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 is fund manager for the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (“NPIF”), the RisingStars Growth Funds and the Finance Yorkshire Seedcorn Fund. 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.

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

About

Matthew joined the EV Growth Funds Investment Team in 2018 and is responsible for originating and transacting new investments and advising portfolio companies. He is based in the Manchester office and invests into high-growth SMEs across the UK in a range of sectors.

Previous experience

Before joining the Group, Matthew spent the last seven years as an assistant director at BDO in the transaction services team based in Manchester, focused on providing due diligence services to mid-market private equity firms, across a range of sectors. Matthew is a Chartered Accountant and holds an Economics degree from the University of Sheffield.

Matthew.Molyneux@mercia.co.uk

About

Maurice joined Mercia in 2017 and is an Investment Associate with the NPIF – Mercia Equity Team. Working across Yorkshire, Humber and Tees Valley, Maurice’s role includes sourcing and executing early-stage deals whilst also being responsible for reporting to our NPIF stakeholder, the British Business Bank.

Maurice is also a member of the Mercia Knowledge Committee.

Previous experience

Prior to joining Mercia, Maurice was responsible for all investment operations on the Finance Yorkshire Equity Linked Fund. He holds a BA (Hons) degree in Business Management and an MSc joint honour in Finance and Marketing, both from Manchester Metropolitan University.

 

maurice.disasi@mercia.co.uk

About

Megan joined the Group in 2018 as an Investment Associate for the NPIF – Mercia Equity Team, which is focused on investing in businesses located throughout Yorkshire, Humber and the Tees Valley. Megan is based in our Leeds office, and provides research and deal origination support to the Investment Team.

Previous experience

Megan has a background in deal origination, having previously worked at Langcliffe Merger Connect, where she was a senior deal executive in their private equity team, specifically working with their European clients. Megan holds a BSc (Hons) degree in Biochemistry from the University of Leeds.

megan.noble@mercia.co.uk

About

Melanie joined the Group in 2011 as an Investment Executive providing support to EV SME Loans, the RisingStars Growth Funds, Coalfields Growth and the EV Growth Funds Investment Teams which are able to invest in businesses across the UK and in a variety of sectors. Based in Manchester, she is responsible for supporting portfolio management and as such takes responsibility for coordinating the investment process, monitoring portfolio companies during the Fund’s involvement, and also reporting to Fund investors.

Previous experience

Melanie has a background working within the finance and audit function, with a particular focus on governance and compliance. She has previously supported large Government contracts within the Welfare to Work Sector, ensuring the business operated within the parameters of the contracts it managed.

melanie.hooper@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

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

Simon joined the Group in 2017 and is a member of the NPIF – Mercia Equity Team. He is focused on identifying and delivering investments from NPIF Equity and is the primary contact in the Teesside and Humberside regions. He supports a growing number of investments in these areas.

Previous experience

Simon is from the materials and petrochemical industry, having held positions in Johnson Matthey and Davy Process Technology. This has included team management and leadership roles in research and development, technology licensing and technology consulting, which led to a number of patented commercialised processes for catalyst recovery, natural product conversion and bulk petrochemical manufacture; more recently operations, manufacturing excellence, and strategy development. Simon has a science and technology background with a degree and PhD in Chemistry from the University of Durham.

simon.crabtree@mercia.co.uk

About

Stephen joined the Group in 2019 as an Investment Manager for the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) team, focusing on proof of concept and early stage opportunities.

Previous experience

Graduating from Loughborough University, Stephen has spent the last 10 years supporting Midlands-based businesses in a finance capacity. Prior to joining the Group, Stephen was an investor at the Housing Growth Partnership, investing in small and mid-sized housebuilders across the Midlands. Stephen has also spent time in the Midlands office of Lloyds Bank’s leverage finance team, working on acquisition facilities to support private equity buy outs across a multitude of sectors including telecoms, media and technology, manufacturing, leisure, education, and oil and gas.

stephen.windsor@mercia.co.uk