Level 20 launches committee in Amsterdam

The board of Level 20, the not-for-profit body established to inspire women to join and succeed in the private equity industry, will today launch in Amsterdam with an inaugural event.

The Dutch launch follows the formation of the Level 20 German Committee earlier this year and comes some three years after the foundation of Level 20 in London. The Dutch Committee will be led by Ruulke Bagijn, Managing Director Fund Investments, AlpInvest Partners BV, and comprises a group of private equity investors based in the Netherlands, namely, Ilona Brom, Ellen de Kreij, Brigitte van der Maarel, Cilian Jansen Verplanke and Lesley van Zutphen. The newly formed committee will aim to further the Level 20 objectives, which are:

• Attract more women into the private equity industry across the Netherlands

• Ensure that as many women as possible stay in the industry to develop their careers

• Support women who have the ability and the determination to reach the most senior levels of the industry

To achieve these goals, the committee will organise and run events and initiatives based on those that have proven successful both in the United Kingdom and Germany, tailored for the local market and including:

• Networking events, from breakfasts for smaller groups to larger events for all members

• An outreach programme for top business schools and universities

• A mentoring programme, where male and female mentors regularly meet with mentees for both formal and informal guidance sessions

Ruulke Bagijn, Managing Director Fund Investments, AlpInvest Partners BV, said: “I strongly believe that achieving greater gender diversity will benefit the European private equity industry as a community, while also serving as an important driver of investment performance. With the support of leading figures in the Netherlands and the backing of the impressive Level 20 team in the UK, I look forward to replicating the success the organisation has seen in the UK and Germany.”

Jennifer Dunstan, Chair of Level 20, said: “Level 20 was launched with the vision that it would be a European organisation; it is wonderful that our local committees in Germany and now the Netherlands are bringing this to life.”

Jeryl Andrew, CEO of Level 20, said: “The establishment of our second overseas committee is an exciting moment for Level 20, following a year which has seen a significant expansion of the scale and scope of our activities. We are delighted that senior professionals across Europe are working with us, supporting our mission, and expanding our organisation internationally.”

Level 20 now has 1,800 members, spread across the UK, Europe and beyond, and has received financial backing from 46 GP sponsors. It is working across Europe with senior industry professionals with the aim of launching more committees in additional geographies.

The Level 20 launch event in the Netherlands is being sponsored by AlpInvest Partners BV, Wilshire, Bencis Capital Partners and NIBC Bank NV.