Digital active investment manager and wealthtech Sidekick has announced a £3.33m pre-seed equity round.

It was led by Octopus Ventures with Seedcamp and venture fund Semantic also partaking.

Sidekick aims to close the generational wealth gap with products and services usually reserved for only HNWIs. This includes access to alternative investments and also the ability to borrow against these investment portfolios.

Furthermore, customers will have access to the Sidekick investment team. This team will provide regular updates on portfolio performance and share editorial content to help customers build investment knowledge.

Matthew Ford and Peter Townsend founded the firm in January 2022. Ford previously founded the mobile banking platform Pariti, which also had Townsend as CTO.

The funding round is being used to develop the Sidekick app further, as well as expand the in-house asset management team. In addition, the firm hopes to gain the regulatory permissions registrations.

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Matthew Ford, CEO and co-founder of Sidekick, said: “Most retail investors have two options to build wealth: settle for passive portfolios or try to time the market and pick stocks and crypto themselves without access to the training, tools and information needed to do this effectively. This funding will allow us to build a modern app-based investment service that gives customers the same professional expertise that only high-net-worth individuals are used to. We’ve already got a stellar team in place, and we’re now excited to be working towards regulatory approval to launch over the coming months.”

Nick Sando, principal at Octopus Ventures, added: “We have seen a surge of interest and capital in public markets from retail investors. But investment products offered to the retail segment still lie at two extremes: higher-risk single stock picking and lower-risk index trackers / ETFs. High-Net Worths can access alternative assets whose higher-risk adjusted return profile can create significant compounding effects on wealth over time, but retail investors are largely prohibited from these due to high cheque sizes and the lack of digital tools to power and distribute these services. Sidekick solves this, and we’re delighted to support the team as they look to close the disparities in wealth creation between High-Net Worths and the broader retail investor class.”