Incubator Modules and Workshops are facilitated by a team of successful entrepreneurs, institutional players, leading venture capital investors, experts, and guest speakers - including below:
Incubator Facilitators & Technical Partners
Lisa Lambie - Chief Executive & Trustee, Positive Planet UK. 20+ year track record as a successful entrepreneur, corporate executive, and board member spanning private equity, Family Office investments, investment banking, operations, and venture capital incl. extensive experience in funding and mentoring entrepreneurs and SMEs. Responsible for strategy and management of PPUK, as well as a key role and responsibility in developing and funding programs for Positive Planet in Africa. Prior to PPUK, Co-Founder of SHIL Private Investment Office making direct principal investments and providing investment advisory in Europe and Africa; Managing Director and Keyman for $212mm Africa Private Equity Fund – joint GP with Actis LLP; Barclays Capital Director for Emerging Markets Structuring and Head of Distribution/Capital Markets Sub Saharan Africa, at JP Morgan and BAML ~ Director for EMEA Leveraged Finance & Financial Sponsor Coverage with primary responsibility for The Blackstone Group and Clayton Dubilier & Rice; Co-Founder and headed Investment Banking / Corporate Finance for 2nd largest financial institution in Caribbean. Boards have included PPUK, Institute of Directors (Highlands & Islands, Scotland), AfrAsia Bank, Mecene Investments, CALLEFI, Intl. Lawyers for Africa, Canadian Council on Africa, Ethiopian Childrens Fund, The Wharton Club of Africa (Founder); Global Co-Chair of WCA Family Office Network of 400+ single family offices. BSE in Civil Engineering from Princeton University and MBA in Finance from The Wharton School.
Gillian Rowe - Program Manager, PP Womens Venture Incubator 2019. Gillian Rowe is a successful entrepreneur and experienced program coordinator with 10+ years of project management experience. She is the Founder of Lex Nova Core, a professional EU project management and administration firm; Co-Founder of Read For Life Inc, a literacy focused non-profit organisation; as well as, an award-winning author of the children’s book ‘But Johnny Didn’t Hear Me’. She is passionate about tech-enabled ventures and internet governance, being a member of the Internet Society. As a member of JCI International she also contributes to youth development and youth-led projects impacting countries. She is a student member of the International Bar Association, and is currently completing an LLB in Law at Northumbria University UK.
Joanna Michaels - Social Media Strategist – PPUK | Founder – Beyond Social Buzz | Trainer - Facebook. Joanna is a social media marketer, international speaker, lecturer, published author and Founder of Beyond Social Buzz. Effective and engaging social media trainer who delivers regular talks and workshops for start-up hubs, universities, and a wide range of organisations. One of 25 nationally accredited She Means Business Trainers for Facebook and delivers regular events for female founders. Joanna brings a wealth of knowledge in helping start-ups and established SME businesses build their brands on social media and convert followers into customers.
Prof. Lynne Cadenhead - Angel Investor & Entrepreneur | Chairwoman, Women’s Enterprise Scotland (WES) | Presenter & Ambassador, Women on Boards UK | Advisory Board, Technology Scotland | CEO, Quest Game Director, Emotional Sciences | Chair (Scotland), UNICEF UK | Advisory Board (Business School), Edinburgh Napier University. WES is a catalyst for economic growth and inclusion, working to create an environment where women can start up in business and thrive. WES has multiple private and public sector partners including RBS/Natwest and the South Eastern European Women’s Business Angel Network. Lynne is an entrepreneur and business angel investor working with and investing in a variety of technology and retail companies.
Gary Stewart - Managing Director, WAYRA - Wayra is Telefónica´s accelerator for digital start-ups in Europe and Latin America that has invested in almost 800 start-ups. Gary Stewart is the Director of Wayra UK and Wayra Social Ventures. Our 180 start-ups have raised $230 million, are worth more than $750 million and have closed contracts worth more than $15 million with Telefónica. We run 10 programs in 7 cities throughout the UK. Gary is also Former director of Wayra Spain, overseeing hubs in Barcelona and Madrid. Redesigned and relaunched IE Business School's accelerator for MBA students, and taught entrepreneurial management courses to MBAs. Proactive, exited Entrepreneur. Co-Founder of Nuroa.com, an Internet start-up that raised $4 million+ before being sold to a competitor that was itself sold for $135 million. Results-oriented, highly creative, out-of-the-box strategic thinker. Yale-trained lawyer with first-class experience in top global law firms. Specialized in mergers and acquisitions and securities law. Graduated magna cum laude (first honours), Phi Beta Kappa (National Honour Society) from Yale College. Was one of two Executive Editors at The Yale Law Journal. My article on police discretion in The Yale Law Journal has been cited 139 times.
Siân Prime - Director for Creative & Cultural Entrepreneurship; Head, MA & MSc Social Entrepreneurship Program; Lecturer in Digital Entrepreneurship; Management of Innovation; Fashion Design | Goldsmiths Institute (University of London). 20+ years experience in working with start-up and mid-stage enterprises and entrepreneurs in the UK and globally; as well as, advising corporations in value creation, leadership, corporate entrepreneurship, and innovation. Co-Investigator into new digital business models and online audience development approaches, and currently writing a book for publisher Routledge on Cultural and Creative projects and sustainability. Worked to deliver business advice, training and coaching for social innovation start-ups, creative individuals and organisations. She has also developed a blended learning approach to training mentors and people wishing to develop careers in the creative industries. Clients have included UK’s Combined Arts Venue Network, Natverkstan, Globalverkstan Goteborg, IIMB Bangalore, ITB Indonesia, the GoDown, Arts Council England, Cultural Enterprise Office, Scotland and Comic Relief’s Tech for Good, Istituto Luigi Sturzo Italy, ENCATC, Romatre University, Italy and the Leisure Studies Institute of University of Deusto, Spain, funded by the European Commission’s Life Long Learning Fund.
Iyinoluwa Aboyeji - Co-Founder & CEO, Flutterwave | Co-Founder, Andela “Entrepreneur in the Public Interest looking for opportunities to impact a billion lives”. Iyinoluwa Aboyeji has been blazing a trail across the innovation and technology space in Africa; and is passionate about building the future by working with the fastest growing entrepreneurial communities to leverage technology as an instrument of change. Co-Founder of Andela in 2014, which is today Africa’s largest engineering organisation with over 1,000 software engineers, later invested in by Mark Zuckerberg and Google Ventures amongst others. Andela recently closed in 2019 an additional capital raise of US$100mm one of the largest ever for a tech start-up globally. Co-Founder & CEO of Flutterwave in 2016 (one of the largest Africa Fintech start-ups to date) which has processed close to US$2 billion in payments across 50 million transactions and has attracted significant investment from Mastercard, Y Combinator, Greycroft, Omidyar Network, Greenvisor Capital. Member of Nigerian President’s Industrial Policy & Competitiveness Advisory Council. World Economic Forum Young Global Leader.
Raj Kulasingam - Senior Counsel, Dentons LLP | Angel Investor and Entrepreneur. Raj is an investor in multiple companies and advises on structuring and investing in various sectors including in the UK real estate sector. 20+ years of experience providing legal and strategic advice on private equity transactions, M&A, corporate/commercial, energy and infrastructure transactions in Europe, Middle East, Asia and Africa. A frequent speaker on private equity, financing energy and infrastructure projects; and writes a monthly column on finance and infrastructure for Financial Nigeria/Nigeria Development Finance Forum.
Kanini Mutooni - Chairman, Global Innovation Fund (GIF) | Chairman – Advocacy Accelerator | Managing Director (EMEA), Toniic Institute. Transforming ideas into impact - improving lives through social innovation. GIF is a non-profit innovation fund headquartered in London that invests $50k to $15mm per venture in the development and scaling of social innovations that aim to improve the lives and opportunities of millions of people in the developing world. Since 2014, GIF has backed 40 innovations and reached 28 million people. GIF uses rigorous evidence and development economics to identify and invest in high-impact early-stage enterprises situated in the funding gap between angel and later-stage investors in private equity and development finance. Toniic is the global action network and community for qualified angel and impact investors with members in over 20 countries. Prior, Kanini was Director for Investment at the $65m USAID-funded East Africa Trade & Investment Hub; set up the first UK platform for SME funding over $50m in debt capital in Eastern and Western Europe. Investment Committee for African Enterprise Challenge Fund, a $250m impact fund. Recognised by Barclays Wealth as one of the most influential women in the City of London. World Economic Forum Young Global Leader for exceptional leadership in business, health, and global entrepreneurship.
Emily Nott - Head of Diversity & Inclusion Programmes, Innovate UK. Innovate UK is the UK's Innovation agency that works with people, companies and partner organisations to identify and drive science and technology innovations that will grow the UK economy. Since 2007, Innovate UK has invested over £1.5 billion in innovation, matched by a further £1.5 billion in partner and business funding, and has helped more than 5,000 innovative companies in projects estimated to add £7.5 billion to the UK economy, and created 35,000 new jobs. Innovate UK spearheads various award programs including Women in Innovation Awards and recently launched a global review of diversity and inclusion in business innovation.
Nzube Ufodike - CEO, Amoo. Nzube Ufodike is an entrepreneur and advisor to early and growth stage businesses, primarily in the FinTech sector, in the UK and emerging markets. Currently, he is a director at Aurora Equity Partners, and an Investment Manager for a large international corporate Tech Accelerator, based in London. Previously, he led Strategic Partnerships and was a Digital Product Owner for an award winning technology vendor to the wealth management industry. Before that, he was part of a team at UBS SmartWealth that built and launched the UK's first FCA regulated robo-advisor, focused on the mass affluent wealth segment. Prior, Nzube founded Amoo Venture Capital Advisory, a boutique TMT focused firm. During that time, he screened thousands of start-ups, met with several hundred, and had the privilege to engage dozens of disruptive clients including Pavegen, Intern Avenue (acquired by Bright Network), Fits.Me (acquired by Rakuten), and CloudByte. At Amoo, he also raised over £3.5mm for several start-ups.
Yvonne Greeves - Enterprise Management and Head of Women in Business at Natwest, RBS & Ulster Bank. Yvonne is responsible for the strategic direction and delivery of the Women in Business strategy andprogramme for NatWest & the Royal Bank of Scotland across the UK, working with key stakeholders both internally and externally across the UK to deliver tangible results and return on investment. Responsible for the bank’s Business Banking’s Enterprise Strategy, and delivering the Scotland-specific Enterprise Agenda for Enterprise Education, Diversity, and Entrepreneurship. Trustee for Firstport Scotland supporting social enterprises and entrepreneurs. Chairwoman of Msmissmrs. MBA from University of Glasgow.
Simona Maellare - Global Head of Financial Sponsors & Private Equity Clients for UBS Group AG. Based in London, Ms. Maellare is recognised as one of the FN 100 Most Influential Women for past 5 consecutive years, 2014-2018. Member of UBS Global Management Committee, EMEA Risk Committee, Global Client Franchise Executive Committee. Previously at JP Morgan, DLJ, Banc of America Merrill Lynch. Masters Degree summa cum laude in Economics, Università Bocconi (Milan).
Rosalind Kainyah MBE. Rosalind Kainyah MBE is an experienced professional Non-Executive Director and trusted advisor to global companies on responsible business investment and partnerships. She ensures that her clients’ operations have positive socioeconomic impacts on the countries in which they operate, whilst realising optimal financial value. In addition to currently serving on the Boards of several leading companies she was previously VP of External Affairs and CSR at Tullow Oil and was responsible for setting up De Beers USA. Rosalind was awarded an MBE in 2019 and named one of the top 50 Leading Females professionals of Black, Asian and other Minority Ethnic (BAME) women. Rosalind began her career as an environmental lawyer, then as a corporate lawyer at Linklaters. Rosalind is a Non-Executive Director of Aker Energy ASA; CAL Bank Ghana; GEMS Africa; Invest in Africa.
Lu Li - Founder, Blooming Founders. Lu Li is the founder of Blooming Founders founded in 2015 and today one of the largest female entrepreneur networks in the London metropolitan area. Blooming Founders is a platform that leverages the power of networks to help early stage female entrepreneurs and diverse teams succeed; runs an award-winning co-working space in Shoreditch; and offers professional services to corporates and government entities. Author of “Dear Female Founder”, a collection of personal letters written by 66 female founders from 20 countries. In her previous corporate career, Lu launched FMCG products for Procter & Gamble across Western Europe and has worked on several consulting projects for McKinsey, BMW and T-Mobile.
Dr. Zeynep Kaparoglu - Innovation and Information Systems, London School of Economics (LSE). Dr. Kaparoglu has a PhD in Digital Innovation and Information Systems, and has been teaching at the LSE since 2015, covering a range of topics including Innovation Management, Strategic Management, Marketing, Consuming Behaviour, and Information Systems. Prior to the LSE, she worked in the banking sector on innovative projects such as Contactless Payment and 3D Secure Payment for e-commerce. Dr. Kaparoglu works with 120+ MSc students in digital innovation in the LSE Design Spring Bootcamp as part of the LSE faculty and industry consultants, helping entrepreneurs go from idea to design and prototype in just five days.
Christine Al Khalil – Founder of Aculeaders and Business Thinking Partner. Christine is a personal executive coach, team coach, facilitator and a trainer in leadership with 17 years of professional experience. She is also a Psychotherapist specialising in the systemic approach and uses neuroscience at work, and believes in a multi-disciplinary approach to helping businesses thrive! As an entrepreneur herself, she was part of a FinTech Startup that is nowadays number one in its niche worldwide. She has also created with one of her business partners a Leadership Program designed specifically for VCs and startups. She has been there … As an INSEAD alumni, she adheres to “Business as a Force for Good”. Hence, her great interest in entrepreneurship, especially in how to plant the seeds as early as possible for a “Built to Last” enterprise, and how to create an organisational culture of learning and innovation. Fluent in English, French, and Arabic, her motto is Dare to Know, Dare to Think, Dare to Lead!
Aculeader is a professional executive coaching firm with individual and corporate clients incl. Google, Gefco, Equinix, CWT, Cambridge University; working with CEOs, Founders of startups, and corporate executives in the UK, EMEA, and Russia. Her eclectic career path has made her a bridge builder between different cultures and disciplines, with both a passion for business and deep understanding of the human psychology and its potential. She has spent years working with investment banks at a global level, and created new roles, set up new strategic departments, bridged businesses to IT solutions, managed multi-millions strategic accounts, to stakeholders’ management … leading diverse and global teams of exceptionally talented people!
Sharniya Ferdinand - Natwest RBS Business Inclusion Program Coordinator, Commercial & Private Banking. Sharniya has worked for NatWest for 7 years and currently leads a customer led strategic program of inclusion activities across Natwest for corporate clients. Sharniya’s previous roles involved her being a trusted advisor to her customers, supporting them with their financial needs and hosting educational business focused events to encourage customers to grow and exceed their business expectations. She is passionate about diversity and inclusion and empowering those who are under-represented in their industries and communities, she supports the banks aspiration to be a truly inclusive place to work. BSc (Hons) in Psychology from the University of West England, Master’s Degree in Events and Exhibitions Management.
Nathan Jones - Principal Solutions Engineer, Salesforce. Nathan has worked in Media & Technology for the past 18 years. His experiences includes TV & outdoor media buying for both networks (ITV) and agencies (Mindshare) servicing global FMCG brands. Nathan has also helped setup Account Management practices for MySpace, also playing a pivotal role in creating the Account Management team at Buddy Media (Social SAAS software) across EMEA. Joining Salesforce in 2011, Nathan has held multiple roles helping customers maximise their investment as a Customer Success Manager. Project Managed & deployed Salesforce software globally as part of our Consulting team. For the past 5 Nathan has been a member of the MC SE team, supporting our sales teams educating customers by demonstrating how our technology can help overcome business challenges.
Cyrus Hessabi – Sales Engineer, Salesforce. Cyrus is a French-British-Persian aeronaut and technologist. He currently operates as a sales engineer at Salesforce, working as an advisor to Fortune 500 aerospace, automotive, electronics and manufacturing companies on digitalization with Salesforce. Among other initiatives, Cyrus has been working to develop partnerships with numerous social impact ventures, including Positive Planet but also The Conduit Club. Cyrus graduated from Imperial College in Aeronautical Engineering.
Kevin Hurst - Head of Marketing (EMEA), Salesforce.com Inc. Kevin heads a team of high-performers across EMEA who create cutting edge marketing strategies for the world’s biggest brands to create innovative, multi-channel digital marketing programmes that leverage the full power of Salesforce marketing cloud. Clients include Philips Electronics, Barclays Bank, PwC UK, Teva Pharmaceuticals and Align Technology. Salesforce.com is an American cloud-based software company headquartered in San Francisco, California. Though the bulk of its revenue comes from its customer-relationship management (CRM) service, Salesforce training also sells a complementary suite of enterprise applications focused on customer service, marketing automation, analytics and application development. Salesforce was ranked first in Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work for in 2018.