James Caan, co-executive chairman of Hamilton Bradshaw, is the cornerstone investor of the new company which has raised an initial fund of £30 million (€45 million; $55 million) from non-institutional investors.
Caan, founder of Alexander Mann executive search company, is joined by Tony Sarin, who founded Numerica plc and is a non-executive director of NewMedia Spark plc.
The £30m UK-centric fund will focus on business services, including media publishing, telecoms and financial services. It has already completed one investment in Resource Partners, a financial resources service company, where turnover has increased by over 40 percent from £183 million to £260 million in the six months of Hamilton Bradshaw’s investment.
Speaking to Privateequityonline, Caan stated that the benefit of not having institutional investors was that the firm could develop a track record in the time and way that they wanted to. “We are essentially putting our money where our mouth is” he said.
Sarin also emphasised the speed at which the new firm could operate, citing a decision time of 7-10 days for an investee company to receive a definitive offer letter, not the “normal six to eight weeks” that Sarin saw from both sides of the VC fence, as investor and investee in his previous roles.
Following the close of the fund, which is planned to be invested over the next two years, Hamilton Bradshaw will look to raise a further fund, “closer to £100 million” according to Caan, this time involving institutional investors.
The firm will be based in W1, London and currently comprises six people, including Patrick Stephansen, chief investment officer and Alan Pepper, investment director.