About

Lisa joined the Group in 2011 as a member of the Investment Team focused on the North West Fund for Mezzanine and Venture Capital aimed at start-up and early-stage businesses where she was responsible for new investments and portfolio businesses. Today, Lisa heads up our portfolio resourcing functions and leads the NED networks.

Previous experience

Before joining the Group, Lisa worked for the business growth services team Grant Thornton, where she was responsible for a number of finance readiness and business support programmes, particularly in the healthcare and life science sectors. Lisa has a science and technology background, with a BSc (Hons) in Human Bioscience from Sheffield Hallam University.

lisa.ward@mercia.co.uk

Biography

Mark has extensive private investment and scale-up experience. Since co-founding Mercia he has led the sales of Hybrid Systems (to Myotec) to create PsiOxus Therapeutics Ltd, Warwick Effect Polymers Ltd (to Polytherics Ltd) to create Abzena plc and led the founding investment in Allinea Software Ltd (sold to ARM). Prior to Mercia, Mark played a leading role within Oxford University Innovation (“OUI”, the technology transfer operation of the University of Oxford), spinning out BioAnalab (sold to Millipore), Oxford Immunotec (listed on NASDAQ), Oxitec (sold to Intrexon) and Natural Motion (sold to Zynga).

Following his time at OUI Mark was the vice president corporate development at Oxxon Therapeutics Inc, prior to its sale to Oxford BioMedica plc. He gained his PhD jointly between the University of Oxford and the University of London (King’s College). Mark also has an MBA from the University of Warwick, is a Sainsbury Management Fellow for Life Sciences and was awarded the 2015 EY Entrepreneur of the Year(regional and national).

Biography

Martin has significant public markets and business experience. He is a KPMG qualified chartered accountant with more than 20 years’ experience as chief financial officer of listed, private equity-backed and privately owned technology-led businesses. Martin joined the main market listed Forward Group PLC in 1993 and was group financial director from 1995 until its sale for £129.0million in 1997. In 1999, as deputy chief executive of Symonds plc, Martin led the public to private of this main market listed technology group, backed by NatWest Equity Partners. The group was successfully restructured and sold within 12 months to a NASDAQ listed US electronics group, whereupon he became a vice president, working frequently in Silicon Valley.

He was chief executive of the private equity business Forward Group plc from 2003 to 2005 and since then has been group finance and IT director of the large international food processing group Boparan Holdings Ltd and a private equity backed building services business. Martin has an honours degree in business from Aston University.

 

 

About

Michelle joined the Group in September 2017 and heads up our People & Talent Team. She is responsible for creating and driving forward our people strategy, engagement and processes as Mercia continues to evolve.

Previous experience

Michelle’s generalist HR career spans 25 years, having spent most of these years working in the technology sector, for entrepreneurial businesses with ambitious growth plans. Michelle is driven by delivering the best possible employee experience.

Michelle.Heaselgrave@mercia.co.uk

About

Dr Paul Mattick heads the Sales and Investor Relations team for the Mercia EIS Funds. He works directly with private clients and advisers to build the EIS fund raising capacity of Mercia. Paul oversees the administration and development of the EIS funds, and ensures that investors receive a high level of service, much of which is delivered through Mercia’s award-winning Investor Centre.

Previous experience

Paul has a variety of experience in early-stage businesses (including being a founder), and formerly worked at another leading EIS fund manager, where he built close relationships with top tier clients, and significantly grew both fund and single company assets under management. Paul has a PhD and Post-Doctorate from the University of Oxford and a 1st Class Bachelor of Science from the University of Leeds.

paul.mattick@mercia.co.uk

About

Peter joined the Group in 2015 as Head of Life Sciences & Biosciences, with over 20 years’ experience in this sector, and became Chief Operating Officer in 2018. He is responsible for a number of the life science portfolio investments including Locate Bio, Concepta plc, Sense Biodetection and Axis Spine Technologies and in July 2020 he oversaw the successful exit of The Native Antigen Company.

Peter is the champion of several of our key initiatives and working groups as well as heading up the VCT and EIS divisions of Mercia and is a member of the Mercia Knowledge Committee

Previous experience

Peter has been involved with a number of turnarounds and exits within the sector, including the acquisition of Surgicraft’s loss-making business where, as managing director, sales quadrupled within three years and the business was subsequently sold to a private equity backed business and Diagnostic World, a fast-growing diagnostic provider to the NHS.

peter.dines@mercia.co.uk

About

Rebecca joined the Group in June 2018 and is based at our office in Henley-in-Arden. Rebecca plays a key supporting role in our People & Talent team.

Previous experience

Rebecca has over 15 years of HR and recruitment experience in the professional services sector, including one of the ‘big four’ accounting firms. Rebecca has also worked across the information technology services and engineering sectors; her most recent role was working for a company supporting manufacturing based in the West Midlands. This was a generalist human resources role, with a particular emphasis on recruitment and onboarding.

rebecca.whitfield@mercia.co.uk

About

Russell joined the Group in 2017. His role is to help financial advisers develop their businesses and provide technical support on tax-efficient investing for their clients. This often involves working closely with other professionals such as accountants and solicitors across the country.

Previous experience

Russell has a wealth of experience in tax-efficient investing and helping advisers across the UK develop their business. He is an active member of the Personal Finance Society and has presented at a number of tier training sessions. He formerly helped establish Kuber Ventures, the first alternative investment platform, as business development director. He has also set up and ran his own business promoting tax-efficient investments to independent advisers and professional connections. Russell has worked in a number of roles over his considerable career for organisations such as Prudential, Old Mutual and Zurich both overseas and in the UK.

 

russell.fryer@mercia.co.uk

About

Sandy joined the Mercia in 2017, originally in the University Team focusing on the North of England she has now moved to the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) team with responsibility for the East Midlands; this fund focuses on proof of concept and early stage opportunities.

Previous experience

Sandy has hands-on experience of early-stage companies having founded and worked as CEO for a university spinout for eight years. She also has experience of acting as a consultant on spinout formation in the HE sector as well as most recently managing the spinout portfolio at the University of Leicester. In addition, Sandy has acted as both director and observer on a number of early-stage company boards, and holds the Certificate in Company Direction from the Institute of Directors. She has a technical background with a PhD in Chemistry, and started her career in corporate research and development.

sandy.reid@mercia.co.uk

About

Sarah joined the Group as Head of Legal in October 2018 and was promoted to Group General Counsel & Company Secretary in July 2020. She is responsible for providing legal advice across the Group and the portfolio, and managing the Group’s relationship with external legal advisors as well as performing the role of Company Secretary. Sarah is based at the Henley-in-Arden office.

Previous experience

Sarah qualified as a corporate solicitor in 2007 and has extensive experience in all aspects of corporate transactional and advisory legal work. In her previous role at Shoosmiths LLP, she specialised in mergers and acquisitions, venture and growth capital transactions, MBOs, MBIs, and corporate governance advice.

sarah.thawley@mercia.co.uk