Board

Gonçalo de Vasconcelos

Co-founder and CEO

A serial entrepreneur himself, Gonçalo is only too aware of the long path leading to a successful funding round.

In September 2011 Gonçalo graduated with an MBA from Judge Business School, University of Cambridge where he was awarded the ‘Best Dissertation’ prize and the Benavitch Scholarship for academic and professional achievements.

His past experience has shown him that often entrepreneurs have to spend too much time chasing investors instead of focusing on the most important part of their business: their customers.

He has a vision of how to help great entrepreneurs to fulfil their dreams and that vision is called “SyndicateRoom”. He is passionate about giving the crowd access to the top deals into which experienced business angels are investing their own money. This is what drives his vision for SyndicateRoom.

Gonçalo is also a contributor for Forbes, writing regularly about equity crowdfunding, business angel investment and venture capital investment and speaks regularly at public events about the same themes.

In his spare time Gonçalo cycles long distances to raise money for charities (his last ride was from Cambridge to Paris), plays tennis and, when in warmer climates, sails with his wife whenever there is half a chance.

Tom Britton

Co-founder and CTO

Born in Los Angeles, Tom moved to the UK to play football and after three fairly successful years realised it was time to focus on his non-sporting career. Before joining SyndicateRoom as a co-founder Tom worked in product development on a number of software-based projects including managing the development of the mobile applications for TheTrainline.

Tom completed his MBA at Cambridge where he focused on developing start-ups and has taken a keen interest in ventures focused on helping other start-ups. Tom leads SyndicateRoom’s website development team though his skills and experience ensure that he does a lot more than just that. In his spare time Tom volunteers for Camp Footprints, rock climbs, and still plays the odd five aside game.

Tim Bellis

Chairman of the Board

Tim is Chairman of the Board at SyndicateRoom and has been involved as an advisor since the company was just an idea. Tim brings a wealth of experience to the board, having been a Partner at Herbet Smith LLP specialising in mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings on international stock exchanges, and investment and joint venture work.

With more than 24 years’ experience in the field, Tim now spends much of his time in academia as a Fellow of Management Practice and a Senior Adviser for Professional Service Firms at Judge Business School, University of Cambridge. Tim has been featured in and contibuted to a number of publications.

Jonathan Milner

Lead investor and Non-Executive Director

Jonathan is the Founder of Abcam, the company which he founded 1998 and which went on to list on AIM in November 2005, becoming ‘Company of the Year’ in both the 2009 and 2013 AIM Awards.

As well as being an experienced entrepreneur, Jonathan is also a business angel with a passion for supporting UK life-science and high-tech startups. He has invested in and provided support to more than 30 companies, and has also helped three IPOs to join the AIM market.

Jonathan is a lead investor in SyndicateRoom and a Non-Executive Director.

David Gill

Non-Executive Director

David is Managing Director of St John’s Innovation Centre in Cambridge, the longest-established business incubator in Europe for technology ventures. He set up and ran the Innovation & Technology Unit at HSBC Bank in London (1997–2004) before serving as an Executive Director of a venture fund focused on early-stage, technology-based investments. Educated at Cambridge, he qualified as a barrister before working in corporate finance for US and UK banks.

A Sloan Fellow at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in California (2005), David is currently an Official Visitor at the University of Cambridge Institute for Manufacturing, Non-Executive Chairman of Psonar Ltd (an angel-funded internet music startup), a Non-Executive Director of UK Business Incubation Ltd and a member of the Department for Business Access to Finance Expert Group.

He was previously a Non-Executive Director of LINC (the Local Investment Networking Company Ltd), a predecessor organisation to the current British Business Angels Association, and of mo.jo (a pioneer crowdfunding website).

David is also co-author of several studies on a country basis of innovation (2000–07) and of a review for the National Endowment for Science Technology & the Arts (NESTA) of the impact of business incubation on high-potential firms (2011).

Team

Gonçalo de Vasconcelos

Co-founder and CEO

A serial entrepreneur himself, Gonçalo is only too aware of the long path leading to a successful funding round.

In September 2011 Gonçalo graduated with an MBA from Judge Business School, University of Cambridge where he was awarded the ‘Best Dissertation’ prize and the Benavitch Scholarship for academic and professional achievements.

His past experience has shown him that often entrepreneurs have to spend too much time chasing investors instead of focusing on the most important part of their business: their customers.

He has a vision of how to help great entrepreneurs to fulfil their dreams and that vision is called ‘SyndicateRoom’. He is passionate about giving investors access to the top deals into which experienced business angels are investing their own money. This is what drives his vision for SyndicateRoom.

Gonçalo is also a contributor for Forbes, writing regularly about equity crowdfunding, business angel investment and venture capital investment and speaks regularly at public events about the same themes.

In his spare time Gonçalo cycles long distances to raise money for charities (his last ride was from Cambridge to Paris), plays tennis and, when in warmer climates, sails with his wife whenever there is half a chance.

Tom Britton

Co-founder and CTO

Born in Los Angeles, Tom moved to the UK to play football and after three fairly successful years realised it was time to focus on his non-sporting career. Before joining SyndicateRoom as a co-founder Tom worked in product development on a number of software-based projects including managing the development of the mobile applications for TheTrainline.

Tom completed his MBA at Cambridge where he focused on developing start-ups and has taken a keen interest in ventures focused on helping other start-ups. Tom leads SyndicateRoom’s website development team though his skills and experience ensure that he does a lot more than just that. In his spare time Tom volunteers for Camp Footprints, rock climbs, and still plays the odd five aside game.

Francesca O'Brien

Head of Private Markets

Fran is responsible for managing the private deals listed on SyndicateRoom.

She graduated from St John’s College, Cambridge, where she read Part I History; Part II Psychology, before completing a Graduate Diploma in Law in London.

Fran previously worked with one of the legal teams responsible for preparing victim and witness statements for the Leveson Inquiry, and within the schools and education department of the London Borough of Ealing Council. She joined SyndicateRoom to immerse herself in the unique challenge that comes from working at an ambitious, rapidly growing company, within an exciting and disruptive industry.

Fran is interested in all aspects of psychology, especially those related to business and behaviours.

James Sore

Chief Investment Officer

With a degree in Mechanical and Electronics Engineering and a passion for racing, James’ career in Formula 1 was all but guaranteed. Unfortunately, he was unaware that a third aspect was needed, namely capability.

So he refocused his efforts on a more conventional career as a technology consultant for PA Consulting, designing and improving products for some of the world’s leading consumer, medical and pharmaceutical companies. Previous clients include Coca Cola, Johnson & Johnson, Hershey’s, British American Tobacco and Pfizer.

James left PA to build a technology consultancy as co-founder, growing the company from 2 to 12 full-time employees in under 2 years. He subsequently decided to sell his shares in the consultancy and took a role as an investment analyst for a boutique IP investment company, where he rose through the ranks to investment manager in under three years.

James now heads up the investment team at SyndicateRoom as Chief Investment Officer. His key responsibilities include deal attraction, selection and management, as well as growing and managing our rapidly expanding investor network.

Graham Schwikkard

Chief Operations Officer

Graham joined SyndicateRoom as head of operations in January 2017. His drive for delivery and knowledge of best practices is expected to play an integral part in scaling the platform.

Before joining SyndicateRoom, Graham spent seven years in management consulting, where he helped companies develop market strategies and optimise their business models. During this time, he developed a strong sense of business operations, with a particular interest in using technology to shift markets but also enable functions and automate routine tasks.

Graham first came to the UK in 2013 for his MBA, where he won multiple awards and focused his studies on startups. It was during this time that he met Tom and Gonçalo, and worked on the early version of SyndicateRoom. Soon after, he was obligated to return to South Africa due to contractual commitments but stayed in touch.

After ongoing conversations across continents, Graham made the decision to return and join the adventure with SyndicateRoom at the start of 2017.

Outside of work, Graham likes to work and make redundant jokes. He is an avid reader and quite happy to spend a Saturday finishing a classic, a popular business book or a science fiction epic with a whiskey in hand. If he can squeeze in a run or cricket game, then he’s content for weeks.

Miruna Girtu

Strategic Partnerships Manager

After studying Economics at UCL, International Business in Rome and Management at Cambridge Judge Business School, Miruna joined SyndicateRoom as an Investment Associate. After demonstrating unparalleled skill in matchmaking, in 2016 she became the company’s Strategic Partnerships Manager.

Having always been inspired by the power of human collaboration, Miruna is fond of working with people and discovering ideas. She has previously worked on an ambitious FinTech consulting project with Lloyds Banking Group Innovation Labs and helped with an International Development project run by Innovations for Poverty Action.

Outside of the office, Miruna appreciates world cinema and thought-provoking books.

Marcin Zaba

Head of Marketing

Marcin joined SyndicateRoom on the basis of his experience in fundraising. He successfully raised equity capital for his own startup, so feels he knows the journey entrepreneurs have to go through to get their idea off the ground.

Previously Marcin worked at the BLN, the UK’s no.1 network for business leaders.

Marcin holds an MSc in Management from Imperial College Business School and a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics.

Marcin’s interests include clever marketing and disruptive business models.

Outside of SyndicateRoom, Marcin does a lot of karate and enjoys learning languages and travelling.

Articles by Marcin

Katy Levitt

Senior Analyst

Katy started working at SyndicateRoom in April 2015 and now leads the sales and due diligence team. She enjoys investigating new opportunities and really getting to know the team behind the company. Her strong analytical skills go hand in hand with her interest in financial modelling.

Katy’s background in languages and linguistics has seen her living and working abroad, most recently in Paris and Chongqing, China. She can never turn down a challenge and is a competitive rower

Sonia Caetano

Senior Graphic Designer

I’m a Senior Graphic Designer based in Cambridge, UK, with extensive experience designing visual identities and creative concepts for print, web and mobile.

I have worked with a vast number of clients and markets for more than nine years. I really enjoy challenges that push my creative skills forward and ultimately find solutions to the business’s creative problems.

I get my inspiration from travelling around the world, nature, art exhibitions, street art and music – essentially by looking at the world with a curious eye.

Also, I cannot forget to mention that animals, especially dogs, are a big source of joy in my life. #doglover :)

Telmo Contreiras

Head of Development

A graduate of Informatics in the High Institute for Advanced Technologies in Lisbon, Telmo joined SyndicateRoom having shown his technical skills and knowledge.

His career has always been close to IT, stretching from programming to system administration. In his last job he worked with private and public sector companies in Document Management Systems projects, Customer Relationship Management, Contact Centres, etc.

Telmo heads up the development team, being responsible for the smooth running of the various information systems involved in running the backoffice and the company’s website.

Telmo is interested in new technology and space travel. In his spare time, he likes to read and paint.

Articles by Telmo

To Git Is a Beautiful Thing or How Can Git Help You Keep Track of Your Work

Leveraging your team’s collective knowledge #teambuilding

You can find Telmo’s SyndicateRoom author profile here.

Eleanor Richards

Data Protection Officer

Ellie joined SyndicateRoom as a Company Marketing Executive in 2017, and now enjoys specialising in privacy as the Data Protection Officer.

Ellie has a background in marketing as part of the English Language Teaching division at Cambridge University Press, and in management administration at Addenbrooke’s hospital in Cambridge.

In her spare time, Ellie enjoys cycling, music, painting, and following developments in the arts and fashion industries.

Cornelius Riethdorf

Senior Analyst

Cornelius is a member of the sales and due diligence team. He reaches out to potential clients and analyses investment opportunities before they are accepted onto the SyndicateRoom platform.

Originally from Würzburg in Bavaria, Cornelius moved to the UK at age 11. Before starting at SyndicateRoom, he spent most of his adult life studying and working at the University of Cambridge (Peterhouse), where he holds an MA (Cantab.) in History, as well as an MPhil and PhD, both in the History of Law and Political Thought.

In his free time, Cornelius enjoys looking after his dog, playing tennis, walking, and indulging his interest in literature and all things political.

Oliver Hammond

Senior Analyst

Oli is a member of the sales and due diligence team. He reaches out to potential clients and analyses investment opportunities before they are accepted onto the SyndicateRoom platform.

Oli left the University of Kent in 2014 with a BA (hons) in War Studies. Prior to SyndicateRoom, Oli worked in banking in the West End and co-founded a company that specialised in shipping containers. He also worked at an ambitious startup that aimed to encourage the next generation of entrepreneurs through an app. Oli joined SyndicateRoom because of his passion for early-stage companies.

In his spare time, Oli enjoys playing football and rugby. He’s also a keen cook and a man of the world, always eager to jet off to far frontiers and explore new cities.

Annabel Jenney

Investment Associate

Annie is a member of the Associate Team, which is responsible for managing companies’ private fundraises on the platform.

After achieving a BA in Law at the University of Cambridge, she worked in the competition team at City law firm Stephenson Harwood before joining SyndicateRoom in January 2018. Her aspiration to one day start up her own business was a motivational factor in joining the company and she hopes to learn from the ambitious entrepreneurs that she works with, while helping them realise their own goals.

In her spare time, Annie enjoys playing the piano, sketching landscapes and running along the River Cam.

Edward Hume-Kendall

Associate-Nominee

Ed works as an Associate-Nominee and is responsible for nominee communications and management of our investors and companies following the closure of a round.

Ed graduated from the University of Exeter in June 2017 with a BaCH in History and Politics and began work with SyndicateRoom in September of that year.

Outside of work, Ed is a keen water-skier and spends as much of his time as possible doing so in Cornwall.

Katerina Sanchez-Schilling

Investment Analyst

Katerina is a member of the analyst team, reaching out to potential clients and analysing investment opportunities before they are accepted onto the SyndicateRoom platform.

Originally from New York City, Katerina moved to the UK at the age of 15. She went on to study International Relations & Social Anthropology (Joint Honours, MA) at the University of St Andrews, and studied abroad at the National University of Singapore. She then completed an MPhil in Management at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School before joining the SyndicateRoom team in September 2017. Katerina has work experience as a diplomat at the United Nations for Chile, as well as consulting for Jaguar Land Rover.

During her time at Cambridge, Katerina played on the Blues rugby team and rowed for her college. She is a keen traveler and foodie, and is always eager to learn new things.

Rob Wagstaff

Videographer

I’m a videographer based near Ely, UK, with extensive knowledge in all aspects of film. I’m responsible for making SyndicateRoom’s video content and live events look and sound as brilliant as they deserve.

I’ve worked in video with a vast number of clients, such as PwC, Barclays, Tesco and M&S. Specialising as a video editor, I was taught by the amazing John Richards, Editor of Band of Brothers, Doctor Who and Da Vinci’s Demons.

I have a love for animation, having made my own stop-motions and cartoons. At home, you’d find me either scribbling ideas for an animation, playing the piano, playing with the cat, or watching some sort of weird TV show about mysteries.

Ekaterina Bystrova

Content Editor

Hi, I’m SyndicateRoom’s Content Editor, responsible for all written (and some verbal) content we produce. That includes reports, guides and my personal favourite, The Syndicate – our online magazine for the investor community. (Check it out!)

Before SyndicateRoom, I worked at a publishing house releasing international publications on behalf of the Commonwealth Secretariat. It was there that I first got the opportunity to enter into editorial (following a truly misguided stab at sales), and in the two years that followed desk edited several books on health, education and good governance.

I also earned the title of Features Editor, working on the company’s international current affairs magazine, Global: the international briefing, for which I got to interview high-profile characters the world over (admittedly via the phone) and write a lot.

In my ‘spare’ time, I like to read, write, draw, watch a daunting amount of Netflix and, occasionally, sleep. I also maintain an online presence as a Book Reviewer and Cat Instagrammer.

Kieran McKeown

Investment Associate

Kieran is a member of the Associate Team, which is responsible for managing companies’ private fundraises on the platform.

Whilst studying for a BA in History with Spanish at University College London, Kieran was first exposed to the startup life through an internship with a creative agency. On graduating from UCL, he joined the company full-time, working closely with the COO.

Kieran joined SyndicateRoom in June 2017, aspiring to help entrepreneurs realise their bold ambitions, and to learn from them in the process. He was a Programme Intern for the Founder Institute’s London 2017 cohort.

Outside of work, Kieran could describe himself as a ‘keen runner’, but is unlikely to do so. He can often be found in an East London music venue and/or on yet another city break.

Jaspal Ubhi

Investment Associate

Jass is an Investment Associate at SyndicateRoom, where he is responsible for deal flow. While sector-agonistic, he has a particular interest in biotechnology (especially biomimicry) and AI startups.

He is passionate about wildlife conservation, especially charismatic mega-fauna such as tigers, wolves and bears.

Dan Jones

Product Manager

Dan left the University of Cambridge in 2016 with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Physics (focusing on biological physics) from Churchill College. Having spent most of his life studying deep scientific ideas, he is now looking to combine his analytical skills and passion for entrepreneurial spirit and early-stage companies at SyndicateRoom.

In his spare time Dan enjoys rowing and coaching – indeed, he was captain of his college boat club. He also enjoys spending time cycling through the countryside and reading the latest research on quantum physics.

Jake Gordon

Senior Frontend Developer

Before SyndicateRoom Jake ran his own company, AllYearbooks, the UK’s leading school yearbook provider. He has a passion for keeping things simple, and making the webiste super fast.

Ademir Santos

Junior Web Developer

Ademir was born in São Tomé and came to live in Portugal at the age of seven.

He studied Management Informatics in school followed by a one-year intensive course in programming, where he gained interest in PHP programming. He started working right after the course, carrying out website maintenance and doing other development work on company products. Ademir has a Microsoft certificate on HTML5 CSS and Javascript.

In his free time, Ademir enjoys going to the movies, playing football and video games, and hanging out with friends.

Alexandre Sousa

Quality Tester

Alexandre is a Chemical Engineer and begins his career working in Quality and with computers being in charge of the computer system and network.

Later on, at Opensoft, he worked for five years as Web Application QA/Tester where he used his academic qualifications in a lateral field complementary to the core activate namely in testing and analysis.

Has delivered exemplary (fast, accurate and according to client specifications and practically free of bugs) applications versions and achieved recognition as a Web Application QA/Tester.

David Pereira

Web Developer

David joined SyndicateRoom as a Junior Web Developer in Q4 2016, interested in improving his skills in a team that is constantly learning and growing.

He completed a Software Developer course in the Instituto de Emprego e Formação Profissional in Cascais, with an academic internship included, where he applied his knowledge in CSS, HTML, JS and .NET technologies such as VB and C#. David also has a Microsoft Software Development Fundamentals certification in C#.

Outside the office, David likes listening to music, playing bass guitar, playing video games and travelling.

Tim Sharman

Compliance Officer

Tim is the Compliance Officer and Money Laundering Reporting Officer for SyndicateRoom.

He graduated from the University of Kent, Canterbury with an MA in the History and Philosophy of Science in 1986.

He has over 27 years experience in the financial services industry, in compliance, operational and investment management roles. In the last 15 years, Tim has specialised in the alternative investments sector.

He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment.

Diogo Rodrigues

Web Developer

Diogo joined SyndicateRoom as a Web Developer in Q4 2015, seeking a new motivational challenge where he could improve his skills and contribute to the development of the company.

Diogo has been working in development for the past three years, having started his career in a small/medium company developing B2C and B2B websites integrated with third-party management software. His experience focuses mainly on .NET technologies and some frontend development; he also has experience in e-ticketing, having developed a kiosk for a Portuguese ticketing operator.

Outside of the office, Diogo likes riding his bike through Portugal’s beautiful countryside and spending time with friends.

Carlos Leandro

Web Developer

Carlos is a Web Developer working in this area for two and a half years, mainly focused in PHP applications and some Front-End.

He started his career maintaining software in a company and shortly after building new web platforms with different PHP Frameworks.

He also did some courses and certifications on HTML5, CSS3, Javascript, Ionic, AngularJs technologies to improve this knowledge.

Joined SyndicateRoom in 2016 for a new challenge, contribute to the development of the company and grow alongside it and the team.

Outside the office, Carlos loves to practice sports, play video games, travel and learn new things.

Felipe Nascimento

Web Developer

Felipe joined SyndicateRoom in November 2017 for a new motivational challenge where he could improve his skills and gain new ones while contributing to the development of the company.

Felipe has worked in the area of web development for six years, gaining experience of both front end (JavaScript, jQuery, HTML, CSS) and back end development (Java).

Outside of the office, Felipe loves to play sports – football and cycling in particular – and spend time with friends and family.

We are recruiting

Interested in joining our team? We are recruiting.