BGF has appointed Sophie Brand as an investor in its Leeds office. Sophie joins from Deloitte where she spent nearly eight years working across the firm’s Leeds and London offices.
After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant in Deloitte’s audit practice, Sophie has spent the past four years working in the M&A team gaining particular experience of transactions in retail and consumer markets.
Sophie’s role at BGF will involve all aspects of the investment process from meeting business owners when they’re first considering funding to due diligence and actively working alongside a number of portfolio companies after completion.
BGF’s team in Leeds has invested more than £220m across 22 businesses in Yorkshire and the North East since BGF was set up in 2011. The team experienced a record year of investing in 2018, providing £65m in patient capital for businesses in the region. Recent investments include: Arcinova, an innovative research and development organisation based in Alnwick, North East behavioural marketing company Sale Cycle and Yorkshire-based business vehicle rental platform Fleetondemand.
Commenting on her appointment, Sophie said: “BGF’s point of difference in the market is the long-term outlook it takes, and it has carved out a phenomenal reputation in the region over the last few years. The chance to work in partnership with management teams to achieve their ambitions really appealed to me and, combined with how active the team has been in the region, adding to an increasingly diverse portfolio across the UK and Ireland, the opportunity was a compelling one.”
In 2018, BGF expanded to new offices at Platform in Leeds and opened an office in Newcastle to support more local businesses in the region.
Richard Taylor, head of BGF’s Leeds office, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Sophie to the investment team covering Yorkshire and the North East. She brings a track record of building exceptional relationships and completing deals across a wide range of sectors, and her knowledge of the region and reputation will be a real asset to the team.”