Support for UK fintechs with new FinTech Growth Fund
UK FinTech Growth Partners will launch the FinTech Growth Fund, the first investment fund of its kind focused on supporting growth stage fintechs as they scale.
With backing for the initiative already secured from Barclays, NatWest, Mastercard, London Stock Exchange Group, and Peel Hunt, the FinTech Growth Fund will invest in UK fintechs, predominantly between Series B and pre-IPO, to enable them to scale into world-class global organisations.
The first deployment of capital into businesses is scheduled for Q4 2023 with a strong pipeline of opportunities already identified. The fund will look to undertake, on average, four to eight investments per year, with investments between £10 million and £100 million. The fund will make minority investments and all investments will be for equity and equity-linked securities.
Alongside the investment capital, the FinTech Growth Fund will provide strategic support to its portfolio companies to help them achieve their corporate ambitions, giving them access to an ecosystem of deep, relevant experience across fintech, venture capital, and the wider financial services ecosystem.
The UK FinTech Growth Partners executive team combines decades of experience in venture capital, FinTech and government. The partners of the fund include:
- Angel Issa – former Global Head of Corporate Development & Strategic Investments at Nomura, having previously held similar roles at BNP Paribas and Morgan Stanley
- Joe Parkin – former Managing Director – Head of Banks, Digital Channels and UK Inorganic at BlackRock
- Kaushalya Somasundaram – Former Executive Director and UK Head of Payments, Partnerships & Industry Relations at Square; Former Managing Director and Global Head of FinTech Partnerships & Strategic Innovation Investments Director at HSBC
- Phil Vidler – CEO of FinTech Alliance, formerly Group Strategy Director at Pollinate and Head of Global Markets for HM Treasury
The fund is currently recruiting for a number of roles, including regional positions as part of its commitment to supporting businesses throughout the UK.
To support the growth of the fund, UK FinTech Growth Partners has assembled a non-executive advisory board which brings with it a wealth of sector expertise. The advisory board will be chaired by former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Philip Hammond, and will also feature notable UK financial services and fintech figures, including:
- Clare Bousfield – MD Retail and Savings for M&G plc
- Sir Charles Bowman – Former Senior Partner of PwC and former Lord Mayor of London
- Dame Jayne-Anne Gadhia – Chair of Moneyfarm, Founder of Snoop and Ex CEO of Virgin Money
- Lord Gerry Grimstone – former Minister for Investment jointly at the Department for International Trade and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, former Chair of Barclays Bank, and former Chair of Standard Life
- Alastair Lukies CBE – Founder of Pollinate International and Founding Partner of Motive Partners
- Dame Helena Morrissey – Chair of the Board of Directors Fidelis and Chair of Altum Group, former Chair at FTSE250 firm AJ Bell and former CEO of Newton Investment Management
- Romi Savova – Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of PensionBee
- Philip Smith – Founder and former CEO of Embark Group
Phil Vidler, Managing Partner, commented: “The UK has always been at the forefront of innovation in fintech but there is a very clear and well evidenced growth funding gap. The FinTech Growth Fund will address the lack of available growth capital by providing a first of its kind domestic, growth-stage, fintech focused venture capital fund backed by strategic investors. Our aim is to not only provide the capital needed for founders to scale their businesses, but to also engage with stakeholders across the nation to support the wider ecosystem. In doing so, we believe we can ensure the UK remains a global leader in fintech.”
The idea for the fund grew out of the landmark Kalifa Review which outlined a five-point plan to help the UK retain its status as a global leader in financial services through securing the success of UK FinTech. It identified an annual funding gap for growth stage fintech estimated at £2bn and recommended a £1bn growth fund which would sufficiently fill this gap in order to sustain our world leading ecosystem. Currently these fintechs struggle to find domestic capital to help them scale, resulting in a loss of IP and a growing divergence between the UK and the US at post seed funding levels.
The fund is welcomed by Sir Ron Kalifa, author of the Kalifa Review: “I am delighted to welcome the launch of the UK FinTech Growth Fund as a private sector initiative, backed by institutional capital, responding to one of the key recommendations of the Review. The Fund represents another key building block in the support ecosystem for growth stage UK fintech businesses. This is an important step forward towards ensuring the UK retains its leadership role in fintech.”
Outside its core remit, UK FinTech Growth Partners will commit to providing wider holistic support for the UK fintech ecosystem. This extensive commitment will be realised through the ‘Beyond Investing’ programme which will consist of initiatives focused on national connectivity, support for early-stage founders, and talent, diversity, equity, and inclusion.