What it does
The focus of the management is two-fold: to pursue the monetisation of all of the company’s existing assets, through selected realisations, court-led recoveries of misappropriated assets and substantial debt-recovery processes and to seek technology-related investments, with special regard to interactive media, blockchain and AI sectors.
What it owns
After reviewing its strategy, Clear Leisure has set out to build its future on small stakes of carefully picked projects focused in the technology sector.
New investment vehicle
In August 2020, Clear Leisure said it is planning to launch a new investment initiative focused on high growth technology companies.
The proposed fund will seek to invest in companies that focus on the integration of biological and digital systems. The AIM-listed investment company said in a business update that it hopes the new venture will receive all the necessary approvals and be able to start raising funds within the next six months.
Clear Leisure has 4.53% stake in GeoSim, an Israeli company specialising in 3D city mapping to create digital models of cities, called ‘Digital Twins’.
Whilst the geo-spatial visualisation solutions offered by Google, Microsoft and others feature satellite photographs, street photographs and more recently coarse 3D-models with limited visual quality and interactivity, GeoSim delivers highly detailed, fully interactive city models, which the user can explore from the land or the air.
The scope for the end-product varies across sectors, such as real estate and city planning, homeland security, tourism and entertainment.
Clear Leisure owns 20% in ForCrowd, an Italian equity crowdfunding platform based in Milan dedicated to Italian small/medium companies, launched in December.
The money for London’s and Milan’s ‘Digital Twins’ will be raised through the crowdfunder, meaning the EUR7mln required in total will not come out of shareholders’ pockets.
ForCrowd successfully launched its first equity crowdfunding campaign on May 19 despite disruption from the coronavirus pandemic.
PBV, in which Clear Leisure owns 10% stake, is the only asset not involved within the ‘Digital Twins’ project, as it is focused on the legal space.
It is in fact an Italian company specialising in the acquisition and dissemination of data for the legal services industry, utilising proprietary market intelligence tools and dedicated search software.
As part of the investment agreement, Clear Leisure is an exclusive advisor regarding the potential sale of PBV is entitled to a 4% commission fee.
Sipiem court case and Mediapolis settlement
In 2019, Clear Leisure acquired the EUR10.8mln legal action from Sipiem, which is entitled to receive a third of any funds recovered.
Sipiem, an Italian construction and leisure company, filed a claim against its previous executive management team and internal audit committee for fraud and mismanagement.
The first hearing was completed in February, however, a hearing in a Venice court, originally scheduled for May 6, 2020, has been postponed due to disruption from the coronavirus pandemic.
Meanwhile, the company said in June that it has reached an agreement with the Mediapolis receiver regarding the transfer of Mediapolis auction funds to its subsidiary, Clear Leisure 2017 (CL2017).
The firm said under the settlement with the receiver CL2017 will receive EUR1.66mln, a 14% discount to the auction proceeds of the Mediapolis real estate sale.
In mid-August, Clear Leisure said it has now received EUR1,480,932, the first tranche (89%) of the court-approved settlement.
How it is doing
In the six months to 30 June, loss shrank 70% to EUR477,000, while group net asset value was EUR1.5mln.
Revenue was 25% lower at EUR6,000 and cash in the bank at the end of the period was EUR3,000.
What the boss says: Francesco Gardin, chairman
Commenting on the new investment fund, Gardin said: “We will be investing in only the most innovative companies in the new frontier area of the merger of biological and digital systems. This new frontier industry has been the focus of extensive research work carried out between myself and a former colleague at the Milan University during the last two years, under a formal cooperation agreement with the Medical School of the same university,”
- Targets for new investment fund
- ForCrowd ramp-up
- Sale of PBV Monitor