Gresham House Ventures invests £4mn in neuro-inclusion solutions leader Cognassist
Gresham House Ventures, a growth equity investor, specialising in scaling companies across a diversified range of sectors, including healthcare & education, consumer markets, technology & communications, and business services, has made a £4mn investment into leading education and neuro-inclusion solutions provider Cognassist.
Cognassist provides a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform focused on identifying and supporting individuals with hidden learning needs, underpinned by extensive scientific research and a vast cognitive dataset. Cognassist was founded in 2019 by successful repeat entrepreneur Chris Quickfall and has already scaled its underlying business within the education market, providing greater social mobility to learners and helping diverse minds to thrive. Quickfall, a thought leader in the space, is supported by Leigh Carlin as COO and Matt McMillan as CFO as the executive management team.
The investment will empower Cognassist to continue its growth within the education market and penetrate the enterprise market, where demand for neuro-inclusive solutions to adequately support employees is rapidly emerging. As part of the transaction, Gresham House Ventures’ talent function supported Cognassist in appointing seasoned entrepreneur Nerissa Naidu to its Board. Naidu was selected as a WEF Young Global Leader in 2019 and brings decades of global corporate experience, including senior executive roles at Accenture and AIG. She will advise Cognassist on its ESG, technology and revenue generation strategies.
As part of its due diligence process into Cognassist, Gresham House Ventures also consulted leading academic, author and professor of psychology Adrian Furnham, who supported the scientific basis for Cognassist’s approach.
The opportunity was originated within the North-East by Matt Jones, who co-led the deal alongside Joe Krancki, evidencing the strength of the team’s regional advisor network and Gresham House’s commitment to investing in businesses that help to deliver a more sustainable economy. Newcastle-based RG Corporate Finance, led by Carl Swansbury, advised management throughout the fundraise.
The investment comes amid a busy dealmaking period for Gresham House Ventures, which has led a recent £4.65mn funding round for climate impact data business Connect Earth, an exit from print management information software business Tharstern, and a £4.5mn investment into specialist eating disorder clinic Orri.
Joe Krancki, Investment Director at Gresham House Ventures, says:
“Having established a market-leading education product, Cognassist is at the forefront of this rapidly developing sector and is well positioned to expand into the enterprise market. The Cognassist team is passionate about transforming how neurodiverse individuals are perceived and supported in the workplace, and we look forward to working with them to increase understanding and productivity across the UK.”
Chris Quickfall, Founder and CEO of Cognassist, says:
“This investment will facilitate a significant expansion for Cognassist into the enterprise market, where our science-backed technology will enable businesses to support neurodiverse employees and ensure they are able to reach their full potential. Gresham House Ventures has an outstanding track record of scaling technology-driven businesses like ours, so we are excited to work with the team over the coming years as we look ahead to the next phase of our growth.”
Nerissa Naidu adds:
“We are finally witnessing increasing recognition of the barriers that neurodiverse employees can face in the workplace, and a growing number of businesses are looking for effective diversity, equity and inclusion solutions that support these individuals. Cognassist aims to do just that and I look forward to working with Chris and the team to deliver on their goals.”
About Gresham House Ventures and Gresham House
Gresham House Ventures is a growth equity investor specialised in scaling businesses with business models driven by technology, customer insight or service excellence. Gresham House Ventures aims to work with ambitious management teams who want the support of a flexible long-term investor who brings capital, insight and expertise.
Gresham House Asset Management is the FCA authorised operating business of Gresham House plc, a London Stock Exchange-quoted specialist alternative asset manager. Gresham House is committed to operating responsibly and sustainably, taking the long view in delivering sustainable investment solutions.