A boat chartering marketplace (the first of its kind in the UK) which allows boat owners to list their boats “Airbnb-style” for private charter, joins the envied alumni of UK-based sharing economy companies (including Borrow My Doggy, Ridelink and JustPark) that have overfunded while crowdfunding; Borrow A Boat hit 200% of its £200,000 target with several days left of the round, finally closing with 238%. As well as presenting a specialised solution to a gap in peer to peer rentals, the nature of Borrow A Boat is true to the sharing economy philosophy; it opens up a hobby and experience to millions that previously couldn’t afford boating, or didn’t have the required knowledge.
Their crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube, which closed on 4th December, vastly exceeded expectations, reaching 200% of their target figure with several days to go. Originally intending to reach £200,000, when the campaign closed their total was £477,550. And while riding the wave of crowdfunding publicity, the company took its largest booking ever.
Matt Ovenden, CEO of Borrow A Boat plans to use the funds raised to build on the existing momentum through increased marketing, as well as further development of the web platform. He had this to say of the campaign’s success; “The team and I are blown away by the reaction to the business from our crowdfunders! We could never have predicted such an amazing result. You always have faith in your business, but this just confirms even more for us that this is a service and platform that people really want and need. And we’re now so excited for 2018 and taking Borrow A Boat forward to the next level.”
With over 13,000 boats, and everything from a RIB to huge luxury yachts on offer globally, the team is setting out to bring more choice, variety and better value to the boat charter market than ever before, while at the same time helping boat owners offset the costs of boat ownership. According to Borrow A Boat, boat-owners typically leave their boats idle for the majority of the year due to practical time limitations on using them. This leaves marinas across the world full of expensive, much loved, but under-utilised assets.
Although other British peer-to-peer companies have achieved great success, Borrow A Boat looks to be the first to bring a boating-specific platform to the UK, and from there, reach global proportions. This is partly due to the world-wide nature of their industry, and, according to Matt, partly due to the support they received from crowd-funding-focussed marketing agency TribeFirst.