World of Books Group
Stephen is a co-founder, former CEO and Deputy Chairman of World of Books Group from 2008 to 2021. World of Books is a for profit, circular economy business that protects the planet and supports charities through reuse and recycling. World of Books is proud to be a certified B Corps, using its business as a force for good in the world. Previously, Stephen was Commercial Director of the British Retail Consortium and worked for the British Heart Foundation, setting up the highly successful Furniture and Electrical Division, reusing and recycling unwanted furniture to raise funds for vital heart research.
Family Business United
Founder & CEO
Paul is the founder and CEO of Family Business United, the award winning champions of the family business sector that celebrates the significant contribution of family firms in the UK - income generated, employment provided and wealth created.
Dawn Bonfield MBE
King's College London
Dawn Bonfield MBE
Entrepreneur in Residence
Dawn Bonfield MBE is Royal Society Entrepreneur in Residence at King’s College London working with young people on addressing the Sustainable Development Goals as entrepreneurs. She has been Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor of Inclusive Engineering at Aston University since 2017, and is the Founder & Director of Towards Vision, a not-for-profit which works towards a vision of diversity and inclusion in engineering. She is Past President and former Chief Executive of the Women’s Engineering Society (WES). Dawn is Deputy Chair of the Women in Engineering Committee of the World Federation of Engineering Organisations working on the application of engineering and technology to address gender inequality globally.
Ezechi Britton MBE
Impact X Capital
Ezechi Britton MBE
Principal / CTO
A tech founder with over 15 years experience in FinTech. Ez’s journey has taken him from coder to Co-Founder and CTO to Venture Capital.
He is a Founding Member, Principal and CTO at Impact X Capital Partners LLP a VC fund investing in underrepresented founders.
He is the Co-Founder of Code Untapped, a digital skills accelerator working with diverse & underrepresents technologists.
He is a former Co-Founder of Neyber a multi-award-winning Fintech and an advisor to numerous companies.
In January 2022 Ez was awarded an MBE for services to Diversity and to Young People.
King's College London
Director - Entrepreneurship Institute
Julie Devonshire is the Director of the Entrepreneurship Institute at King’s College London supporting students, alumni and staff to learn entrepreneurial skills, have entrepreneurial experiences and, perhaps, start a venture of their own.
Julie is an award-winning social entrepreneur and business-scaling expert; she scaled One Water, a range of bottled mineral water donating 100% of its profits to build water pumps in Africa.
Julie is an ACCA fellow who is passionate about early-stage entrepreneurs. In 2016 Julie was awarded an OBE, in the Queen’s 90th Birthday Honours List, for her service to entrepreneurship.
Scott is an entrepreneur, investor and speaker in the entrepreneur media industry for the last 20 years. Has founded and co-founded national media companies, offline and online digital publishing and national conferences, awards and exhibitions. Has trained 1,000’s executives in multiple industries and provides regular business consultancy for fast-track start-ups. Currently Brand Director at CEMG the combined publishing and events brand behind Elite Business, Elite Business Live and Elite Franchise, expanding it’s purview includes a range of content for supporting SME fast-track growth companies and digital marketing solutions He’s an experienced host and speaker and known face in entrepreneurial circles.
The Cheeky Panda
Co-founder of The Cheeky Panda along with my wonderful partner Julie. Ranked 6th in the UKs top 100 start-ups, Sunday Times Fast Track 100 OTW and a B Corp. I am passionate to deliver change for good. I regularly feature in the media including podcasts, press, radio and as a keynote speaker.
Chief Executive Officer
Award-winning entrepreneur Jack Hamilton is the Chief Executive Officer at Mash Direct (www.mashdirect.com). This innovative brand combines six generations of the Hamilton family’s farming expertise to produce an extensive range of delicious and award-winning ‘field to fork’ vegetable accompaniments.
Jack now oversees the operational side of Mash Direct and is committed to bringing innovation and quality to the market. He has been integral to the brand’s accelerated expansion and marketing strategy and has helped to grow Mash Direct into a National household name that employs 243 people, with a portfolio of over 50 products.
Head of Business Development
Wes joined Santander in 2019 to lead Business Development within Commercial & Corporate Banking.
His previous role was as Head of Workplace Pensions for Scottish Widows, although he has plenty of experience in banking with more than 20 years in commercial banking.
Wes is married with two daughters, lives in Worcestershire and is a keen football and rugby fan.
Head Dragon ead Dragon & CEO
Rachel Jones is Head Dragon at SnapDragon Monitoring, a brand protection technology business she founded after fighting counterfeits of her own baby product. The diverse and international team now works with SMEs and global brands, removing over £100m of fakes from sale online in the last 12 months alone. With a passion for intellectual property, Rachel is on the EUIPO SME Task Force and was recently appointed to the Board of Equity Gap, an Angel investment syndicate. She was formerly on the Scottish Government’s Trade Board. SnapDragon was awarded a Queen’s Award for Innovation in 2020 and has been widely recognised for its commitment to helping SMEs grow in the face of adversity, and in promoting women in industry.
Business in the Community
Race Equality Director
Sandra works together with business leaders and government policy makers to influence action on race in the UK.
Prior to working at Business in the Community Sandra worked for DWP and the Cabinet Office. Between 2012 and 2016, Sandra chaired the DWP Ethnic Minority Employment Stakeholder Group, advising the Government on employment barriers facing individuals from ethnically diverse backgrounds.
More than 24,000 responses to the Race at Work 2015, 2018 and 2021 surveys provided the evidence to establish the Race at Work Charter which has been recently expanded and now has more than 800 employer signatories. Sandra sits on the Royal Society Diversity Committee, the Office of National Statistics (ONS) Strategic Advisory Board and the Cabinet Office Race Board.
Sandra is a big advocate of mentorship, sponsorship and allyship.
The Supper Club
Chief Executive Officer
Oliver leads The Supper Club team to deliver amazing peer learning experiences to founders of growth SME’s. Online and in-person connections and experiences allow the members to get the peer support they need at the right time on the journey of personal, business and better growth. At the heart of The Supper Club is an ethos of Give and Get. Our members support each other by openly sharing their experiences and learnings. They help each other to grow and to avoid often costly mistakes. Previously Oliver led MindTools.com a global learning business that was sold to Emerald Publishing in 2019.
Specialist Private Equity Investor helping SME’ s grow and create value under challenging and complex situations including stressed businesses. Works closely with Investee Management teams and partners to deliver a commercial and practical approach in getting things done and dealing with the challenges in delivering financial and operational business improvements.
Sector generalist with 20+ years’ experience as an Investor, advisor and banker and with particular expertise in cash management, process/profit improvements and risk management, all of which support value creation strategies.
Sean Longsdale joined Santander in June 2012 to help build out the Structured Finance business in the Corporate & Commercial Bank. The team now incorporates a Financial Sponsors team, who manage Private Equity backed transactions; a Growth Capital team who support high growth SME’s to realise their aspirations with debt capital solutions; a Strategic Debt Solutions team who support businesses with complex and/ or leveraged funding needs such as mergers and acquisitions and a Specialised and Project Finance team, who focus on the renewable energy sector and other niche financing requirements.
Katy began managing the business after her late father and founder of Trent passed away in 2011. The importance of maintaining the family business that he had worked most of his years in building is what motivates her.
Having a background in business management, finance and customer relationships helped Katy endure a steep learning curve and navigate difficult times. She believes that Service and Quality should be of the highest standard in everything we do and continues to strive for this.
The Supper Club
Victoria Nash is Managing Director at The Supper Club, a community exclusively for Founders, whose purpose is to empower entrepreneurs to build better businesses, together. She supports business owners and their teams to succeed by facilitating peer to peer learning, knowledge share and support. Her insight comes from working with and talking to hundreds of entrepreneurs and business leaders about their experiences.
Entrepreneur and Founder of XLN
Christian Nellemann is a serial entrepreneur and the Founder of XLN, which provides low-cost phone, broadband and card processing services for small businesses. The company was bought by Daisy in 2022 for £210 million.
He was born and brought up in Denmark and started his first business in the UK at the age of 22, creating successful companies selling perfume and office products before founding Euroffice.co.uk in 1999 and XLN in 2002.
Christian has won many awards himself and in his book Raw Business he shares his experiences of being a successful entrepreneur. He now chairs Boards and helps early-stage entrepreneurs as an angel investor and mentor.
O'Donovan Waste Disposal
As MD of O’Donovan Waste, Jacqueline is one of the waste and construction sectors’ most passionate pioneers of employee-training, industry best-practice and road-safety. Jacqueline is recognised as an innovator and a leading-force in the industry and is a keen advocate of sustainable-operations as well as encouraging diversity and inclusion. She has received numerous accolades for her work and holds several respected fellowships/affiliations with professional organisations/bodies in the sector. She is a recipient of the Growing Business ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ title as well as the Women’s Economic Forum naming her as their Woman of the Decade in Enterprise and Leadership.
London Export Champion manager
I have been a civil servant for 22 years. My most recent role at the Department of International Trade (DIT) is London Export Champions and Relationship Manger. The main purpose of this role is to manage an ambassadorial/focus group of high exporting SME’s in London. This group is known as the London Export Champions. The main purpose of this group is to Encourage low and potential exporters to export through our marketing campaign and DIT led events. We also used the group for insight into business challenges and barriers that helps shape future policy including Free Trade Agreements.
Centre for Entrepreneurs
Chief Executive Officer
Neeta is CEO at The Centre for Entrepreneurs, which supports UK entrepreneurs through independent research, networks and entrepreneur communities. It also runs the NEF+ which is the UK’s leading development programme for first time founders.
She has over 30 years of experience in the corporate world, spanning financial services, media & publishing, and education. She has also led her own Fintech startup.
She is a mentor and adviser to numerous start-ups led by young entrepreneurs, is an Entrepreneur-Mentor-In-Residence at London Business School, and a Non- Executive Director at the FTSE 250 listed Allianz Technology Trust. She is a board adviser at Tech London Advocates and a board member of City Ventures, City University.
Chief Executive Officer
Brie Read is the founder and CEO of Snag Tights. Describing herself as an ‘elder millennial’ Brie is a passionate believer in the power of digital technology to change the world and people’s lives, and has built her career by being at the cutting edge of the digital revolution. Snag is her first direct-to-consumer e-commerce brand and was inspired by Brie’s own daily struggles to find tights that really fit.
Bradley Scheffer has spent over 35 years selling at the highest level. He was the number one salesperson at Yellow Pages, Canon and Pitney Bowes, he achieved sales of over a million pounds a year in each company. He has run his own sales business for over 27 years, training graduates to experienced salespeople.
Co-Founder & Partner
Co-Founder of award winning VC Haatch, backing entrepreneurs at pre-seed to exit.
Chief Revenue Officer
Aquis Exchange is Europe’s 6th largest exchange by value traded. In the UK it is one of only 2 Recognised Investment Exchange primarily focused on high growth companies. David is responsible for attracting companies to the exchange and ensuring their successful secondary trading. Prior to Aquis David was CEO at 2 PE companies. He began his career in the City at Goldman Sachs.
Bridges Fund Management
Partner, Sustainable Growth Funds
Emma is a Partner on Bridges’ Sustainable Growth Funds strategy, which partners with high growth, purpose-led companies to help them scale-up their operations and impact. She currently sits on the Board of Vegetarian Express, Impact Food Group, Talking Talent and Nkuku.
King's College London
Lecturer, Business Ethics & Sustainability
Catherine Tilley is a Lecturer in Business Ethics & Sustainability at King’s College London. Her research examines two phenomena: first, the ways in which people in companies incorporate sustainability into their decision-making; and second the ways in which complex socio-technical systems adapt to climate pressures. She is a Fellow in Construction Engineering Management at the University of Cambridge.
Prior to working at King’s, Catherine spent over 20 years in management consultancy, mostly at McKinsey & Company. She has an MA and PhD from the University of Cambridge, and an MBA from Manchester University.
Mandy Tucker Consulting
Startup and Leadership Consultant
Mandy has over 20 years’ experience as a Corporate Technology leader as well as being the CEO and Founder of Mandy Tucker Consulting and the “Startup Culture Code” framework helping founders and entrepreneurs scale using corporate strategies and insights. She speaks on leadership techniques, operational strength as well as Culture enablement based on Wellbeing and Emotional Intelligence as a bedrock of any successful new business. Mandy is determined to galvanise new businesses to depart from the norm and improve diversity and inclusion as a way of promoting great places to work and a people centred strategy.
Growing Business Intelligence
Amber is Events Director at Real Deals Media and Director of Growing Business Intelligence.Prior to joining Real Deals Media, Amber spent nine years at Argus Media, developing and building up an events portfolio, spanning the energy industry across Europe and Africa. During this time, she launched the European Biomass Conference, and specialised the launch of events in developing countries including Tanzania, Ghana and South Africa. Since joining Real Deals Media three years ago, Amber has grown the events portfolio across the private equity sphere in Europe, as well as leading and driving the growing business audience via both events and content.
Northumbria University; Institute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship [ISBE]
Senior Lecturer In Entrepreneurship; Trustee
Dr Kayleigh Watson has over 10 years experience as an academic researcher and educator. She has committed her research and teaching career so far to the discipline of entrepreneurship. Kayleigh’s published works have contributed to furthering the research agenda on the value of start-up competitions and business plans, particularly with respect to new venture creation and entrepreneurial learning. Additionally, Kayleigh is an elected trustee of the Institute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, an network for people and organisations involved in small business and entrepreneurship research, policy, education and support.
Head of Research & Consultancy
Henry leads Beauhurst’s Research & Consultancy team. He is an expert on business finance, entrepreneurship and innovation. He has worked on briefs for clients including the British Business Bank, HM Treasury, BEIS and Innovate UK. Henry regularly gives presentations on market trends at events around the country. He studied Classics at the University of Oxford.