InspireWales invests in Cardiff-based Schoop

Finance consortium InspireWales is investing in Schoop, a multilingual app for schools, schools, nurseries, charities, sports clubs and community services to communicate and engage.

The company was founded by Paul Smith, who was frustrated with the lack of communication from his children’s school. So he decided to come up with a viable business solution.

It lets teachers engage families in the education of their children and lets schools save money by providing all school communications, calendars and forms in one simple app.

InspireWales is providing the business with £200,000 of investment, and it’ll also offer sales and marketing support through its highly influential investor network.

The consortium is made up of leading Welsh entrepreneurs, including Hayley Parsons, founder of GoCompare and Simon Powell, founder and CEO of software development company Comtec.

Based in Cardiff, it aims to boost the growth of start-ups throughout Wales. As part of the investment, InspireWales member and managing director of TVS Education Alan Whiteley will join Schoop’s board.

Paul Smith, founder of Schoop, said: “We have already had great reaction to Schoop and we are an integral part of many school’s relationship with parents, but the investment from InspireWales means that we can take the business to the next level. We plan to double our customer base in the next 18 months.

“The fact that investors of such high calibre are also investing in Schoop gives us the confidence to escalate our growth plans. Education is still our main customer, but the platform can also help many other private sector clients, large organisation who want to communicate with its clients or customers.

“We are already working with Arriva Trains Wales and Cardiff Bus. We are looking forward to seeing what the future holds with the mentoring and support of InspireWales.”

InspireWales fund manager James Henderson explained why Schoop was an attractive proposition for the consortium. “Schoop is an established and profitable business with a solid customer base and a very interesting product,” he said.

“It is already solving some clear problems for schools around speed of communication and response rate, and bringing parents much closer to the education process.”

James added: “A lot of InspireWales members are from the tech arena and were able to identify some key areas where Schoop could really differentiate itself and solve a lot more communication and community issues on one simple platform.”