In an industry where females are under-represented in senior executive positions, BOP/Waikato based angel investor group Enterprise Angels continues to lead the way by appointing the country’s first female Angel network CEO.

Nina Le Lievre comes into the role following 6 years of working alongside Founder and Executive Director, Bill Murphy. This appointment comes at a time when the network is experiencing unprecedented investor activity and new business opportunity, following the launch of EA Fund 3 and the country’s largest impact investing fund, Purpose Capital.

‘Innovation is in the DNA of the organisation’ says founder Bill Murphy. ‘We spend every day working with inspiring, innovative people and through Nina’s appointment we strengthen our organisation further. Our organisational values recognise the importance of diversity of thought. This is true when leading investment decisions, and helping entrepreneurs deliver successful outcomes.’

Instrumental in the launch and ongoing management of the angel group’s two funds, EA Fund 1 and 2, and its wholesale investor platform AngelEquity, Nina has a background in investment banking in both London and New Zealand and sits on the New Zealand Angel Association Council.

She is currently overseeing the launch of EA Fund 3, which will bring the total amount of funds under management to $7m+. Over the next two to three years EA Fund 3 will provide investment for 15 to 20 New Zealand startups.

Nina says it’s a privilege to be given the opportunity to lead such a preeminent organisation as Enterprise Angels. ‘Having more females leading in the Financial Services industry is important for NZ. We’re seeing changes in the investing landscape with greater numbers of women investors engaging with Angel activities. Through diversity in ideas and people behind our deal flow, we are seeing more investment opportunities that bring the head and heart together. This delivers shareholder value.”

“I work with a dedicated, professional team, amazing founders and experienced investors from across New Zealand. Enterprise Angels is in a great position and I plan to leverage this to take it to the next level as angel investing comes into its own as an asset class. I want to thank the Enterprise Angels team, members and Board for their support and, in particular, Bill Murphy for his mentorship over the years.”

Bill founded Enterprise Angels in 2008, garnering the support of influential business people throughout the Bay of Plenty and New Zealand, through his passion and enthusiasm.  Since its inception, the nationally and internationally-recognised organisation has grown to over 200 members, providing more than $40m in equity capital to support growing New Zealand businesses.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of growing Enterprise Angels into the professional organization it is now. I know the organisation will continue to thrive under Nina’s leadership. This will allow me to focus on Purpose Capital, my next challenge!” The role transition has been underway for the past year. Over this period the launch of the Purpose Capital Impact Fund has become a reality with Bill’s leadership and Enterprise Angel’s support.

Bill’s primary focus going forward will be with Purpose Capital. He will however retain an important leadership role with Enterprise Angels, moving to a part-time Executive Chair position. This will ensure a smooth transition and continued benefit of Bill’s extensive knowledge and connections.

James Beale, current Chair, says Nina’s six years of practical experience puts her in a strong position to take on the operational leadership of Enterprise Angels as CEO.

“She knows the business inside out and the board is confident Enterprise Angels will prosper under her leadership.”