A £2.5bn ($4bn) corporate venturing fund backed by the UK’s six biggest banks has hired its chairman and chief executive ahead of investing up to 75 companies per year.

The Business Growth Fund will be chaired by Sir Nigel Rudd (pictured), also chairman of airports operator BAA, and managed by Stephen Welton, managing partner of investment bank JP Morgan’s former leveraged buyout manager CCMP Capital, as chief executive.

The fund will start investing £2m to £10m in companies with an annual turnover of between £10m and £100m in April. The fund, which is backed by Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander and Standard Chartered, will take between 10% and nearly 50% of the portfolio company in return for its investment held over an expected five-year period.

Sir Nigel told news provider Financial Times: "If we invested, we would want a seat on the board – that would be…

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