John Handley


John trained with Grant Thornton and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1984. Following a brief spell at KPMG he joined the Corporate Finance team at then Stoy Hayward both in Birmingham and London working on a number of private equity transactions. In 1990 he joined Natwest Ventures before opening ECI’s first regional private equity operation in Birmingham in 1996.

In 1999 John joined LDC in Birmingham rising to Senior Director responsible for the Midlands region. Following a period that saw LDC’s profits grow from £4m in 1998 to over £80 million in both 2004 and 2005, John left LDC in 2005 to pursue a pluralistic career.

As well as his involvement in Lighthouse, John is Non-Executive Chairman of a number of companies as well as a lecturer on private equity for the BVCA and other clients in the UK and abroad.

John’s transaction highlights include:-

  • MBO of the Benjamin Priest Group
  • MBO of Tricom Automotive
  • MBO of Christy Towels
  • MBO of Steelite Pottery
  • MBO of ISOFT plc and subsequent flotation achieving an 11x investment return for LDC. The company peaked at a capitalisation of £500 million on the FTSE.
  • The turnaround and sale of Maverick Television. Joined as Financial Director in 2005 with marginal profitability and sold to A3M in 2007
  • Turnaround and sale of CyclingTV. Joined loss making IPTV company in 2005 as Non- Executive Chairman and successfully sold to Jump Inc in 2007 generating 4x investor returns
  • Tactical and negotiation advice on the secondary MBO of Poundland
  • Tactical and negotiation advice to the management team on the sale of the Foresight Ventures stake in WAA Limited
  • Secondary buy out of Healthcare at Home