British Design Fund 3

British Design Fund 3

Investing in UK based product design and manufacturing companies.


What is the aim of this fund?

"Ultimately, the Fund’s mission is to help create, invest and grow design-led product companies."

Damon Bonser, Twenty20 Mentoring Limited

The British Design Fund 3 leverages the UK’s position as one of the preeminent design centres in Europe along with the lack of dedicated VC/seed investors in this sector in order to invest in innovative early-stage design-led businesses. The Fund works with extraordinary entrepreneurs and their teams to support the best cultures, work ethics, and ultimately, help create thriving stand-out companies.

The team will assist the Investee Companies to build products that people want and need. In doing this, the Fund will invest in some of the UK’s potentially most exciting design companies, helping them grow and taking them to the next level of their development.


Damon Bonser-1Key Individuals - Damon Bonser is a serial entrepreneur with over 15 years’ experience of building and running product design and manufacturing businesses. The CEO, investor and mentor started out in business when he was in his mid-20s, after finishing university. Fast forward to October 2019 and the BDF has invested just under £1m into six companies, with the aim of expanding their portfolio over the coming years.

Damon is supported by a team of experienced investment professionals with backgrounds in venture capital, private equity and entrepreneurship.


At a glance

Investment goal


Relative risk

High / Adventurous. Capital at Risk

Risk 7

Invests in

UK product design



Target Return

3x return after six years

Not a reliable indicator of future income.



Open to new investors. Fund close date 31 March 2021. The minimum investment is  £10,000.

Fund Details

Investment Strategy

View our Legal Policy

The focus of the Fund is to invest in UK based early-stage companies that seek to lead the market in provision of innovative product design and manufacturing. The Fund seeks to invest at least £100,000 in each investee company in return for circa 10% to 20% equity, across at least five companies.

Due to lack of investment options available to companies in the innovative product design and manufacturing sector, the Fund will seek to select the most attractive opportunities and pre-money valuations. The Fund will gain access to unique deal flow and will seek to de-risk investments by validating that there is demand for the product.

Twenty20 Mentoring Limited believe that product businesses are attractive to investors due to:

➢ Global potential;
➢ Validated sales distribution and licensing channels;
➢ Product/brand extension opportunities; and
➢ Tangible metrics that allow clear performance evaluation.

Sapphire with the research assistance of Twenty20 Mentoring Limited will seek to identify potential investee companies, which it believes will have the following key criteria:

➢ A defined pragmatic business plan with sales, profit and loss, and cash flow forecasts;

➢ A well-designed product that solves a clearly defined problem or meets a clearly defined need;

➢ A working prototype and indication of interest from key target client(s);

➢ Defensible intellectual property;

➢ Revenue flow or a qualified sales pipeline;

➢ Winning chemistry within the founding team; and

➢ Deep understanding of the relevant marketplace and a clear competitive difference.

Example Prior Investments

Kokoon Headphones

Kokoon’s, Bluetooth, noise-cancelling headphones which uses sensors and audio within a feedback loop to monitor, protect, and induce sleep.

Lutra Marine

Lutra Marine supply precision, environmentally friendly dredging equipment to the marine and other sectors

Funded by the British Design Fund

KTech Manufacturing Limited

kTech manufacturing is an idea for a new range of products, using the 221 series of connectors from Wago.


Investor Charges

Full initial charge 0%
Annual management charge 0%
Administration charge 0%
Performance fee 20/25%

On any increase in value on an individual investment in an investee company up to £5 above a hurdle rate of £1.05 (for every £1 invested) a performance fee will be charged of 20% on the amount of the increase over and above £1.05 up to £5. A performance fee will be charged of 25% on the amount of the increase over and above £5.

Investee Company Charge

Initial charge 5%
Annual management charge 2-4%

An annual charge is payable to the Investment Manager by each investee company of between 2% to 4% of the amounts invested in the investee company, determined by the level of support required by the investee company.

Please check the fees section of the Information Memorandum for full details. All fees and charges are stated exclusive of VAT, which may be applicable in some cases. Any fees and charges payable by the investee companies or the underlying businesses do not directly come out of your investment. However, they will effectively reduce the returns generated by investee companies and therefore directly impact your investment.

British Design Fund 2



If you have any questions regarding the British Design Fund 3 or the application form - please feel free to contact us.

Important Information

Eligible Investors

View our Privacy Policy

To invest, you must be an eligible investor. To be an eligible investor, you must be qualifying as one or more of the following:

Risk Warning

Important information for private investors – Reliance on the information provided here to engage in any investment activity may expose an individual to a significant risk of losing all of the property or other assets invested. Your attention is drawn to the risk section contained within the Information Memorandum. Investments are typically in unquoted shares in small companies, the value of which can be volatile and are often difficult to sell. Nothing on this website constitutes investment, tax, financial, legal, regulatory, or other advice by Sapphire Capital Partners LLP.

The value of an investment may go down as well as up, and you may not get back the full amount invested, and you may therefore lose some or all of your investment.

If you are unsure of the suitability of any investment for your circumstances, please contact your independent financial advisor or other professional advisor authorised under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA) who specialises in advising on investments of this type. Tax reliefs depend on individual circumstances. There is no guarantee however that the tax reliefs (such as EIS reliefs, CGT reliefs or IHT relief) will be available on any investment made or that if it is initially available, it will not be subsequently withdrawn. Any references to tax laws or rates are based on current legislation, all of which are subject to change and are provided as a guide only. Prospective investors are advised to take their own investment and taxation advice and should consult their own professional advisors on the implications of investing.

Investments made in investee companies via funds managed by Sapphire Capital Partners LLP are not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). For more details, please contact us or refer to their website:

Past performance is not a guide to future returns. 


View the Twenty20 Mentoring Limited website.