John Holmes

Andy Campbell Fundraising and Investment, Mentors

John Holmes

Company Overview

Advantage Creative Fund was established in 2003 as one of the first venture capital funds dedicated to investing in the creative industries. Our investment of £5.4m in creative industries companies levered a further £5.9m of private investment and helped stimulate a much healthier investment ecology for the creative industries. We now focus on supporting creative entrepreneurs through the early stages of building their business.

As Managing Director, John Holmes works with our partners on the design and delivery of our creative industries incubator and accelerator programmes, often contributing to the team as a seasoned mentor. 

John Holmes has over 20 years of experience in managing creative and cultural businesses including theatres, arts centres, museums, festivals, and marketing agencies. John typically mentors business owners and Chief Executives in the creative industries sector to help them develop effective plans to realise their potential with a special focus on

  • Business growth, marketing, funding and finance for creative businesses.
  • Income generation, fundraising and audience development for cultural organisations

I mentor founders and owner/managers across all kinds of creative industries business, and my particular areas of experience and interest include: Games; Immersive Tech/Entertainment; Film & Television; Theatre; Music, Museums & Galleries; Live Events.

At Advantage Creative, one of our founding principles is to inspire and equip the next generation of talent, helping creative people grow their business – so I was over the moon when Creative England and Creative Wakefield asked me to join this team of mentors.

Areas of Specialism for Mentoring

My areas of expertise include: Finance and Investment; Business Planning; Pitching; Market Research and Routes to Market; Developing Networks.

John Holmes, Managing Director

Photograph of John Holmes

I have managed a wide range of creative industries skills development, business support and mentoring programmes since 2010, often joining teams of business coaches and mentors in the delivery of these.

I currently manage skills development and mentoring programmes for the Worcester Arches (Cultural Development Fund) programme, British Council Creative Spark projects, and our own Accelerator programme.

Through our work with partners, I am currently a creative industries scale-up mentor on the WMCA and WECA Creative Scale Up programmes, and on the Augmentor Accelerator delivered by Digital Catapult for Immersive Tech startups.