RNS Number : 4236L
Vela Technologies PLC
06 September 2019

RNS Reach

6 September 2019

Vela Technologies plc


 Update re. WeShop Limited - Partnership Agreement with BrandShield Limited

The Board of Vela (AIM: VELA) would like to update shareholders on its investment in WeShop Limited ("WeShop"), following receipt of a shareholder update.

Vela has an interest in 71,429 shares in WeShop representing approximately 1.4 per cent. of the fully diluted share capital of WeShop. Vela's holding has a paper value equivalent to £427,145, based on the subscription price of the most recent funding round. In its audited accounts for the year ended 31 March 2018, Vela valued its investment in WeShop at the acquisition cost of £100,000.

The shareholder update from WeShop is copied below:

WeShop Limited


Partnership Agreement with BrandShield Limited




WeShop is pleased to announce an exclusive global partnership agreement with Brandshield Limited, one of the world's leading brand protection and online threat hunting companies.


Exclusive Partnership


The partnership is focussed on the co-development of a global product, merchant and user verification proposition for social commerce, that will protect users from fraudulent online merchants, counterfeit product and fake user accounts, and that will protect brands from counterfeiting and trademark infringement. WeShop intends to integrate the verification proposition into its B2C and B2B offering across over 100m products in the UK alone within various marketplaces, to further enhance its credentials as one of the world's most powerful social commerce platforms.


Background to BrandShield


•     BrandShield provides a global solution from brand protection to online threat hunting, by detecting online threats and taking them down.

•     BrandShield has developed the most advanced AI and big-data based technology that monitors the web for counterfeits, fraud, social phishing, executive impersonation and brand abuse, and automatically analyzes the potential threats based on content, web-metrics and many other data points of the different items.

•     BrandShield analyses over 20 million online items (including websites, marketplaces listings, social media users and posts, mobile apps, paid ads, etc.) every day to detect potential counterfeits, phishing, fraud, impersonation and other types of brand abuse).

•     BrandShield's technology was developed by cyber security and brand protection experts, with experience in the Israeli military in cyber security, intelligence and information security.

•     BrandShield has growing international blue-chip client base including Fortune 500 and FTSE 100 companies. Customers are from a variety of industries including fashion, pharmaceuticals, financial, software, sports, entertainment, consumer products, industrials, online, and more.


Commenting, James Sowerby CEO of WeShop:

"Social commerce is gaining momentum as a major channel of distribution for brands and retailers, and as a preferred way of shopping for consumers - users are 4x more likely to buy something when recommended by a friend. As a result, trust in the merchant and product becomes increasingly important for brands and consumers alike. At the same time online fraud, phishing and online counterfeit sales are growing, and are expanding to almost every industry and companies of all sizes. Both WeShop and BrandShield are committing to solving this critical issue."


Key terms of the partnership:


•     WeShop and BrandShield will work together to evaluate how to most effectively and powerfully utilise BrandShield's technology to enable the protection of:

Social commerce users from fraudulent merchants and counterfeit products

Brands and retailers from brand abuse and trademark infringement on social commerce platforms

Social commerce users and brands from fake users and accounts

•     WeShop and BrandShield will initially pilot the technology across 10 global merchants to (including brands, retailers, and marketplaces) from the WeShop datafeeds with the aim of verifying the merchant and products

•     The partnership will be exclusive to WeShop within the global social commerce market.


Commenting Yoav Keren, CEO of Brandshield:


"The partnership between WeShop and BrandShield is targeted to solve one of the most troubling and fast growing problems in ecommerce - the ability of users buying on online platforms to be safe from counterfeits and fraud. While BrandShield is used by companies worldwide to detect and takedown such activities, users have no tools today to be sure they are buying a genuine product. Our partnership with WeShop is aimed to provide that safe experience to WeShop users".


For further information, please contact: 

Vela Technologies plc

Tel: +44 (0) 7802 262 443

Brent Fitzpatrick, Non-Executive Chairman

Antony Laiker, Director 



Allenby Capital Limited

(Nominated Adviser)

Tel: +44 (0) 20 3328 5656

Nick Athanas/Asha Chotai



Smaller Company Capital Limited


Tel: +44 (0) 20 3651 2910

Rupert Williams/Jeremy Woodgate



About Vela Technologies 

Vela Technologies (AIM: VELA) is an investing company focused on early stage and pre-IPO long term disruptive technology investments. There are currently 12 investments in the portfolio which either have developed ways of utilising technology or developing technology with a view to disrupting the businesses or sector in which they operate. More recently, Vela Technologies has also started to focus on existing listed companies where valuations may offer additional opportunities.


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