BooksThe Lives, Loves and Deaths of Splendidly Unreasonable Inventors EducationCarmel College, Oxfordshire, University of Sussex
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Jeremy Coller (born 17 May 1958) is a British financial executive and philanthropist. He is Chief Investment Officer and Executive Chairman of Coller Capital, the firm he founded in 1990. Financial News has voted Coller one of the most influential people in private equity in each of the past four years. The publication also named him 'Personality of the Decade' in Europe in 2013, to acknowledge his innovation in private equity and the ‘industrialisation’ of the secondaries market. As well as being Chairman of the Jeremy Coller Foundation, his vehicle for philanthropic activities, he sits on the Boards of the Coller Institute for Private Equity at London Business School and the Coller Institute for Venture at Tel Aviv University. He is a member of the Advisory Council of The Elders.
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Early life and education
Coller was born in London on 17 May 1958. He attended Carmel College and holds a master's degree in Philosophy from the University of Sussex, and a BSc (Hons) in Management Sciences from Manchester University School of Management. He also took the Diplome Cours de Civilisation at the Sorbonne in Paris. After building a successful career in private equity, Coller was awarded an Honorary Fellowship by London Business School in 2011. In 2013, he received an Honorary Doctorate from Tel Aviv University.
Coller's early career was spent as Head of Equity Research at Fidelity International. He then joined ICI Pension Plan as a Sector Fund Manager, before being promoted to Venture and Buyout Manager. In this role, Coller pioneered the purchase of secondary positions in private equity and became the first investor in VCFA.
In 1990, he started the first European private equity secondaries fund. Since then, Coller Capital has grown to become a globally recognized leader in the private equity secondaries market. Jeremy Coller is today recognised for leading the industrialisation of private equity secondaries.
He is Chief Investment Officer and Executive Chairman of Coller Capital, which has completed some of the largest transactions in the private equity secondary market. The firm employs around 185 people, and is headquartered in London, with additional offices in New York City and Hong Kong. In 2015, Coller Capital closed its latest secondaries fund, Coller International Partners VII, with total capital commitments of $7.15 billion and backing from approximately 170 of the world’s leading institutional investors. Jeremy Coller promotes entrepreneurialism, in the UK and worldwide, and offers frequent support for the commercialization of innovative ideas.
The Jeremy Coller Foundation is a strategic grant-making organisation, focused on a number of programme areas, including the Coller Institute of Private Equity at London Business School, the Coller Institute of Venture at Tel Aviv University, Animal Welfare and Human Health programmes.
Areas currently under research for future work include: sentient rights and duties; pensions as a tool for economic reform; and career mapping.
The Foundation support the work of The Elders, of which Coller has been on the Advisory Council since 2012.
Coller Institute of Private Equity at London Business School
The Coller Institute of Private Equity at London Business School (2008-2016) sprang from a significant donation to London Business School by the Jeremy Coller Foundation in 2008.
The Institute focused on private equity education and research, and was influential in building bridges between academia and the global private equity industry. The Institute also published Private Equity Findings, a digest of international private equity-related research. (This publication is now published directly by Coller Capital.)
Coller Institute of Venture at Tel Aviv University
The Coller Institute of Venture was established at Tel Aviv University in 2013, with a mission to advance the venture ecosystem globally. The Institute’s work is centred around three key objectives:
To identify the conditions that will lead to compelling venture capital returns for long-term capital providers (e.g., pension plans, charitable foundations, and sovereign wealth funds)
To investigate and communicate best practice in ‘technology translation’ – the creation of new businesses from IP owned by governments, universities and corporates
To promote innovation in venture policy-making and planning, encouraging governments to adopt best practices in legal frameworks, fiscal incentives, behavioural economics, and other areas of public policy.
The Institute produces the Coller Venture Review (previously known as Venture Findings) – a publication aimed at deepening understanding of innovation and the venture ecosystem.
Coller School of Management, at Tel Aviv University
The Coller Institute of Management at Tel Aviv University was established in 2016, following a major donation from the Jeremy Coller Foundation. The donation renamed, and boosted the capacities of, Israel’s leading business school, which has been educating undergraduates, graduates, business managers, and entrepreneurs for over 50 years.
The Coller School is one of the world’s leading management schools, especially in the area of venture and entrepreneurship; its graduates are more successful at attracting venture capital funding than those of many other well-known business schools – ranking the Coller School number 11 globally in this area.
The support of the Jeremy Coller Foundation will allow the School to build on its recent successes in recruiting young faculty, expanding its research, and diversifying and internationalizing its student body.
The Coller School of Management aspires to be one of the leading places in the world for aspiring innovators to build the skills, the know-how, and the networks for success in the world of venture – a mission that will be greatly facilitated by the School’s base in Tel Aviv, which has been recognised by Startup Genome as having the world’s best start-up ecosystem outside Silicon Valley.
Foundation initiatives on factory farming
The Jeremy Coller Foundation is actively engaged in shaping the debate on the unsustainable practices of animal factory farming. The Foundation is taking action on two fronts:
'Influencing capital flows' through ESG (Environment, Social and Governance), by exploring the relationship between investment in animal factory farming and financial returns
Coller Investment Risk Report – establishing the material risks presented by investing in animal factory farming (report to be published September 2015)
Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW ) – supporting the development of BBFAW, a tool for investors to assess corporate animal welfare policies and performance
Farm Animal Investment Risk & Return (FAIRR) Initiative – an investor network to put farm animal welfare on the ESG agenda (see more information below)
'Influencing legislation' related to human health and factory farming
Epidemiological Research – providing an evidential basis for the link between antibiotic misuse on factory farms and antibiotic resistance in humans, and projecting future resistance patterns
Alliance to Save Our Antibiotics – JCF is the main funder of the Alliance, which campaigns for tighter regulation of farm animal antibiotic use
Consequences of meat overconsumption – publishing research and briefing papers on the human health effects and environmental implications of meat overconsumption and production
FAIRR is an investor initiative that aims to put farm animal welfare on the ESG agenda. Launched by the Jeremy Coller Foundation in summer 2015, FAIRR believes that there is a knowledge gap in the investment community around the material risks and opportunities connected with animal factory farming and poor animal welfare standards.
FAIRR provides research to help investors to understand these risks and to support investors to incorporate farm animal welfare into their investment processes. As a framework to do this, FAIRR has developed a set of three aspirational principles:
Investment Decisions. We will consider farm animal welfare as an ESG issue in our investment decision-making process.
Monitoring. We will consider including farm animal welfare in our investment monitoring.
Transparency. We will support transparency on farm animal welfare issues by the entities in which we invest.
Investor signatories to FAIRR commit to implementing these principles.
To date, FAIRR has published the following resources:
An Introduction to FAIRR – overview of the FAIRR initiative and why investors should consider farm animal welfare issues in their investment process.
Considering Farm Animal Welfare in Investment Decision-Making - case studies and guidance for investors on integrating farm animal welfare into the investment process
The Coller Investment Risk Report, the first report to assess material risk presented by the animal factory farming industry, will be published in September 2015.
Human health and the misuse of antibiotics
The Foundation is also supporting activities to better understand and fight one of the most pressing public health issues today: resistance to antibiotics http://www.jeremycollerfoundation.org/programmes/human-health. The Foundation is the main funder of the Alliance to Save Our Antibiotics, which is engaged in promoting better legislation for appropriate use of antibiotics on humans and other animals. The Foundation has also commissioned epidemiological research on the causes and determinants of antibiotics resistance, with the final objective of influencing the global public health action plan.
Honours and awards
Coller has won numerous awards and has often been honoured for his contribution to the private equity and venture capital industries. These include:
Being named one of the Most Influential People in Private Equity by Financial News in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013
Being voted Private Equity Personality of the Decade by Financial News (awarded in 2013)
Outside his professional achievements, Jeremy received an Honorary Doctorate from Tel Aviv University in 2013. Specific mention was given to his vision in guiding the evolution of private equity as an asset class, and his commitment to the worldwide teaching of research in entrepreneurship and innovation, as a means of bolstering the economy. In 2011, he also received an Honorary Fellowship from London Business School. In 2008, he was the recipient of the University of Manchester’s Outstanding Alumnus Award.
Books authored by Jeremy Coller
Splendidly Unreasonable Inventors: The Lives, Loves, and Deaths of 30 Pioneers Who Changed the World.