CircleUp Announces First Investment on Equity Crowdfunding Platform

High Growth Consumer Goods Company Episencial Closes $500K Round

SAN FRANCISCO, June 21, 2012 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- CircleUp (, the leading equity crowdfunding site in the US, today announced the successful financing of Episencial, the producer of all natural, baby-safe skin care products.  Through the CircleUp platform, Episencial found new investors from across the country to help close a $500,000 investment round in less than a month on the platform.


Choosing Crowdfunding Over Traditional Options

Los Angeles-based Episencial has grown more than 100 percent over the past three years, as the company developed a product offering that focuses on clinically-proven, natural skin care for babies and kids.  The company decided to raise growth capital to help meet rising customer demand, and choose CircleUp over traditional funding sources to meet their financing goals.

"We chose CircleUp to complete our investment round because of their expertise in the consumer space, and the quality of the investors on the network," said Kim Walls, CEO of Episencial. "It was a great experience. We raised the capital quickly from a broad network of value-add investors."

Episencial plans to use the growth capital provided through CircleUp to expand sales through additional marketing and operational spending.  According to the Kauffman Foundation, companies less than five years old, like Episencial, account for all net new job growth in the US.  With bank lending still largely absent for these firms, CircleUp is quickly filling the void as a vital source of growth capital for this important segment of the US economy.

A New Source of Deal Flow for Investors

The new investors selected Episencial from a curated list of high-growth companies featured on the platform.  Less than 2% of companies that apply to CircleUp are accepted.  Episencial investor Steven Vafier notes, "CircleUp offers exposure to exciting growth companies and fantastic entrepreneurs. The investing process was seamless and the forum offers direct correspondence with the management team."

"CircleUp exists to help exceptional consumer brands find the capital they need to grow from our private network of strategic investors," said Ryan Caldbeck, CEO and co-founder of CircleUp. "Our goal is to make the process more efficient for both investors and companies. We are proud to work with outstanding small businesses like Episencial, which are poised for breakout growth." 

About CircleUp

CircleUp ( is an equity based investment platform that connects individual investors with growing private companies. CircleUp features a curated list of national high-growth U.S. small consumer brands. All companies have a tangible product or retail outlet that you can touch, taste, use, or visit. Using tools provided by the platform, investors review companies of interest, ask questions of the management team and complete their investment – all on CircleUp.  

Media Contact:

Rory Eakin CircleUp, 4158271492,

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