subject to the Broker Option may be increased at the discretion of the Company with the written agreement of Novum Securities. If the Broker Option is fully taken up, it will raise an additional £3 million. If the Broker Option is not fully subscribed by 5:00pm on 23rd April 2021, orders from eligible investors will be satisfied in full, and the balance of the Broker Option shall lapse.
To participate in the Broker Option, eligible investors should communicate their interest to Novum Securities directly in the first instance or alternatively via their independent financial adviser, stockbroker or other firm authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority. Novum Securities can be contacted on +44 (0)207 399 9427.
Application will be made for any Broker Option Shares issued to be admitted to trading on Aquis, such trading is expected to commence on or around 30 April 2021.
Mike Edwards, Chief Executive Officer
Mike Edwards, Chief Executive Officer, has started and invested in technology companies for over 20 years. Mike has invested in more than 40 technology startups including Punch’d, which was sold to Google; Summify, which was acquired by Twitter; Wander, which was acquired by Yahoo; AreaConnect, which was sold to Marchex; Wylie Interactive, which was acquired by Zynga; and PasswordBox, which was acquired by Intel.
Mike is actively involved in growing and supporting the crypto currency start-up community and connecting local entrepreneurs with the right investors, mentors and influencers in Silicon Valley, New York, Europe and Asia. Mike co-founded Growlab, a seed stage accelerator focussing on consumer facing digital product, which later merged with Extreme Startups to create Canada’s Highline accelerator; and co-founded, and is a board member of, Creative Labs, a venture capital backed start-up foundry that builds consumer technology companies by leveraging the Creative Artist Agency’s access to talent and audience. Mike was also the co-founder and President of Argo Blockchain plc, the first cryptocurrency company to be admitted to the Main Market, which had a market capitalisation of £1bn in February 2021.
Timothy Vincent Le Druillenec, Non-Executive Director
Timothy Le Druillenec is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and has acted as a Director to a number of public and private companies over many years and held board positions on several Main Market, AIM and PLUS companies. He was until recently a Director of Argo Blockchain Plc, Guild Esports Plc, Cellular Goods Plc and Dukemount Capital Plc and was involved with launching those companies, all of which are listed on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. He is currently a Director of NFT Investments Plc and Dispersion Holdings Plc.
Mark Rutledge, Non-Executive Director
Mark has over 25 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur, C-level executive and strategic adviser with a particular expertise in structuring and financing early-stage start-ups. In the initial stages of his career, Mark practised securities and entertainment law, acting for clients such as Viacom, Disney, Paramount, Time Warner, and Canal+, and arranging over $100M in production and equity financings. He is currently CEO of Carraway Capital Corp., and co-founder and President of Sosido Networks Inc., a pre-eminent knowledge-sharing community for health-care professionals. He was until recently a Director of Leaf Mobile Inc, (TSE: LEAF), and is currently a director of Pioneer Media Holdings Inc. (CSE: PNER) an investment company focused on eSports and mobile gaming, helping to take both companies public. He is also a director of Aja Ventures Inc., an investment company focused on psychedelic therapies and longevity, as well as Streaks Gaming Plc, and Game Tribe eSports Plc. He has been active in the cryptoasset space since 2011.
Misha Sher, Non-Executive Director
Misha is an international senior sports marketing Executive with over 15 years' industry leadership experience in areas of sponsorship, strategic planning, brand management, media, digital and social marketing and talent representation. He has experience of negotiating in excess of $100M in sponsorships, appearances, image rights and host city agreements across four continents. Misha is currently a Vice-President of Sport and Entertainment at MediaCom, one of the world’s leading media communications specialists with billings exceeding $29 billion. MediaCom has also been named Network of the Year for various years at the global M&M Awards.
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This announcement is not a prospectus and does not constitute an offer of securities for sale in any jurisdiction, including in or into the United States, Australia, Canada, Japan or South Africa.
Neither this announcement, nor anything contained in it, shall form the basis of, or be relied upon in connection with, any offer or commitment whatsoever in any jurisdiction. Investors should not subscribe for or purchase any ordinary shares (the "Ordinary Shares") referred to in this announcement or in any final admission document except solely on the basis of the information contained in any such admission document including the risk factors set out in it, that may be published by Dispersion Holdings PLC) in due course in connection with a possible placing of Ordinary Shares in the Company and the possible admission of the Company's entire issued ordinary share capital to the Access segment of the AQSE Growth Market operated by Aquis Stock Exchange Limited. A copy of any admission document published by the Company will, if so published, be available for inspection from the Company's registered office and on the Company's website at www.dispersionholdings.com