EISA Presents: Ready, Steady, Grow! Breakfast Seminar

Giving the opportunity to meet investors, funders, entrepreneurs and business advisers to find out about the various funding options all in one place at one time!

Hosted by Brown Butler at Leeds Marriott Hotel  4 Trevelyan Square, Boar Lane, Leeds LS1 6ET

Time: 8:00-10:30am

Please book via our Eventbrite page here.

PLEASE NOTE: Places are free but in the event of non-attendance or cancellations, less than 24 hrs in advance, an administration fee of £30 per attendee will be charged.

More speakers to be confirmed.

Richard Blakesley is co-founder and CEO of of Capital Pilot, the single market for tech startups and investors, bringing transparency, efficiency and speed into the early stage fundraising process. Around 1,000 companies are registered on the Capital Pilot platform, which now has regional and sectoral angel networks and a women’s platform. Capital Pilot is launching Autopilot, its “Smart-VC” co-investment fund. Autopilot offers investors ultra low-cost diversified exposure to SEIS and EIS qualifying tech assets.

Capital Pilot is the 13th startup Richard has been involved with in the past 15 years, so he has plenty of experience – good and bad – to draw on. Before moving into the early stage technology world Richard spent 15 years as a mergers and acquisitions specialist for Lehman Brothers, Chase Manhattan and JP Morgan, where he was Managing Director in charge of telecoms and technology M&A.

Colin Glass, OBE is a Chartered Accountant with his own practice, Winburn Glass Norfolk (WGN) which he started, with two partners, in 1975. He is, or has been, a Non-Executive Director of several companies, some of which are quoted on AIM and which came out of the WGN portfolio. He has always been passionately interested in helping small businesses, including start-ups, develop to their full potential.

He was a Non-Executive Director of Partnership Investment Finance (PIF), a fund set up, to support SMEs and social enterprises in the areas of Yorkshire and The Humber. Colin acts as a mentor to early stage SMEs with high-growth potential.  Due to his involvement with SMEs over many years, in 2014 Colin was appointed a Non-Executive Director at the British Business Bank, a government-owned development bank under the ownership of the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and where he recently completed his three-year tenure of office.

Colin had the honour of being awarded an OBE in the 2017 Queen’s New Year Honour’s list, for services to business start-ups and entrepreneurship.

Dorothy Mead is a technology and b2b marketing veteran who has worked with multinational organisations, consultancies and with early stage businesses in London and Cambridge UK. She currently is responsible for building the Talmix brand globally and creating programmes to support growth in the Enterprise, Private Equity and Management Consultancies.



Grant Peggie Director in the Venture Capital Team at the British Business Bank, Grant has led the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund , the Midlands Engine Investment Fund and the new Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Investment Fund. Previously he led the Bank’s work on regional finance including Finance Yorkshire and North East Finance. Before joining the Bank he was Head of Strategic Partnerships at Innovate UK where he was responsible for better connecting innovation and business support for innovative, high growth companies.



John Toon is a Partner and the UK Head of Tax at international legal services business DWF LLP. A solicitor and Chartered Tax Adviser, John has been based in the North of England throughout his career and has been recognised nationally for over fifteen years as a leader in his field. DWF’s Tax team has a wealth of experience in advising on a full range of venture capital and private equity investments and divestments for businesses ranging from start-ups to those in the planning phase for sale or IPO, and in devising tax-efficient structures for those looking to invest.



Henry Whorwood leads Beauhurst’s Consultancy team. He is an expert on early-stage business finance and has worked on briefs for clients including the British Business Bank, Penningtons Manches, Syndicate Room, Innovate UK and HM Treasury. Henry regularly gives presentations on market trends at events around the country. He studied Classics at the University of Oxford.

Henry will present new data on the high-growth company landscape in and around Leeds. He will discuss the companies raising funds from both private and public sources, as well as the organisation making particular efforts to support high-growth businesses in the area.



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