London-based VC firm Forward Partners has announced its intention to trade on AIM (Alternative Investment Market), a sub-market of the London Stock Exchange. Following the family lineage, both BlackRock and Draper Esprit have signaled their interest at £15 million and £2 million in ordinary shares, respectively. Forward Partners are also opening the doors to retail investors via PrimaryBid.
Founded in 2013 by former Draper Esprit Partner Nic Brisbourne, Forward Partners has made 72 investments to date with 10 exits and has raised approximately £61 million across two funds. In the past eight years, Forward Partners has demonstrated a gross IRR over 25% as of 31 March 2021, and an unaudited Initial Portfolio NAV of £103 million (then comprising 45 active investments).
“Our big differentiator has always been that we offer start-ups more than money. The combination of capital alongside specialist support for our start-ups has helped us to improve the odds of success for more pioneering founders,” comments Brisbourne.
“We believe it’s crucial that our industry innovates because venture capital holds the key to unlocking the technology innovation that will build a better future for everyone. We’re taking our firm public to realise that vision. We’ll be able to invest more, for longer - and to build new products and services founders really need. For founders, it means more routes to growth - more choice, more control, and more support. For investors, direct access to fast-growing, innovative tech businesses through a well-established, well-managed, and balanced portfolio.”
Forward Partners is expecting to be active on AIM as of mid-July with the ticker FWD.