New structure to support the firm’s £1.2bn three-year investment pledge and build on period of successful returns.
LDC, the leading mid-market private equity investor, has expanded its leadership team and announced several promotions as part of its commitment to invest £1.2bn of equity in Britain’s small and medium sized companies over the next three years.
The business, which operates a regional network of nine offices, said the promotions would simplify and strengthen its national and regional operating structure, enabling it to increase origination and conversion across the UK and support value creation across its portfolio. It follows a period of sustained success for the firm, part of Lloyds Banking Group, which has invested £1bn of equity over the last three years and generated exit proceeds of £2bn, representing an average money multiple of 2.5x and an IRR of 37%.
Director and Head of East Midlands region, Andy Grove, moves to a newly created national role as Head of New Business with overall responsibility for LDC’s approach to transaction origination and completion across its network. Andy has more than 23 years of private equity experience, including eight years with LDC where he has led some of the firm’s most successful investments, including lifestyle brand Joules and global beauty products group Original Additions. Before joining LDC in 2008, Andy spent 15 years as a Corporate Finance advisor with both Deloitte and PwC specialising in private equity backed transactions.
Director and Head of South region, Yann Souillard, will also take responsibility for LDC’s London team in an enlarged role. An experienced investor, Yann has been with LDC for 13 years and was based in the London business for seven years before becoming head of the Reading team in 2011. More recently, Yann has delivered the successful exits of Microlease and PSG, as well as investments in Equiom, Clifford Thames and EDM.
Andy Lyndon, Director and Head of Birmingham and one of LDC’s longest standing employees with 16 years in the business, will assume an expanded Head of Midlands role. He takes overall responsibility for the Birmingham and Nottingham teams, the latter being headed by John Green. Meanwhile, following a period of growth in the region with five investments in the last eight months, Director Johnny Bell becomes Head of North West after 11 years with LDC, and Ged Gould is promoted to Senior Director with a focus on new business.
Under the new structure, Chris Hurley will take up a newly created role of Chief Portfolio Officer, reflecting a greater strategic focus on driving shareholder value across its 90-strong portfolio of investments. He will also be responsible for the firm’s recently expanded portfolio management team, as well as its value enhancement, finance and legal functions, and will remain a member of both its Executive Committee and Investment Committee.
Martin Draper, Chief Executive of LDC, said: “This is about recognising some of our longest-standing and most successful investors through well-deserved promotions, and creating a stronger team to drive investment and exit performance in the coming years. 2016 was a strong year for the business across each of our offices, confirming the importance of our regional networks and trusted relationships. We’ve already had a great start to 2017, having invested more than £85m in six transactions in the first two months of the year.”
He added: “Evolving our operating structure makes it at once simpler and stronger, but our strategy remains unchanged; we partner with ambitious management teams across the UK to help them grow their businesses. We are committed to investing £1.2bn in UK small and medium-sized businesses over the next three years which in turn forms a key part of Lloyds Banking Group’s plan to help businesses prosper.”
LDC, which is part of Lloyds Banking Group, has been investing in the UK mid-market for more than 35 years, making over 550 investments.