Currie’s Seneca Partners to raise £5m EIS fund

DEALMAKER Ian Currie has taken the wraps off Seneca Partners, a new venture offering investment, wealth management and corporate finance advice.

Currie, who left the Manchester-based Zeus Group a year ago, will raise a £5m Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) fund to make investments in exciting small companies.

Currie will split his time across bases in Haydock and Manchester city centre.

He has formed a strategic alliance with long-time associate Norman Molyneux, director of Acceleris – a niche Manchester-based corporate finance adviser.

In the short-term Seneca’s corporate finance function will act as an appointed representative of the FSA-regulated Acceleris.

Currie told “I am delighted and excited to be bringing Seneca to the market.  We will be looking for solid, cash generative businesses to invest in. In the short term we’re raising £700,000 for Seneca and via the EIS scheme.”

The other Seneca partners and investors are Steve Charnock, Richard Manley – who have been working with Currie at Cenkos Fund Managers –  and experienced wealth manager Alex Dymock, who has joined from Credit Suisse.

Further appointments on the wealth management side are expected in the coming weeks.

Currie added: “I am convinced there is demand for Seneca Partners – wealth managers want to be able bespoke products for their clients and we can offer that.

“Our relationship with Acceleris is important – Norman is a specialist in EIS, and we know there is demand for that too. A combination of his expertise and our contacts will be great.”

He believes that now is a good time to launch a business again – and that Seneca’s newness won’t be a barrier to attracting good quality people, or clients.

“I don’t think the fact that we haven’t been around for 200 years counts for a great deal any more – people are looking far wider for investment opportunities.

“I think we’ll also be able to attract high calibre people in a market like this, rather than in a boom time.”

As well as Seneca Currie has interests in Cenkos Fund Managers which is fund manager for the Rapid Realisations Fund, SIP-provider Liberty, stockbroker Hedley & Co and Palatine Private Equity.