I started my career in the UK’s shipbuilding industry just at the point when the consequences of decades of under-investment and lack-lustre response to change was becoming evident. So, I resolved to understand the role of finance in developing strong industrial activity better. After completing an MBA at the London Business School I joined 3i plc, which was the UK’s leading provider of growth capital for private companies at the time.
Hence, within a few years I moved from an environment of negligent stewardship to investing in visionary management teams with exciting ambitions for businesses across an extraordinary range of sectors.
Investing in teams scaling-up is one thing; being a member of one yourself is another. After 17 years at 3i working in various leadership and investment roles, in 2004 I had the opportunity to join a team with a wildly ambitious goal at Serimax Holdings. We went onto to exceed it by 50%, growing 5-fold within 4 years. It was during these years that I gained insights into developing businesses that are able to stay ahead of market trends whatever the direction of travel – exuberant market expansion or negative competitive and demand related pressures.
My involvement with Frog stretches from the formative years of the business including a period as Martin’s predecessor as Chairman. Frog’s mission is clear and one that I endorse strongly – supporting scale-up with ambitious equity capital in conjunction with insightful expertise and guidance. Experience of leadership positions in a range of businesses and ownership structures (quoted, private equity, family and entrepreneur) has hammered home the point that it is not just the availability of capital to finance dreams that matters – it is also having the wisdom to do the right thing at the right time. I am delighted to be part of the Frog team as an Operating Partner ready to bring my experience of change and growth to bear.