Sygnia Asset Management
in London, United Kingdom
Permanent, Full time
Last application, 29 Oct 20
Sygnia Asset Management
in London, United Kingdom
Permanent, Full time
Last application, 29 Oct 20
Posted by:
Liezel De Klerk • Recruiter
Posted by:
Liezel De Klerk
Sygnia Ventures is a growth-stage life sciences and technology fund with offices in London, Cape Town and Johannesburg. To date fund has backed investments in Oxford Sciences Innovation plc and spin-out companies originating from the Oxford University through its investment in Braavos Capital Funds, and intends to widen its mandate to include spin out companies originating from the Cambridge University and Imperial College.

Sygnia Ventures is a venture capital arm of Sygnia Limited, a South African financial services company head officed in South Africa and listed on the main board of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. The company provides asset management, stockbroking and administration services, as well as a wide range of savings products, to institutional and retail investors. 

Sygnia Ventures allocates capital directly to companies associated with UK’s leading universities, as well as to established venture capital funds with a similar focus.  The mandate of the fund is to focus its investments on fintech, healthcare, robotics, quantum computing, consumer internet and other high-growth sectors. In-line with fundraising activity Sygnia Ventures is now looking to add an Investment Principal to the investment team. 


This role falls within the Investment department of Sygnia and would report to Head: Investments in South Africa.  The role is focused on research of unlisted companies spun out of leading UK universities such as Oxford University. The primary interest areas should include life sciences and/or technology innovation.

The duties and responsibilities of this position include (but are not limited to):

  • Qualitative and quantitative research and due diligence of unlisted companies
  • Building partnerships with other leading life sciences/technology investors with a view to forming successful syndicates or investing in their funds
  • Attendance at companies’ roadshows, maintaining contact with management of companies and building of relationships
  • Compiling of research reports and recommendations relating to unlisted companies
  • Market research and competitor analysis
  • Identifying and analyzing the potential in investment opportunities by being able to see the potential of the market, the management team, the technology and the exit pathway
  • Design of the optimal investment structure and negotiation of investment terms, including valuation and governance rights, as well as exit terms
  • Preparation of investment proposals and presentation of recommendations to the Investment Committee
  • Building/coding of internal models for more effective portfolio management and reporting                           
  • Identification of market trends and provision of update the Investment Committees on such trends
  • Assistance with client servicing matters (investor queries, administration, reporting, compliance requirements, preparation of report back presentations)
  • Sourcing and screening of new potential investments relevant to Sygnia Ventures’ investment strategy
  • Support portfolio companies in specific projects and monitor their progress and performance
  • Maintaining and expanding existing network (industry veterans, successful entrepreneurs and management teams) in the relevant field of expertise by attending industry specific/ investor conferences and help source new emerging technologies


  • A finance and/or statistics degree from one of the leading UK universities
  • Minimum of 3 to 5 years’ research work experience in an asset management firm managing private equity or venture capital funds
  • Proven track record in the research and financial analysis of unlisted companies (experience in credit analysis rather than equity analysis is a preference)
  • Experience in researching UK university spin-out ecosystem and relationships with leading UK university incubators will be considered a strong positive
  • Ability to pro-actively reach out to management teams of companies to source potential new investment opportunities
  • Experience in managing and networking with external advisors, particularly in healthcare (KOLs, medical experts, MedTech industry players) to identify attractive early stage life sciences opportunities (from Series A) and to assess their potential


  • A self-starter able to work in a small team
  • A genuine passion for and knowledge of new technologies and business models in the areas of life sciences and/or technology innovation – this includes developing close ties and remaining connected with successful founders/innovators/entrepreneurs in those fields
  • Ability to work independently and with light supervision on complex tasks and projects
  • Communication skills
  • Entrepreneurial mindset and resourcefulness to lead projects independently
  • Ability to interact with Senior Management
  • High levels of integrity
  • Advanced knowledge of Word, PowerPoint and Excel (including advanced functions and modelling) and other required financial software packages (programming skills will be a considered an advantage)
  • Experience with cash flow modelling and investment valuation techniques relevant to unlisted equities
  • Track record in recognizing the indicators of successful management teams (leadership skills, track-record, performance, market reputation), as well as early challenges (e.g. lack of commercial acumen)
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