Dr Peter Englander has taken over as chairman of sustainable growth investor Bridges Ventures after Sir Ronald Cohen stepped aside.
Englander has worked with Cohen for a decade at Bridges and for 30 years at private equity firm Apax Partners, where he is chief executive of its charitable foundation.
Cohen will become chairman of the advisory board at the firm, which has raised six funds totalling almost £275m since it was founded in 2002.
He said: “Bridges has played a leading role in the emergence of the social investment sector over the past ten years.
“Our society’s multiple pressing problems cannot be solved through government and philanthropy alone.
“The next decade is therefore likely to be the decade of social investment and entrepreneurship as we harness their powerful forces to innovate in resolving social issues.”
I am delighted that the Board has chosen Dr Peter Englander to sit as the new Chair and that he has accepted this role. I have worked with Peter at Apax Partners for 30 years and at Bridges for 10 and I cannot think of a more experienced or accomplished investor to chair Bridges in the future.”
Englander has served as a non-executive director on Bridges’ management board since the firm’s inception and has been a key member of its investment committee.
He said, “I have greatly enjoyed contributing to Bridges’ work over the last ten years and I look forward to guiding Bridges through its next decade, to make successful investments that make a difference.”
The firm was launched with a mission to invest in companies which would achieve dedicated social and environmental goals as well as returns for its investors.
Bridges co-founder and managing partner Philip Newborough said, “Ten years ago the prevailing view was that investing for financial and social or environmental returns were mutually exclusive aims.
“Our experience has shown that this is not the case.”
In January Bridges expanded its team by hiring Clara Barby as head of impact, a new role which will see her working closely with the investment teams of all of the firm’s funds.
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