Today, London Union, parent company of the highly successful Street
Feast, launches one of the biggest crowdfunding bids in history,
looking to raise £3.5 million to build a world-class, permanent street
food market in central London.
Founded by Leon’s Henry Dimbleby and Street Feast’s Jonathan Downey,
the company is backed by a distinguished advisory board of founder
investors, including Nigella Lawson, Jamie Oliver, Yotam Ottolenghi,
Russell Norman from the Polpo Group, Soho House’s Nick Jones, and
several of the UK’s best known food writers, broadcasters and
London Union’s street food markets were visited by more than 300,000
people over five months this spring and summer, generating £3.5
million of revenue and £1.5 million of market EBITDA (excluding
overheads and costs). As many as 1.5 million people are expected to
visit London Union markets in 2016.
Alongside 12 local markets across London, London Union wants to create
the world’s greatest food market – at a permanent site in an iconic
central London location.
Investors will become ‘Union Members’, with benefits including a seat
on the advisory board, an invitation to the company’s ‘Annual General
Eating’, PLUS to all London Union markets and events, and the chance
to review a restaurant with Giles Coren or Tom Parker-Bowles.
Jonathan Downey, co-founder of London Union, said: “We founded
London Union to transform London’s food landscape, turning underused and
derelict corners of the city into vibrant street food markets. In
Lewisham, for example, we transformed Model Market – an abandoned 1950s
market – into one of south east London’s most popular weekend
destinations, with around 4,000 visitors each week.”
Henry Dimbleby, co-founder of London Union, said: “Although only
five months old, London Union is already very profitable. This
profitability enables us to open commercially-sustainable markets that
bring communities together, create employment and provide opportunities
for new food entrepreneurs to establish themselves without requiring
large amounts of capital. We are doing this fundraising so we can move
fast to open the world-class, permanent street food market that London
‘Union Members’ – including over 60 street food traders and advisory
board members who have already invested through previous rounds – will
help to determine the future of the business. At the company’s Annual
General Eating they will all come together to eat, drink, listen, learn
and vote together on major decisions.
In addition to 30% EIS relief available to qualifying UK taxpayers,
investor benefits include:
- A seat at the company’s Annual General Eating.
- Invitations to all new openings and preview parties.
- A ‘Union Card’ giving free access with three guests to all venues.
All of the above, plus:
An invitation to London Union’s annual May Day party to mark the start
of the spring/summer market season.
An annual bar tab dividend of 10% (a total of £2,000 payable during
years four and five which can be claimed earlier subject to EIS
The net cost to the investor of a £10,000 investment is £5,000 after
EIS relief and investor rewards.
All of the above, plus:
An opportunity to review a restaurant with Giles Coren or Tom Parker
Bowles (first five investors only).
- Year one: a 12 bottle case of limited edition London Union gin.
- Year two: a 12 bottle case of limited edition London Union whisky.
All of the above, plus:
Membership to London Union’s advisory board along with the founder
- Invitations to the bi-annual founder investor lunches/dinners.
- Year one: two 12 bottle cases of limited edition London Union gin.
- Year two: two 12 bottle cases of limited edition London Union whisky.
London Union’s advisory board:
- Petra Barran, founder of KERB
Giles Coren, writer, broadcaster and restaurant critic, The
- Gizzi Erskine, chef and food writer, Sunday Times
Bill Granger, founder of Bill’s (Australia/Japan) and Granger &
- Nick Jones, founder and CEO of Soho House Group
- Nigella Lawson, food writer and broadcaster
Thomasina Miers, co-founder/director of Wahaca and writer,
- Jamie Oliver, chef, broadcaster and restaurateur
- Marina O’Loughlin, writer and restaurant critic, The Guardian
Yotam Ottolenghi, co-owner of Ottolenghi and Nopi, and food
writer, The Guardian
Tom Parker-Bowles, food writer and restaurant critic, Mail on
Sunday, and Food Editor, Esquire
Stevie Parle, chef/owner of The Dock Kitchen, Rotorino and
- José Pizarro, chef/owner of José and Pizarro
Mark Sainsbury, owner of the Zetter Group and Grain Store,
co-founder of the Sustainable Restaurant Association
- Shamil Thakrar, founder and CEO of Dishoom
- Russell Norman, co-owner of the Polpo Group
- Richard Beatty, co-owner of the Polpo Group
- Richard Turner, chef/partner in Hawksmoor and Turner & George
- Rosie Boycott, Chair, The London Food Board
Stef Calcraft, who co-founded the advertising agency Mother, is
the company’s Chairman.
Ben Aronsten, Chief Marketing Officer at Seedrs said: “We are
excited London Union has chosen the Seedrs platform to provide an
opportunity for the crowds to be a part of the rapidly growing street
food movement with such accomplished entrepreneurs“.
NOTES TO EDITORS
Further details about the investment
London Union is raising £3.5m for a 10% stake in the business.
London Union is EIS approved. For taxpayers who qualify, a £5,000
investment will have a net cost of £3,500 after EIS relief and a £10,000
investment will have a net cost to the investor of £5,000 after EIS
relief and investor rewards.