Founding a company is the hardest act in business, only now that we’ve walked that path can we truly empathise with the many people and businesses we look to back. We’re proud and excited by what we’ve built but we’re never satisfied, we can always be better.
Every one of us at QPE works in the same open-plan office space, ensuring we are constantly connected and quick at conviction-led decision making. Often this means sharing the excitement of the latest investment opportunity, the challenge of a 14-meeting day or upcoming weekend plans; at QPE we work as a one-team culture to address all these situations together.
Entrepreneurial Empathy is one of our core values. It signifies our desire and ability to put ourselves in your shoes and is a hugely under-appreciated skill. It’s why we obsess about qualitative over quantitative and EQ before IQ.
What I relish most in my interactions with founders is understanding the personalities behind the success stories and seeing how QPE’s value creation pillars can help them accelerate their growth.
I am immensely proud of our Ambassador Network. It is through them I learned the value of creating strong relationships. Each of them has experienced working with us in our past and actively helps us portray those experiences onto our teams of tomorrow.
A lot of people ask where our money comes from. We are privileged that the majority is from endowments, foundations and philanthropic organisations. If we fail to deliver they lose scholarships and medical research funding. Few people then ask what motivates me each and every day.
I have always been competitive and had a strong desire to win, but I would much rather do so as part of a great team. I’m proud that the QPE team are exactly that and our contribution to every company always comes from several of us working together.
Fatherhood has given me a greater appreciation of our scarcest resource; time – how quickly it goes and how we all need to make the most of now. The same applies to many of the successful founders and managers we back, as more often than not they are making a once in a lifetime decision and at QPE we fully acknowledge and respect that.
Some of the first shares I ever owned were in my beloved Chelsea FC. Having acquired them at 166p per share it was heart breaking to see the company be taken private for 33p eight years later, but I certainly learnt a lesson that some passion projects are simply not investible.
I was born, raised, educated and always employed in Central London - apparently there aren’t too many of us around - but my roots are actually Slavic. Both my parents came to the UK very young and built a household where hard work and dedication was always the key to success. The single most important value my father instilled in me was “your word is your bond” and I have lived by this ever since.
Family life has taught me the importance of staying organised whilst being able to roll with the punches. With an Aussie wife and two young kids, chaos is something I’ve learnt to embrace. If and when I escape the chaos I enjoy any sport that can be played on ice (and snow) or measured on Strava, long haul travel (despite my fear of flying) and Old-World reds.