British Business Bank welcomes Stephen Welton CBE as chair
The Government has today announced the appointment of Stephen Welton CBE as the new non-executive chair of the British Business Bank.
Stephen Welton takes over from Lord Smith of Kelvin, who has held the position for six years since September 2017. In 2013, Stephen was appointed as an advisor to the UK government regarding the establishment of the British Business Bank and, in 2017, served as a member of the Industry Panel advising HM Treasury on the Patient Capital Review. He was also a member of the prime minister’s 2021 Business Council and member of the Innovate Council 2018-2021.
Stephen Welton has extensive experience as an investor in private capital markets around the world. He was the founder CEO of the Business Growth Fund (BGF) from 2011 to 2020, then executive chair between 2020 and 2022, and later non-executive chair until July 2023. BGF is the UK’s most active investor in scaling businesses and the model has been successfully replicated in a number of other countries internationally. He also serves as chair of the BGF Foundation.
Prior to BGF, he was one of the founding partners of global private equity firm CCMP Capital (formerly JP Morgan Partners) and, before that, managing director of Barclays Private Equity and Henderson Ventures, which he also co-founded. Stephen has significant board experience and is currently a non-executive director of FTSE 250 ICG plc.
Stephen Welton CBE, chair of the British Business Bank, said: “I have dedicated much of my career to investing in growing companies and backing entrepreneurs and innovators. I believe passionately that finance is a vital ingredient in helping smaller businesses start up, grow and achieve their ambitions, and to maintaining their enormous contribution to the UK economy nationwide.
“That is why I am delighted to take up my position at the British Business Bank as chair. This is a pivotal time for the economy as we look to drive innovation and growth, while substantially increasing the level of long term investment in the UK . I look forward to working with the team at the Bank as well with as colleagues in government and the private sector.”
Louis Taylor, CEO of the British Business Bank, said: “On behalf of the British Business Bank, I would like to thank Lord Smith for his outstanding service to the Bank and leadership of the Board during his term of office.
“The British Business Bank is delighted to mark this new phase in our organisation’s growth and development by welcoming Stephen Welton, who will take up his position as our new chair this month. He has an impressive record of leadership, significant investment and scale up expertise, and has demonstrated a deep commitment to smaller businesses over several decades. He will be an invaluable asset to the Bank.”
Stephen Welton started his career in banking, has a law degree from Durham University, and is a qualified Barrister-at-Law. He was awarded a CBE in June 2023 for services to Small Businesses and Entrepreneurship.