A government loan granted to the Killing Kittens company to help it through the pandemic has turned into an equity stake in the company, the British Business Bank confirmed on Tuesday.
Killing Kittens, which organizes adult parties led by women in cities such as London and New York, has secured investment in 2020 from the British government’s Future Fund, which is designed to help startups survive the Covid-19 pandemic.
The company was founded by Emma Sayle in 2005, and hosts members-only parties in exclusive venues where “established gender stereotypes” are challenged, according to its website.
The company saw a 330% increase in traffic to its website during the coronavirus lockdown measures, and declared itself “the fastest growing adult social network”.
At one point, the pandemic forced the company to change all of its online events and workshops, accelerating existing plans to enter the sex tech industry — a fast-growing industry that encompasses products and businesses focused on improving sexual experiences.
Killing Kittens now has an app that lets users meet “for casual dating, friendship, sex partners or a steady relationship,” according to a description on its website.
The government’s Future Fund previously granted the company a loan of £170,000. The programme, which is financed from tax receipts, provides debt financing of between £125,000 and £5 million to companies, subject to at least equivalent funding from private investors.
The government acquired stakes in many other companies through the fund. As of this March, 337 convertible loans that had been granted to companies across the country also turned into shares after raising more funds.
Asked about the investment in K KITTEN on Tuesday (28), a British Business Bank spokesperson said that “applications that met all eligibility criteria received investment”.
“The Future Fund used a set of standard terms with published eligibility criteria,” the representative added in a statement. “The process provided a clear and efficient way to make funding available as widely and quickly as possible without the need for lengthy negotiations.”
Kittten did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
After the initial investment in 2020, Sayle joked that he “never anticipated having Boris as a silent shareholder”, referring to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Source: CNN Brasil