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South London brand looking for further £750k to help it increase capacity and marketing capability

Vulpine, the south London-based cycle clothing firm that raised £1 million in investment on Crowdcube in just a fortnight in 2015, has returned to the platform for a second round of funding.

Its initial campaign had opened with a target of £500,000 which the company hit in five days, leading it to double the amount it was seeking.

The money was raised to expand the HOY Vulpine range and grow the business abroad in markets including the US and Asia, especially Japan and South Korea.

> Vulpine fundraising drive hits £1million to double its target

Now the company, which is forecasting turnover of £1.3 million this year, is seeking a further £750,000 via Crowdcube – equivalent to an aggregate 10.34 per cent equity stake.

Its pitch on the crowdfunding investment site says the money will be used on marketing as well as raising stock levels to meet increasing demand for its products.

It will also be used to ensure the business has the online capacity to meet that demand, as CEO Nick Hussey, who co-founded the business five years ago with his wife Emmalou, explains in a blog post last week.

He wrote: “As a customer you’ll know about the site crashes, because we’re unable to cope with the traffic. The stock that was there at 11am, but gone by 1pm. The delays in replying to service emails, because 786 people contacted us over the weekend, and we only thought we needed two people.

“We’re sorry for that, so we’re going to invest in the next stage, to make Vulpine even better. A better site, easier to use, more robust, better everything really. Plus a load of stock, so the jacket you saw last week in medium blue is still there come pay day.

“I’m crazy ambitious, but always the ‘right’ way. A way I can always be proud of what we achieve. Always look back knowing we did our best, and did it as the good guys.

“Again, we want you to own us. To influence us and to be part of our story. To see it from the inside. I’ve loved having 577 customers and friends as co-owners.

“Like our wares, shares are limited,” he added. “Many lost out last time, as we raised so much faster than expectations. Grab a piece of us while you can.”

Hussey also expanded on why the business needs further investment in this video produced as part of the Crowdcube campaign.

> Vulpine launches spring/summer range

Vulpine’s Round 2 pitch on Crowdcube will run for another three weeks, and at the time of writing is almost a quarter funded, with more than £175,000 pledged in the opening week.

As we reported earlier today, Vulpine is one of a number of cycle clothing firms to have sought investment through Crowdcube, with Le Col, Huez* and currently Meame also going the same route.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.