Angels Invest Wales backs Carapace Slate
Welsh based Carapace Slate Limited has secured £300,000 investment from Angels Invest Wales and the Development Bank of Wales. Furthermore, the Angel network also introduced new appointed Chairman, Mark Huxtable.
A recent study by Redland revealed that 46% of construction SMEs are experiencing difficulties hiring roofers whilst the UK Government has promised 50% faster delivery of new builds and a 50% reduction in greenhouse gases. Carapace hopes to capitalise on this growing need for manufacturing solutions that enable developers to complete contracts more efficiently.
Their slate looks, feels, and performs exactly like quarried natural slate. Using a revolutionary new bio-composite, which can replicate any colour, grade or pattern. Each slate self-aligns and interlocks without nails or screws, resulting in 90% quicker build speed, therefore reducing labour and overall projects costs.
An initial loan of £65,000 in 2017 from the Development Bank of Wales and a grant of £133,000 from Innovate UK enabled managing director and founder Martyn Lucas to design a realistic tile from slate powder that is durable and can be fitted easily. Carapace now has final stage patents in the UK, EU and USA.
Martyn Lucas, managing director and founder of Carapace, said: “We couldn’t be more excited about the prospect of growing the company with Mark and the development bank alongside us.
“With Mark’s wealth of knowledge and experience in manufacturing and the immeasurable support of the team at the development bank, we believe we now have the ultimate runway to catapult Carapace to commercial success both efficiently and sustainably.
“Our investment journey has not necessarily been a straight road to the finish line but we got there thanks to the support from the development bank and assistance from Angel Invest Wales, both working tirelessly to find us the perfect investment match.
“We’re an incredibly close-knit team, with fantastic emerging young talent and large ambitions in a famously conservative, high volume industry. Teaming up with industry expert Mark will add new depth to the team and undoubtedly help us grow to our fullest potential.”
The investment was led by Zoe Reich, technology ventures investment executive with the Development Bank of Wales. She commented: “Finding the right investor is often a very complex and time-consuming process.
“Working with our colleagues in Angels Invest Wales, we’ve been able to secure the right funding and experience needed to take the business forward.
“Mark is an excellent match; bringing a wealth of industry knowledge and experience.”
Newly appointed Chairman Mark Huxtable said: “I am pleased to be involved with this exciting technology start-up which has energetic young people and great ideas.
“I am sure the business will progress rapidly and I look forward to working closely with the team to help build a successful business.”
Carol Hall, regional manager with the Angels Invest Wales, added: “Carapace has been designed to provide a step-change in onsite productivity – enabling an unskilled worker to reduce installation time by over 90% when compared to traditional materials and methods employed by skilled roofing professionals; extending current resources and expanding the competency base of general builders and labourers.
“They have a great team and I am delighted that together with my colleagues in the development bank, we have enabled such a great partnership and I look forward to watching the business progress.”