Venture Capital

Wol Kolade on diversity in private equity | Business


As a young venture capitalist in the 1990s, Wol Kolade travelled around the country to scout out opportunities for his firm, Baronsmead. One such trip was to a family-owned meat processor, Slinger Group, near Blackburn. “On the reception they had a board that said, ‘Slingers welcomes Wol Kolade’,” he recalled. “I went in and said, ‘I’m here to see the CEO.’ And they were like, ‘Hmm, who are you?’

“I said, ‘That guy on the board — that’s me.’ You could see a ripple, like, ‘Ooh — something interesting is happening here.’

“The most extraordinary thing was being in the factory. The boss took me from where the carcasses came in to where they took the meat off the bone, and there were big guys


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