Biography

Jonathan brings extensive experience in the technology sector, originally in both finance director and chief executive roles and latterly in investing in and helping to scale up technology ventures. Having qualified as a chartered accountant at PwC, Jonathan gained significant executive experience, firstly in senior finance positions at Convergys Corporation (NYSE – CVG), Geneva Technology Ltd, Thomas Cook Retail Ltd and Semitool Inc. He then became CEO at Datanomic Ltd, where he oversaw a twenty-fold increase in the company’s global customer base and compound revenue growth of 105% over a four-year period, before being purchased byOracle Inc (NYSE – ORCL) in 2011. Since leaving Oracle Inc in 2012, Jonathan has founded his own early-stage technology investment vehicle, Thorium Technology Investors, and currently sits on the boards of
a number of young technology businesses.

Jonathan has a degree in zoology with marine zoology from the University of Wales, Bangor and a PhD in cell proliferation from the University of East Anglia. Jonathan has considerable venture and private equity investing experience, both as a CFO and CEO of private equity-backed businesses that have successfully exited, and also as the founder
of a technology focused venture angel investor group.

Biography

Julian joined Mercia through the 2016 acquisition of Enterprise Ventures, which he joined in 2004 and was head of technology investments at the time of its acquisition. He has over 20 years of venture capital experience, including the successful listings of companies such as Blue Prism Group plc and OptiBiotix Health plc. Through the subsequent sell down of its holding in Blue Prism, Mercia’s RisingStars Growth Fund realised c£95m, 105x the cost of its investment. Julian leads the equity investment team as well as managing the pipeline of Mercia’s direct investments.

Alongside his wide experience of investing across many sectors,  Julian played a leading role in securing the managed funds contracts awarded by the British Business Bank and North East Fund Ltd and has been Mercia’s Chief Investment Officer since April 2018. Julian has a geology with chemistry degree from the University of Southampton and qualified as a chartered accountant with accountants Smith & Williamson. He is also responsible for investments in nDreams and Soccer Manager.

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).

In addition to this CEO role Mark is also responsible for the following investments – OXGENE, Psioxus and Medherant.

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.

 

 

Biography

Ray is an entrepreneur with an established track record of shareholder value creation. Until 1997, Ray was executive chairman and the principal shareholder in Forward Group PLC, which he grew from a start-up company in 1978 to become one of Europe’s leading high-technology printed circuit board manufacturers, listed on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. In 1997 Forward Group accepted a £129.0million offer from PCB Investments plc, a company established by Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst. Subsequently, Ray diversified  his interests in a number of areas, which included setting up the Forward Innovation Fund, a trust focused on investing in university spinouts and other technology-led start-ups.Ray was  appointed Non-executive Chair at the time of the Group’s IPO and having steered Mercia Asset Management through its first 18 months as a  listed company, moved to a non-executive position in May 2016.

Ray has deep venture experience across several decades and sectors, as both a founder of and investor in many start-up businesses which have resulted in successful cash exits.

Biography

Caroline is a serial entrepreneur who previously co-founded recruitment and innovation consultancy FreshMinds, with clients including Jaguar Land Rover, Vodafone and Google. She remains involved with FreshMinds as non-executive chair and is CEO of Fluidly which she founded in 2016, a venture-backed SaaS business in the fintech space. Caroline was previously an independent panel member of the £2.7billion Regional Growth Fund and served as one of Prime Minister David Cameron’s Business Ambassadors representing the Professional and Business Services sectors.

Caroline was awarded an OBE in the 2016 Birthday Honours’ list for services to business and charity. She has an MEng in engineering, economics and management from Oxford University. Caroline is a serial start-up entrepreneur and is highly effective in bringing her current venture capital investee insights to Mercia’s Board and Strategy meetings.

 

Biography

Ian is a qualified solicitor who retired as managing partner of international law firm Wragge & Co in 2014 after eight years in post. Prior to managing the business, Ian was a corporate partner at the firm for 14 years, acting for a number of substantial public and private companies and private equity houses on a wide range of transactions. Ian is currently a director and chair of Commonwealth Games England, a director of the Board of the Organising Committee of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and the Host city representative on the Commonwealth Games Federation Executive Board. He is also a non-executive director of the global waste management group TRRG Holdings Ltd and a non-executive director of the AIM listed Arena Events Group plc. Ian has an MA in law from Cambridge University and his appointment as Mercia’s Senior Independent Director in January 2017 recognised the continuing development and scale of the Group. He becme Non-executive Chair in July 2019.

Ian has over 25 years’ experience advising businesses of all types and sizes on their growth activities, as well as deep corporate governance experience, both as a legal adviser to listed  businesses and as a current and previous non-executive board member of leading sports and other multinational organisations.