Finance managers behind Northern Powerhouse fund boost team

Managers of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund have boosted their team with three key appointments.

Maven Equity Finance, managed by Maven Capital Partners, has invested £12 million in businesses across the Northern Powerhouse region since it launched in February last year.

The investment has supported the creation of more than 200 jobs.

Maven has strengthened its team with the appointment of senior investment specialists Andy Round and Karen de Meza to increase the level of support to companies across all stages of the investment process and for ongoing business support.

Round joins Maven’s Manchester office as investment director, bringing close to 20 years’ experience of investing and advising SMEs.

Most recently, he was managing regional funds for SPARK Impact and MSIF and has previously worked for IP-Group investing in a range of early stage University companies across different sectors.

He holds a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Leeds.

At Maven Round is responsible for execution of new investments across Maven’s funds in the North West.

De Meza joins Maven’s Manchester office as portfolio manager, bringing around 30 years’ experience advising companies on their financial, commercial and strategic management.

Most recently, Karen was group finance director for the Bowden Group, which held a portfolio of investments in the engineering services sector.

De Meza qualified with KPMG in Manchester and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales.

In the early part of her career De Meza worked in corporate finance and for RBS in specialised lending, covering the Yorkshire and Humberside region.

She has also held a number of executive finance roles across a variety of sectors in plc businesses and privately owned companies.

At Maven, De Meza will be responsible for supporting portfolio companies across the North of England.

Appointed by the British Business Bank in 2017, Maven manages £57.5 million worth of equity finance for NPIF, a £400m fund for SMEs in the North.

Working with 10 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and Combined Authorities in the North, as well as local accountants and banks, NPIF provides investment capital to support the growth of innovative and ambitious businesses across a wide range of sectors and in a variety of funding scenarios.

Ryan Bevington, investment director at Maven, said: “We are delighted that NPIF – Maven Equity Finance has reached such a significant milestone and that we have been able to support the creation of so many jobs across the region. In particular, we welcome Andy and Karen to the growing team, which strengthens Maven’s presence and will help us continue to identify high-growth, innovative businesses as potential investments.

“NPIF – Maven Equity Finance’s positive impact on businesses in the North of England is already evident, fuelling the growth of ambitious SMEs across a wide range of industries, and supporting a significant number of jobs. Our local investment team works closely with the businesses we support to provide flexible funding to suit a wide range of scenarios. Reaching this key milestone demonstrates the need for this type of equity finance and we look forward to working with more innovative, fast growing small businesses to help them achieve their growth plans.”

Grant Peggie, Director at British Business Bank, said: “NPIF – Maven Equity Finance has been critical to the successful delivery of the wider Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund since being launched last year. Having already made a significant impact on job creation in the North, the Maven team continue to support the North’s innovative, growing small businesses boosting economic prosperity.

“We look forward to continuing our successful partnership with Maven as it achieves its next significant milestone.”

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