Guardian Angel, a Northern-based ‘death tech’ start-up, has closed its pre-seed round raising £492,000.
Guardian Angel is a free online platform that aims to simplify the bereavement process by connecting families and friends with funeral directors.
Alongside the funding, the firm has brought two former Co-op executives onto its strategy team.
Founded in 2017 by Sam Grice, the business was started following the unexpected death of his mother in a road accident.
The lack of digital efficiency in the industry became evident as Grice and his family struggled to coordinate the tasks and sudden influx of communications.
The secure platform aims to reduce the stress in the immediate aftermath of a loved one’s death by enabling you to coordinate support from family and friends.
There is a ‘key times’ function which informs people when they can visit and when you and your family would like to be alone, and its ‘to-do list’ allows you to manage all tasks and ask friends for help.
Sam Grice, Guardian Angel founder said: “The support we received from well-meaning family and friends after mum’s accident was amazing.
“However, managing that support together with organising a funeral and wake, something I had never done before, proved immensely difficult during one of the most stressful periods of my life.
“And I’m not alone. Most of us have or will experience the death of a loved one and face the same issues that I did.
“The funeral sector has been slow to modernise and digitise its services but we are talking to funeral directors on a daily basis about the benefits of creating a Guardian Angel support hub for their clients, as we believe technology can really help in the bereavement process.”
Guardian Angel aims to use this investment to improve its current digital platform and to develop a tool to make the process of planning for the inevitable easier.
As part of the raise, two members of the NorthInvest Angel network, Rod Bulmer and Alistair Asher, agreed to come on board as financial and as strategic advisors and between them, they have contributed a six-figure investment.
Professor Adam Beaumont, founder of NorthInvest added: “NorthInvest has attracted investment to several scalable platforms which address challenges or opportunities on a global scale.
“Guardian Angel is one of such platforms and we’ll watch with interest – I believe their empathic approach to helping deal with difficult issues in an efficient way can not only be a successful start-up but make a positive impact to many.”
Guardian Angel has also attracted ex-Goldman Sachs MD Andrew Weisz who will act as financial director going forward.