Chrystal Capital

Chrystal Capital raises £2 million for miDrive

Chrystal Capital Partners LLP, the FCA regulated corporate finance boutique based in London, is pleased to announce that it has raised £2 million for miDrive limited, via a private placement.

Chrystal Capital’s Growth team advises on private UK based transactions, with a focus on equity capital fundraising, either directly into private companies or as co-investment alongside the best of breed VC and PE houses.

miDrive is re-inventing how people start driving by being the first end-to-end learner driver portal for learner drivers and instructors. They are a platform of independent, fully approved independent instructors readily available once students pass their theory exam through the free social media app. Learners are able to monitor their progress through an interactive curriculum as well as receive smart lesson reports from their instructor, route maps and data-driven insight on where to improve. miDrive learners can save up to £300 because they are better prepared when they arrive for the test and more likely to pass first time.

miDrive was incubated Holiday Extras in 2013. Holiday Extras continue to be active shareholders in the business. The round has been led by the highly respected European and Silicon Valley based investment firm, Initial Capital, who have a proven track record in backing disruptive early-stage technology companies including Supercell ($3 billion sale to SoftBank), Glu Mobile ($350 million IPO) and Playfish ($400 million sale to Electronic Arts). Other investors include high-profile insurance investors, and Family Offices from UK & Europe. Proceeds of the fundraise will allow miDrive to expand nationwide as well as add motor insurance to their product range.

The investment comes as miDrive strengthens its leadership team. miDrive promoted Asher Ismail, (formerly leader of the Skype click-to-call business from $0 to $100 million revenue run rate)  from COO to CEO at miDrive at the beginning of the year. It also appointed a new chairman, Alastair Peoples (former CEO of the Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency), and announced two new board directors – David Norris (ex-Partner at Forward Partners and ex-COO at Bookatable) and Shukri Shammas (Founder at Playfish and Partner at Initial Capital).

Asher Ismail, CEO of miDrive commented: “We are delighted with the quality of investors Chrystal Capital introduced to us, including the repute of Initial Capital whom cornered the round. We are excited that investors have bought into our vision as we enter an untapped market and are excited for what the future holds.”

Shukri Shammas, Partner at Initial and appointed Board member said: “Having invested in a number of  early stage gaming companies, miDrive was a no brainer. miDrive saw great traction last year and we were particularly impressed by Asher and his team. We’re confident this company has what it takes to dominate its category and turn miDrive into the most well known and respected global brand for learner drivers and instructors.”

Saavan Shah, deal leader at Chrystal Capital added: “As we continue to strengthen our co-investment offering for our family offices, miDrive is an example of the opportunity Chrystal Capital are able to provide to their family office network, of co-investing alongside leading institutional investors. We are excited to continue to be miDrive’s partner on its journey in disrupting the learner driver market.”

About Chrystal Capital

Chrystal Capital Partners LLP is an established, FCA regulated corporate finance firm with access to a global network of over 500 single family offices.

The firm specialises in being a trusted source of advisory services to the families, assisting them with their existing portfolio investments, whilst also reviewing new investment cases on their behalf. Opportunities are originated from both within the network and other trusted third parties. The families are based mainly in the UK, Western Europe, North America, GCC and South East Asia.

Chrystal is regularly approached for equity investment by both companies and institutional investors looking for co-investment partners. In each case, our in-depth knowledge of the families’ asset allocations provides a gateway to an alternative source of funding.

Chrystal is sector agnostic and has a global outlook.

For further information please contact Saavan Shah at or call +44 (0) 207 850 4769