Hands across the water everyone! It appears that pulling together a combination of European and U.S. investors is creating some interesting synergies for young startups. UK-startup GroupSpaces, which recently announced new funding, has partnered with WePay, a former ycombinator startup billing itself as the “Paypal for groups”. With some deep API integration, GroupSpace users can now sign up to WePay within GroupSpaces and collect money for their groups. This gives groups a U.S. bank account with a debit card, something even PayPal doesn’t do.
Since its launch in 2007, GroupSpaces has hit 500,000 group memberships and recently secured a $1.3m investment from Index Seed Fund and leading angel investors including Dave McClure, Chris Sacca, Simon Levene, Meagan Marks, Ariel Poler and Quincy Smith of CODE Advisors.
Note that it’s extremely rare for this many high-profile Silicon Valley angel investors to invest in a U.K. startup, and it appears these U.S. links are paying dividends for GroupSpaces in enabling it to set up deals with U.S. partners like WePay. Let’s have more of the same.
GroupSpaces is super-simple online management and administration tool for real-world groups which provides and all-in-one set of tool for sports clubs, hobby groups, associations and student societies. The integrated offering makes administration of groups easy, and is designed to be way more easy to use than a Yahoo! group for mailing list, member records in Excel and collecting payments through various clunky offline means. GroupSpaces only requires group leaders to sign up, making it faster to adopt than, say, a Ning group. Group members can be imported from Excel and get emails, register for events and pay their membership dues, all without having to create a user account and password. The site is free for groups with less than 250 members and for student groups of any size. Above 250 members, pricing starts at £5/month. The company generates revenue via a combination of premium accounts, targeted advertising and transaction commission from payments made through the site.