Ernest Lyles is Founder and Managing Partner of The HiGro Group, a mission driven private equity firm focused on the lower middle market. Since founding The HiGro Group in 2016, Ernest has invested in and acquired five companies with cumulative assets over $100 million transaction value. As Managing Partner, Ernest oversees all aspects of the firm including investment activities, growth initiatives and talent management. Additionally, he serves as a Board Observer of EMSAR and Lead Director of DRS Imaging Services, two HiGro portfolio companies.
Prior to founding The HiGro Group, Ernest spent a decade as an Investment Banker with UBS Investment Bank. His tenure included advising some of the most notable global corporations and private equity firms including Apollo Global Management, CACI International, The Carlyle Group, General Electric, IBM and Xerox. As the Head of Technology and Business Services at UBS Investment Bank, Ernest became the most senior African-American investment banker within the firm's industry coverage groups. In addition to his transaction and business development experience, Ernest served as Head of the Diversity Task Force and Head of the Howard University recruiting team among other internal committees.
A current resident of New York with his wife and two daughters, Ernest serves a number of non-profit organizations focused on education and community development. That includes Director of Scan / Harbor, Trustee of Manhattan Country School and Director of the West Harlem Development Corporation. Ernest is also a member of the New York Economic Club and Founder of the UTULIVU Group, a mission driven non-profit focused on the continuity of holistic achievement by high performing Black men.
Ernest attended The Howard University School of Law in Washington DC and Shepherd University in West Virginia where he was raised.