Innovative bike light manufacturers Blaze raise £1M to expand product line and raise global profile- 03/10/2014

● Blaze’s flagship product is the Laserlight, a bike light with a laser projection designed to tackle the biggest cause of cycling fatalities – vehicles turning across an unseen bike
● Closes further investment round led by Pembroke Venture Capital Trust, with additional support from Raven Ventures (Australia), the Branson family and others
● Investment underlines 400% growth in the past year and other successes, including signing MoMA Design Store in the US and Evans Cycles in the UK

An investment consortium led by Pembroke VCTplc (“Pembroke”), with support from investors including Raven Ventures (Australia), the Branson family, Chairman of Dr Martens, David Suddens and the Founder of Lepe Partners and Co-Founder of Founders Forum, Jonathan Goodwin, have announced further investment in cycling startup Blaze. Blaze are makers of the world’s first front bike light with a laser projection: the Laserlight. It combines a white LED light and a green laser to project the symbol of a bike onto the road six metres ahead, increasing the cyclist’s footprint and alerting motorists to their presence.
The new capital underlines investor confidence in this cyclist-safety brand thanks to solid performance from Blaze. Blaze have seen a 400% year-on-year revenue growth and sold lights in nearly 50 different countries, solely through online sales. A partnership with UK’s largest cycling retailer, Evans Cycles, has also helped to raise Blaze’s profile, with the lights becoming available in their 57 high street stores across the UK.
The investment will be used to support the continued expansion of the company, particularly in the US, and with new product development. Blaze Laserlights have already been sold in the Museum of Modern Art Design Store in New York to enthusiastic reception from local cyclists. Blaze will also be looking to expand into new markets including Australia, aided by support from Sydney-based investor Raven Ventures, and Japan – another urban cycling hub.
Andrew Wolfson, CEO of Pembroke Venture Capital Trust, commented: “Blaze is a fantastic product, a must-have for safety-conscious cyclists the world over. Pembroke VCT is delighted with Blaze’s impressive growth in sales last year and looks forward to another successful year as Blaze continues to expand and develop on a global level.”
Kristian Blaszczynski, Partner of Raven Ventures, commented: “an elegantly designed product. The Blaze laser light has the potential to have a profound impact on the safety of cyclists globally, much like the introduction of the bicycle helmet. We look forward to the roll out of further products and supporting Blaze as it becomes a global urban cycling brand.”
Emily Brooke, CEO of Blaze and inventor of the Laserlight, said today that she was thrilled to announce the new investment, and added that “not only will this investment facilitate expansion worldwide, it will be crucial in allowing us to launch three new prototyped products currently in the pipeline.”

ABOUT BLAZE
Based in London, Blaze is a cycling brand on a mission to upgrade urban cycling and encourage more people to get on their bikes. To start, they reimagined the bicycle light so that even when caught in the blind spot, cyclists can make their presence known. Blaze was one of the first Kickstarter projects in the UK. Launched in late 2012, they have been shipping Laserlights to customers around the world since 2013. https://www.blaze.cc

ABOUT PEMBROKE VCT
Pembroke VCT was launched in 2013 to invest in early-stage consumer facing businesses, raising £18.2m in its first public offer. Pembroke is managed by Oakley Investment Managers LLP, part of the Oakley Group; an asset management and financial advisory business led by private equity veteran Peter Dubens. Peter Dubens is the founder and a non-executive director of Pembroke.
http://www.pembrokevct.com

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