Our client was an early stage Venture Capital investor who had recently made a strategic decision to invest in a start-up Professional Services business. The start-up enterprise had in place a strong management team with a wealth of experience in delivering services in the B2B environment. All the directors involved had previously worked in small high growth markets and had a demonstrable track record of success. The Venture Capital investor wanted to put in place a Non-Executive Chairman and a senior Non-Executive Director (NED) who had experience of the Professional Services sector and who would understand the pitfalls the entrepreneurs would face.

Client Need

The Venture Capital investor was looking to build the business into a seven figure turnover entity within five years and then spend the next two years preparing the business for sale either to  a private equity buyer who could accelerate the businesses growth, or as a trade sale. In searching for a Chairman and NED the Venture Capital investor needed to identify individuals who had grown businesses in the Professional Services sector from start-up to £10 million of turnover. These individuals would lend weight to the entrepreneurial management team while coaching and mentoring them and opening doors which might not necessarily be  available.

Our Approach

The search was started prior to the launch of the business and therefore targeted search and headhunting was deemed the most appropriate means by which to find potential candidates. As the businesses hadn’t yet been launched and didn’t have any marketing collateral, there was limited value  in undertaking advertised selection.

When defining the brief for the role there were three key deliverables that the successful candidates should have:


  • Experience of chairing a start-up with a highly experienced senior leadership team
  • Experience of growing a business from Zero £ to £10 million of turnover
  • Experience of mentoring and coaching entrepreneurs and helping them face  and overcome the challenges that would inevitably arise.

Non-Executive Director

  • Experience as either a Non-executive or Executive Director in a Professional Services business
  • Deep understanding of the Professional Services Sector and coupled with a highly developed network of senior industry figures whom they could introduce the business to
  • Experience of mentoring and coaching entrepreneurs and helping  them face and overcome the challenges that would inevitably arise.


Moorlands Human Capital was able to identify a long list of twelve potential candidates for the Chairmanship and eighteen potential candidates for the Non-Executive Director position within four weeks of being retained.  Within six weeks all candidates had been interviewed and assessed providing the client with four highly qualified candidates for each role. Within ten weeks from the start of the assignments, the Venture Capital Investor was able to have both people in place and working with the start-up on its launch phase.