Luke Johnson backs start-ups with Beer & Partners investment

Johnson, who’s previous investments have included Pizza Express, Signature Restaurants, Belgo and Borders in the UK,  has acquired a 27.4% stake in Beer & Partners, making him the largest single investor in the company. His investment will give him a direct route to support the 100-strong portfolio of small businesses that Beer & Partners works with annually.
Luke Johnson, founder and chairman of Risk Capital Partners comments: “I believe that entrepreneurs are a crucial driving force in our economy. I’ve been writing ‘The Entrepreneur’ column in the Financial Times for several years and think the growth opportunities at this vibrant end of business are exciting and potentially very rewarding. By becoming part of Beer & Partners and its network, I will be able to provide far greater support and tap into a wider pool of ambitious entrepreneurs than I ever could by myself.
Johnson added: “Angel investors are the only realistic option for these early-stage companies. Currently banks are barely open for business, or tend to offer loans on unattractive terms, so the need for equity capital is greater than ever. What’s more, since current low interest rates give savers such poor returns, more and more angel investors are emerging that have a strong appetite for direct investment in small companies. Using a business angel network, such as Beer & Partners, entrepreneurs can get access to a huge pool of potential investment and expertise.”
Dr Roy Bichan, recently appointed Chairman at Beer & Partners said: “Working with Luke is a great opportunity for Beer & Partners to benefit from his extensive experience in the business and investment world. At a time when many small companies are struggling to find the backing they need, it’s heartening to know that successful entrepreneurs like Luke are willing to support them by facilitating access to capital.”