Quarterly Company Progress Report September 2018

Welcome to the September 2018 Quarterly Company Progress Report. This report covers details reported to shareholders on the progress that companies have made since our last update. At the end of the report there’s also an update covering the latest happenings at Snowball Effect.

The information below is provided by the companies themselves, and participation in the report is at each company's discretion. Many companies have chosen to moderate the level of financial / commercial information included below due to sensitivity, with shareholders typically receiving more fulsome detail on company progress. There are a small number of companies not included in the current report due to the timing of their shareholder reports. Updates from these companies will be added when their reports are made available to shareholders.


Zeffer is the largest independent, dedicated cider producer in New Zealand. The company raised $1.2m on Snowball Effect in June 2017, and has just closed another $2.4m round on Snowball Effect in June 2018.

Highlights for the quarter included:

  • We successfully launched our new range of individual 330ml cans and 1L flagons for the domestic market. These are gaining rapid distribution and the initial feedback to both formats has been very encouraging as we head into Q3 and Q4./li>
  • Growth in domestic grocery sales remained strong, with 73% year on year growth for the quarter. The growth is very encouraging over winter and is a result of our increased distribution and the rate of sale.
  • We won the champion cider award at the New Zealand Brewers Guild Awards in the cider or perry category for our Cidre Demi Sec cider. Cidre Demi Sec also took out a gold medal at the Australian Cider Awards (and was just 0.5 of a point off the overall champion cider).
  • We officially opened our Zeffer Tap Room and Bar at Zeffer. We held a soft opening at the end of September with an official public open day on the 20th of October. This was a fantastic day at Zeffer with over 3,000 people attending and excellent feedback from those who came along.

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Designer Wardrobe

Designer Wardrobe was founded in 2014 by Donielle Brooke as a New Zealand based fashion marketplace and successfully raised $1.7 million through Snowball Effect in May 2017, and a further $912k in June 2018.

  • With continued execution of our Business plan, we have now achieved four consecutive quarters of growth and continue to exceed our forecasts.
  • Revenue for Q3 was ahead of our forecast by 6.6%, and our calendar year to date revenue was above forecast by 4.2% as we continue to drive the growth of our Direct Rental and P2P business.
  • We have seen record listings created and listings sold in Q3, showing excellent synergies between our P2P and Direct Rental lines of business. Our Direct Rental Inventory has also expanded to over 850 dresses in this quarter.
  • Our Gross Profit Margin has increased from 55% to 77% compared with the same period last year.
  • A high P2P sell-through-rate of 35.5% was achieved, a strong signal that our customers are valuing our services.
  • Our user base has now grown to over 149,000 members off the back of our consistent membership acquisition efforts through social media.

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Reefton Distilling Co.

Founded in 2018, Reefton Distilling Co. aim to be a leading producer of premium spirits in Oceania and to produce the best quality distilled spirits using locally sourced ingredients. Reefton Distilling Co. raised $1.35m through Snowball Effect in February 2018.

  • We are extremely pleased to be able to report that we have made significant progress and opened our doors on the 17th of October.
  • Having completed our test runs and the scaling up of our gin recipes in the months prior, our first batches of Little Biddy West Coast Botanical Dry Gin have been produced and are available for purchase from our cellar door and online store as well as at nationwide stockists.
  • All three products in our Little Biddy Gin range sold out within days of release and we have increased production to meet demand. Our first liqueur will be released in early December as well as a premium Vodka under the brand Wild Rain.
  • Our new website has been well received, which is simple, informative and has given us an opportunity to tell a small part of the story behind Reefton Distilling Co. It also hosts our online store.
  • Our distribution partner began rolling our products out to their nation-wide network in early November.
  • We have received a good reception from mainstream media in New Zealand which has resulted in articles published locally on the West Coast, front page on both The West Coast Messenger and The Grey Star, as well as several items included in the NZ Herald (business and travel sections), with a further article in NZ Business and a mention in NZ Today magazine. Both NZ Business and NZ Today will run additional stories in coming months, and we will feature in DrinksBiz industry magazine in December.

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Squirrel Group is made up of Squirrel Mortgages, Squirrel Money, and TenanSee. It is this unique combination of (proprietary) technology working alongside a strong brand and a growing market share of mortgage brokering that puts Squirrel in the right place at the right time to lead market disruption.

Highlights for the quarter included:

  • Mortgage settlement volumes for the September quarter were up 6% on the same period last year largely on the back of solid year on year increases in Auckland property sales in the first four months of the financial year to July.
  • Overall, total revenue for the Mortgages business was up 10% on the prior year for the six months to September.
  • The cash received via trail commissions continued their upward trajectory as expected, up 14% on the previous quarter and 62% on the same quarter last year.
  • Overall, the business is cash-flow positive for the six months to September.
  • Overall total operating expenses for the six months to September were up 5% on the same period last year largely due to an increase in employee related costs and higher legal costs associated with our new product launches.
  • Confidence continues to build within the business as our new product and service offerings gain momentum. We are still working through a number of additional product offerings in the lending space that will further complement our mortgage advisory business.

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Invivo isn’t just a winery; it’s a startup, taking on the world one mouthful at a time. We were founded by a couple of old school friends that liked wine so much they started a winery to make some – whatever it took. Like it says in our ads, our first vintages really were made from “Grapes, time and two maxed out credit cards!” Invivo currently sells in New Zealand and 17 offshore markets. Invivo was the first New Zealand company to raise $2m of equity and has now received more than $4 million from over 687 investors through Snowball Effect and private equity.

  • For the first 6 months of 2018, total sales are already 35% ahead of the same period last year.
  • Export sales are up 42% over the same period last year, and now account for over 86% of total sales.
  • We successfully closed our capital raise in August of this year, with over $4m raised to date from over 687 investors.
  • Our key markets are performing excellently, with Australia’s sales up 88% over last year, driven by the Prosecco launch across 900 Woolworths stores. Sales to distributors in North America are up 33% over last year, and sales in the UK & Ireland are up 24% versus last year.
  • We are incredibly excited about the future as we continue to invest in our global brand, build new product ranges and build the Invivo team.

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UBCO develops, markets and distributes Utility Electric Vehicles (UEV) which have three connected products and services: Portable Power, Accessories and Software.

Highlights for the current financial year include:

  • The business has continued to grow strongly with trailing 12 month revenue climbing from $840k to $2.8m NZD.
  • We have achieved a number of our 2018 milestones, including releasing the 2018 Road Legal bike across NZ, AU and US markets, introducing our first range of production accessories.
  • Dealer development has continued to grow strongly with close to 100 dealers internationally. The US market is now operationally established and growing, with the AU market development well and the NZ market reaching a more mature state with product acceptance and applications broadening.
  • Our sell through rates continue to improve within our existing dealer network, ranging from close to 100% in NZ and 60% in the US.
  • The Ambassador programme established globally is set to launch before the end of the year.
  • We have also continued our product and technology development programmes with the 2019 2x2 Models and the portable power supply on track for release in 2019.
  • UBCO is placing a new capital round that will be used for ongoing growth of the company over the 2018 and 2019 Calendar years. For more information about the offer, you can view the offer preview below.

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SOS is a medically formulated hydration drink mix that’s as effective as an IV drip. SOS raised over $250k through Snowball Effect in January 2016.

Highlights for Q3 2018:

  • We have hired a new COO in the USA. The new SOS hire comes with considerable distribution and growth pedigree in the USA which will help to capitalise on our growth.
  • SOS is aiming for consistent profit over the next four to six months as production and sales increase and investment cash is no longer required.
  • Our sales for Q3 have have risen over 50% over the same period last year.
  • SOS launched 'small tubs’ into the marketplace which have now been accepted into Kroger, with plans in place to launch a watermelon line. SOS now has 15 SKU’s in the USA and 19 SKU's in NZ.
  • We are continuing to make progress in Boots and Wholefoods UK, with more stores set to open in Q4.
  • In the New Zealand market, our new sports RTD has already taken 6% of market share in sports drinks in key accounts.

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Veriphi is a New Zealand company that has worked to develop a highly innovative laser-based analyser to verify intravenous drugs and alert clinicians before administration to prevent medication error in hospitals. Veriphi raised over $700k through Snowball Effect in May 2016 and $240,000 in November 2016, following requests from shareholders to be able to invest more money.

Since the capital raise Veriphi has:

  • As work continues on improving our performance on low concentration drugs, we have begun to look at potential adjacent opportunities with current spare testing capacity. Our focus is to achieve first revenues at the earliest opportunity. Currently we are investigating potential revenue targets.
  • Our first opportunity is pharmacy testing of opiates and oncology drugs. Pharmacy testing of these drugs requires measurement of drugs in very low concentrations. Following improvements to the analyser performance, we are about to conduct preliminary tests on opiates at Auckland City Hospital and are also about to sign a contract with Palmerston North Hospital for an oncology drug trial to commence in February.
  • Our second opportunity is the hospital testing of anaesthetic drugs. Many of these drugs are present in relatively high minimum concentrations, but a commercial application requires medical device approval.
  • Non-medical fluid verification such as fuel testing has also been considered as we have recently conducted preliminary tests on a range of fuels on behalf of a potential public service customer. We are following up with further testing and discussions with the potential customer.
  • Good progress towards a commercial solution continues to be made. We also have 3 new interns working with us over the summer period and we anticipate even faster progress will be made as the new interns join us.

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Snowball Effect

Snowball Effect is an online investment marketplace. Our mission is to simplify investment into high growth Kiwi companies. We’ve been funded by existing shareholders and cashflow to date to support the continued growth and development of the equity capital market for early-mid stage New Zealand growth businesses.

Highlights for the quarter ending September 2018:

  • $3.65 million was raised during the quarter, including portions of a $3.45m private raise for LINK, a portion of the $1m raise for SuiteFiles, and a few other private placements totalling $450k. A total of $43.7m million has been raised to date.
  • Average investment this quarter was $16.7k from around 190 investors. Overall, average investment amount to date is around $7.8k from 3,251 investors.
  • The wholesale investor database has grown to over 1,489 members. Around 649 members have completed their Investor Profile and 382 have indicated an interest in becoming a director or advisor to growth companies.
  • We have released case studies on two of our raises this year, Reefton and ArchiPro. If you are interested in learning more about everything that Snowball Effect does, you can read about it on the Case Study Section.
  • We are hosting our annual Birthday Event on Wednesday the 28th of November. To come along, make sure you RSVP here and feel free to bring a +1: RSVP Page
  • Snowball Effect is looking for a new director to join our energetic and growing team. This role is responsible for working with companies throughout the capital raising process. Further details on the role can be found via the position description.
  • The company has no capital raising plans at this stage.

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