WOODSIDE, Calif., April 21, 2020 — Runway Growth Capital LLC (“Runway” or the “Company”), a leading lender of growth capital to both venture and non-venture backed companies seeking an alternative to raising equity, announced today that it has hired Rob Lake to head the company’s new Life Sciences practice.
Lake comes to Runway from Bridge Bank, a division of Western Alliance Bank (NYSE:WAL), where he was the founder and group head of its life sciences practice. During his nearly five years with Bridge Bank, Lake was responsible for all aspects of the group including business development, maintaining asset quality, and managing the division’s P&L.
Healthcare companies offer substantial enterprise value; they represent a significant portion of the overall technology and innovation landscape in the U.S. The Life Sciences practice creates another avenue for Runway to further diversify its investment portfolio, and provide healthcare borrowers with access to a seasoned lender who has a positive track record and deep domain knowledge in biopharma, biotechnology, diagnostics, and medical devices.
“Rob brings years of experience and deep sector knowledge, having recently founded and managed a successful life sciences team and national business line for a publicly-traded commercial bank,” said David Spreng, CEO of Runway. “Rob is an exceptional culture fit for our Company, given his commitment to his teams and helping borrowers in the life science space achieve their business goals. What sets Rob apart is his results-oriented approach and more than 20 years of success underwriting and closing new business, while managing and maintaining the credit quality of large, complex loan portfolios of early-to-late stage life sciences companies.”
Over Lake’s lending career, he has funded more than $1.4 billion in loans, while maintaining a low loan loss ratio. At Runway, Lake will continue his efforts to thoughtfully structure loans that support Life Science’s growth and meet the needs of both entrepreneurs and institutional equity holders. Lake will also join the teams that support current borrowers in the life sciences space such as CareCloud and MingleHealth.
“David Spreng and the Runway team have a peerless reputation as lenders and investors, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to join such a well-regarded team of proven leaders in venture debt,” said Lake. “I’ve spent the last few years helping a technology-focused venture bank launch, build, and grow their expertise in the life sciences vertical, and I’m excited to bring this deep institutional and sector knowledge to Runway’s new life sciences practice.”
While at Bridge Bank, Lake was responsible for hiring a team of seasoned lenders and significantly growing assets (loans and deposits) from the ground up – closing approximately 50 debt transactions while managing a very active loan portfolio of life sciences companies. Under his leadership, the life sciences division quickly achieved profitability and soon became one of the highest yielding divisions, and had one of the best operating efficiency ratios, within the entire bank.
Previously, Lake was an executive director at Oxford Finance, LLC, a privately held specialty financial services company that provides capital exclusively to life sciences and healthcare services companies worldwide. He also spent time at Silicon Valley Bank, a publicly traded (NASDAQ:SIVB) financial services company focusing on emerging growth and mature companies in the technology, life science, private equity and premium wine markets. Prior to that, Lake worked for The FINOVA Group, Inc. (Berkshire Hathaway, Inc. / Luecadia National Corporation), a non-bank diversified financial services company and at the American Medical Association.
Lake has a bachelor of arts in business administration from Aurora University and was a four-year collegiate athlete (football). He currently serves as the treasurer and board member for Fresh Start Surgical Gifts, a local charity that provides reconstructive surgery for disadvantaged infants, children, and teens with physical deformities caused by birth, accidents, abuse or disease.
About Runway Growth Capital LLC and Runway Growth Credit Fund, Inc.
Runway Growth Capital LLC is the investment advisor to Runway Growth Credit Fund Inc., a lender of growth capital to companies seeking an alternative to raising equity. Led by industry veteran David Spreng, the Fund provides senior term loans of $10 million to $50 million to fast-growing companies based in the United States and Canada. The Fund is a closed-end investment fund that has elected to be regulated as a business development company under the Investment Company Act of 1940. For more on the Fund and its manager, Runway Growth Capital LLC, please visit our website at www.runwaygrowth.com.
Statements included herein may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Statements other than statements of historical facts included in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements and are not guarantees of future performance, condition or results and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements as a result of a number of factors, including those described from time to time in Runway Growth’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Runway Growth undertakes no duty to update any forward-looking statement made herein. All forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release.