Joe has over 20 years’ experience working as an LP, GP and technology operations executive. Prior to Isomer he was MD for Business Development at Pomona Capital, a leading global secondaries firm, and earlier at Cambridge Associates responsible for advising institutional investors on $2bn of private equity investments. Joe began his career in information technology operating roles, most notably at Invensys plc (now Schneider Electric) in the US and Europe. He received a BS Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth and an MBA from London Business School.
Chris is an experienced founder, advisor, startup mentor and technology executive. Prior to Isomer he was the founding director of the Venture Capital Unit for the UK Government where he cultivated over $1bn invested from the US and Asia into fund and direct company opportunities. As a venture partner at Octopus Ventures and Entrepreneur First he is an active value-add non-executive director and has mentored 15 companies to successful seed funding. He co-founded Cambridge Positioning Systems which sold to a global semiconductor firm in 2007, prior to which Chris worked for 15 years in technology operations at US-based DSC, where he assisted in its $4bn sale to Alcatel, and at Nortel. Chris holds a BSc in Physics and Chemistry from Leeds University.
Thomas has 15 years of experience in the asset management industry and more recently as an entrepreneur developing companies in Italy. He was responsible for the Southern European business of Russell Investments, one of the largest multi-managers in the world, where he worked with some of the most important financial institutions in Europe to develop investment solutions to address their needs. Being fluent in French and Italian, and speaking some Spanish, he helps reinforce our network and insight in continental Europe. Thomas holds degrees from Université Paris IX-Dauphine and Paris V – Descartes.
Catherine has experience as an LP, company founder and lawyer. Before returning to London she worked as a cornerstone LP at BDC Capital, the business development arm of the Canadian government. At BDC she led investments in new venture capital funds including White Star Capital, Real Ventures and OpenText Enterprise Apps Fund. She was instrumental in supporting Canada's venture capital managers by leading the popular FUNDamental Principals events, and education and networking series. Before BDC she was part of the investment team of a North American technology private equity fund and held operational roles with an ethical clothing brand she co-founded and a manufacturing company in which she is an angel investor. Catherine holds an MBA from Oxford University’s Saïd School and a law degree from the University of Sherbrooke.
Savitri has experience growing and developing start-ups and founders from their formative stages through to funding. In her previous role at Entrepreneur First she worked closely with over 600 founders and headed up the EF Company Building team, scaling the programme to help over 200 would-be founders each year to meet their co-founder and start a tech company from scratch. Prior to EF she worked in PR and Marketing at Teneo Blue Rubicon, with tech startups and giants alike, and for the UK government. Savitri speaks five languages and holds a degree from the University of Oxford.
Chloe has experience in supporting technology start-ups and ecosystems, focused mostly in developing countries. In her previous role as a consultant at IMC Worldwide Chloe co-ordinated the delivery of technology-focused entrepreneurship programmes on behalf of clients such as the UK government and the World Bank. This included an accelerator whereby she was responsible for entrepreneur experience and leveraging investor and mentor engagement, and a programme whereby Chloe supported the management of a fund for technology-for-development start-ups. Chloe holds an International Politics degree from Queen’s University Belfast.
Astrid has wide experience of the venture capital industry from roles with market leading venture capital and private markets data and consulting firms. She was most recently a Managing Director and private investments specialist at Cambridge Associates. She advised on private investments portfolios for a number of institutional investors globally, before which she lead Private Investments Research and Performance Monitoring, and was one of the creators of CA’s proprietary private investments databases. Prior to joining Cambridge Associates Astrid was a Manager in Venture Economics’ Analytical Products, Director of Research at Highland Capital Partners, and a research analyst at Charles River Ventures. Astrid currently serves on the investment advisory board of asset management firm Fondaco S.p.A., Turin, Italy. She is a member of the investment committee of Cintrifuse Early Stage Venture Capital Fund, the Selection Advisory.
Pascal is an experienced corporate finance advisor to companies, funds and institutional investors. He has an extensive portfolio of angel investments in early stage technology companies and co-founded London-based investment banking firm Lancea Partners in 2005. Previously he created a private equity advisory business within Credit Lyonnais UK to advise early stage technology and cleantech companies on their development and funding strategies. Pascal spent the first two decades of his career developing first the US, then the European equities business for Salomon Brothers International, subsequently setting up the European equities desk for Nomura International, and then at Credit Lyonnais Securities Europe. Pascal has an MBA from The Wharton School and a BA in economics from Connecticut College.
Andrei is an entrepreneur with experience in corporate strategy, M&A, early stage technology investing, and the founding and building of a number of both commercial and non-profit organizations. He is the CEO of Azurite Trading, an international trading and logistics company which he founded in 2014. He has previously co-founded Blue Wire Capital, an early stage investment firm, and in 2008 A/political, a foundation to support and promote artists working within a socio-political framework. From 2003 Andrei was Head of Business Development at Kazakhmys where he played a key role in its listing on the London Stock Exchange where it became a FTSE 100 company. He is currently a director of Ocean Harvest, Artnews S.A. and a member of the investment committee of Hoxton Ventures. Andrei holds a post graduate degree from Manchester University and a bachelors’ degree in Finance and International Business from Pennsylvania State University.
Industry Advisory Board
Benoit is the founder and managing director of Launchworks & Co, a leading strategy advisory company focused on the development of innovative business models and platform ecosystems. He recently co-authored “Platform Strategy: How to harness the power of communities and networks to grow your business”. Benoit has advised the boards and top management teams of many blue chip companies, regulators and Governments over the past 20 years, previously at KPMG where he focused on Telecommunications, Media and Technology, and as Business Development Director at Telia UK (now Telia-Sonera). Benoit holds Master degrees in Management Sciences and Information Systems from Telecom EM in Paris, a MA in Economics & Competition Law from King’s College, London as well as MBAs from both London Business School and Columbia University in New York City.
Marvin is the chief strategy officer of Sumscope, a market data service company specialised in Chinese fixed income, and a partner of Howood Capital, a fintech investment fund with a focus on payments. He is also a venture partner of Octopus Ventures, supporting the firm and its portfolio companies with Chinese strategy and relationship building. Previously Marvin was a venture capital investor with HSBC’s Strategic Innovation Investment team, and earlier started his career as an investment banker with Torch Partners, a technology-focused corporate finance advisory firm. Marvin received an MSc in Finance (Distinction) from Cass Business School and a Bachelor of Engineering (Electronic Information Technology) from Zhejiang University.
Alex is Chairman of Octopus Ventures. Alex has been in the same position as many entrepreneurs having started, built and sold his own business. He founded Katalyst Ventures with his colleagues in 2000, creating the private angel network prior to its sale in 2007 to Octopus and rebranding as Octopus Ventures. Over the following ten years Alex led Octopus Ventures as CEO building assets under management from under £20 million to in excess of £700 million, growing the team from 4 to 30 with offices in London and New York as well as representation in Silicon Valley, Shanghai and Singapore. Alex remains actively involved in new deal transactions, portfolio management, exits and new fund creation. Under Alex’s leadership, Octopus Ventures has established itself as one of the leading European venture capital houses.
Chris is successful entrepreneur with experience in corporate strategy, globalisation, fundraising, and M&A. His most recent company Ubiquisys, a VC-backed pioneer of the burgeoning cellular small cell industry, was acquired by Cisco in 2013 for $310 million. Today Chris serves as chairman of cybersecurity technology companies Qnective and MIRACL, and Semiconductor IP company Ultrasoc. Previously he held a series of general management positions at Data General and Motorola, after beginning his journey on the entrepreneurial path in Silicon Valley as CEO of IP Wireless. Chris holds a BSc in Physics from the University of Bristol.
Kobayashi-san is a seasoned investor and telecommunications executive, having been part of the senior investment team of NTT Investment Partners (the corporate venture arm of Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corporation) and now advising Singapore-based venture capital fund Digital Media Partners. Prior to NTT Kobayashi-san was part of the management team of CICOM BRAINS, covered Japan’s telecom, broadcasting and advertising sectors for HSBC Securities, and served as BT Japan’s Director of strategy. He started his career at Boston Consulting Group and NTT’s marketing department. Kobayashi-san holds a Bachelor of Law from the University of Tokyo and an MBA from the University of Chicago.
Joost is a partner at Prime Ventures, a leading venture capital and growth equity firm focused on investing in European companies in technology and related industries. He started his career in private equity at AlpInvest Partners (a leading investor in private equity with €40 billion AUM) in 2001 as part of the Fund Investment team where he led a large number of investments venture capital, buy-out and mezzanine funds. He was a member of numerous advisory boards in Europe and Israel. Previously Joost was a senior consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers in the areas of strategy and organisational design and worked as a research fellow at Leiden University. He holds two master’s degrees and a PhD in Theology from Leiden University and Yale University, where he was a Fulbright scholar.
Rupert is a partner of Lyrique Private Equity, a European private equity advisory firm for family offices and wealth managers. He previously served as a non-executive director of Polar Capital Technology Trust, a £1.1 billion investment trust quoted on the London Stock Exchange, and co-founded Greenspring Associates (formerly Montagu Newhall Associates), a leading American venture capital fund of funds manager with $4.2 billion under management. Earlier in his career Rupert worked for private equity advisory firm Altius Associates, and Hambros Bank in London. He holds an MBA from London Business School and an MA with honours from Edinburgh University.
Jonathan is a coach and consultant to private fund managers focused on Venture Capital, Buyout, Infrastructure, Real Estate, and Credit strategies. He has over 17 years of both buyside and sellside experience and brings a unique bilateral perspective to the investment and fundraising process. Jonathan is also a professional actor with credits in theatre, film, television, and commercials. He previously held senior roles with global placement agents Probitas Partners and Matrix Group, founded Eiger Capital, a European technology focused fund of funds, and was instrumental in building and managing a £1.4 billion fund of funds portfolio for Abbey National. Jonathan holds a BSc Economics from the University of Bristol, and an MA Acting from Drama Centre at The University of the Arts, London.
Peter has a 25-year history in the alternative investments industry. Since 1981 he has lived and worked in Dubai, acting as an independent placement agent for leading private equity and hedge funds such as Apax France, Bridgepoint, Castle Harlan, CD&R, Clarus Ventures, Madison Dearborn, Makena Capital, Moore Capital Management and Silverfleet. He works with the major institutional investors in the MENA region and is a personal investor in most of the funds he has represented. Peter started his career at a family-owned engineering company in France, was a management consultant for McKinsey & Co in New York and Paris, and set up offices for FMC Corporation in Vienna and Moscow. He studied at the Sloan School of Management, has a CEP from Sciences-Po in Paris, and is a graduate of Yale University in Mechanical Engineering.