Our Mentors

nexuslab focuses on exposing and connecting startups to an expanding community of key mentors and advisors that provide expertise from a multitude industries, roles, and regions vital in growing a business.

These mentors are the best and brightest entrepreneurial minds around and will work hard with our startups to accelerate them.

Back to nexuslab

Addy Crezee

CEO, Investors' Angel

Addy Crezee is a Bitcoin enthusiast since 2013. Beginning of 2014 has become the year of changes when he entered the doors of CoinTelegraph. Addy was working as the CMO and tried to show his best in developing growth, sales and marketing. He has done marketing for more than 50 Blockchain and Bitcoin companies and helped to secure $800k for Blockchain startups since the end of 2015. In August 2015 he founded his own project Investors’ Angel – Blockchain  Consultancy agency. Investors’ Angel has helped to raise $800k for Blockchain-oriented startups up to this moment.

Skills: Fundraising, Marketing, Strategy, Networking

Marc Wesselink

Selection & Alumni Partner, Startupbootcamp

Marc Wesselink is a Serial Entrepreneur. He started 12 companies in FMCG, Home Electronics, Healthcare, E-commerce, HR and Finance. Marc is extremely knowledgeable in a wide range of fields such as business strategy, product, marketing, sales, which can help entrepreneurs to maintain a 360 degree view on their business. He is a motivator, a business coach and a critical optimist. At Startupbootcamp Amsterdam, Marc is responsible for the selection process as well as managing the needs of 72 alumni startups. In this role, Marc talks to over 500 startups per year and strives to help them start and survive their businesses in the crucial first 3 years.

Skills: Serial Entrepreneur, Mentor on Business, Product & Organization, Inspirator

Yessin Schiegg

Member of the Advisory Board, Ethereum Foundation

Yessin Schiegg is the CFO of Alpha Associates AG, an asset management firm in Zürich, which provides services in relation to private equity, private debt and infrastructure investments. Previously, he was engaged in the private equity businesses of BlackRock, Swiss Reinsurance Company, and Horizon21. Before that, he was a senior auditor at PwC, serving banks and asset managers. He graduated from the University of St.Gallen in Switzerland, where he studied Finance. Yessin is a Swiss CPA, a CFA Charterholder, and has achieved the CAIA designation. Moreover, he is serving on the Board of the Ethereum Foundation in Zug, providing advice relating to financial, legal, and regulatory subject matters.

Skills: Start-up advisory, Private equity, blockchain and smart contracts, strong academic background

Mathias Wegmueller

Head of Business Development, Qumram

Mathias Wegmueller is a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of Denkplatz and Qumram. He is also board member at Meteotest. Mathias is an experienced advisor for digital transformation & project management.

Skills: Business Development, Sales, GoTo Market Strategy, Digital Transformation, Project Management

Stephan R. Goethel

Attorney at Law/ Partner, Pier 11

Prof. Dr. Stephan R. Göthel is attorney at law, mediator and a founding partner of the Hamburg based law boutique Pier11. He is specialized in the areas of corporate law, mergers & acquisitions, venture capital and start-ups, and has a special focus on companies in the tech, media, communications and consumer industry. Further, he is Professor of Company Law at BSP Business School Berlin. Stephan R. Göthel studied at the Universities of Münster (Dr. jur.), Lausanne and Strasbourg as well as the University of Michigan Law School (Visiting Scholar) and Cornell Law School (Master of Laws, LL.M.).

Skills: Legal and strategic advice in the areas of corporate law, mergers & acquisitions, venture capital and start-ups

Joe Robinson

VP Risk & Data Science Products, Circle

Joe Robinson is an executive at Circle, a personal finance company backed by Accel Partners, General Catalyst, and Goldman Sachs. He previously worked at Square, where he was product lead for Square Dashboard and Square Online Stores. Joe runs Designers + Geeks, one of the largest communities of designers and technologists in the world. Drawing from his experience in disruptive financial technologies, he speaks at conferences internationally about design and the evolution of money. Joe is an investor in several technology ventures, and provides mentorship to companies at TechStars, Hackers/Founders, and FinTech Fusion in Switzerland. You can find him on Twitter as @i8joe.

Skills: Product Design, Product Management, Marketing, Risk, Fundraising, San Francisco Networking

Mark Berger

Director, Bank Vontobel

As entrepreneur, coach and digital consultant, Mark has been involved in the startup and digital services business for more than 15 years. As COO & Head of Business Development at partyguide.ch (acquired by Axel Springer 2008) he contributed significantly to its establishment and realized many projects for national and international companies.
Startup acceleration is Mark’s passion. That is why he has supported many early-stage companies through the development and growth of their business activities.

Skills: Digital and Online Marketing, Ecommerce, Digital Strategy, Venture Capital, Investment, Banking

Diana Biggs

Founder & Managing Director, DCCB Ltd.

Diana is an advisor and executive based in London, UK where she consults on strategy and innovation in financial services and technology, with a focus on blockchain, digital currency and financial inclusion. She is currently leading partnership development in UK & EMEA for Uphold, a global cloud-based financial services platform that allows both consumers and businesses to benefit from inclusive and transparent finance.
Previously, Diana was Chief Strategy Officer for Soko, a Kenya-based mobile technology social enterprise revolutionizing models of international trade, prior to which she spent five years with Oliver Wyman Financial Services, where she advised Fortune 500 firms, governments, and investors across Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East and founded the organization’s microfinance group. She was recently named one of the top Fintech Influencers in the UK and one of the most Powerful Women in the City by CityA.M. Diana is an advisor and executive based in London, UK where she consults on strategy and innovation in financial services and technology, with a focus on blockchain, digital currency and financial inclusion. She is currently leading partnership development in UK & EMEA for Uphold, a global cloud-based financial services platform that allows both consumers and businesses to benefit from inclusive and transparent finance.

Skills: Business Strategy and Operations, Strategic Communications, Blockchain Technology, Digital Currency, International Development, Emerging Markets, Investor Network

Urs Bernegger

Founder & CEO, Helvetii Consulting

Urs Bernegger began his career as a bank apprentice in Zurich, learning the ins and outs of banking services and operations with the highly customer-focused Julius Bär Group. Subsequently he joined the bank’s FX division, where he helped grow a great franchise in a succession of progressively responsible trading roles, prompting the bank to appointme to run its New York FX spot trading department. While in New York, he was recruited by AIG Trading Group to serve as Senior Vice President and Senior Trader FX Spot. Between 1993 and 2010, Urs worked for UBS Investment Bank in the US and Switzerland, with regional and global responsibilities respectively. Roles held with the bank include Chief Dealer of the North America FX Spot Desk, Head of FX Spot & PM Trading for North America/Deputy Global Head and Global Head of FX Spot & PM Trading. Urs moved to Bank Vontobel in 2013. As Managing Director and Head of FX & PM at Vontobel, he established a new FX setup involving a shift to electronic trading and straight through processing, including integration of the Investment Banking (IB) unit’s structured products desk. In 2016, he founded Helvetii Consulting advising on strategy to improve efficiency and results in all areas of electronic FX, addressing Buy- and Sell Side needs as well working with Fintech companies to position their products in the FX market.

Skills: FX Markets, Strong Network in FX Sector, Designing and Implementing electronic workflows, Risks of Payments and Currencies

Björn Lapakko

Growth Hacker, Funderbeam

Björn Lapakko grew up in Minneapolis. He had the pleasure to work with brands like Microsoft, 3M, and Best Buy. Now, Björn is living in Tallinn, Estonia learning about the blockchain and life within a startup.

Skills: SEM, Social Advertising, Experiential Marketing / Advertising, Conversion Marketing, Social Media: Content & Community, Content: Long & Short Form, SEO

William Dougherty

Chief Investement Officer, CTI Invest / QDN Partners

William, CIO of family office QdN Partners, is involved with a number of Swiss startups both through his QdN Partners affiliation and as a business angel investor. Prior to joining QdN, he worked for a New York-based private equity firm facilitating deal flow in the healthcare and information business services sectors. He also has experience working for a multinational IT company and a strategic business consulting firm.

Skills: Business Strategy, Experienced Investor, Private Equity, Bitcoin

Huw Evans

MD, Head of FX, Rates and Credit Business Transformation, UBS

Huw has spent over 20 years at the forefront of the changes sweeping the world’s financial markets, principally as COO and leader of strategic change for UBS’s global FX business. In the 2000s he initiated and led a major transformation programme that re-engineered the entire business around e-commerce while halving the business’s cost base, which launched UBS to become a world leader in foreign exchange. Huw has led and participated in many industry-wide initiatives, including chairing the Global Financial Markets Association FX Committee since inception in 2009. Prior to UBS, Huw worked for Andersen Consulting (now Accenture) on projects for financial institutions and securities exchanges around the world. Huw has a degree in Mathematics and Philosophy.

Skills: Business Modeling, Value Creation, Efficiency and Scalability

Henrik Herr

Head Private Banking Germany/ Austria, Credit Suisse

Henrik Herr has more than 23 years of experience in the Private Banking Industry with Deutsche Bank as well as Credit Suisse. Today he is responsible for all German and Austrian Private Banking Business within Credit Suisse.

Skills: Wealth Management, Passion for people and learning

Guido Rudolphi

Entrepreneur

Guido Rudolphi first got in contact with computers when he was six years old – which is almost 50 years ago. After a career in journalism, he became a computer and internet-forensics expert and as such got in contact with Bitcoins pretty early. Today, he is active in a Bitcoin-company and one of the persons behind the project «Bitcoin-Bank» in Switzerland.

Skills: Blockchain Technology, Ethereum, Bitcoin, Coding, Forensics

Lucas Betschart

Founder, Blockchain Source
Lucas Betschart is the founder of Blockchain Source, a consulting company focusing on applying Blockchain technologies in the real world. Being involved in Bitcoin since the early days he has a deep understanding of decentralized systems, cryptography and the technologies available today to build or integrate with the best blockchain.
He is the founder and organizer of the Blockchain Meetup Zurich group, which connects and educates startups, corporates and enthusiasts and community manager of the Bitcoin Association Switzerland.
Skills: Blockchain Technology, Bitcoin, Software Development, Start-Up Experience, Community Management, Event Organization

Thomas Brunner

Project Leader Corporate Business Development & Executive Director, Bank Vontobel

Thomas Brunner currently works in corporate business development at Bank Vontobel where his focus is on strategic group-wide initiatives in the areas of digital transformation, innovation and strategic IT & operations. His industry expertise is mainly in financial services where he conceptualized and led large transformation programs that often included a significant technology component. He has a deep understand of banking processes, products and systems. His experience includes working for global firms such as Credit Suisse and PwC but also small software startups in both Switzerland and abroad. Earlier in his career he also gained experience as a software engineer. Thomas started his career after graduating with a MSc in Computer Science from ETH Zurich in 2003. He also holds an MBA degree from INSEAD business school in France and Singapore and has lived in 6 countries in Europe, North America and Asia.

Skills: Banking Value Chain, Banking Products, Processes and Systems, Blockchain Technology, Business Cases, Regulatory Framework for Banks, IT and Business Architecture

Steve Pscheid

Managing Director, Innovation DataArt GmbH

Steve Pscheid is a banker and is working in the IT-Industry for more than 20 years. He was founder of many startups and supports new business models in the financial industry. Steve develeops DataArt for huge bank houses and rating agencies all over the world. Today he’s also consultant for innovation and new business and helps to cooperate with fintechs.

Skills: Digitalization, Financial and IT industry, Business modelling

Alpesh Doshi

CEO, Fintricity

Alpesh Doshi is founder and CEO of Fintricity focused on digital enterprise business transformation. He currently founded Kendra Labs, a startup focused on blockchain and big data stack for enterprises. Alpesh’s background is within the investment banking, life and pensions as well as asset management and concultency in the field of big data, analytics, Social Media, e-commerce and payments.

Skills: Blockchain Technology, Big Data, Internet of Things, Project Management, Business Strategy & Architecture, Innovation, Analytics

Andrea Fabi

Head of Project Services, Saxobank

Andrea Fabi has 25 years of international banking and consulting experience. In 2011, he co-founded a startup which didn’t fly but immersed in the Swiss Fintech circle and won the Swiss Fintech Weekend in October 2015. Andrea loves working hard with inspiring people and sharing his experience.

Skills: Banking, Regulations, Operations, Startup Experience, Business Network in Swiss Banking Sector, Multi Functional Teams

Fabio Federici

CEO, Coinalytics

Fabio Federici initially founded Coinalytics in 2014 and is since Chief Executive Officer of the company. He continues to wear several hats at the company and maintains relationships to customers, manages product development and secures the necessary resources. Prior to founding Coinalytics Fabio was enrolled at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Art in Switzerland, pursuing a Master in Business Administration. One semester into the program Fabio got handed the opportunity to take Coinalytics and join the acclaimed 500 Startups accelerator program in Mountain View, California. In the short time since inception the company has raised over $1 million in venture capital from Silicon Valley, obtained various nominations, like “Top Technology to Watch 2014” from the Government Technology Research Alliance and participated in the finals of the BBVA “Open Talent” Competition, as well as the UBS “Future of Finance Challenge” in 2015.

Skills: Blockchain Technology, Bitcoin, Strategy, Business Development, Fundraising, Product Management, Marketing, Branding

Paul Puey

CEO / Co-founder, Airbitz Inc

Paul Puey is CEO and Co-Founder of Airbitz, a company driving privacy and security of digital assets and blockchain technology. Airbitz has won accolades including being one of the top 3 mobile apps for bitcoin in the 2014 Blockchain Awards, being voted the #1 Bitcoin Company by the World Crypto Network, and being voted in the ‘Top 50 FinTech Companies to Watch’ by AlwaysOn Inc.
Paul’s wide skill set encompasses 3D visual engineering, web content management systems, iOS app development, low level C++ systems engineering, as well as startup financial management, business planning, and business development. He held lead engineering positions with Nvidia Corp and Chromatic Research. Paul now combines his lifelong technical and business experience to drive Airbitz to be the leading platform for blockchain applications.
Paul holds a degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from UC Berkeley.

Skills: Blockchain Technology, Financial Planning, Financial Reporting, Startup Experience

Brian Kling

Senior Customer Experience Architect, Autodesk

Brian Kling helps design digital strategies, programs and services that bring brands closer to their customers and employees.
He serves as a catalyst, connecting the dots and building bridges between teams, generating new ideas and possibilities, helping to make innovation real.
Brian uses and facilitates Service Design Thinking methods to ensure we craft human-centered solutions, creating customer experiences that really make the world a better place.

Skills: Customer Experience Design, Digital Customer Service and Support, Customer Loyality and Advocacy Programs, CRM, Content Strategy, Service Design Thinking, Innovation Culture and Practice, Strategy Development, Presentation Design and Delivery, Business Intelligence, Internationalization

Michael Guzik

Senior Digital Strategist (Head Blockchain), PwC Digital Experience Center

Michael Guzik is currently heading PwC’s blockchain technology initiative as a senior digital strategist. Before he joined PwC, Michael founded his first online retail company, where he imported furniture from China and Egypt and sold products on Ebay. After his studies, Michael moved to Vietnam for a short period of time, where he co-founded a leading price comparison website in Southeast Asia. He is still active as a member of the advisory board. Currently, Michael is in a process to found a third company which is in stealth mode.

Skills: Blockchain Technology, Startup Experience, Business Modeling, Digital Industry Expertise

Markus Hablizel

Senior Investment Manager, Allianz SE Digital Corporate Ventures

Markus Hablizel has a strong quantitative academic background (math, cryptography, computer sciences) incl. MBA. He has long experience in the insurance industry, especially operations, business development, M&A and corporate venture capital.

Skills: Startup Network, Innovation Venture Capital, Insurance Industry, Blockchain Technology, Data Analytics

Thorsten Hau

Product Manager, Swisscom

Thorsten Hau is running two online businesses for Swisscom which make money and grow in the double digits. He holds a PhD in Information Systems and has a passion for products and finding out what works in the market. He lived in Black Forest, Canada, South Africa and Switzerland.

Skills: Pitch Training, Storytelling, Product Market Fit, Business Modeling

Gene Vayngrib

CEO & Co-Founder, Tradle

Gene Vayngrib believes in changing world by achieving the economies of scale with cooperative commercial networks, enabled by the blockchain technology. To get there Gene and his Tradle team are building a Trust Provisioning Network, starting with the KYC solution for all sectors of banking and insurance. Gene is a Blockchain evangelist, speaker and architect of Blockchain solutions. Prior to Tradle, he co-founded a startup that pioneered the decentralized business network helping ship and invoice millions of tons of products in a supply chain spanning 20 countries. Tradle is now applying these insights to a new decentralized system, this time based on the blockchain. In his previous role, Gene managed the Innovation division of Information Builders, a New York Enterprise Software company where his team developed and deployed products to 90% of Fortune 500 companies. Prior to that Gene pioneered the use of AI in industrial control systems.

Skills: Startup Experience, Blockchain Technology, KYC solutions

Stephan Hoeger

FX, Rates & Credit Distribution, UBS AG

Stephan Hoeger has joined UBS in 2010 to help building the electronic FX (eFX) Distribution business and is since 2013 Head of e-Distribution for FX, Rates & Credit (FRC) for the CEMEA region and since 2015 co-Head for EMEA FRC Flow Distribution. Prior to this, Stephan has worked for several years in the eFX distribution team at Barclays in London, UK.  He holds a Master’s degree in International Economics from the University of Innsbruck, Austria and Universidad de Valladolid, Spain.  He is currently living with his wife and 2 children in Zurich area, Switzerland.

Skills: Business Development, Financial Markets, Sales, Capital Markets

Johannes Huebner

FinTech Entrepreneur & Researcher, ETH Zurich

Johannes Huebner previously co-founded two startups as their CTO, one of which is a FinTech company (a PFM app launched in Germany, called Numbrs). Since then, he joined forces with ETH and Leonteq to research the Finance and Insurance industries in detail. A particular research interest of Johannes falls in Blockchain applications, especially outside Bitcoin. His educational background lies at the intersection between Business and IT; he studied Business Informatics at TU Munich and Stanford. In his two startups and numerous other projects he has also taken a role that bridges between IT and business.

Skills: IT Strategy, MVP, FinTech, Startup Experience, Blockchain Technology, Startup Network

Behzad Imani

High Tech Investment Advisor

1990-1996 Transoptics, CEO

1997-2001 XL Optics, CEO

2002-2006 Mc Sensor, CEO/Founder

1990-2008 PG1, CEO

2005-2012 Amberix, CEO

2013-current Self, Investment Advisor

Stephan Karpischek

Founder, B9Lab

Stephan Karpischek is an experienced entrepreneur, researcher and teacher. He has more than 20 years experience in developing businesses and IT solutions and is active as a strategy and management consultant in finance and telecom. Before joining B9lab he was part of the crypto 2.0 innovation lab at UBS. Stephan has been working on digital currencies since 2008 and strongly believes that blockchain will change the world.

Skills: Strategy and Management Consulting, Blockchain Technology, Finance

Petra Kolesarova

Associate, Credo Ventures

Petra Kolesarova works as an Associate at Credo Ventures, which is a venture capital company focused on early stage investments in Central and Eastern Europe. Prior to joining Credo Ventures, Petra worked as a lawyer managing private equity investments. She completed the Global Law program at the University of Haifa, gained her Doctor of Jurisprudence degree (JUDr.) from the University of Matej Bel and LL.M. degree in International Business Law and Intellectual Property from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Currently, she is a Ph.D. candidate at the Charles University in Prague and focuses on patents as investment instruments. In addition to her legal roles at Credo Ventures, she is also responsible for sourcing, executing, and managing venture capital investments broadly focused on unique technologies in the CEE region.

Skills: Legal, Business Consulting, Venture Capital

Christian Koenig

Founder, Finanzpro GmbH

Christian König is a Fintech Specialist with 15 years Investment Banking experience. He consults Fintech and Investment companies around the world with his company Finanzpro Ltd and is specialized in Financial Products, Social Media and Content Marketing.  He is a regular Fintech Speaker, a Fintech Mentor and a Digital Finance Lecturer. On top of that he runs several Blog projects such as Fintechnews Singapore and other award winning Finance Blogs. He holds a Master in Banking in Finance from the famous Swiss University in St.Gallen, is Certified International Investment Analyst and holds Advanced diplomas in online marketing, social media and e-commerce.

Skills: Financial Products, ETF, Structured Products, Online and Content Marketing, B2C Marketing, Social Media

Andrei Martchouk

Chief Architect New Business and Technologies, Traxpay
Traxpay:
Architect (product and technology) and Product Designer for Conditional Payment, Augmented Payment and forthcoming Trade Finance products, especially in the Smart Contract and Blockchain based areas.
Fintech Consultancy:
Consulting services in areas of: Blockchain,Cryptocurrencies, Smart Contracts, Online Payment Processing, PCI DSS audit and certification, regulation, digital and distributed ledgers, money remittance.
CEO of Yacuna Cryptocurrency Exchange:
Developing, bootstrapping  and operating of the first European regulated crypto currency exchange platform, operation under UK based e-money license. Multi currency wallet, multisignature, p2p, trading engine, 5K customers.
Chief Architect and Head of Development at ClickandBuy (later Business Unit Payment at Deutsche Telekom):
Development and operating of online payment systems, payment card processing, card issuing, mobile payment, online wallet, e-money subledgers, online retail integration for digital and physical goods, >30 payment methods, 18 mio customers, 18K merchants, manager of a distributed team of 100 devs and ops across the globe (Cologne, Berlin, Hyderabad, New York, Tokyo).
Skills: Innovative payment solutions (b2b & b2c), software architecture, implementation of payment and monetary products

Andrejs Krotokovs

Graduate Program, UBS AG

Andrejs Krotokovs has around 2.5 years experience of internship and full time job along industries such as airline, consulting, fast moving consumer goods and automotive. He always stays connected to finance related topics and IT department. Andrejs is currently undertaking the role of Project Management within Inhouse Consulting of UBS, a newly established and highly growing department. The current project is Asset Management MiFID II regulatory implementation within UBS. Outside working hours, Andrejs helps to expand business of several Latvian Fin-tech companies.

Skills: Project Management, SAP, IBM Quickr, JIRA, Sharepoint, ProAct, Oracle

Christine Laut

Founder, White Line Consulting

Christine Laut has 20 years experience in Financial Services: 3 years in a Financial Group, 14 years in Business Consulting (KPMG, Atos consulting), 3 years as Strategy and Business Developer in Atos, 1 year as local head of Insights and Data Practice in Capgemini. In Consulting, she managed consulting practices in Compliance and Risk Management in Financial Services during 7 years. Currently, Christine is building White Line Consulting that enables a new approach to compliance and regulation in Financial Services that includes innovation to rethink current business model and enable more transparent, customer oriented and real time process with technology embedded.

Skills: Due Diligence Process, Market Evaluation and Positioning, Wealth Management, International and Swiss Regulation, Strategy and Business Consulting, Pitch Training, Change Management, Compliance, Accounting

Remco Livain

Founder & CEO, GANDT Ventures

Remco Livain studied international business (innovation and marketing) in Maastricht (NL) before moving to Germany in 2007 where he co-founded his first digital project (C-Date). In 2011, Remco joined Westwing Home & Living (Rocket Internet) to head the global online marketing team and build up the performance marketing operations world wide. 2013 he co-founded a flower delivery service (MIFLORA) for a Munich based Venture Builder and Investor, Venture Stars. In 2015, Remco founded the venture builder GANDT Ventures in Zurich to help support Swiss and International companies build digital ventures.

Skills: Digital Business, Strategic Performance Marketing, App and Website Prototypes, Ecommerce Due Diligence

Sergey Lozovoy

Investment Advisor & Director, UBS AG

Sergey Lozovoy is a professional banker and a certified accountant with network in Moscow, London, Brussels, Vienna and Zürich. He spent the past 5 years with two major wealth managers advising private individuals on structuring and managing their investment portfolios. Sergey spent the preceding 7 years with two major global accounting firms advising US, EU and Russian corporations on a range of financial statements subjects.

Skills: Strategic Asset Allocation, Behavioral Finance, Private Wealth Management, Portfolio Construction, Investment Performance Analysis

Renier Janse van Rensburg

Managing Director/ Principle Consultant, GrowthPains

Renier Janse van Rensburg is a skilled assurance and advisory professional with over 17 years experience in a range of governance roles focussing on operational risk, internal control, internal and external audit and regulatory change. Renier gained consulting experience at Ernst & Young (EY), PwC and Deloitte, and have worked with many large multinational tier 1 banks and corporates on domestic and international assignments. He is looking forward to get involved, learn alongside the blockchain startups, and shareing his past experiences and insight.

Skills: Governance, Operational risk, Internal control, Internal/ External audit, Regulatory changes

Christos Lytras

Product & Service Lead, Eurobank ERB Innovation Centre/ Group Digital Banking

Since February 2016, Christos Lytras is Product & Service Lead at the Eurobank Innovation Center responsible for developing the Centre Service offering internally across the Eurobank Group and externally with the GR and EU startup ecosystem across areas such as Fintech, IoT & Big Data Analytics. For 3 years Christos was the Site Manager of the “egg – enter-grow-go” programme, an integrated incubation, acceleration and co-working programme, a CSR Eurobank intiative, coaching & advising 60+ Programme graduates (startups) which have generated >1M€ sales in FY2015 and raised >1,5M€ debt & equity financing up to date. Christos has been working for Eurobank for the past ten years as a Project Manager across different products and services in local and group-wide (CEE – SEE) implementations. His areas of expertise lay in Target Operating Model design, process reengineering, performance measurement and application of lean tools and methods.

Skills: Product Development, Performance Measurement and Improvement, Risk Management, IT Strategy, Strategy and Operating Processes Design, Target Operating Model Design, Application of Lean Tool and Methods

Mali Marafini

Founder & CEO, Interruptiv.com

Mali Marafini is CEO-Founder of Interruptiv.com, a Fintech Venture and Intrepreneurial global peer to peer network and partnership ecosystem.  The vision and mission of Interruptiv.com is to robustly connect the Fintech arena with enabling Corporate environments to embrace an agile lean start-up culture and embed collaborative innovation and automation pragmatically and seamlessly into strategic business models.  Value add and commercial B2B, B2C and P2P opportunities are gained by realizing the full potential of new markets, technologies, products, people and services by bridging the competition gap achieved by challengers.

Skills: Leadership, Operations and Technology Transformation, Product Design, Business, Data and Technology Architecture, Financial Services, Banking, Capital Markets

Jacob Ninan

Co-Founder & Director, Kottackal

Jacob Ninan has worked in Information Technology for more than 20 years, through the dotcom boom and bust. His last employment role was working with eBay Europe, delivering mandates for European market. For the past few years, Jacob has turned Entrepreneur by cofounding Kottackal Business Solutions Pvt. Ltd. Kottackal Business Solutions is an Internet startup which provides product management services for the Internet. Recently the company has diversified into providing Blockchain based solutions. The company is working with global companies to build diverse applications of Blockchain. Jacob has been a Venture Scout for Startupbootcamp. He is a Peer Reviewer for the Fund for Innovation and Technology Development Macedonia as well as Angel Investor. Jacob is an Engineer by education. He is also a Nanyang Fellow from the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He has lived in India, Singapore, US and Switzerland.

Skills: Software Development, Business Analysis, Project Management, Product Development, Blockchain Technology

David Nydegger

Head of Product, zkipster

David Nydegger has more than 10 years of experience in growing digital businesses; as a consultant, a corporate business unit manager and a tech entrepreneur. After starting his career at 2 different tech startups in Berlin, he has worked for 4 years as a digital strategy consultant for Namics in Switzerland and Germany. After this, he co-founded Localina, which became Switzerland’s leading online reservation service for restaurants. In 2012, he sold Localina to local.ch / Swisscom. After 2 years at local.ch as a business unit manager, David entered again the world of entrepreneurship by joining the NYC based event software startup zkipster as a partner and head of product. David holds a master’s degree in business innovation from University of St. Gallen.

Skills: Startup Experience, Scalability and Organic Growth, Coaching, Digital Business

Richard Olsen

CEO, Lykke

Richard Olsen is a pioneer of market micro-structure; he wrote and co-authored many scientific papers, a book on high frequency finance. Richard’s unorthodox but compelling ideas have made him an opinion leader. His goal is “to create tools of finance that are as slick and elegant as the most sophisticated tools of technology.” Richard holds a Licentiate in Law from the University of Zurich, a Masters in Economics from Oxford University and a PhD from the University of Zurich and worked as a researcher and foreign exchange dealer before founding his first company, Olsen & Associates in 1985. He has launched Lykke Corp to build a global marketplace for all asset classes and instruments with immediate settlement and second-by-second interest payments using the blockchain technology.

Skills: FinTech, Startup Experience, Financial Engineering, Negotiating

Matteo Perrotta

During the past 16 years, Matteo Perrotta worked at UBS AG in Zurich. He retired at the end of 2015. At UBS Asset Management, he gained experience in the regulatory management (member of FATCA Core Group) and re-engineering of on-boarding processes. He was Head of a CRM/Business Development unit responsible for acquisition of fund administration mandates, Head of Sales Operations Fund Marketing EMEA managing all sales related operational tasks and Business Manager of a strategic CRM project. At Systor AG, a systems integration subsidiary of UBS AG, he held positions as Sales & Marketing Manager responsible for CRM strategy and services and Consultant for one of the first European Internet Fund Supermarkets. Before joining UBS, Matteo spent 15 years in the Information Technology sector focusing on software and hardware solutions for the financial services industry. He worked for global firms such as Philips Information Systems, Digital Equipment Corporation, Compaq Computer Corporation. Furthermore he held senior sales and marketing functions at European level.

Skills: Financial Services, Technology in Financial Services Sector, International Business Experience, Sales and Marketing

Tarmo Ploom

Enterprise Architect & VP, Credit Suisse

Tarmo Ploom works as an Enterprise Integration Architect in Credit Suisse Zurich. During ten years Credit Suisse he has coached and mentored hundreds of IT initiatives globally in Credit Suisse (in New York, London, Zurich, Singapore). He is frequent conference speaker on innovation related topics and has developed number of innovation strategies for Credit Suisse. Before joining Credit Suisse Tarmo worked for Swiss Life and Zurich Financial as an Architect. Before that he founded machine translation company.

Skills: Bitcoin, Blockchain Technology, Experienced Investor, Startup Experience, Startup Network

Tobias Prodolliet

Director, Product & Market Development Transaction Banking Director, UBS AG

Tobias Prodolliet worked over 10 years in UBS (securities services, business technology center, IT) in several roles (business analyst, project manager, team head) covering topics like performance and risk analytics, portfolio management systems, investment reporting & accounting, custody etc. He has 4 years working as an external consultant serving several Swiss banks in implementing banking software. Since 2014, Tobias is back in UBS responsible for product & market development within transaction banking. He holds a bachelor in business informatics and a master in banking and finance.

Skills: Portfolio Theory, Custody, Accounting, Reporting, Asset & Fund Management, Portfolio Management Systems, Asset Servicing, Financial Intermediaries

Christoph Ruedt

Communication consultant, Ruedt Communication Consulting

Christoph Ruedt is a communication consultant specializing in integrated communication advice in the areas of technology, transformation and strategy. He has previously worked with various technology companies to help them translate complex matters into compelling stories. Before founding Ruedt Communication Consulting, Christoph worked in-house for more than 10 years in communication management roles at large international firms including UBS, Deloitte and AXA Winterthur, in both Switzerland and the UK. He managed both internal and external communications for outsourcing, change and M&A initiatives, and developed integrated communication strategies for large-scale projects. Christoph advised senior leaders on their communications to different audiences and, as a company spokesman, helped shape the reputation and public perception of his employers. Christoph holds a Master’s Degree (M.A.) in Communication, Business Management and Information Technology, and a Ph.D. in Marketing.

Skills: Messaging and Strategic Storytelling, Presentation Skills, Presentation Development and Design, Communication Strategy Development, PR, Media Coaching, Social Media, Issues Management

Martin Schawalder

Co-Founder, iAgentur

Martin Schawalder is co-founder of iAgentur, streamboat GmbH and appFabrik AG. He holds a Master in Strategy and International Management of University St. Gallen and a MBA of Nanyang Business School. Martin is a certified ScrumMaster and Bitcoin Professional and has invested in several startups in the FinTech, Mobile App and Bitcoin space.

Skills: Startup Experience, Experienced Investor, Bitcoin

Grace Scheerhout

Co-Founder, humnchain

Grace Scheerhout is engaged in independent consulting services focusing on Business Transformation and Innovation solutions. Her expertise delivers Clients improved business performance through intelligent technology adoption linked to effective people, risk and financial management. In this capacity, Grace has gained the experience through team collaboration and by working closely with large organisations in the air transport and travel industry as well as high tech startups in the Innovation Park at EPFL in Lausanne. Grace is an industrial engineer by education with Information Technology background complemented with a business mindset solidly shaped with an Executive MBA from EPFL/HEC Lausanne. Hands-on projects she has driven: application of new technologies (IoT, machine learning), product development using agile scrum methodology, development of solution delivery strategy, business model optimisation, organisational restructure (organisational design) and program management.

Skills: Organisational Design, Scalability and Organic Growth, Business Strategy, Internationalisation, Product and Service Development, Prototyping and Iterative Process Design, Customer Experience, Value Proposition, Customer Journey Map Design, Customer Centric Design, Design Thinking, Ideation Moderator, Digital Marketing and Brand Management, Communications, Startup experience

David Siegel

Entrepreneur, Coach, Author

David Siegel lived 20 years in the Silicon Valley and 13 years in New York. He is a web entrepreneur for over 20 years, wrote five books about the web and business and spent his entire life in startups. He is now living in Rapperswil and works with Consensys people on their projects and run www.decentralstation.com, He also gives talks on business agility and blockchain/Ethereum.

Skills: Corporate Culture, Processes, Thinking Smarter

Massimo Simbula

Managing Partner, Simbula Law Firm

Massimo Simbula is a lawyer with more than 15 years experience in Italy and abroad on corporate, IP, TLC, Cyberlaws and new technologies. He provides legal assistance to incubator of digital startup, Venture Capital, innovative business providing a full range of activities including legal setup (incorporation of companies and ToS), seed and ordinary investment agreements with convertible financial instruments, draft and negotiation of P2P, B2B and B2C agreements, license agreements, trademark and software protection and registration, digital publishing agreements, work for equity agreements. He held positions as a Senior Legal for Tonucci&Partners Law Firm and FENDI (LVMH Group). Furthermore Massimo is frequently speaker at seminars with Institutions and authorities. More activities available at www.studiolegalesimbula.com.

Skills: Legal Advisory, Startup Experience, Bitcoin, Blockchain Technology

Konstantin Speidel

Innovation Project Manager, UBS AG

Konstantin Speidel is part of UBS’s Wealth Management Innovation Team,  responsible for their Digital Advisory initiatives. Before joining the innovation team full-time two years ago, he worked in various client-facing positions in Munich, Kiev, Hong Kong and Zurich. Konstantin holds a Master in Business Administration and worked on one of the 1st German Robo-Advisors in 2009.

Skills: FinTech, Venture Capital, Research and Development, Banking Processes, Blockchain Technology, Startup Experience

Daniel Spirig

Head Business Development, SwissQ

Daniel Spirig is a Swiss executive manager with 22 years of activity in the software, IT and telecommunications industry. At companies such as SQS Software Quality Systems (Schweiz) AG, Hewlett Packard Switzerland and Siemens Switzerland, Daniel developed state-of-the art solutions together with customers, providing both added value and achieving results with distinct cost savings. Daniel’s focus also lies in the business development, sales and marketing of IT services and complex solutions, including managed services (near- & off-shoring), outsourcing with employee takeover, consulting & integration and management consulting. His track record includes achievements such as making SQS Schweiz the No. 1 company in its segment in Switzerland and increasing sales yearly by 18% in average between 2006 and 2013. Under his leadership, EBIT was increased significant in 2011-2012 and in 2012-2013. Between 2008 and 2010 he was a member of the SQS Schweiz Managing Board, since 2011 in charge as Managing Director for Entire Switzerland. Apart from his management activities, Daniel also lends his IT industry expertise and experience to iqnite Switzerland, a leading industry event. Between 2010 until 2013 he has served as Chairman.

Skills: Business Development, Sales and Marketing, Business Plan Evaluation, Company Development, Coaching

Luke Szkudlarek

Digital Strategy Lead, what.digital

Luke Szkudlarek has more than 10 years experience in digital business -from coding, analytics to digital marketing – always with the goal to acquire, activate or retain new customers. He is currently leading a digital agency in Zurich – helping startups and established brands to grow online.

Skills: Online Customer Acquisition, Digital Marketing, Growth Hacking

Michael van der Meer

Senior Analyst, RobecoSAM

Michael van der Meer covers emerging market companies within the RobecoSAM Sustainability Investing team. Prior to joining RobecoSAM in 2016, Michael was responsible for overseeing several of Trading Emissions PLC’s clean energy investments in emerging markets. For Trading Emissions, a UK-listed investment fund, he served as a non-executive director at Singapore-based Asia Biogas. Michael started his career at an international consultancy in Beijing, being responsible for several EU-funded trade competitiveness and sustainability studies in China. Michael, a Mandarin speaker, received a BSc with First Class Honours and an MSc with Distinction from the University of London in management and finance. Michael is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Charterholder.

Skills: PE Investing Emerging Markets and Clean Energy, Private Investment Experience with several Start-Ups including in the FinTech sector, Managing Litigation Process and Contractual Disputes

Mark Wilcox

Production Manager & Founding Team Member, NYRIAD

Mark Wilcox is a technology entrepreneur from New Zealand with a background in media communication and social systems. He’s interested in large scale, market-based distributed systems and is currently developing new organisational models for distributed software development.

Skills: Product Market Fit, Acquisition Strategy, Digital Marketing, Growth Hacking

Roger Wirth

Managing Director& Head of Information Security, UBS AG

Roger Wirth started off as a banking software developer in 1994 (mainframe and decentral systems) at a major Swiss bank. He gained experience in IT security consulting and project management at a Swiss IT services company and built up a new line of business for new technologies at a Swiss IT services company (enterprise java). Roger ran global IT departments for software engineering (new technologies, web development and IT security) and the IT security stream of a strategic banking platform program as well as the Information Security function for the Wealth Management division at a major Swiss bank.

Skills: IT Industry & Services, Cryptography, Management

Patrick Wittwer

Entrepreneur & Investor, swisscubator AG, versicherix GmbH, Solofinanz, inversum GmbH

Patrick Wittwer is a veteran of the insurance business. He has 20 years of experience as an insurance manager, insurance broker and founded later 2015 a startup in the area of peer2peer insurances with his friends from the fields of IT architecture, programming and coding. They will release soon a whole new wave of p2p insurance platform and leading to cheaper and more customer centric insurance coverage all around the world. Fast, smart and easy.

Skills: Insurance, Insurance Tech

Fei Zhang

Head Blockchain Innovation Lab, Allianz SE

Fei Zhang is heading the Blockchain Innovation Lab of Disruptive Technologies within the Allianz Group. In this role, he is advising the Allianz management board and senior executives within the group on the corporate objectives and strategies regarding Allianz activities in the blockchain space. He is also responsible for designing, implementing and rolling out value-creating blockchain business cases within the group. Before joining Allianz, Fei has worked on innovation and disruptive technology topics including big data analytics, customer experience design, software-defined networking, unified communications across telecom industry and management consulting. Fei holds an MBA from INSEAD and engineering degrees from Supélec and Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

Alex Stoeckl

Investment Manager, Creathor Venture

As Investment Manager in our Zurich office, Alex Stöckl is focusing on investments in the technology sector. Having previously held the position as VP Business Development at Pure Foods AG, where he was strongly involved in the early stage expansion, Alex brings hands-on startup experience to the table. Prior to that Alex worked for several years as a Senior Consultant at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants, where he advised top management of industrial and retail clients on issues relating to strategy development & optimization, growth strategies and corporate restructuring. Alex holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration (BBA) from European University Barcelona and a Master’s degree with distinction in International Business (MIB) from Grenoble Graduate School of Business. In his spare time Alex enjoys travelling, doing sports or exploring Zurich’s exciting restaurant scene.

Skills: Market Strategy, Monetization, Business modeling, Financing and Investment, Incentivation

Kevin Tholke

FinTech professional specializing in prepaid, payments, and mobile bank accounts

Kevin Tholke is a FinTech professional with a background in prepaid debit cards, mobile bank accounts, and payments.  He is currently consulting for FinTech companies in Switzerland, with work focusing on strategy, growth, and product development.  Prior to moving to Switzerland, he was Director for the prepaid business unit at Green Dot Corporation, a leading US prepaid company.  He worked closely with the executive team on the corporate strategy for international expansion, and with business development on new distribution opportunities.  Kevin helped build the product roadmap, prioritize revenue initiatives, and generate strategic partnerships.  He also worked closely with cross-functional stakeholders, including: product, analytics, marketing, risk, sales, supply chain, legal/compliance, and customer care.  Earlier in his career, he worked in investment banking and as a financial analyst.

Skills: International Strategy, Program and Channel Management, Payments, KYC procedures, Competitor Analysis, Customer Behavior Analytics

André Wolke

Founder & CEO, Validity Labs

André Wolke is an entrepreneur, crypto-enthusiast, future of money evangelist, software and infrastructure engineer working in the fin-tech space. André is the founder of Validity Labs, the first smart-contract school in Switzerland and the CEO of Swiss Cryptotech GmbH, a R&D company focusing on providing blockchain enabled big-data solutions for enterprise companies. He is also the Co-Founder/Organiser of the blockchain-meetup Switzerland.

Skills: Blockchain technology, Smart contracts

Ariel Barack

Head of global business development, Centralway AG

Ariel is the head of global business development at Centralway AG. He has been working with startups since 1999, when he was an HTML programmer. Ariel has founded a number of businesses around the world and can share experience and expertise on how to (and how not to) build teams, deal with investors (having raised over 5m $ for his last project), and approach emerging markets (Russia specifically, having founded an online B2B marketplace there in 2014). Ariel also has a wide network of connections to share, both in the valley and in the Israeli tech scenes.

Skills: Fintech, Ecommerce, Crisis Management, Leadership

Arthur Jerome

Director Institutional Solutions Group, UBS AG

Jerome is a Director in the Private Capital Markets within UBS focusing on structuring private placement for intuitional like client covering all sectors. Previously, Jerome was working at CS IB Corporate development in NYC. He holds an MBA from the IMD and is a CFA charterholder.

Skills: Startup and VC experience