VC firm recruits former 3i partner

Laurence Garrett has joined Highland Capital as general partner to help drive the firm’s expansion strategy for Europe.

US-based Highland Capital Partners has signed on Laurence Garrett to help drive the firm’s expansion strategy in Europe’s venture capital markets.

Laurence Garrett

Garrett’s primary responsibilities will involve identifying European technology and internet companies for the purpose of injecting growth capital. 

Prior to his move, Garrett was a partner with 3i, ultimately spending 14 years with the firm before he eventually departed in 2008. His work with 3i included leading the firm’s European technology team and executing “investments in several communications and technology companies, producing realized returns of over three times invested capital”, according to a statement from Highland.

Since 2000 Garrett led investments totalling £43 million (€51 million; $68 million), including Icera Semiconductor, a provider of wireless communications technology; and Metalysis, a technology company which produces specialist metals, according to Cambridge Judge Business School’s website.

Since 2008, Garrett has been a member of the investment committee for Cambridge Enterprise, responsible for advising Cambridge University on its venture funds program.



Garrett decided to leave 3i following the firm's decision to close its Cambridge office last year, according to media reports. Garett was unavailable to comment at press time.

Garrett will be working alongside existing European investors Fergal Mullen and Irena Goldenberg, who work as general partner and principal respectively in Highland's Geneva office.

Highland, who has invested in and helped create such start-ups as search engine Ask Jeeves and online web mapping service MapQuest, has approximately $3 billion of committed capital.