Q + A with William Chappel, Partner and Head of Growth Credit
Will joined the Palatine team earlier this year to head the Palatine Growth Credit Fund. He is focused on finding new investment opportunities in fast-growing, scalable businesses across the regions throughout the UK.
Having spent 17 years in Corporate and Investment Banking and Fund Management, Will has successfully launched three Growth Credit strategies into the market and is passionate about helping entrepreneurs to reduce shareholder dilution and maximise the growth potential of their business.
Who is the Growth Credit Fund for?
Fast-growing venture capital backed B2B businesses that are achieving over £2 million revenues, predominantly based in the regions. We don’t lend to start-ups, instead we will lend to businesses with consistent annual revenues, which have secured long term contracts. Ultimately, we are looking for companies with a strong growth trajectory.
You’re focusing on fast growth businesses outside of the Capital, do you think traditional lenders are under-serving this market?
Absolutely. There have been several providers who have retrenched from the regions, predominantly because of factors specific to those lenders as opposed to the market generally . However, the demand remains and there is evident growth in venture capital deployment in the regions across the UK especially in the North of England .
What drew you to Palatine?
Palatine is such a progressive organisation. Having done my due diligence on the firm, I was impressed with the growth of the business over a number of years. The culture at Palatine is one that stands out as incredibly positive and dynamic, with the sustainability messaging sitting at the very core of the team. Not only is the firm market leading when it comes to its regional outlook and outreach, but also its reputation is very strong.
I’ve joined Palatine to bring another innovative product to an already innovative business.
Palatine’s ethos is ‘positive equity’ what does this mean to you in terms of the Growth Credit Fund?
This new market-unique product will be the only one of its kind with such a strong sustainability angle. The regional focus will also help push the levelling up agenda and the ESG approach the fund will adopt will help reduce carbon emissions and improve diversity in the businesses we back. As such our Growth Credit strategy perfectly aligns with Palatine’s ‘positive equity’ messaging.
You’ve been working in banking and fund management for the best part of two decades, what element of the job gives you the most satisfaction?
Similar to Palatine’s ethos of delivering returns in the ‘right way’, my focus is doing the right thing by companies and their management teams. I enjoy building real relationships with those teams and sharing in the success when companies achieve their goals.
I am passionate about ESG and diversity. Not just for us as a firm, but for growth businesses all over the country.
Can you tell us about some deals that you are most proud of?
I am always thrilled to see companies I have worked with celebrate key milestones and well-deserved exits. Two successful former clients spring to mind. I had the pleasure of working with Shazam and PassFort, which both sold to blue-chip companies – Apple and Moody’s respectively.
In these instances, like so many others, it is the founders and management teams that hugely deserve the success they had from the hard work they put in. The pride from this job comes when you see a management team that I have backed succeed in their goals.