Our Team

Matt Truman

Founding Partner & CEO

Matt is CEO and Co-Founder of True Capital and Co-Founder of TrueStart and has been involved in the retail and consumer sector for 16 years. He began his career at Deloitte and subsequently joined Lehman Brothers as an equity analyst, where he was made Head of European Retail. He subsequently joined Nomura and then latterly JP Morgan where he led the European retail franchise. Over his 13 year career in the City, Matt advised a collection of the largest retailers in the world. He co-founded True Capital with Paul in 2008, initially as a private investment vehicle, before launching the business full time in 2013. Matt sits on the board of True Capital portfolio companies, Ribble Cycles and Tyres on the Drive.

Paul Cocker

Founding Partner

Paul is a partner and Co-Founder of True Capital and Co-Founder of TrueStart and has 16 years’ experience in the consumer sector. He began his career at Deloitte, where he met Matt and subsequently spent 7 years as a corporate financier with Dawnay Day and latterly Strand Hanson. In 2008, Paul co-founded True Capital, initially as a private investment vehicle before launching the business full time in 2013. He currently sits on the board of True Capital portfolio companies, Ribble Cycles and Tyres on the Drive. 

H. Ashton Crosby

Investment Director

Ashton joined True Capital in 2015 as Investment Director and has over 10 years of experience in the retail and consumer sector. Prior to joining True Capital, he worked in Business Development at Tesco, during which time he also held positions as Commercial Director and COO of the Harris+Hoole coffee chain. Previously Ashton was an investment banker at Nomura in EMEA Consumer/Retail M&A. Prior to that he lived in New York City and Hong Kong working in emerging market currency trading. During this time Ashton also helped found two Consumer/Retail businesses. Ashton graduated from Trinity College in the USA with a Bachelor’s degree and holds an MBA from HEC Paris, as well as a Master’s ‘Certificat de Spécialisation’ in luxury goods. Ashton speaks fluent Spanish and is conversational in Chinese (Mandarin), French, and Portuguese. 

Serena McCutcheon

Operations Manager & EA to Matt and Paul

Serena joined True Capital in 2016 to manage the Operations and Accounts for True Capital and to provide EA support to Matt Truman and Paul Cocker. Prior to joining True Capital, Serena was an Executive Assistant at Global Insurance firms JLT Specialty and Zurich Insurance, working in Credit, Political & Security Risks and Actuarial Pricing respectively. Serena graduated from the University of Leeds with a First Class Bachelor’s Degree and also holds a Master’s Degree from Leeds University Business School.

Richard Brick

Senior Associate

Rich joined True Capital in 2014 and is a Senior Associate. Prior to joining True Capital, he was at Citigroup within the Investment Banking Division specifically focusing on retail and consumer mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity transactions. At Citi, he worked on a range of projects with some of the world’s leading multinational brands within luxury, e-commerce, and consumer goods. Rich graduated from University College London with a Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy & Economics.

Kalinka Kay

Associate

Kalinka joined True Capital in 2015 and is an Associate. Prior to joining True Capital, she was Head of Business Development at Grace Belgravia, a start-up health and wellbeing platform, where she gained significant operational experience. Previously she worked at Barclays Capital, advising and selling interest rate products to central banks and hedge funds. Kalinka graduated from the University of Bristol with a First Class Bachelor’s Degree in French and German and has completed Level 1 of the CFA program.

James Wain

Associate

James joined in True Capital in 2016 as an Associate. Prior to joining True Capital, he was a Manager in the Retail and Consumer M&A advisory division at PwC. Previously James worked at The Hut Group where he was Head of Commercials in the Lifestyle Division, specifically responsible for the management of online retailer, ProBikeKit. James graduated from Oxford University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Management.

Chris Spira

Operating Partner

Chris Spira is a partner at True Capital and is a specialist in luxury, premium and branded consumer goods. Most recently, Chris has been an investor in and advisor to a wide range of retail clients, including Nicholas Kirkwood, Lulu Guinness, Hussein Chalayan, Mary Katrantzou and Sophie Hulme. Prior to joining True Capital, he was recruited by Texas Pacific Group to join a turnaround team at Ducati. Subsequently, he spent two years as part of a restructuring team at Escada. He has held positions as CEO of Haunch of Venison, a leading contemporary art gallery, and as CEO of Julien Macdonald. He attended business school at SDA Bocconi in Milan and holds a Masters in Modern Languages from Cambridge University.

Advisory Committee

Hannu Ryopponen

Hannu has more than 30 years of experience in international retail. Hannu currently holds non-executive directorships at Amer Sports and Samworth Brothers. He is also the Chairman of the Altor PE-funds. His previous roles include CFO of the IKEA Group from 1985 to 1998 and CFO at Ahold from 2003 to 2005. Hannu was also CFO of PE-firm Industri Kapital (now IK Investment Partners) for four years and his last full time executive job was as CFO and deputy CEO of Stora Enso, the global pulp and paper group, from 2005 to 2009. He was recently the Chairman of the Hakon Invest AB (now the ICA Group) and packing-material Group, Billerud-Korsnas AB. He has also held non-executive roles in companies such as Novo Nordisk, Neste Oil.

Robert Burrow

Robert has over 30 years of experience as an advisor and investor in the retail sector. He is currently Co-Chairman of Chelsfield Group Limited and Chief Executive of Chelsfield Advisers LLP. Since 1985 his previous roles include director of various entities within the Caxton Group including Caxton Global Investments Limited and Senior Partner at S J Berwin LLP (now King and Wood Mallesons) from 1985 to 2007 where he specialised in private and public international M&A.

Sir Ian Cheshire

Sir Ian has over 30 years of experience in retail and is currently Chairman of Debenhams and sits on the board of Whitbread. His previous roles include CEO of B&Q from 2005 and Group CEO of Kingfisher from 2008 to 2015. In 2015, Sir Ian became Government Lead Non-Executive, having formerly been the Lead Non-Executive Director of the Department for Work and Pensions and Chairman of the British Retail Consortium.

Terry Duddy

Terry has over 30 years of experience in retail and is currently Non-Executive Director at Hammerson and a board member for Debenhams. Since 1984 his previous roles include Sales Director of Currys, Product Marketing Director of Dixons and Managing Director of PC World. In 1998, he became CEO of Argos and subsequently Home Retail Group in 2006.

Edward Griffith

Edward has over 20 years of experience in ecommerce and digital marketing. He is currently CEO and Founder of True Capital’s seed investee company, LoveCrafts, which has enjoyed three years of exceptional growth. He previously built the world’s biggest network for teachers (TES Global) based on sharing lesson plans, was the first employee at Boo.com and started his career as a consultant at BCG.

John Strachan

John has over 35 years of experience in retail property. He was formerly Global Head of Retail at Cushman & Wakefield. John was also previously a Partner at Healey & Baker and was a member of the main board. Following the merger with Cushman & Wakefield, he sat on the firm’s UK and EMEA boards, and the Global Advisory Board, and became Global Head of Retail in 2005. He has served on Government and advisory panels including currently the International Council of Shopping Centres Global Board. He is also a Non-Executive Director of Intu Properties plc.