Two well-known North East dealmakers have stepped up to senior management roles at regional fund management firm NEL Fund Managers.
David Thomas has been named as the Newcastle-based firm’s investment director, while Jonathan Luke has been promoted to portfolio director in recognition of their contribution to NEL winning contracts to manage two of the five funds which make up the new £120m North East Fund Supported By The European Regional Development Fund.
David is part of the team working with businesses looking for investments from the North East Growth Capital Fund and the North East Small Loan Fund that NEL manages, helping them shape their business plans and successfully complete the application process.
Jonathan provides a direct link to the firms in which investments are made, reviewing their progress and acting as a sounding board for their management teams, while both regularly chair NEL’s Investment and Portfolio Committee meetings.
Both Jonathan and David are from the North East, with Jonathan joining NEL after a career in the regional banking industry, and holding the CFA Society’s Investment Management Certificate.
David is a qualified member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and worked for a number of chartered accountancy firms before joining NEL. He also holds the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales’ Corporate Finance qualifications.
The £18m North East Growth Capital Fund has been designed to create over 800 jobs in more than 70 regional firms over the next five years, and offers unsecured investments of up to £500,000 to established businesses looking to realise their growth potential.
Aimed predominantly at smaller SMEs, the £9m North East Small Loan Fund typically offers loans of between £10,000 and £50,000 to businesses in the same areas, and is designed to assist with the creation of over 500 new regional jobs in more than 320 SMEs over the same period.
Dr Yvonne Gale, chief executive at NEL, says: “David and Jonathan’s experience and expertise has long been central to reaching the robust investment decisions that we make, and they are a crucial part of a strong management team.
“Their promotions are due recognition of the contribution they’ve made to our success, the impact that their knowledge and advice makes on the commercial success of our investee firms and of their role in the next phase of our regional investment story.
“With our two new funds now open for business, there’s a real imperative to us to get this investment capital out into the market as quickly and efficiently as we can.
“There’s never been a shortage of business ideas coming out of the North East, and our mission now is to find even more ambitious companies right across the region who need investment capital to implement their expansion plans.”
For more information about NEL’s investment criteria, visit www.nel.co.uk or contact the investment team on 0345 369 7007.