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Growth Capital VCT

Growth Capital VCT

The 2020/2021 offer for Subscription in the B Share Class is now open for investment with capacity available.


What is the offer?

Seneca Growth Capital VCT Plc is a generalist VCT aiming to generate returns from a diverse portfolio of both private and AIM quoted growth capital investments. These investment returns are intended to provide Investors with an attractive income stream and also capital growth over the longer term. The VCT is managed by Seneca Partners Limited.

The current offer for Subscription aims to raise up to £10 million of B Shares with an over-allotment facility of up to a further £10 million.

Click here to download our VCT “Insight for Investors” brochure.


  • New VCT offering launched in 2018
  • Raised £6.5 million to date ; five qualifying investments completed
  • Paid total dividend of 3p per share in 2019. (Dividends are variable and not guaranteed)
  • Seneca Partners Ltd is an experienced growth capital investor, now managing more than £85 million of VCT and EIS funds on behalf of investors
  • Choose between 2019/20 and/or 2020/21 tax years
  • Minimum investment £5,000
  • VCT Reviewed by Allenbridge (rated 84) and MICAP

Please note that the information on this website is for experienced investors. Seneca Partners Ltd does not offer financial or taxation advice. If you are unsure whether an investment of this type is suitable, please seek advice from your financial adviser. Investments are for the long term. They are high risk and illiquid and can fall as well as rise in value, so you could get back less than you invest.

The Manager

The VCT is managed by Seneca Partners Limited. In 2018 it took over the management of Hygea vct plc, renamed it, and launched a new, separate B share class.

Although relatively new to the VCT market, Seneca Partners is an experienced growth capital investor. It has raised and deployed more than £85 million of EIS and VCT capital into more than 40 SME companies through over 80 funding rounds since 2012 (figures to 31 December 2019).

The Seneca Growth Capital VCT is managed by the same team behind the EIS funds, including shareholder directors of Seneca Partners Ltd – Richard Manley, Ian Currie, and Tim Murphy. All three are SME specialists by background. Their previous experience includes KPMG, NM Rothschild, Cenkos Fund Managers, Altium, Apax, RBS, Deloitte and HBOS.

Directors of Seneca Partners Ltd and key members of the management team in the wider group of Seneca branded companies invested more than £200,000 in the 2018 offer and are investing £100,000 in the current offer.

Investment Strategy

The VCT follows the same generalist investment strategy the manager has been applying to its EIS Portfolio Service. The VCT has benefitted and is expected to continue to benefit from the same deal flow, investment process and co-investment opportunities that come from Seneca’s EIS activity.

Seneca believes this allows the VCT to participate in a higher number of investments of a larger scale into more established businesses than otherwise possible for a VCT of its size.

Seneca seeks well managed businesses with strong leadership teams that can demonstrate established and proven concepts in addition to growth potential. Businesses may be unquoted or AIM listed.

Seneca’s record of Growth capital exits in it’s EIS Portfolio Service averages 2.21x before fees from 12 investment rounds. By way of example, an investment subscription of £100,000 across 12 exited companies (which includes 3 business failures) would have resulted in an overall return (net of all costs-excluding any tax reliefs) of £184,447.

Past performance is not a guide to future returns

Utilising a well established footprint in the regions outside London and South East, Seneca have 12 investment sector diverse opportunities in various stages of Due Diligence in a mix of AIM and private limited companies and a healthy pipeline of further opportunities through 2020.

Existing Portfolio

The VCT raised £6.5 million under the first B Share offer. Of this, the VCT has already invested into five investee companies, co-investing with Seneca’s EIS funds in all of these initial deals. Four of the companies are unquoted and one is AIM listed. These include:

SilkFred Ltd (unquoted)

SilkFred Ltd is a fast-growing fashion e-commerce platform. It was created in 2012 to help independent fashion brands promote and sell online. It acts as a central marketing and sales platform, charging commission in exchange for these services, so it takes minimal inventory/working capital risk on new brands, lines or products.

Today it partners with over 600 independent brands, has over 1 million monthly visitors and 500,000 customers.

SilkFred was the first B Share pool investment – the VCT invested £500k in December 2018. Seneca had previously invested in March 2018 in its EIS and was impressed by the management ability to scale the brand and improve the overall SilkFred offering.

SkinBioTherapeutics Plc (AIM quoted)

SkinBioTherapeutics is a life science company focused on skin health. The Company’s proprietary platform technology, SkinBiotix®, is based upon discoveries made by CEO Dr. Catherine O’Neill and Professor Andrew McBain at The University of Manchester.

SkinBioTherapeutics targets three specific skin healthcare sectors; cosmetics, infection control and eczema. In each of these areas. The most advanced programme is focused on the application of the Skinbiotix® platform in managing sensitive skin in the cosmetics industry.

Seneca initially invested in SkinBioTherapeutics when it was admitted to AIM in April 2017. The VCT invested £720k in February 2019.

Please note that in providing these examples, neither Seneca Partners Ltd or Seneca Growth Capital VCT Plc is suggesting or recommending that you should buy or sell shares in the companies mentioned. As is to be expected with all growth capital businesses, investments can fail or be subject to sudden falls in value.

Target Returns

The manager has not specified a dividend target. It aims to pay regular dividends as well as special dividends where significant realisations occur from the sale of its portfolio assets.

That said, the VCT has existing distributable reserves which may be used to facilitate the payment of dividends on the B Share class .The VCT declared a maiden B Share interim dividend of 1.5p per B Share in March 2019 and a further 1.5p per share in December 2019.

Please note, dividends are variable and not guaranteed.


VCTs are high-risk so should only form part of a balanced portfolio and you should not invest money you cannot afford to lose. They also tend to be illiquid and hard to sell and value. Before you invest, please carefully read Prospectus carefully paying particular attention to the risks detailed on pages 14 and 15.

Tax rules can change and benefits depend on circumstances.

Fees and Charges

  • 2.0%* initial fee (following advice from a financial adviser)
  • 5.5% initial fee (without advice from a financial adviser)
  • 2.0% p.a. + VAT annual management fee
  • 3.0% p.a. cost cap (including annual management charge)
  • 20% + VAT performance fee (see Prospectus for further details)

* Initial fee is currently reduced for new investments into the VCT following advice from a financial adviser.


Unless the offer is fully subscribed beforehand, the following deadlines apply:

  • Deadline for applications in 2019/20 tax year: 3 April 2020 (5.00 p.m.)
  • Deadline for applications in 2020/21 tax year: 9 July 2020 (5.00 p.m.)


How do I invest?

Firstly, we would ask you to read the Prospectus  and the appropriate Key Information Document (see below) to provide you with further information about the risks involved and details about this offer.

Key Information Document (where financial advice has been given)

Key Information Document (where no financial advice has been given)

Secondly, if you are happy to continue please download and complete the Application Form

To access the VCT’s website, please click here.

Important Information

You should only rely on the information provided in the Prospectus and relevant Key Information Document when deciding whether to make an investment.

The investments we offer are high risk in nature and therefore not suitable for everyone; please see our Target Market