VCs deliver £1m to Magicalia

Atlas Ventures and Matrix Private Equity were among investors in Magicalia, a network of sports websites.

Magicalia, creator of community websites which focus on sports such as cycling, golf, fishing and sailing, has raised over £1m from a number of investors including Atlas Ventures, Matrix Private Equity and private investors.

The capital will be used to develop existing sites, build the less mature sites and to launch two more sites this spring. Magicalia will also launch a promotional campaign. Its long-term aim is to develop around 20 sites to create a broad based sports and leisure internet publishing business.

Adam Laird and Jeremy Tapp, both formerly of Boston Consulting Group, formed Magicalia in 1999. Their websites provide a channel for news discussion forums backed up by sophisticated electronic tools for communication and marketing. The company has six websites which cover cycling, golf, fishing, surfing/windsurfing, sailing and outdoor sports. All are branded “Magic”.

Matrix Private Equity invested £400,000 in the round. Commenting on the deal, Helen Sinclair, director of Matrix Private Equity, said: “It is an exciting business concept which addresses specialist but large markets in a way which is complementary to existing channels. The company has an enthusiastic and committed management team and we believe that they will create a successful consumer based business.”

Magicalia has over 29,000 registered users and around 1 million page views per month. The company estimates that there are about 9.6 million consumers in its current markets.