MSIF Appoint First LCR Angel Network Director

After an extensive recruitment process led by CRSI, MSIF is delighted to announce the appointment of Katie Nicholson as Director of the Liverpool City Region Angel Network. 

Founded in March of 2018, by MSIF, Brabners and Grant Thornton, the LCR Angel Network exists as an important link for active angel investors in the Liverpool City Region and provides quality investment and connection opportunities for angels and entrepreneurs alike.   

Since its inception, the network has supported businesses such as Flare, Betmate and most recently, Heatio to gain significant angel investment, successfully supporting growth ambitions across a range of industries and markets.  

Following a recruitment process in which candidates were asked to demonstrate their ability and plans on how they intend to continue attracting quality angels and assist in developing investor ready entrepreneurs, Katie will now be tasked with implementing formal processes and structures to LCR Angels to generate successful investment opportunities.  

Katie brings with her an extensive network and deep understanding of emerging markets that will further enhance LCR Angels capabilities in the region and will be key in fostering effective relationships within the city and further afield, with both angels and entrepreneurs looking for investment to grow businesses.   

Prior to joining LCR Angels, Katie launched and managed the Bridge Angel Network in the Isle of Man, participated on the Fund Her North Steering Committee and founded the successful strategic and communications business, Petra Consulting, highlighting her sound business acumen and eye for identifying companies with significant growth potential. 

Commenting on her appointment, Katie said  

“I am absolutely delighted to have been appointed in this new role for the LCR Angel Network. I know how valuable a successful angel network is – providing that vital support and funding for businesses at that very early-stage. There is a great deal of positive activity and support within the wider LCR entrepreneurial ecosystem, this is testament to the commitment of the Combined Authority, as well as organisations such as MSIF. I believe that the LCR Angel Network has a solid foundation on which to build and I am looking forward to driving that growth.” 

MSIF’s vision of transitioning LCR Angels into a network run by angels has been backed by Liverpool City Region Combined Authority with funding of £0.5m to match its own investment. This will enable the network to grow and develop its resources to actively increase the number of deep sector angels and to improve the quality and investment readiness of local entrepreneurs.  

The network will contribute to the city region’s ambition to invest 5% of its economy on Research and Development (R&D) BY 2030 – nearly double the government’s UK target – making it easier for high-growth technology and research and innovation businesses to access early-stage funding. 

John O’Brien, MSIF Chairman said on Katie’s appointment:  

“The Liverpool City Combined Authority have bought into MSIF’s vision for LCR Angels and that it should become an angel network run by angels providing money and most importantly hands on mentoring and support for the region’s entrepreneurs. Appointing Katie as the first Director to LCR Angels, we have selected a proven networker, with a clear understanding of what makes a successful angel network combined with a drive and ambition to succeed.   

Mark Rathbone Partner at Brabners and one of the founders of LCR Angel Network added 

“Having helped to start-up the LCR Angel Network and having continued to support it throughout the last 5 or so years, it is really gratifying to see the project receive the support of the LCR Combined Authority and MSIF. Their combined funding of the angel network has enabled us to recruit Katie Nicholson on a full-time basis and now enables us to professionalise what we have been doing for the benefit of the angels and the entrepreneurs we support. There is a very exciting future for this angel network as a key component of the region’s growing eco-system”.