Level 20 appoints PE veteran as chief executive

Former BVCA council member Jeryl Andrew has joined the group which aims to promote the role of women in the private equity industry.

Level 20, the group established to promote the role of women in private equity, has appointed Jeryl Andrew as its first chief executive.

Private equity veteran Andrew has worked in the industry for 30 years, in GP, LP and advisor roles, according to a statement released by the group. She began her career at venture capital investor Abingworth Management and went on the hold senior roles at fund of funds investment group Vencap International and Advent Venture Partners, an early and growth-stage investor.

Andrew has spent the past six years as a consultant to private equity and venture capital firms, advising on fundraising and investor relations.

Between 2002 and 2007, Andrew also served as a council member of the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association. During her tenure, she chaired numerous BVCA committees and has served as course director for the BVCA investor relations training programme since 2011, according to the statement.

Andrew joins the group after it secured financial backing from more than 25 firms across the private equity industry in June. The firms, which have committed multiyear funding to support the organisation, include CVC Capital Partners, HgCapital, and KKR.

“I am delighted to welcome Jeryl as Level 20’s first chief executive. Her wealth of experience will be of enormous benefit to our organisation as we seek to fulfil our mission to boost the numbers of women in senior roles across the private equity industry, and we look forward to working with her,” Smits said in the statement.

Launched to inspire women to join and succeed in the industry, London-based Level 20 was founded in September 2015 by 12 senior women representing both GPs and LPs in the industry. The group includes, among others, Smits, Impetus PEF trustee and Sofina SA non-executive director; HarbourVest Partners managing director Kathleen Bacon and Bain Capital managing director Cécile Belaman.

The group began a mentoring program for women mid-career, to provide them with access to guidance from more senior professionals they may not otherwise receive, Level 20 chair and co-founder Hanneke Smits previously told pfm.

Level 20 currently has around 700 members, and is about to launch its second mentoring programme following last year’s 45 participant-strong pilot, according to the statement.

The group wants women to account for 20 percent of senior professionals across the European private equity industry by 2020.