Foresight injects GBP1.25 million of growth capital into luxury glamping pod holiday company, FURTHER.SPACE
Foresight Group, a listed infrastructure and private equity investment manager, has made a GBP1.25 million growth capital investment under the Scottish Growth Scheme into FURTHER.SPACE Limited, a luxury glamping pod holiday company, providing outdoor premium short breaks in Scotland and Ireland.
The company is well placed to benefit from the growth in staycations with Covid-19 likely impacting international tourism for some time to come and more broadly to serve a growing segment of consumers concerned about the carbon footprint of air travel.
FURTHER.SPACE was founded in 2019 and operates luxury pod accommodation across Scotland and Ireland. It manufactures high-quality, design-led pod accommodation installed in hand-picked partner locations, available through direct marketing and a booking platform that is managed by FURTHER.SPACE.
With the growing trend of eco-tourism and increasing demand for authentic countryside experiences, FURTHER.SPACE saw an opportunity to create a product that helps independent landowners to diversify their revenue streams through a low-cost partnership model.
FURTHER.SPACE enables local landowners to start an independent micro-tourism business, driving economic development in regional areas, with each pod estimated to add cGBP40,000 per annum of tourism spend into the local economy. FURTHER.SPACE pods are rated highly across holiday rental platforms and it was recently included in the Irish Independent Fab 50 — Ireland’s Best Places to Stay in 2021.
To date, FURTHER.SPACE has deployed 50 pods across 10 sites. There are plans to grow this significantly following the appointment of two Scottish based business development managers, with the company committing to installing over 100 pods in Scotland over the next five years. FURTHER.SPACE has a strong pipeline of new potential landowner venues and is targeting an ambitious deployment schedule to meet this demand.
FURTHER.SPACE is partnering with smaller-scale local landowners that are bringing tourists to locations across Scotland and Ireland which previously had limited shares of the tourism market. As well as the pods, the company provides branding, marketing, an online booking system, customer support, planning and architectural support and maintenance. Each pod is a self-contained unit with a full-size bathroom, kitchenette and sleeping space for a family of four, furnished to ensure residents are self-sufficient for the duration of their stay. Following Covid-19, the annual UK tourism market is estimated to be worth GBP8.25 billion, while the glamping market has been growing ahead of the overall UK market.
Foresight’s investment supports an already strong senior management team in scaling the business through additional hires in the business development team and increasing manufacturing of pods. Foresight is committed to supporting SMEs that have a sustainable social or environmental impact. FURTHER.SPACE’s pods have a considerably smaller environmental footprint compared to hotels and will drive additional external investment in rural areas that would otherwise struggle to attract it.
Commenting on the investment, Peter Farquharson, CEO of FURTHER.SPACE, says: “I am delighted to have partnered with Foresight to scale up our business, especially in the Scottish market. This is a very exciting time for us as we move forward at pace, in a flourishing glamping market. I look forward to working with Foresight to continue to successfully grow the business in the future.”
Graeme Mckinstry, Investment Manager at Foresight, adds: “We are delighted to support Peter, David and the wider team at FURTHER.SPACE as they progress with new site roll-outs. The team has built a market leading brand that provides its customer base with a highly differentiated and luxurious staycation experience, set in some stunning scenic destinations in the UK. We have been impressed with the pace of growth to date and are delighted to partner with the company for its next phase of expansion.”