Donald has extensive experience as an entrepreneur and investor in early stage companies focused on opportunities in the emerging markets. His previous role was as Executive Chairman of Intivation the global leader in solar powered mobile handsets, meeting the needs of power-challenged users. Prior to this he was a Partner with ePlanet Capital, recognized as a pioneer of the global venture capital business model.
Padraig has extensive experience of funding and managing the finances of high-growth companies in emerging markets. Previously associated with Digicel Group, one of the world’s fastest growing mobile telecommunications companies, where he was integrally involved in their M&A activities, new licensing opportunities, and as Chief Financial Officer of Digicel Group in the Eastern Caribbean. Prior to joining Digicel he was Financial Controller of Boutique US Investment Bank – Brown Brothers Harriman’s Irish Operations.
Michael joined Syngenta Ventures in 2013. Prior to this he spent several years in Unilever's corporate venturing group in US and UK investing in early stage companies. Before this he worked in Unilever's Foods R&D centre in Holland. He is a Kauffman Fellow, and has degrees from the University of Durham, UK and RSM Erasmus, Holland.
Jean-Christophe Iseux The Baron Pfetten is currently President of the Royal Institute of East-West Strategic Studies and Visiting Professor at the People’s University of China. He was the youngest Ambassador at the United Nations in Geneva at the age of 28 years old (UNCD 1996) and is well-known as the first and only Caucasian member of the Upper-House of Chinese Parliament (CPPCC Changchun 2001-2005 and Shanghai 2009-2012). He was Director of China Studies at the Regulatory Policy Institute in Oxford until 2005 and Special Adviser to the International Department of CPC Central Committee from 2005 to 2009. He is still currently Honorary Adviser to 34 local governments and seven central government units in China. Pfetten serves as a Business Adviser to the CEOs of multinationals, as well as a Foreign Investment Adviser local governments in China including Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Chongqing, Nanjing, Qingdao, and Shenzhen.
Jan plays an active role in identifying new investments and directly supports a number of investee companies, with a focus on consumer-facing marketing services and technology spinout companies. Jan joined Unilever in 1989 where he had a number of international marketing roles including European Marketing Manager for Persil. He also spent four years with Unilever in the UAE. Jan was part of the Corporate Strategy Group that delivered the corporate venturing strategy, and is a co-founder of Unilever Ventures where he has worked since 2002.
David has held senior positions on both sides of the marketing fence. Starting at Saatchi and Saatchi as a graduate trainee he rose to be a Group Account Director. After a brief tenure as Managing Partner at WCRS, he went on to be MD of Lowe Howard-Spink in London, and then Global Director and VP of Advertising for the Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta. David returned to the agency world as President of BBDO Europe and then joined Tempus as a Mian Board Director and CEO of Tempus Partners. Following the purchase of Tempus by WPP, he set up Team Vodafone for WPP and joined Vodafone in mid 2004 as Global Director of Brand and Marketing Communications. He was promoted to Global Brand Director in 2005, and then CEO of Vodafone Ireland Marketing Ltd (VIML) in January 2008, based in Dublin. David left Vodafone in September 2010, returning to live and work in London.
Mark has over 30 years marketing experience gained initially in Unilever where he led a number of senior positions. Together with a partner he started and built The Added Value Group, a consultancy, market research, design and internal communication agency. In 1999 this was sold to Tempus Group, where Mark led the successful acquisition of three marketing services businesses (Nota Bene South Africa, ICC Japan and Fusion Marketing, USA). He was a member of the leadership team that secured an eventual sale of the Tempus Group to WPP for $900m in 2001. Having worked for many years while at Added Value as a consultant to SAB PLC (including on the acquisition team for Miller Brewing Company in the USA), he was invited in 2002 to join the newly-formed board of SABMiller PLC as Global Marketing Director. He is author of “Added Value – The Alchemy of Brand Led Growth” published by Palgrave, and is on the editorial board of Market Leader, the highly respected journal for the UK Marketing Society (of which he is a Fellow). In 2006 Mark moved his family to Cape Town. These days, Mark describes himself as an advisor, investor and writer, with a strong interest in emerging digital marketing businesses.
John joined Unilever from college and initially following a technical career in Engineering, Research and Development and as a factory General Manager. This was followed by a switch into consumer marketing where he had responsibility for a number of food brands including PG Tips, Colman’s and OXO. He also sat on the Board of Unilever’s UK Foods Company. He has been Managing Director of Unilever Ventures since 2002, and is currently Chairman of four portfolio companies including Brandtone.