HACE Secures £450,000 in Pre-Seed Funding to Combat Child Labour with Tech



HACE: Data Changing Child Labour, a Tech for Good startup dedicated to leveraging technology to eradicate child labour in global supply chains, has successfully raised £450,000 in its pre-seed funding round, surpassing its initial target by 20%.

Led by Manchester Angels, the funding round saw participation from GC Angels, Ada Ventures, Found Capital, and individual angel investors, totaling an oversubscription of £75,000 despite the challenging funding environment in 2023.

The capital infusion will primarily be used to finalize the development of HACE’s flagship product, the Child Labour Index. This innovative tool empowers asset managers, wealth managers, and institutional investors to identify and address child labour risks within their portfolio companies. Using AI technology, the Child Labour Index generates three distinct risk scores, enabling proactive engagement with businesses to drive positive change.

Additionally, the funding will support ongoing Proof-of-Concept feedback and Pilot phases with select asset and wealth managers, as well as the advancement of HACE’s Stewardship Toolkit. The Toolkit, designed to facilitate investor engagement on child labour risks, is being developed and validated by expert academics and practitioners.

Furthermore, HACE plans to invest in the growth of its Independent Business Advisory Board and continue research on child labour as a business and investment risk.

Eleanor Harry, CEO of HACE, expressed gratitude for the support received, emphasizing the significance of oversubscribing the funding round amid economic challenges. She highlighted the critical role of technology in addressing the global issue of child labour sustainably.

In addition to the funding, HACE has formed a Joint Development and Technological Partnership with software provider Equal Experts and announced a new board of directors, chaired by Eric Solomons. The board comprises industry experts Paul Inella and John Freeman.

With the appointment of Chris Turpin as a Business Partner, leveraging his extensive experience in the financial services industry, HACE aims to foster enhanced engagement between investors and companies to eradicate child labour from corporate supply chains.

Founded in 2020, HACE previously received grant funding from the Greater Manchester AI Foundry and the University of Cambridge. The company’s mission aligns with addressing the growing and alarming issue of child labour globally, leveraging data and technology to drive meaningful change in human rights and ESG practices.

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