Clear Leisure updates on portfolio firms PBV Monitor and ForCrowd


Clear Leisure PLC (LON:CLP) has provided investors with an update on two companies in its technology portfolio, PBV Monitor and ForCrowd.

The investment firm said Italian legal database firm PBV, in which it holds a 10% stake, has received a €300,000 investment from an Italian investment firm that also holds a minority stake in Clear Leisure.

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The funds have been raised at a pre-new money valuation of €3mln, similar to the valuation at which Clear Leisure made its own investment in PBV in December 2018.

The investment will comprise €150,000 in PBV equity and a €150,000 subscription for a PBV 18-month convertible loan note with an annual interest rate of 10%. Should the loan note be converted into PBV shares at the end of the 18-month term it will be on the same valuation as the investment in PBV equity.

Meanwhile, Clear Leisure intends to maintain its 10% holding by subscribing for €15,000 in PBV equity and €15,000 in the convertible loan on the same terms.

The company added that the process to integrate PBV’s services with Italy’s second-largest financial news publishing group, originally announced in October, had taken longer than expected, however, Clear Leisure remained confident that its investment in PBV “represents a unique opportunity”, a view it said was shared by the new investor.

Gardin to chair ForCrowd

Elsewhere, Clear Leisure said its chief executive and chairman, Francesco Gardin, will become chairman of equity crowdfunding group ForCrowd subject to the approval of Italian regulators.

ForCrowd is also currently reviewing applications to raise funds via its platform from three Italian companies operating in renewable energy, real estate and online business cost optimisation services respectively.

“With the help of respected external investors whom we have introduced to our investee companies, we believe the Company’s technology investment strategy is taking shape with PVB’s new fund raising being the first example of this. The Company is now in talks with several further investment entities, interested in making direct investments in our existing portfolio companies”, Gardin said.

“My proposed appointment as ForCrowd’s Chairman will, we believe, better facilitate ForCrowd’s approach with potential institutional investors, such as the Italian Universities’ incubators, particularly in the Milan area. The strategy will be to offer these institutions framework agreements to enable their many start-up vehicles special terms for fund raising on the ForCrowd platform”, the CEO added.

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