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Wuva set to revolutionise sustainable consumption with British Business Bank Start Up Loan

Altrincham-based Wuva, a pioneering platform committed to sustainable subscription services, has secured £50,000 of finance from the British Business Bank through Virgin Startup. The investment catapults Wuva into a new phase of expansion, poised to reshape the landscape of conscious consumerism.

Founded in June 2023 by Matthew Ridd and James Hole, Wuva emerged from a shared passion for creating sustainable and innovative solutions. Matthew’s background within Research and Development in manufacturing organisations, coupled with James’ first-hand experience navigating the complexities of sustainable parenting products, laid the foundation for Wuva’s new approach.

box including company brochure and sweets Wuva provides a one-stop destination for sustainable subscription services for bikes, scooters and prams, reducing the need to re-purchase new products throughout a lifetime, whilst taking away the hassle and cost of purchasing the product outright. With the financial injection from the Start Up Loans programme, the business was able to scale its subscription marketplace from just five to 50 subscribers, significantly boosting revenue to £15,000.

The finance also enabled Wuva to create the back end of its subscription platform’s technology infrastructure, invest in new branding, and laser-focus on understanding the needs of existing customers. Subsequently, the business is now stocking leading manufacturers in the UK, including Raleigh, Segway, and Woom.

Wuva has now set its sights on further expansion as it embarks on a new funding round for investment, having joined ReLondon’s circular business community. The programme nurtures a vibrant ecosystem of circular businesses, supporting jobs and resilient economic growth in London. Over the next few years, the business will be looking to expand its platform further to provide subscription services and technology to manufacturers wanting to lead the circular transition.

Matthew Ridd, Co-founder of Wuva said:

“We have seen countless families continually buy new bikes, prams, scooters and car seats to ensure their kids fit them, only for their child to outgrow them just a few months later, and for that bike to be left in the shed for years to come. Not only is this a waste of raw materials but also a waste of money, especially in the cost of living crisis.

James and I thought it could be more sustainable and cost-effective to rent rather than buy, which our friends and family agreed with – thus, Wuva was born!

Through the Start Up Loan programme and with support from Virgin StartUp, we’ve not only gained financial freedom to invest properly in the growth of Wuva, but it has also connected us with invaluable business resources and networks. This support has been transformative. It has propelled us towards our vision of redefining consumption for the next generation where you can rent the functionality of an item. Going forward, consumerism must be sustainable, and Wuva is the first step in achieving that, offering consumers the option to swap and cancel items when they don’t need them.”

Andy Fishburn, Managing Director at Virgin Startup said:

“At Virgin StartUp we are passionate about supporting businesses that make a real difference in the world and Wuva is a great example of this, helping to maximise the lifecycle of big ticket items like bikes, prams and scooters, whilst also helping customers to make their money go further during the cost-of-living crisis. Our team have really enjoyed working alongside Matthew and James to help shape their plans and decide how best to use their loan to scale the business. We have no doubt that Wuva will grow into a thriving success story and we look forward to watching their journey.”

Delyth Edwards, Senior Network Manager for the North West at the British Business Bank, said:

“I am so proud of the impact the Start Up Loans programme is having on businesses in the North West. The contribution Wuva is having on the circular economy is inspiring, and Matthew and James should be proud of themselves. It is businesses like Wuva that demonstrate the importance of regional support, enabling us to unlock the potential of entrepreneurs across the country. I look forward to seeing what Wuva achieves in the future.”

Published on 19 April 2024

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