Andy Jones has a nearly 30 year business career with a proven track record of building and growing businesses and creating shareholder value. He has a unique blend of operational and investment success, having worked on “both sides of the fence” as an Operating Executive and an Investor/Board Member. Born and raised in Maryland, he has spent most of his business career operating in Maryland. An entrepreneur at heart, he connects with those that the Maryland Venture Fund invests in and supports because he has “been in their shoes”.
Andy spent 15 years in the venture capital business here locally, starting in the mid-1990s with Frank Adams (former TEDCO chair) and Grotech Ventures.
Recognizing a local market need for early stage capital and also feeding his first entrepreneurial “itch”, Andy left Grotech in 1999 to raise an institutional fund with peers in the venture business. They successfully raised an $85 million 1st institutional fund and the mid-Atlantic office of Boulder Ventures was born.
After 3 successful funds with Boulder and just under $300 million raised and deployed into early stage technology and life science ventures, Andy got the entrepreneurial itch again to do another start-up.
But this time the start-up was an operating business. Andy had spent the last 15 years of his career funding great entrepreneurs locally, but now it was time for him to build a business from scratch. The market opportunity was outsourced back-office financial services overseas, where there was real customer pain. The unique twist was a Software-as-a-Service delivery mechanism which did not exist in the market. Andy teamed up with a long-time friend of his in Annapolis and together they raised a 1st round of venture capital to execute on this opportunity. The business was named High Street Partners. They successfully raised a $6 million 1st round of venture capital from Sigma Partners and Baird Capital, and the rest was history. Two more rounds of venture capital helped them grow the business into a $42 million recurring revenue business in 2014 with 220 employees. In 2014 they received an offer to purchase the business that they could not refuse – a large European private equity player (HgCapital) offered $100 million for the business and High Street was sold.
Prior to joining the Maryland Venture Fund, Andy was recruited to run M&A in North America for a $4 billion market cap public company in Europe named Kingspan. Kingspan is the market leader in energy efficient building envelope solutions. Andy consummated the first ever public acquisition for Kingspan, a $400 million deal in Toronto that achieved significant press and put Kingspan on the map across Canada. Andy completed a few other smaller acquisitions for Kingspan and one divestiture, but was attracted to the Maryland Venture Fund so he could pursue his passion which is financing and growing privately held businesses.
Andy has key experience to bring to his role as Managing Director of the Maryland Venture Fund – 15 years of successful venture capital investing with Grotech and Boulder, a raw startup that he grew into a successful exit with the help of venture capitalists, and public company M&A experience. He started his career in technology in the 1980s in the research labs of Motorola. There he put to use his computer science studies and electrical engineering degrees from Cornell developing patents and new technologies for cell phones back when they were the size of bricks!
Andy received his Masters of Business Administration with a specialization in Finance from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business in 1990. He received his Master of Engineering degree from Cornell University in 1986 and Bachelor of Science from Cornell in 1985, where he studied computer science and majored in electrical engineering.