Case Study


April 2nd, 2019

How a private equity specialist gives and gets back from helping an elderly care social enterprise grow

Fredrik Burger and Hertfordshire Independent Living Service (HILS) are a perfect match: not only does Fred live in their area but he’s also the former CEO of a company providing medical and mobility equipment for elderly people.

So when he heard, through Social Business Trust (SBT) corporate partner EY about HILS’ social mission, providing meals delivery and other services to help vulnerable people live independently in their homes, it was something Fred identified with straight away.

Now alongside being EY’s lead Partner advising private equity clients on their operations, Fred makes time to be the SBT Investment Director for HILS, overseeing all elements of the help provided by SBT and being a sounding-board for their CEO, Sarah Wren MBE.

Fred explains: “I went on a round with one of their drivers and got very inspired by it. What they’re doing is fantastic, they make so much good every day.  It’s also so different to my day job and that part of it is great as well.”

Fred’s main role is to support the sustainable growth of the business: “I take part in board meetings as an observer on behalf of SBT and we discuss everything from strategic to practical matters as any board would do. I also sit on a board subcommittee and have regular face-to-face catch-ups with Sarah.”

But he can also be found rolling-up his sleeves and delivering meals himself in an emergency: “I drive a 4×4 so when it snows, I and others with 4x4s help to deliver the meals. People have to eat whatever the weather!”

Fred speaks highly of his involvement with HILS: “It’s fantastically rewarding, particularly the face-to-face interactions with the broader HILS team – to see this tangible benefit and help in society.”

He’s also learning things that help him professionally. “It’s the softer things: I learn a lot from other board members and seeing how HILS operates. They run a lean operation and have to be effective, so they’re very focused on getting things done. It’s a practical and pragmatic way of doing things.”

Sarah Wren is equally positive: “Fred’s a remarkable chap, who gives us his passion, skill and knowledge. Thank you, Fred for bringing so much to us and for bringing so much to the people that we’re serving too.”