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.

 

 

About

Paul joined the Group in 2006 with more than 30 years’ experience in lending. He is the Managing Director, Mercia Debt Funds and heads up Mercia’s lending activity. Paul was heavily involved in the launch of both SME Loans Funds and is also Fund Manager for NPIF in Yorkshire and Humber and was also responsible for several successful exits including Core RFID and Finch Consulting.

Previous experience

Previously Paul was a regional director with Barclays Ventures and responsible for the north of England and the Midlands. He has made numerous equity investments in MBOs and development capital transactions in various sectors, including specialist manufacturing, support services and distribution. Paul also sat on the boards of many of these businesses and he continues to do this as part of his role within Mercia too. The earlier part of Paul’s career was spent in corporate banking, in the UK and overseas.

paul.taberner@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:

Mercia Knowledge Committee – a Group wide Information and Data Development team

Mercia Responsible Investment Committee – a Group-wide team committed to delivering the ESG strategy across the business.

Mercia O2 Committee – offering the benefits of diverse opinions, ideas and points of view.

 

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

Wayne joined Mercia in 2006 and is the Managing Director of Mercia PE Funds where he is responsible for originating and investing into high-growth SMEs across the UK. He also manages a portfolio of companies from the PE Funds spanning sectors from manufacturing to online retail including Woodall Nicholson and Total Resources.

Previous experience

Previously, Wayne was an investment director with Aberdeen Asset Managers Private Equity, investing in a broad range of sectors across the north of England. Prior to that, he was in the corporate finance teams at both Ernst & Young and BDO where he advised companies, management teams and investors on a wide range of mid-market transactions. A Chartered Accountant, Wayne has spent the last 20 years of his career advising and investing into SMEs and larger corporates.

wayne.thomas@mercia.co.uk

About

Will joined the Mercia in 2011, and has over 16 years’ experience in venture capital. He is Managing Director, Regional Venture Funds heading up the team that provides support for entrepreneurs to build high-growth innovative companies. These funds provide risk capital for new and early-stage startups, both tech and non-tech, together with scale-up capital for ambitious, established growth businesses located throughout the regions.

Will is also responsible for investments in Intechnica and Azzure IT.

Previous experience

Will was previously a director with 3i, based in Manchester, with responsibility for a £500.0m portfolio of investments across the UK. The earlier part of his career was spent with Ernst & Young as a member of its corporate finance team in the north of England. Will has been working with regionally-based growth and venture capital-backed companies since 1989, and in that time has been involved in more than 150 transactions.

will.clark@mercia.co.uk

About

Angela joined Mercia in January 2019 as Head of Portfolio and Platform and was promoted to Managing Director, Mercia Investments in July 2020. In her current role, Angela is responsible for the Direct Investment portfolio and overseeing the value-add support which Mercia offers to its investee companies

Previous experience

Angela has over 20 years’ experience in venture capital and private equity. She started her investment career at NatWest Development Capital and has since worked at North West Equity Fund, Barclays Ventures and, immediately prior to joining Mercia, as a partner at YFM Equity Partners where she specialised in portfolio management including trade sales, secondary buyouts and fundraisings. She has held board positions at companies involved in the software, support services, manufacturing and communications sectors.

angela.warner@mercia.co.uk

Charlie joined NVM in 2016 and has extensive experience in venture investing and supporting young companies in the UK, which he has done for nearly 20 years. He has previously been a director of a fund management company and spent the 1990s working as a Technology Strategy Manager with JP Morgan in London and New York.  At NVM, Charlie has invested and currently sits on the Boards of Volo, Medovate, NorthRow and SHE, so he has a grounding in software and innovative technologies as well an engineering degree and MBA from the University of California at Berkeley. He has a strong track-record of investments that have scaled, including Tracsis, Xeros Technology and Retroscreen.

Charlie joined Mercia in December 2019 when NVM’s VCTs contracts were acquired, where he continues to work with Tim Levett in managing the VCT team and portfolio.