Digital duo hope to crack the global market

Tees Business Digital Media Pack

Alan Hammersley Tony Abbott3

An ambitious project which could catapult a digital expert into the lucrative e-learning market – and create jobs at the same time – has captured the imagination of local business experts.

Tony Abbott and Alan Hammersley run mylearnadfriend, an e-learning portal for a variety of businesses.

Allowing the creation of bespoke e-learning courses for each individual business.

The pair, who first met back in 1992 before setting up their project 20 years later, have created a unique package which looks set to revolutionise the lucrative worldwide e-learning market.

With over 60 years combined training and learning experience between them, Tony and Alan are now about to move into the booming global e-learning, which is worth an estimated $102bn having doubled over the last two years.

To help them reach the heights, the UK-based directors have set up a Growth Funding package which encourages investors to pledge an equity investment in return for a hefty payout when the business flourishes towards the end of a five-year plan.

The mylearnad friend duo set themselves an ambitious target of £300,000 to raise in a month-long campaign which – if successful – will lay the foundations for them to take their brainchild onto the next level.

And they have been given a huge boost after around £200,000 was pledged by business experts who have seen the potential of their project and were quick to get onboard.

Dad-of-four Tony, 57, from Great Ayton, said: “To get two thirds of our target pledged so quickly into our campaign shows we are not the only ones who see the massive potential of our product.

“What we have put together is like nothing else on the market, we have had £170,000 Proof of Concept funding from North Star to get us to this level. We are now excited by what lies ahead.”

Mylearnadfriend is initially targeting 25 sectors, but has had enquiries in several others across the world.

Alan, a 52-year-old married dad-of-two from Hartburn, appreciates the financial risks which people may have concerns over before making a pledge, but has moved to reassure them that anyone keen on getting involved can have all of their questions answered before they commit.

Speaking from the mylearnadfriend base in Boho, Middlesbrough, he said: “People can pledge whatever they want, some have staked £100 into the Growth Fund page, others have gone to five or six figure sums.

“The larger the stake, the higher the return the individual receives when the business is sold at the end of the five-year plan.

“As an example, if someone put in £500, the percentage they would get at that rate would see them pick up a return of £7,500 if the business sold for £30m.”


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