An Interview with Malcolm Ferguson of Octopus Ventures: Insights on Octopus Titan VCT in 2021

**New 2022 interview here: [Octopus Titan VCT Interview](**

Octopus Titan VCT, managed by Octopus Ventures, is a venture capital trust that focuses on investing in pioneering companies with global ambitions across five key themes: fintech, health, deep technology, consumer, and B2B software. In this interview, Malcolm Ferguson, partner at Octopus Ventures, discusses the types of companies they invest in and provides examples including Cazoo, Bought By Many (now ManyPets), Elvie, Quit Genius, Raylo, Overture, Depop, WaveOptics, Semafone, and Secret Escapes.

For more information on Octopus Titan VCT, including investment details and documents, please visit [Wealth Club](

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**IMPORTANT**: The opinions expressed in this video are those of the interviewee and not necessarily reflective of Wealth Club Limited. This interview, along with our service, does not constitute financial advice. It is essential to note that VCTs involve higher risks and lower liquidity compared to mainstream investments. There is a potential to lose capital, and tax rules can change, affecting tax benefits based on individual circumstances. If you are uncertain about an investment’s suitability, please seek professional advice.

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Hello, I’m Alex Davies, founder of Wealth Club. Today, I’m joined by Malcolm Ferguson from Octopus Ventures to discuss Octopus Titan VCT. Hi Malcolm! Before we dive into the specifics, could you provide a brief background on Octopus Ventures and yourself?

Malcolm: Of course! Octopus Ventures is one of Europe’s largest and most established venture managers today. We have a team of over 25 professionals actively making investments. I’ve been with the team for eight years now, serving as a partner. In my role, I focus on fintech investments, portfolio management, and board positions at various portfolio companies. Prior to joining Octopus, my career began in investment banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, specializing in the technology, media, and telecom sectors. I then transitioned to a technology boutique called GP Bullhound.

Alex: Thank you for sharing that. Now, let’s talk about Octopus Titan VCT. Could you provide an overview of what it is and what it aims to offer investors?

Malcolm: Certainly. Octopus Titan VCT is the largest VCT in the UK, with a net asset value exceeding £1.25 billion and a portfolio of 90 active companies. It allows retail investors to access the venture capital asset class, which was traditionally limited to institutions like pension funds and insurance companies. By investing in Titan VCT, retail investors gain exposure to high-growth companies, which can lead to capital appreciation and regular dividends.

Alex: Fascinating. When it comes to selecting companies for investments, what are the characteristics or types of companies that Octopus Ventures is looking for?

Malcolm: At Octopus Ventures, we primarily invest in UK-based technology and technology-enabled companies at their early stages, typically seed and Series A. These stages indicate early product development to early revenue. The common factors we look for in potential investments are exceptionally talented and ambitious management teams, significant market opportunities, and the potential for substantial growth. To help us identify and target the best businesses in each sector, we utilize a sector team approach, focusing on fintech, health, deep tech, consumer, and B2B software. Our aim is to find opportunities that can deliver at least a 10 times return on initial investment, with the potential for even higher returns.

Alex: Excellent. Management teams play a vital role in a company’s success. What specific qualities or attributes do you seek in a management team?

Malcolm: The management team is indeed crucial. We back various types of founders, who generally fall into three categories. Firstly, we have the serial entrepreneurs, individuals with a track record of building and scaling successful businesses. An example of this is Alex Chesterman, whom we backed at LOVEFiLM, Zoopla, and most recently Cazoo. Secondly, we support individuals who have experienced success within already thriving companies and are now venturing out to create their own startups. Lastly, we back individuals who are dedicated to solving particular problems, whether through academic breakthroughs or firsthand executive experience. Overall, an exceptional management team greatly increases the chances of building a groundbreaking and influential company.

Alex: Thank you, Malcolm. Lastly, could you share some examples of recent companies that Octopus Ventures has invested in?

Malcolm: In the past year, we have invested in nearly 20 new companies across our five sector teams. Let me highlight a couple of them. Firstly, there’s Raylo, a business revolutionizing smartphone ownership. Raylo offers a smart leasing option for acquiring the newest phones. It provides consumers with an affordable monthly payment plan instead of expensive contracts or upfront costs, reducing wastage and promoting a circular economy. Another example is Overture from our health team. Overture addresses the issue of declining fertility rates by automating and streamlining the IVF process, making it more accessible and affordable for couples facing conceiving difficulties. These are just a few examples of our recent investments.

**Source:** [Original Video Transcript](

**New 2022 interview here:

Octopus Titan VCT seeks to invest in what it defines as “pioneers with global ambitions” operating across five broad themes: fintech, health, deep technology, consumer, and B2B software. We talk to Malcolm Ferguson, partner at Octopus Ventures, about the types of company they invest in – with examples discussed here including Cazoo, Bought By Many [now ManyPets], Elvie, Quit Genius, Raylo, Overture, Depop, WaveOptics, Semafone and Secret Escapes.

For more details on Octopus Titan VCT, including documents & how to invest, see

Please Subscribe (+ 🔔 ) for more Meet The Manager video interviews.

The opinions expressed in this video are the interviewee’s own and do not necessarily reflect the view of Wealth Club Limited. This interview, like our service, is not advice and the products featured are not suitable for everyone. VCTs are higher risk and less liquid than mainstream investments. You could lose your capital. Tax rules can change and tax benefits depend on your circumstances. If you’re unsure an investment is right for you, please seek professional advice.

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