Previous speakers

Tommy Palm

Awarded Game designer, serial entrepreneur

Tommy Palm, long-time Swedish games industry veteran, is the co-founder, CEO and resident “Guru of visual computing” at Resolution Games, where he works in the forefront to man the helm of the company’s voyage into creating original IP for VR and AR gameplay that will forever change the way mainstream consumers engage in the platforms. Most recently Tommy was the spokesperson and Games Guru of Candy Crush Saga maker King Digital Entertainment, where he helped lead the company to its IPO at a $7B valuation. Prior to that, his company Fabrication Games was acquired by King Digital Entertainment in 2012 to provide the platform ultimately used to help the wildly successful company transition to mobile. Tommy also founded Stugan, Jadestone, The Game Trail and consulted on games development since he first started programming for Commodore 64 in 1986.

Susan Standiford

CTO, Ikea

Susan Standiford is Chief Technology Officer at Ingka Group. Ingka Group, formerly know as IKEA Group, is the world’s largest home furnishing retailer and owns and operates 367 IKEA stores in 30 markets (FY18) under franchise agreements with Inter IKEA Systems B.V. Susan has started her IKEA career February 2019 and has the overall responsibility for technological vision, implementing technology strategies, and ensuring that the technological resources are aligned with the company's business needs. She comes with 25 years of technology experience. Prior to IKEA, she held leading positions in several global businesses such as Oracle, Disney, Zeal, Travelocity and others. Susan brings a strong customer focus in combination with digital & tech capabilities. Susan has an engineering background and comes with a successful track-record in growing and transforming retail businesses, and building and managing strong Tech teams. She is also engaged in many advisory and supervisory boards for start-ups, scale-ups and incubators working with founders for building innovative products. Susan is married to Chris and has a beloved dog called Molly. Her passion is playing tennis and traveling.

Hekla Arnardóttir

Partner, Crowberry Capital

Hekla is a General Partner at Crowberry Capital, a Nordic venture fund at the forefront of technology growth. As a seed and early stage investor, Hekla has backed many tech startups and worked closely with the founders on funding strategies, product and team development.

Hekla joined a health tech startup right after graduation in Mechanical Engineering. Emphasis on innovation was a key to the company’s success and during Hekla‘s time at Ossur ( the company grew into an international leader in its field, developing breakthrough products helping amputees gain better mobility. Roles at Ossur included leading product testing in R&D and product management. She moved to Hong Kong and then Shanghai to set up Ossur offices for the Asia region, hiring a local team and passing along the company culture to new employees in the region.

Francisco Velázquez de Cuéllar

President of Axon Partners Group

Francisco has more than twenty-five years of experience in venture capital, investment banking and strategic consulting, having worked in more than 30 countries, with reputable private clients, governments and investors
across the globe.

Francisco Velázquez de Cuéllar founded Axon Partners Group in 2006, and he is currently the President. Axon has become one of the largest Spanish advisory companies, with more than sixty employees, international offices,
and a very extensive list of clients and international investors. Within the venture capital division, Axon manages more than two hundred million euros. In additional to his role at Axon, Francisco is a Board Member of
numerous companies such as nxtGen and Captronic in India; O4IT and Mercadoni in Latin America; and Finizens and NicePeopleAtWork in Spain. Previously, he was an investor and Board Member of numerous successful
companies, including Akamon, and JustEat.

Francisco began his career as a systems engineer, first at Airbus and then in Hispasat, where he had the opportunity to lead the satellite Hispasat 1C and 1D and its satellite mission team. Subsequently, before founding Axon, he was partner in Analysys Mason, a British Consulting firm, where he advised international transactions valued at +20 bn dollars, in addition to his work as a consultant in the launch of important companies like ONO or Jazztel in Spain.

Francisco is a member of YPO (Young Presidents Organization) since 2012 and holds degrees in aerospace engineering and an MBA from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.

Joe Schorge

Founder and Manager Partner at Isomer Capital

Joe has over 20 years’ experience working as an LP, GP and technology operations executive. He founded Isomer to access early stage technology opportunities through commitments in funds, company co-investments, and providing liquidity to firms and founders via secondary purchases. Prior to Isomer Joe was MD for Business Development at Pomona Capital, a leading global secondaries firm, and earlier at Cambridge Associates responsible for advising institutional investors on $2bn of private equity investments. Joe began his career in information technology operating roles, most notably at Invensys plc (now Schneider Electric) in the US and Europe. He received a BS Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth and an MBA from London Business School.

Kirsi Larkiala

Finnish Fintech Ecosystem Ltd

CEO & Founding Partner Finnish Fintech Ecosystem Ltd ( ), Fintech influencer, Fintech Entrepreneur, Long-term Corporate& Investment Banker.

Kirsi Larkiala is a dynamic and highly respected wholesale & transaction banking and Fintech senior executive with market-leading results in increasingly more complex leadership and client advisory positions. Kirsi has over 30 years of experience in Corporate, Institutions & Retail & Transaction, Liquidity & Risk Management banking. Kirsi is known as a thought leader in digitalization, disruption, innovation & change management as well as client advisory in the financial industry. Long-term professional relationships with leading corporate and institutional clients in the Nordics are important part of Kirsi´s network. Last 5 years Kirsi has been focusing also on Fintech companies and today as a founder of Finnish Fintech Ecosystem Ltd for creating collaboration, tangible business results and innovation between traditional players and Fintech companies.

Scott Sandell

Managing General Partner, NEA

Scott Sandell is Managing General Partner at NEA. A General Partner since 2000, and Co-Managing General Partner from 2015 - 2017, Scott served as head of the firm’s technology investing practice for 10 years and has led NEA’s China investing activities for over a decade. Since joining the firm in 1996, he has personally led investments in industry-transforming companies like Bloom Energy, Data Domain, Fusion-io,, Tableau Software, WebEx, and Workday. Scott is one of only four investors named to the Forbes Midas List every year since 2007, with 24 technology companies in his portfolio having successfully completed public offerings or mergers.

Scott is currently a director of Bloom Energy (NYSE: BE) and a number of private companies including Automation Anywhere, Branch, Cloudflare, Coursera, Enigma, Expanse (fka Qadium), Hello Alfred, One Concern, Robinhood, Sentons, Transfix, and WaterBit. Other previous investments include Fusion-io (acquired by SanDisk), Neoteris (acquired by Juniper Networks), NetIQ (acquired by Attachmate Corporation), Playdom (acquired by Disney), and Spreadtrum Communications (acquired by Tsinghua Unigroup).

Prior to joining NEA, Scott was a Product Manager at Microsoft, where he worked on Windows 95. Before joining Microsoft, Scott was the first salesperson at C-ATS Software and later co-founded and ran the company’s European subsidiary. He began his career at the Boston Consulting Group. Scott holds an MBA from Stanford and an AB in Engineering Sciences from Dartmouth College.

Scott also serves on the Board of Advisors for the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth and is a former Chairman of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) (2014-2015).

Zoe Adamovicz

Founder, Neufund

Zoe Adamovicz is the CEO and co-founder at Neufund. A serial founder and investor. Co-founder and CEO at Xyologic Mobile Analysis GmbH (exited to Nasdaq-listed venture Digital Turbine Inc.), Head of EMEA and Executive VP of Group Technology Development at Digital Turbine. Strong background in electronics and informatics and 20 years of experience as a founder. Mentor at the Gaza Sky Geeks, supporting technology entrepreneurship in the challenging area of the Gaza Strip and helps to introduce Blockchain.

Falk Müller-Veerse

Partner & Head of Germany/Nordics Bryan, Garnier & Co GmbH

Falk is an experienced M&A and fundraising professional with over twenty years of experience in the software, technology and internet industries. He has a global network in the investor and acquirer community and closed successful deals with companies such as Microsoft, Disney, Blackberry, Balderton, Swisscom and Telefonica.

Falk was the founder and managing partner of Cartagena Capital which merged with Bryan, Garnier & Co in January 2016. Before that Falk worked for Durlacher (acquired by Lazard), Gartner Group, Logica, McGraw-Hill and Nokia in various management, consulting and investment roles.

He is also a founder and private start-up investor as well as board member of private and public companies in the technology sector.

Jeff Pulver

Executive Vice Chairman, Skrumble

Throughout his highly successful international career, Jeff Pulver contributed to helping to launch the VoIP industry in 1995 and helped grow it to what has now become a two trillion dollar global industry in 2019. As an Internet Pioneer known for his work in VoIP, Jeff literally helped change the way the world communicates. Jeff launched the first phone network on the Internet known as Free World Dialup in 1995; launched the VoIP Industry Trade Show VON in 1997; founded the company which is now known as Vonage in 1998 and worked with policy makers in Washington, D.C. which resulted in the landmark order issued by the FCC in 2004 known as “The Pulver Order.”

His work in Washington on getting “The Pulver Order” passed is the reason services like: FaceTime, Telegram and WhatsApp are free both in the US and in over 100 countries around the world. Jeff has influenced the creation of numerous startups and has invested in over 400 startups. Currently exploring the intersection of: Blockchain and Finance. As Co-Founder of The Local Group, Jeff is a passionate advocate of Programmable Securities and Digital Assets. Strategic adviser to Blockchain projects.

Details. Jeff Pulver can be described as: Internet Pioneer, VoIP; Entrepreneur, Investor, Mentor, Strategist, Astrophotographer, Futurist, Life / Business Coach. Helped shape the worldwide market acceptance of VoIP; Founder / co-founder of numerous startups including: Free World Dialup,, VON, Vivox and Vonage. Veteran of the Tradeshow industry; producer, host, curator of events. Jeff is also involved in public policy advocacy and is the founder of both the VON Coalition and the Blockchain Token Association

Known as a globally renowned Internet thought leader. In 1995 defined ``VON`` to stand for Voice/Video on the Net. From 1997 to 2008 he hosted/produced the VON Conferences and drove the growth of the global VoIP Industry.

Mr. Pulver is committed to the future of the Internet and is featured in the media as an expert in his field.

— The Pulver Order —

On February 12, 2004, Mr. Pulver's petition for clarification declaring Free World Dialup as an unregulated information service was granted by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). This landmark decision was the first decision it made on IP communications. Now referred to as ``the Pulver Order``, the ruling provides important clarification that computer-to-computer VoIP service is not a telecommunications service. By doing this, the FCC delivered a strong signal to consumers and capital markets that the FCC is not interested in subjecting end-to-end IP Communications services to traditional voice telecommunications regulation under the Communications Act.

Rolf Assev

Partner at StartupLab

Rolf Assev is co-founder and partner in leading Nordic incubator/accelerator/investor StartupLab and is based out of Oslo Norway. StartupLab has today 80+ startups and invests early phase capital through Founders Fund being the first investor in early phase startups such as Remarkable, NoIsolation, Huddly and 35 other startups.

Rolf worked for 12 years in Opera Software as Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing, Chief Commercial Officer and Chief Strategy on an exciting journey building the company from 12 to 750 people with more than 200 million active users.

He started his post-secondary education at the Royal Norwegian Naval Academy, before receiving his Master of Science degree from the Norwegian School of Business Administration in 1988. Rolf’s work experience includes the Norwegian Trade Council in Stockholm, the marketing department of the Lillehammer Olympic Organizing Committee, senior consultant for the Nordic PR agency Geelmuyden. Kiese and chairman/co-founder of WeWantToKnow which is the startup behind the math game DragonBox.

Kamran Elahian

Founder and Chairman, Global Innovation Catalyst, LLC

As an Innovation Catalyst, Kamran advises various governments on the needed transition from fossil based economies to sustainable innovation economies. In the past, as a global high-tech entrepreneur, he co-founded ten companies, had 6 exits, 3 of them were Unicorn IPOs with a total market cap of over $8B. For

15 yrs., he was Chairman of Global Catalyst Partners, a global VC firm ($350M under management) with investments in the U.S., Japan, China, India, Israel and Singapore. Underlying his vision for global philanthropy is the conviction that modern Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) can be instrumental in dissolving barriers between nations and bridging the social and political differences among people. This vision was reflected in Schools-Online, a nonprofit he co-founded in 1996 to connect the world, one school at a time (6400 schools in 36 countries were provided with computers and access to the Internet) and merged with Relief International in 2003; Global Catalyst Foundation, co-founded in 2000 to improve lives through effective education and empowerment of the youth (with special emphasis on young women)
using the leverage of ICT, and UN-GAID, a United Nations global forum that promotes ICT in developing countries where he served as Co-Chairman (2009-2011).

Paavo Beckman

CEO, Startup Catapult

Paavo Beckman is a well-known player in the startup field. Beckman has established and managed several technology companies over the past 15 years. Two of his companies have also been sold forward. He has led the Team both in San Francisco, New York, London and Helsinki. Beckman has been involved in developing consumer-friendly marketing tools for the world's largest entertainment brands in the US and the UK and has worked as a corporate coach in more than 10 countries. Beckman is an expert startup corporation in piloting co-operation and is a well-known advocate of lean startup methods!

While living in the Silicon Valley of California, Beckman's doctrine is inspiring and engaging in a great deal of difference between American and Finnish entrepreneurship. She has been a speaker at many major business events in more than 10 countries and has reaped the reputation of being an inspirational idea lover and professional advisor.

At present, Paavo is the CEO of Startup Catapult International, where his work image includes the search for growth companies and various innovative solutions for the development needs of large listed companies. Agreeing with the job, his passion and greatest interest are the changes and solutions brought by digitalization and new technologies to the processes of different industries.

The challenges facing businesses and their responses are the backbone of Beckman's inspiring speeches.

In Paavo, the passion for learning, development and change becomes concrete. As a founder of six companies, she has a lot of experience with success, but she particularly emphasizes the importance of failures on the road to success. His performances include practical examples of success stories, failures, methods of developing knowledge and business, and examples of factors that slow down success.

Ola Ahlvarsson

Founding Partner & CEO, Result

Ola Ahlvarsson is a Swedish entrepreneur and athlete based out of Stockholm. Ola has since the mid 90’s been at the cutting edge of digital entrepreneurship as an entrepreneur, investor, thought leader and advisor. He has a deep understanding of how businesses can embrace digital opportunities and technology earning him several international awards and recognitions, such as Wired Magazines top technology thinkers 2015 and Young Global Leader at World Economic Forum.

Speaker and Moderator

Ola is one of Sweden’s most popular international speakers and moderator. Ola has been chosen to host and lead discussions in some of the world’s most prestigious events, amongst them at the World Economic Forum in Davos, DLD in Munich, World Knowledge Forum in Seoul and Le Web in Paris. Ola is also the co-creator, host and moderator of SIME, a thought leader summit held in Stockholm every year hosting 2000 leaders from the Swedish and the International Economy. As a moderator, he has interviewed heads of states, global top executives, pop stars, super-entrepreneurs, hackers, opinionated kids and brilliant academics. As a speaker, Ola has an amazing ability to engage and combine personal experience with the latest trends and learnings and a unique way of combining in-depth domain expertise with excellent stage performance sprinkled with passionate curiosity.

James Digby

Managing Partner 3B Ventures

James is a Managing Partner at 3B Ventures, focusing on investing in innovation that can impact the lives of the next 3 billion. Also the founder the Global Startup Awards, a pan-regional startup competition that recognizes entrepreneurs and their respective supporting ecosystems around the world, and co-founded the award-winning startup incubator Rockstart Accelerator in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

As a seasoned board member, most recently with Louisiana State University (LSU), James has also served on the management team and a personal mentor for a number of startups that have gone on to raise significant funding and global traction, recently with the award-winning AIRTAME wireless HDMI streaming device that became the most publicly backed crowdfunded project in Europe on Indiegogo of all time.

James has more than a decade of entrepreneurial experience working with startups and alongside corporations like Samsung, and public organizations such as the Saïd Business School at Oxford University and the Kauffman Foundation to develop innovation & strategy workshops as well as lecture and keynote on entrepreneurial techniques with a focus on ‘lean’ methodologies and social innovation.

Anna-Maija Sunnanmark

Senior Innovation Adviser at Nordic Innovation

Anna-Maija is a finance and business development professional with +20 years’ of experience in identifying innovations and scalable business models in various industries in an international context with execution capability, a can-do-attitude, holistic perspective and passion to build on Nordic strongholds. Currently she works at Nordic Innovation which is part of official Nordic cooperation contributing to making the Nordic region a leading region for sustainable growth, entrepreneurship, innovation and competitiveness. At Nordic Innovation she is responsible for Nordic Scalers program. The vision of the program is to make the Nordics the leading region in the world not only for starting up but also for scaling up businesses. Nordic Scalers program provides 10-weeks hands-on and customized support for up to 10 Nordic scale-ups at a time who want to grow their business even faster. Before joining Nordic Innovation, Anna-Maija worked with the Finnish start-up ecosystem at Tekes (current Business Finland), evaluating the business performance and execution capability of start-ups and coaching them in their business and innovation development. She has also hold has had various international assignments related to innovation policy development and in the field of innovative service businesses

Colette Ballou

Founder, Ballou Capital

I am an entrepreneur, former angel investor and limited partner.

Years ago, I started Ballou, a European communications and strategy agency that works with high-growth technology and technology-enabled companies, as well as technology investors. As Ballou is at the meeting point of business and media, we’ve been early adopters of leading technologies and monitored their development.

Ballou’s success has allowed me to invest in start-ups and venture capital firms, and has also given me exposure to thousands of different business models, so that I know what works, what doesn't, and what to watch for. Along with my colleagues, I forecast trends, understand and examine human behaviour, and use these insights to position businesses for high growth.

Companies I’ve worked with include 83 North, Accel Partners, Box, Criteo, Eventbrite, Facebook, GoEuro, Lakestar, Pinterest, Stack Overflow, Stripe, TransferWise, Twilio, Waze, WhatsApp and Zendesk.

I am an investor in VC funds including Cavalry Ventures and Connect Ventures.

Svein Berg

Managing Director/CEO at Nordic Innovation

Svein Berg has a wide and long experience from working with innovation and business development both nationally and internationally. He started as Managing Director at Nordic Innovation in April 2017. He came from the position as Director Region Americas at Innovation Norway where he has worked in various positions since 2006.

Berg also has experience from the private sector and has previously served as Director at Norway Seafoods ASA and Managing Director of the Norwegian Seafood Council AS. Berg has also served as Senior Vice President in the Norwegian Industrial and Regional Development Fund. He holds a Master Degree in Economics from the University of Oslo.

Marija Rucevska

Co-founder at & TechChill

Marija is an entrepreneur who has over 5 years of experience in building tech startup ecosystems across the Baltics. During the time she has also co-founded and served as a CEO at TechChill organization, a startup community non-profit that hosts the leading Baltic Tech event every February and brings together hottest startups and innovators from across the region. Apart from the event, TechChill Foundation's main focus is to serve as an international voice for Latvian startups globally and place the Baltic region on the European tech map.

Marija is an active advisory member for the Latvian government when it comes to crafting the overall nation's strategy towards IT and tech. She is a passionate ambassador for Baltic tech and works to help the region gain visibility in order to attract foreign talent, smart investment and media attention that it deserves.

Currently, Marija has co-founded another venture - - a company aiming to fight climate change by offering global scale solution - a creation of a new type of economy (sustainable one) based on a digital asset-backed currency trusted and accepted by all parties. She's in charge of operations and business development. Marija believes in social entrepreneurship and is proud of everyone who works towards building a more sustainable environment for everyone.

Oscar Farres

Head of Unit, Innovation and Technology Investments EIF

Oscar Farres is Head of Unit in the Innovation and Technology Investments team at the European Investment Fund (EIF) in Luxembourg, a European institution that provides risk finance to benefit small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) across Europe. At EIF, Oscar has invested in VC funds across Europe with a focus on the ICT sector and sits on their Advisory Boards. Oscar is a seasoned speaker in VC industry events and contributor to publications in the field of venture capital.

Prior to joining the EIF, Oscar developed his professional career at two Spanish VC funds, Caixa Capital Risc and Debaeque Venture Capital, where he invested in internet and software
start-ups. During this period, he invested and sat on the Boards of companies such as Groupalia, BuyVIP, ApeSoft, Icinetic, and HelpMyCash among others. Before becoming a VC investor, Oscar co-founded Kineto Project, a technology start-up in the fitness space,
and Witur, an on-line marketplace for local travel experiences.

Oscar holds an Electronics Engineering degree from Universitat Ramon Llull and an MBA degree from IESE Business School with an exchange at MIT.

Monika Liikamaa

Co-Founder and Chairman, Board Enfuce Financial Services

Monika Liikamaa is the Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board at Enfuce Financial Services, the world’s first level 1 PCI DSS compliant cloud-based service provider approved by the Finnish FSA.
Monika’s visionary thinking, and experience of the fast-paced payment industry has enabled Enfuce to integrate solutions for their customers in record breaking time. Building sustainable payment solutions is a core value for the company, and with Monika’s wide knowledgebase of the industry nothing is impossible. Being future focused and collaborating with other industry experts is in Monika’s mind the recipe for success. A business is nothing without a great team of people, and that is why Monika has gathered industry experts around her both as co-founders and as employees for Enfuce. Enfuce Financial Services is now one of the fastest growing Fintech companies in Finland and Northern Europe.

Carolina Brochado

Investment Director, SoftBank Vision Fund

Carolina works on sourcing of global investments for Softbank Vision Fund and is based in London.

Carolina focuses on fintech, digital health & wellness and marketplaces. Prior to joining Softbank, Carolina was a Partner at Atomico, where she sourced and collaborated with portfolio companies for almost five years. Some of her investments included Lendinvest, Gympass, Hinge Health, Ontruck and Rekki. Previously Carolina has worked as Head of Ops to a now defunct gifting e-commerce start-up, as an investor at Chicago-based private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners and within Consumer/Retail Investment Banking at Merrill Lynch in New York.

Carolina has a Bachelor of Science degree in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and an MBA from Columbia Business School. She is originally from Brazil.

Pontus Stråhlman

CEO at Spinnaker Ventures

James Mawson

Founder, CEO and Editor-in-Chief, Mawsonia

James was editor of Private Equity News, part of Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal in London, for nearly four years until May, 2010 when he launched Global Corporate Venturing as an independent title from his own publishing company. This was followed by the launch of Global University Venturing and Global Government Venturing by the publishing company, Mawsonia.

Pratima Aiyagari

Corporate Development & Venture Investments, Cisco

#CVC Track

Pratima Aiyagari joined Cisco Investments in 2011 and is responsible for investments and acquisitions in the EMEA region with a specific focus on ML/AI, Enterprise Collaboration and Silicon. In this role, she also serves as Cisco’s board observer on several portfolio companies. Prior to her current role, she has over a decade of experience in multiple roles as a Cisco engineer in the US (in the areas of network management, access routing and advanced services), sell-side equity research in Europe covering the TMT sector (at Société Générale) and corporate development at a startup.
Pratima received her MBA from INSEAD in France and an MS in computer science from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in the US. Pratima is a co-author of a US patent in the area of network device clusters and high availability.

Marc Deschamps

Executive Chairman, Drake Star Partners

Marc Deschamps is Managing Partner & Executive Chairman of Drake Star Partners. Marc combines a highly successful internet entrepreneurial and corporate leadership track record, with an award-winning M&A career dedicated to the tech and internet sectors. Prior to Drake Star Partners, Marc co-founded LD&A Jupiter in 2004, leading over 70 M&A and private equity international transactions.
Marc’s career is all committed to the growth of tech and internet companies. Prior to co-founding Drake Star Partners, Marc served as COO of British Telecom, where he led the broadband internet multi-billion-pound launch and roll out in the UK. He also was Chello NV’s Co-Founder, the first broadband ISP and one of the first unicorns in Europe. As such, Marc led Chello NV through a $1 billion IPO on NASDAQ and AEX before its sale to Liberty Global as part of the UPC group. He began his career in technology management roles at Logitech (launching innovative products) and Philips (European marketing of new media publishing CD-I, CD-ROM). He co-founded his first IT company at the age of 17 providing race series such as Formula 1, IndyCar and NASCAR with revolutionary timing IT.
Marc is and was non-executive board director in multiple innovation companies including some of the leading Indian IT providers, Canadian new media pioneers and the first European wind power operator. Marc founded and invested in multiple IT and internet companies.
Marc holds an MBA from INSEAD and a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Polytechnique de Montréal in collaboration with Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne. Marc published research in Artificial Intelligence and received scholarships from National Research Council of Canada as well as Power Corp.
Marc lives in London with 3 kids, is Canadian and British national, multilingual and lived in some 6 countries.

Sïmon Saneback

Founder, Wellstreet

Briefly, I'm an award-winning geek with substantial experience in the online industry in general and the e-commerce domain in particular.
I founded my first startup at 16 years of age and have since started over dozens of different companies. Since the late nineties, being in an entrepreneurial environment and developing successful businesses have been two of my greatest passions. I focus on meaningful entrepreneurship by supporting entrepreneurs to explore and develop sustainable and impactful businesses.
In the last decade, I have held several executive positions and advisory roles in global enterprises. I'm also a frequent speaker at some of Europe's largest e-business conferences.

While living in the Silicon Valley of California, Beckman's doctrine is inspiring and engaging in a great deal of difference between American and Finnish entrepreneurship. She has been a speaker at many major business events in more than 10 countries and has reaped the reputation of being an inspirational idea lover and professional advisor.

At present, Paavo is the CEO of Startup Catapult International, where his work image includes the search for growth companies and various innovative solutions for the development needs of large listed companies. Agreeing with the job, his passion and greatest interest are the changes and solutions brought by digitalization and new technologies to the processes of different industries.

The challenges facing businesses and their responses are the backbone of Beckman's inspiring speeches.

In Paavo, the passion for learning, development and change becomes concrete. As a founder of six companies, she has a lot of experience with success, but she particularly emphasizes the importance of failures on the road to success. His performances include practical examples of success stories, failures, methods of developing knowledge and business, and examples of factors that slow down success.

Jaajo Linnonmaa

Founder and Chairman of the Board, VirtualTraveller

Jaajo Linnonmaa is a 9-time Radio Host of the Year in Finland. A Primetime TV-host of Who Wants to be a Millionaire? He is also an actor in a TV-series and has played leading roles in a few box office movies. Linnonmaa is a business investor and known and awarded for his work in helping young entrepreneurs. He is co-founder of many companies like MySoda. But still Wikipedia says that he is a tech entrepreneur?

Elia Montanari

Head of Control & Management Office, European Space Agency

Elia Montanari has been Head of Management and Marketing in the ESA Business Applications since 2013.

Truly faithful to his erratic suite of interests, he holds a master degree in Chemical Engineer from the University of Bologna (IT), achieved a master in Business Administration at the Henley Business School (UK) and he is a certified Internal Auditor (IIA, US) with similarly erratic experiences across numerous roles around the globe for Procter & Gamble and the European Space Agency.

Aki Koivistoinen

Ambassador of Europe & Israel StartUp Health

Aki is an entrepreneur, strategist and batteries included health transformer, leading the European arm of StartUp Health. StartUp Health is a global health innovation company and growth platform for entrepreneurs transforming health. StartUp Health has the world’s largest portfolio of digital health companies – over 200 startups spanning 18 different countries – and network of over 40 000 innovators, industry leaders and investors committed to supporting the entrepreneurs re-imagining health and wellness. Prior to StartUp Health Aki was a co-founder of Karyon Ltd, a medical biotech company, developing targeted carrier molecules for imaging and treatment of solid tumors. As a strategist he works in company, industry and government levels in different market areas to build innovation capacity and boost business creation. Aki also serves on the advisory boards of startups he has invested in.
StartUp Health is a global health innovation company. The StartUp Health Platform, including its Academy, Network and Innovation Fund, is empowering a global network of entrepreneurs and innovators to transform healthcare. With more than 200 companies, StartUp Health has the world’s largest portfolio of digital health companies from 18 countries and 5 continents. StartUp Health was founded in 2011 by Steven Krein and Unity Stoakes and is chaired by former Time Warner CEO, Jerry Levin. StartUp Health’s notable strategic partners and investors include AARP, Accenture, Allianz, AON, Aurora Health Care, Bayer, California Healthcare Foundation, Steve Case, Cleveland Clinic, Conifer Health Solutions, Mark Cuban, Esther Dyson, Roger Ehrenberg, Brad Feld, GE Ventures, Genentech, Kaiser Permanente Ventures, Ping An, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, SAP, SeventySix Capital and Stericycle.

Juliet Bailin

Associate Partner, Mosaic Ventures

Juliet is an Associate Partner at Mosaic Ventures, a silicon valley-style series A fund in London investing across Europe. At Mosaic, she works with investments across the healthtech landscape, from adaptive oncology to digital therapeutics, in addition to machine intelligence and enterprise SaaS.

Prior to Mosaic, Juliet was an Investor at Insight Venture Partners in New York, an $18bn growth VC/PE fund focused on software. During her three years there, she invested across stages and industries, eventually doubling down on the fascinating products transforming healthcare. Juliet backed Hinge Health, Parachute Health, and Caremerge, as well as drove M&A for Virgin Pulse. She moved to London in August to join Mosaic's vision of backing ambitious, gritty founders committed to reshaping global markets.

Marvin Liao

Partner, 500 Startups

Marvin works with awesome startups across the globe and at the SF/SV accelerator programs – that is, when he's not practicing his signature song (Backstreet Boys ``I Want it That Way`` btw) & dealing with his book buying addiction, A recovering exec from Yahoo! he's very happy to be part of the Revolution!

He invests in digital media, adtech, marketing cloud, e-commerce and mobile startups across the globe. Formerly of Yahoo! Inc. (10.5 years), Marvin has worked in various departments – sales, business development, ad operations and marketing. Most of his positions have been regional or global management roles, giving him extensive experience across Asia, Europe, Latin America and the United States. He presently serves on the boards and advisory boards of several internet advertising and ad technology companies across the globe. In addition, he is a mentor for several startup accelerator programs in Europe, Israel and the US, helping guide startup teams with their sales, marketing and partner development efforts.

I'm an experienced client-facing senior executive in the media and technology space in both large and start up growth companies, managing large multifunctional teams across multiple countries while based in the Silicon Valley.

A longtime fan, participant, and an observer of the digital technology revolution occurring for the last 14 years across the world, i am presently on the advisory boards of several internet advertising and ad technology companies across the globe.

Andy Krainak

Brand Director, Vaynermedia

Experienced digital and brand strategist with a 5 year work history in Personal Branding, Growth Marketing and Social Advertising, under Gary Vaynerchuk's personal brand team Team GaryVee. Skilled in Digital Content Strategy and Optimization, ECommerce, Paid and Organic Social Marketing on: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Snapchat, Pinterest, Influencer Marketing, Channel Diversification.

Walter Ballheimer

Co-Founder & CEO, German Orbital Systems

As a little kid, I read stories about the first astronauts and cosmonauts and always wondered, why they are called different, although they do the same things in the same environment. From that day on, one idea always motivated me on my way. It is the deep belief, that space is one of the few things left, which unites people instead of dividing them. This is why I became a space entrepreneur.

German Orbital Systems is the only German company focusing on CubeSats. Our core business is building turnkey satellite missions for customers, we also build separation sequence controllers for cluster launches. Large part of our revenues is invested in research. We have ongoing research projects in space debris monitoring as well as in additive manufacturing of structures and in novel electrical power systems. German Orbital Systems is not venture backed.

Markus Ranne

New Space Economy Program Manager at Business Finland

Markus Ranne is the Program Manager of the New Space Economy program at Business Finland. Previously he has worked in various project functions at Business Finland, Finpro, European Space Agency and IVO Power Engineering. He has a Master's degree in electrical engineering from Helsinki University of Technology and a MBA from Aalto University.
The New Space Economy program aims to benefit from the growth potential of international space business. The program offers funding, networks and internationalization services for developing global space business, and funds industry disrupting startups, growth-seeking manufacturing companies and businesses focused on data utilization.

Business Finland is the Finnish innovation funding, trade, investment, and travel promotion organization, headquartered in Helsinki.

New Space Economy program:
Business Finland:
Space Finland – latest on the Finnish space know-how:

Reetta Ilo

International Affairs Manager, FiBAN

Reetta Ilo has started as FiBAN's International Affairs Manager on the 1st of January 2018. Reetta is in charge of FiBAN's new investing project Nordic Angel Program (NAP) that is cooperated with EstBAN, DanBAN and BAN Norway, and coordinated by NordicBAN.

Reetta has been working with international circles for years, first in University of Turku, where she has finished two Master’s Degrees: one in World and European History and other in the faculty for East Asian studies. Her Master of Science degree was conducted in English and Japanese, which she is fluent in. She came to FiBAN from Finnish Export Sales House, where she worked as Sales Manager. Her other prior work experience consists of marketing of Asian trade shows at a German-based corporation and doing an internship at Finnish Foreign Ministry’s UN Development Issues unit, as well as working with a startup in her hometown of Turku. “FiBAN is by far the most interesting organization there is in the startup ecosystem – with international collaboration and networking projects we can gain even more solid footing in the ecosystem globally”, Reetta remarks.

In her spare time, you can find Reetta in karate-dojo, where she has trained both adults and children. In addition, she likes to indulge herself with reading and drawing, as well as playing with her dog, FiBAN’s official Chief Happiness Officer, Meiko.

Asher Siddiqui

Technology Investments Advisor, ADFG (Abu Dhabi Financial Group)

Asher Siddiqui is an investor, mentor and advisor to management teams, boards, family offices, private equity and venture capital firms globally.

Asher is currently an Advisor to ADFG (Abu Dhabi Financial Group) on Technology Investments.

Asher was previously a Managing Partner, and part of the global leadership team, at 500 Startups, dividing his time between Dubai and San Francisco, leading the global flagship mid-to-growth stage fund to double down on ``winners”.
Prior to 500, Asher was Head of M&A and later Head of Venture Capital at Etisalat Group (c. $43bn market cap, c. $14bn revenues) where, for 10 years, he was part of the management team that led the transformation of Etisalat. He led over 36 advanced stage deals valued at approximately $34bn and closed 20+ transactions valued at c.$7.5bn (10 M&A transactions and 12+ VC deals).

Asher started his career in the late 90's and founded several startups in the U.K. and the US.

Inga Chenova

Head of Investor Relations Arctic15, COO ArcticStartup

Valerie Vlasenko

Arctic15 Space Curator, ArcticStartup

Valerie Vlasenko is an entrepreneur tackling the dilemma of popularising space. Founder of VSpace Media and Curator of Arctic15 Space conference - Valerie has rich experience as an entrepreneur, a journalist and a space lawyer.

Today, she is running VSpace, a media consultancy firm with the goal of making space popular and accessible. Member of the Space Generation Advisory Council and with a strong background in Space Law, Valerie interviewed top names in the industry such as: Peter Diamandis, Chairman & CEO of XPRIZE; Luca Parmitano, ESA astronaut; Beth Haley, MD for the European Space Agency at Concordia Station, Antarctica.

She is also often sought after as a mentor to space related startups and hackathons, such as the Tartu Garage48 Space Hackathon. Prior to starting VSpace and joining ArcticStartup - she co-founded two legal startups, and served as a legal counsel in aviation with clients such as Boeing and Amadeus.

Tim He

Venture Investor, Kinnevik

Experienced operator and venture investor. Built and led high performing teams in fast moving international environments. Worked and lived in Europe, North America and China with a deep understanding and appreciation for local customs and cultural differences. Pragmatic mindset and approach with an emphasis on culture.

Adam Kostyál

Senior Vice President, Head of European Listings Nasdaq

Adam Kostyál is the Senior Vice President of the Global Listing Services and Head of European Listings for Nasdaq. Besides the Nordic Exchanges, Nasdaq has approximately 200 companies that are either primarily listed or dual listed on Nasdaq in the USA. In addition Nasdaq has launched the Nasdaq Private Market which is an offering focused on supporting private growth companies in managing liquidity events.

Adam has been with Nasdaq for the past 10 years. He started his career at OMX and has been in various commercial roles within the organization. Prior to his current role he had overall responsibility for Nasdaq Market Technology for the European, Central and Eastern European regions. Prior to Nasdaq, Adam held various positions with Enron, Cell Network and Bloomberg. He holds a BSc in Economics and Marketing from Vrije Universiteit de Bruxelles and speaks four languages including English, Swedish, Italian and French. He is also the father of five.

Gareth Keane

Partner, Promus Ventures

Gareth Keane is a Partner with Promus Ventures, splitting his time between the San Francisco Bay Area and Europe. Promus Ventures invests in early-stage deep-technology software and hardware companies that are run by visionary and tenacious founding teams. Promus funds companies shaping the future in areas like robotics, AI/ML, space, and synthetic biology. Gareth’s career to date has stretched from engineering roles to venture capital investment. Prior to joining Promus Ventures he worked at Qualcomm Ventures, the venture capital investment arm of Qualcomm Inc. Before that he worked for two years in the corporate development teams at National Semiconductor and Texas Instruments, focused on strategic investment, corporate M&A and corporate strategy. Previously he worked for PMC-Sierra and a number of other technology firms across both hardware and software.

Gareth has an MBA from The Wharton School of The University of Pennsylvania, a PhD in Electronic Engineering from The Queen’s University of Belfast (UK) and a BE in Electronic Engineering from the National University of Ireland, Galway. Gareth is also a Kauffman Fellow.

Julia Ognieva

Strategic Product Partnerships, Platform and Augmented Reality, Facebook

Julia is part of the EMEA Platform Partnerships team at Facebook. She drives Facebook's strategy through global programs and strategic product integrations, such as Augmented Reality Camera Effects Platform and Messenger Platform, with partners. Prior to her current role, Julia looked after EMEA Gaming Partnerships at Facebook.

Before joining Facebook in 2014, Julia managed Developer Relations at Tapjoy, a mobile monetization platform.

Julia holds a first-class degree in Economics & Advertising from the University of Worcester.

Jeff Abbott

Partner, Blitzscaling Ventures

Passionately building and scaling international startups. Transforming technology commercialization through startups. Innovating in online international startup education and mentoring.

Peter Vesterbacka

Co-founder, Brand Breaker, Lightneer Inc

Mr. Peter Vesterbacka served as the Chief Marketing Officer and Mighty Eagle of Rovio Entertainment Oy. Mr. Vesterbacka manages the Rovio Entertainment’s business strategy, including expanding Angry Birds into broader entertainment franchise. He serves as Senior Advisor of Transfluent Oy. Previously, he has founded Some Bazaar, he has held several communications industry related positions at Hewlett Packard and founded the Hewlett Packard Mobile E Services Bazaar and he is the co-founder and original initiator of MobileMonday. He serves as a Director of Star Wreck Studios, Start Up Sauna, BlueGiga Technologies Oy, Oy Filmkompaniet Alpha Ab and American Chamber of Commerce in Finland. He served as a Director of F-Secure Oyj since 2014 until April 7, 2015. Mr. Vesterbacka has studied marketing at Åbo Akademi.

Sean Percival


Sean is an American entrepreneur, investor and author originally from California. He has invested in over 120 startups and founded several of his own. Through his work in acclaimed accelerator programs like 500 Startups and the Katapult Impact-tech Accelerator, Sean has helped to mentor 1000s of startups on growth marketing and fundraising. Sean is currently based in Oslo, Norway where he works as the CMO of, the easiest to use video meeting service.

Eric Lagier

Partner, ByFounders

Eric Lagier is Managing Partner at byFounders, the New Nordic seed stage venture fund. Backed by some of the most accomplished founders from the Baltics and Nordics, byFounders invest in the next generation of founders with global ambitions.

Eric Is a successful tech entrepreneur, with more than 20 years of experience from leading tech companies Skype (Acquired by eBay), Tradeshift and Memolane (acquired by HP).

Based in San Francisco, Eric has since long advised and supported other entrepreneurs on early stage ventures. Leveraging his many years of experience to help bring scale and growth to early-stage companies.

Tarjanne Artturi

Partner, Nexit Ventures

Artturi Tarjanne – Activist VC with business angel and serial entrepreneur background
Artturi has over 30 years of international IT industry experience and is well known and referenced in Finland for his track record as one of the pioneering successful software entrepreneurs and organizers of industry interests at large. He is also a sought after mentor and adviser for high growth technology enterprises and entrepreneurs and has had board and chairman positions on dozens of companies.

Anna Puustell

Innovation Lead, Senior Manager, Accenture

Anna leads Accenture Finland’s innovation agenda. She has a strong passion on new technologies that enable significant change in the way business is done. Anna’s background is in technology strategy consulting, communication strategy & development, and digital transformation program delivery. She has a thorough understanding of the possibilities new emerging technologies bring and how to get people onboard to actually make the change happen.

Anna sees that strategic landscaping and business agility are two topics that are becoming more and more relevant for business renewal discussions. The amount of data enables smart organizations to transform their thinking from being reactive to changes in business environment to being proactive in shaping the market around them. Anna believes a strong strategy is key to making the right investments for transformation and that you can make your AI vision a reality by knowing where to start and how to scale.

Ekaterina Almasque

Venture Partner, OpenOcean

Ekaterina (Katya) is a Venture Partner at OpenOcean and she leads the London Team and Operations.

Before joining OpenOcean, Katya was a Managing Director of the Samsung Catalyst Fund in Europe, Samsung’s Electronics $500M venture capital multistage investment fund focused on core technology areas including robotics, autonomous driving, artificial intelligence, digital health, data infrastructure and device level technologies. She led investments across Europe in leading companies such as GraphCore, Mapillary, AIMotive, Sentiance and Quobyte, as well as several venture funds.

For over ten years prior to that, Katya was part of several corporate and independent venture capital funds in Silicon Valley and Europe, including EMC and Siemens Venture Capital. Additionally she was a founding partner of a global private equity advisory firm specializing in high-tech growth companies with $1B+ markets in the technology and environmental sectors, where she led investments in the US, Brazil, and Europe.

Jonathan Sibilia

Partner, Head of Secondaries and Fund of Funds, Draper Esprit

Jonathan joined Draper Esprit in 2009. Prior to joining the company, he was a senior associate in the technology group at Jefferies International advising on high-profile cross-border M&A, debt & equity offerings. Previously, he worked at Rothschild & CIE in Paris and Apax Partners Corporate Finance in France. Jonathan holds a MA in Management from EM-Lyon and the University of St Gallen in Switzerland and an MA in Advanced Corporate Finance from the University of Paris IX Dauphine. Jonathan sits on the board of both M-Files and RavenPack and leads the Secondaries and Fund of Funds program at Draper Esprit.

Dr.Hannah Brocke

COO, PlanBlue

Dr. Hannah Brocke is co-founder and COO at the green tech company PlanBlue GmbH.
In her previous career, she was a marine scientist. She focussed on the effects of human population pressure on the oceans (i.e., Caribbean, Pacific and Oceania). At the peak of her scientific career, she decided to become an entrepreneur. She did this, to better prevent the depletion of our oceanic resources (e.g., fish stock degradation, human pollution into our oceans), by supporting cost-efficient and sustainable industries.

Since 2016, she has become a successful entrepreneur. She has raised both public and private funding and set the foundations of PlanBlue GmbH. Hannah has a keen interest to further her business know-how, and actively participated in accelerator programs such as Climate-KIC, but also conducted personal training and coaching sessions. She especially enjoys finding solutions and new potentials for her business, as well as strategically building networks and infrastructures for her team and company. In December 2018, she pitched on behalf of PlanBlue at the Galileo Masters in Marseille, France. Here, PlanBlue was awarded as the Overall Winner.

Marko Vänskä

Head of Industry, Growth Capital, Business Finland

Entrepreneur and Innovation leader with business management experience from different business domains including technology, customer services, user experience, fintech, games, corporate venturing and start-ups.

Eugene Borukhovich

Global Head of Digital Health and Innovation, Bayer

Eugene Borukhovich is a serial intra and entrepreneur currently serving as a Global Head of Digital Health (G4A) at Bayer. He is also an Entrepreneur in Residence at Personal Health Solutions (PHS) Capital, as well as an advisor to numerous digital health startups. Eugene enjoys mentoring startups and an avid blogger about innovation, digital health and startups.
He can be found at @HealthEugene or

Pravin Luthada

CEO, Addcomposites

At core, I am an engineer trying to solve the most challenging problem with Manufacturing automation i.e. composite manufacturing. In the process of doing so, I have experience in developing customized new processes, commercializing these technologies and building a strong team to support the mission.

Hasan Malik

CEO, Cloud Asset

Hasan Malik is a dynamic business leader with over 17 years of global business development experience in Telecom and IT sectors across Europe and Asia Pacific. Strong go-to-market expertise in creating value and delivering growth leveraging resources and capabilities from own and partner organizations. A track record of successes in delivering sales targets, business improvement, organization development, relationship & channel management and commercial negotiations. Experience spans multiple industry sectors (Telco, Finance, Resource, Government & FMCG) delivering multi-site solutions & services.

Reetta Repo

Strategy Analyst, Innovation & Venturing at Fortum

Reetta joined Fortum team with the assignment to establish systematic startup investment and collaboration activity. Two years later, Fortum announced 150 million euros anchor LP investment in Valo Ventures, VC firm investing in the US and Europe. Reetta has worked through the full path from strategy to the LP investment at Fortum, and her current responsibilities include ensuring strategic value creation from Valo Ventures and other external innovation activity. In addition, Reetta has worked on Fortum’s consumer strategy and corporate venture development. She’s a graduate from Aalto University’s Industrial Engineering and Management program and is currently based in Helsinki.”

Tobias Jahn

Principal BMW i Ventures

BMW i Ventures is the Venture Fund of the BMW Group. Tobias is part of the European BMW i Ventures team, responsible for technology investments in Europe & Israel in the areas AutoTech, Mobility Services and Smart Production / Industrial IoT. He is investing in venture-backed companies since 2008. Prior to joining BMW in 2015, Tobias worked for 7 years for the Corporate Venture of US based 3M Company. He holds a master’s in electrical engineering from the Technical University of Munich and a PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Stuttgart.

Risto Yli-Tainio

Partner, CFO, Nexit Ventures

Risto has over 20 years’ experience of Venture Capital and he has played instrumental role in numerous transactions both in Nordic countries and North America.
He is seasoned in fund management and is typically focused on deal structuring and due diligence in conjunction with investments & exits.
Prior to Nexit Ventures he has served in various financial management positions in Finland and Germany.

Claes Mikko Nilsen

Investment Director, NordicNinja.VC

Claes Mikko Nilsen is the investment director at the Nordic & Baltic fund NordicNinja VC. He is a Finnish-Norwegian, quick-witted character, well-known of his pitch moderator skills. Claes Mikko is an angel network expert and previously co-founded and worked as the first director of Finnish Business Angels Network (FiBAN), which is one of the largest and most active angel networks in Europe, actively inspiring private startup investing. FiBAN received the Finnish Internationalization Award of the President of the Republic in November 2017. After FiBAN, Claes Mikko moved over to manage the ``Nordic angel Dating service`` as the Managing Director of Nordic Business Angel Network (NordicBAN), which is driven by active business angels and angel networks. NordicBAN represents over 10 Nordic & Baltic business angel networks, linking over 1700 business angels, sharing angel investing best practices and supporting the matching of syndication ready startups.

In addition to angel activity, Claes Mikko has been part of developing Slush's Investor Day concept, which today is one of the most important events in the North-European startup scene. Claes Mikko has also entrepreneurial background and during his studies was part of establishing student entrepreneurship society BoostTurku. Claes Mikko has worked with startup guiding at EnterpriseHelsinki and building their startup accelerator service, currently NewCo Helsinki. Claes Mikko was a steering board member at the Rising North Fund, which funded startup ecosystem initiatives supporting internationalization of Nordic startups.

Claes Mikko is fascinated about startup energy, being able to deliver, and finding that perfect one-liner.

Artur Surov

Account Director, Terramonitor

Artur is an Account Director for a Finnish space data company Terramonitor. His main task is to create and deliver a service offering that makes space data accessible to everyone around the globe. By combining satellite imagery with artificial intelligence, Terramonitor can protect forests, enhance agriculture, improve infrastructure and provide unique industry insights.

His prior work history includes being a Founding Partner in Kisu Company, a venture which helps Finnish companies to enter the Chinese market in 100 days. Before that, he lead the marketing efforts in Russia and China for a Finnish food company Myllyn Paras.

He holds a business degree from Saint Joseph's University, Philadelphia, USA.

Rhett Thompson

Investor, FiBAN

Rhett Thompson is an investor with investment focus in what he knows; marketing tech software. Most of his professional experience has been as a tech entrepreneur. Three of his ventures have exited, most notably, CoreMotives, which was acquired by IBM.

Dr Pasi Vainikka

co-founder and CEO, Solar Foods.

Before becoming CEO he led a strategic initiative with the name Neo-Carbon Energy. It was the single-largest renewable energy research in Finland so far. Spin-off projects from that initiative
include Soletair pilot plant producing fuel from air, Neo-Carbon-Food concept for producing healthy protein from air - now commercialised by Solar Foods - as well as the wold’s first simulation for global 100% renewable electricity system named the “Internet of Energy”.

Dr Vainikka has held positions as a principal scientist in the strategic research management at VTT Technical research centre of Finland as well as in the management of VTT’s contract research in energy. Previously heheld a position as the deputy technology manager of VTT’s bioenergy knowledge centre, research team leader and a researcher. Dr Vainikka holds MSc in energy systems form Cranfield University UK, MSc in energy economics from LUT Finland, and DSc in processchemistry from Åbo Akademi, Finland. Dr Vainikka is adjunct professor at Lappeenranta university of technology (LUT).

Luke Parsons

Vice President, Summit Partners

Luke joined Summit in 2017 and focuses primarily on the healthcare and life sciences sector in Europe.

Prior to Summit, Luke served as Vice President in the Mergers & Acquisitions division of Jefferies.

Luke holds an MA in applied economics, with honors, from the University of St. Andrews.

Adeo Ressi

CEO, Founder Institute

Adeo Ressi is CEO of the Founder Institute (, a pre-seed startup accelerator that operates in nearly 200 cities worldwide. Adeo has founded or run ten technology businesses, and he has developed a number of innovations that help startup companies. He is passionate about mentoring Founders, space exploration and inspiring people to achieve their greatness.

Gemma Milne

Science & Technology Writer, Forbes

Gemma Milne is a Science & Technology Writer covering all things deep tech, including biotech, advanced computing, space, energy and innovation in academia, for titles such as Forbes, the BBC, CNBC, the Guardian, and Quartz. She is also Co-Host of Science: Disrupt – a podcast interviewing the innovators, iconoclasts & entrepreneurs creating change in science. As a deep tech consultant, she is an Expert Advisor for the European Commission and Innovate UK, and a Scout for Backed VC. Gemma is an Innovation Jury Member for SXSW and a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, and she is currently writing her first book on hype and idealism in science and tech.

Christian Guttmann

Chief AI & Data Scientist, Tieto

Christian Guttmann is a German-Australian scientist and entrepreneur in Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Data Science. He is currently the vice president, global head of Artificial Intelligence and Chief Artificial Intelligence and Data Scientist at Tieto (a top 100 leading IT company according to Thomson Reuters). vAt Tieto, he is responsible for strategy and execution of Artificial Intelligence and Innovation. He is an adjunct associate professor at the University of New South Wales, Australia and Adjunct researcher at the Karolinska Institute, Sweden.Guttmann is an entrepreneur, and co-founded startups where he led the business and product development using Artificial Intelligence technology. He has edited and written 7 books, over 50 publications and 4 patents in the field of Artificial Intelligence. He is a keynote speaker at international events, including the International Council for Information Technology (ICA) in Government Administration and CeBIT and is frequently cited by Nordic and international media, such as the MIT Sloan Management review and Bloomberg.

Erik Engellau-Nilsson

Matti Ekdahl

Director, Business Development, ICEYE

Matti is working as a business development director for innovative Finnish satellite startup, ICEYE. ICEYE is the first company in the World to develop, launch and operate a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite weighing less than 100kg. Matti has previous experience in working at startups building up new business and sales. In his job with ICEYE, Matti is mostly working with the largest companies in the World as well as governmental entities such as NASA.

Anthony Clarke

Co-Founder & Managing Partner, Seraphim Space Fund

Active Business Angel Investor since 1996. Co-Founder/Managing Partner of £30m Seraphim Capital VC Fund in 2006 and its £67m Seraphim Space VC Fund launched in 2016.
Currently Director of City of London based Newable Ventures (formerly London Business Angels). Chairman of EBAN Space since 2016 and Co- Founder and Director of UK Space Tech Angels.
Co-Founder and Past Chair of UK Business Angels Association (2004-2012). President of EBAN European Business Angel Network (2004-2009) and currently President Emeritus of EBAN. Chairman of the European Commission’s Expert Group on the Cross-border Matching of Innovative Firms with Suitable Investors in 2011/2012.
Qualified as a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Secretary at City of London based Deloitte Haskins & Sells (now PWC).

Alex Felman

General Partner, Felman Family Office

Alex Felman is a veteran of the family office community for almost a decade; working as managing director with his own family office, Felman Family Office, on the ground with local families in Brazil, China, Denmark and South Korea and remotely with other family offices around the globe. He uses his expertise in Molecular Toxicology and Bio-entrepreneurship(B.A from University of California -Berkeley, MBA from Copenhagen Business School) to advise them in biotechnology, healthcare, and other futuristic tech industries with the goal of maintaining long-term wealth through innovation.
He is personally involved with a number of early-stage companies having previously worked as a general partner of Venture Labs, an early stage venture capital/ incubator fund as well as a mentor, advisor, serial entrepreneur and director of numerous startups. Alex is an expert in helping companies with business plan creation, product development, operations, successful market launches, and fundraising.

Teemu Suna

Founder, CEO & Chairman, Nightingale Health

Teemu Suna is one of the founders, CEO and chairman of Nightingale Health, a blood testing company aiming to solve the global chronic disease crisis.

A passionate advocate for disruptive health solutions, Suna has steered Nightingale into an established growth company with 80 team members and customers in over 20 countries. Since late 2015, Suna has raised over €40 million to bring Nightingale’s technology to global healthcare.

Prior to Nightingale, Suna spearheaded pioneering business ventures in healthcare IT, serving as Chief Technology Officer at Fujitsu Finland. Immersed in the field of computational medicine, Suna has authored scientific articles on applying artificial neural networks in medical applications.

Determined to make preventive medicine a concrete reality for all, at Nightingale, Suna has united expertise from a diverse range of different backgrounds to further push the boundaries of the health industry.

Rene Kromhof


Rene Kromhof is a global business executive with strong technical know how and extensive commercial & leadership experience. Throughout his career he has been successfully working for and with the world’s leading consumer electronics & semiconductor companies. Most notably, over the last decade he has been part of the Heptagon leadership team that resulted in ams AG acquiring Heptagon in 2017: one of Europe’s bigger exits in the tech sector. Based out of Helsinki, Finland, Rene currently holds several board positions, invests in early stage startups and consults international growth companies and VC’s.

Anix Lynch

Managing Partner, Expara VC Fund

Anix is Managing Partner at Expara, a leading Seed Venture Capital Firm in South East Asia backed by Stock Exchange of Thailand and Government. She invests in Fintech, Real Estate Marketplace, Enterprise SAAS, Digital Health, Internet of Things and Mobile startups. She has over 20 years of experience with track record over $2B in Private Equity (BlackRock), Family Office (CP Group Family) and Venture Capital across Asia. She leads the firm’s efforts in launching and managing Thailand’s first governmental early stage VC Fund.

As a brainchild of True Digital Park, South East Asia’s largest science park, she is recognized as one of Thailand’s top ecosystem builders and now a board member, advisor, mentor to numerous startups. She is a frequent panelist, judge and speaker on entrepreneurship and VC-related topics. Anix serves as a guest lecturer in Entrepreneurship in the MBA program at UNC, Sasin and Chicago Booth MBA and was named one of Thailand’s Top Female VCs in 2018. She is fluent in Japanese and Thai.

Barbara Piette

Managing Principal, Knightsbridge Advisers

Barbara joined Knightsbridge after spending more than twenty years as a venture capitalist, holding partner positions with both Charles River Ventures and Schroder Ventures. At Knightsbridge, Barbara is actively involved in all aspects of portfolio management, including all investment due diligence and decision-making processes. In addition to Knightsbridge, Barbara works as an advisor with five emerging venture capital firms: Tera Ventures, focused on born-global digital startups; Hyperplane VC, focused on AI; the Material Impact Fund, focused on materials; _Underscore, focused on the cloud; and Will Ventures, focused on sports technology, as well as several early stage technology companies spanning industry sectors such as robotics, blockchain enterprise software, and cybersecurity.
As General Partner of Charles River Ventures from 1986 to 1992, Barbara was responsible for a successful portfolio of health care, technology, and consumer companies and served on the boards of several companies. From 1992 to 1999, she invested with a life sciences focus as a Partner of Schroder Ventures, co-founding the SV Life Sciences funds and serving on the boards of eight companies. From 2000 to 2006, she was President of Blackwood Capital, investing in and advising private and public companies.
Barbara received an MBA with honors from Harvard Business School and holds a BS summa cum laude from Boston College where she graduated first in her class. She serves as an Overseer of Boston Children’s Hospital and as a Board member of the Concussion Legacy Foundation. She serves on the Board of the Alliance for Advancement and Diversity in the Sciences, is a member of the Massachusetts Women's Forum, and previously served on the boards of the Koch Center for Cancer Research at MIT and the Harvard Business School Association of Boston. She has been an annual judge for the HBS New Ventures Competition for over twenty years.

Daniel Sasaki

Managing Partner, Mayfair Equity

Daniel is a founder of Mayfair and is the firm's Managing Partner.

Daniel has been investing in TMT and Consumer businesses globally for the past 20 years. Prior to Mayfair, he led the investment effort of LDC’s London office, where he completed a number of high-profile investments including Easynet Global Services, Fever-Tree and uSwitch. Before joining LDC, Daniel had a successful investment career at Credit Suisse First Boston and SOFTBANK Europe Ventures, where he was the UK Head.

Born in the US and raised in the US and Japan, Daniel started his career as a corporate lawyer on Wall Street for Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. He was admitted to the New York Bar and remains a Member of the American Bar Association.

Harri Valpola

CEO and founder, Curious.AI

Harri Valpola (Ph.D.) is the CEO and founder of the Curious AI Company, which was founded in 2015. The long-term goal of the company is to develop artificial general intelligence. At the moment, the company is developing technologies for enterprise automation and intelligent control. Harri started his academic career in 1993 and has been working on machine learning, computational neuroscience, and robotics over the years. In 2007, he founded ZenRobotics Ltd., which applies machine learning in advanced robotics, currently in robotic recycling.

Lauri Lehtovuori

Co-founder and Head, Combient Foundry

Combient is a select group of 28 leading Nordic enterprises. The companies operate in a variety of industries, ranging from aerospace and defense to renewable materials, from manufacturing to financial services. Together the firms generate over $160B in annual revenue and employ more than half a million people worldwide. Combient identifies and drives strategic digital transformation initiatives in close collaboration with Combient firms.

Combient Foundry assists startups in acquiring Combient companies as their Venture Clients. We bring together leading industrial companies, the most innovative technology startups, and in-depth industry expertise to co-create financially sound new services and solutions, and form long-term business partnerships.

Juha-Matti Liukkonen

Director of Space and New Technologies, Reaktor

Juha-Matti (Jussi) Liukkonen is Reaktor’s Director of Space and New Technologies. With over 25 years of experience in designing and building systems at the intersection of software, hardware and humans, you could say he's a true native in all things tech. He has worked with cars, robots, telco systems and heavy machinery. Jussi represents the Finnish space industry at the secretariat of the national space council, has participated in updating the national space strategy action plan, and acts as the chairman of the board at a space tech startup RSL. His favourite place is still earth though

Masaru ``Nogi`` Ohnogi

Head, San Francisco Office, Gumi

A 15-year veteran, Nogi is Head of San Francisco gumi America, Inc. and Head of Global Business Development at gumi Inc., one of Japan's leading mobile gaming companies. With gumi's establishment of the Blockchain fund, gumi Cryptos Capital, Nogi is essential in the investment and support of portfolio companies, and their global and Asian business expansion. He also built gumi’s AR/VR pipeline and launched the company’s VR incubation, acceleration and funding subsidiaries globally through establishing relationships with partners in 20 countries.

Sebastian Wossagk

Managing Partner, Acton Capital

Sebastian Wossagk is managing partner with Acton Capital Partners, a leading European internet growth venture capital fund from Germany. His current investments and board representations include Alphasights (UK), Linas Matkasse (SWE), Freska (FL), Comatch (GE) and Zenjob (GE). Sebastian has more than 15 years of relevant experience within venture capital, high-tech and consulting. Prior to joining Acton Capital Partners he worked for more than six years at Siemens’ Venture Capital units SVC and Siemens Acceleration, focusing on seed and early/mid stage investments within the telecom and wireless sectors. Sebastian started his professional career as management consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he was involved in a variety of projects mostly within technology. Sebastian holds an engineering degree from the Technical University of Munich, and an MBA from ENPC Paris. He is a passionate skier, snowboarder and windsurfer and loves being out in the nature.

Acton Capital Partners ( is a growth-stage venture capital fund, based in Munich/Germany. With investments in more than 70 companies over five fund generations since 1999, the Acton team brings a wealth of expertise and experience to its portfolio companies. The ideal investment candidates are internet companies in the consumer or B2B-SaaS space in Europe and North America with proven and scalable business models. Acton typically invests between € 3-15m in Series A, B or C rounds supporting the companies to take their growth to the next level. Acton’s past or current portfolio companies include HomeToGo (GE), iwoca (UK), Comatch (GE), Zenjob (GE), Freska (FL), Finanzcheck (GE), Linas Matkasse (SWE), (GE), Etsy (US), Alphasights (UK), Ciao (GE), Zooplus (GE), AbeBooks (CAN) and many other international market leaders.

Harri Lauslahti

Founding Partner, Finnish Fintech Ecosystem

Board Professional. Inspirational and innovative growth and business transformation leader focusing on high customer experience by empowering employees. High performing professional with knowledge of the financial sector, ICT, retail and health services & BPO processes with over 30 years of experience. Strong track record of developing and innovating new operations, growth management and change management.

Hanna Silvola

Ph.D., Associate Professor, Hanken School of Economics

Hanna Silvola (Ph.D.) is Associate Professor of Accounting at Hanken School of Economics. Her research interests are in accounting for sustainability, strategic management control and performance measurement. Her Ph.D. (2007) focused on management accounting and control systems in start-up and growth companies. In 2019, she published a book ‘Vastuullisuudesta ylituottoa sijoituksiin’ (Responsible Returns – How to beat the market with ESG Investing) with Tiina Landau. She has international experience from London School of Economics (UK), University of Stanford (USA), Monash University (Australia) and the University of New South Wales (Australia). Dr. Silvola has published on a range of topics in accounting in journals like Accounting, Organizations and Society; Management Accounting Research; Journal of Small Business Management and Journal of Management Accounting Review. She has comprehensive experience as a speaker in media and executive education.

Tanya Marvin-Horowitz

Partner / Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Butterfly Ventures / CapA

Partner, Butterfly Ventures, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, CapA
Tanya is a Partner with Finland-based, Butterfly Ventures, a Nordic focused pre-Seed deep-tech fund and is responsible for investments in Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Iceland. Tanya is also the co-founder & Managing Partner of CapA, a US based early growth VC focused on supporting new leaders of innovation between the Nordics, Israel and the USA.

An M&A banker from NYC, Tanya followed her passion in 2013 to work with tech entrepreneurs as a VC investor and now based in Stockholm, is perfectly positioned to help budding startup teams gear up for the international market.

In addition to being a collegiate tennis player and athlete enthusiast, Tanya has a dual Mathematics and Marketing degree from Georgia State University.

Topi Tiihonen

CEO and co-founder, Skenario labs

Topi Tiihonen is the Co-Founder & CEO of SkenarioLabs, a Finnish data-analytic startup founded in 2015. SkenarioLabs’ predicts the value and risks of real-estate using data and AI. Beyond SkenarioLabs Topi has been a researcher, application developer, expert and consultant with over a decade of global hands-on-design, management and consultancy experience in urban development and civil engineering projects and related software development projects.

Dima Sarle

CEO, ArcticStartup

Dmitri is advocating true entrepreneurship and global unity through personal growth. Not a corporate “robot” nor a “startup hippie”. To that end he has co-founded 5 companies, started the Arctic15 Conference, ArcticStartup Media, #EUTechWriters Commission and serves as an advisor to Startup Europe and many startups. #Earthian

Lasse Vuola

CEO, Fundu

Lasse Vuola is CEO and a co-founder of Fundu. Prior to his career as an entrepreneur, he worked as an attorney in prestige business law firms. Vuola has publications within alternative finance, and he is a board member of

Natalia Rincon

Founder and CEO, CHAOS Architects

Natalia Rincon, an influencer, is the Founder and CEO of CHAOS. The company started under her leadership in 2015 and since then CHAOS has become the leader in developing data platforms for citizen engagement and smart city intelligence. She is an architect and computer science engineer, and currently working on her doctoral dissertation. She is a Business Tampere ambassador and an advisor for foreign talent at the Ministry of Employment and Economy of Finland. Natalia serves as a deputy councillor in Tampere and member in three urban planning committees. She is a frequent speaker at conferences on topics such as the future of smart cities, citizen engagement, artificial intelligence and female entrepreneurship and equality.

Pekka Viilto

Co-founder, Rundit

Pekka is a super well-connected serial entrepreneur of 20 years. He is a Co-Founder of Rundit - Founder friendly investor reporting tool. Rundit is helping the unlisted companies to do better investor reporting and communication. Their mission is to help the companies ease their reporting load and to build a better relationship with their investors.
Pekka speaks a lot in the events where he shares his experiences in building investor relations, mostly focusing on the bad experiences. What he has learned and how these learnings can be turned to great experiences, so that you wouldn’t do the same mistakes. It serves as a solid foundation for a successful, growing company. Pekka says: “ If I would have appreciated more my previous investors, I would be a millionaire”.

Stergios Voskopoulos

CEO, Kanoo Capital

Mr. Stergios Voskopoulos is the CEO of Kanoo Capital, the Investment Division within YBA Kanoo, one of the largest and oldest family conglomerates in the Middle East. As CEO of Kanoo Capital, Stergios is responsible for the active management of direct and indirect investments regionally and globally.

He has worked in the Gulf Region for over 10 years, and has over 20 years of global experience in the areas of Asset Management, Private Equity and M&A, including AIG Global Investment Group, Barclays, Investcorp and Seera Investment Bank. Mr. Voskopoulos has also been a serial entrepreneur himself and a speaker in several global summits in topics around investment management, innovation, family offices, global affairs and business. He has an MBA in Finance & Investments from Zicklin School of Business in New York and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from the University of Athens, he speaks six languages having lived and worked in seven countries.

Will Cardwell

Partner, Courage Ventures

General Partner at Courage Ventures (Finland) and Open Circle Capital (Lithuania). Adjunct Professor of Finance and Entrepreneurship, Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina. Member, Finnish Business Angels Network (FIBAN) and Carolina Angel Network (CAN).

Tony Verb

Co-Founder, GreaterBay Ventures

Tony is a serial entrepreneur, innovator, venture capitalist and film producer, based in Hong Kong.

He recently launched GreaterBay Ventures & Advisors, an integrated investment and consulting firm, specialised on modern urban development and smart cities. As one of the company's many projects, he is also just launching GreaterBayX, a scalarator program designed for urban tech companies. This is a joint initiative with Tsinghua University's TGN global platform to help European and overseas companies grow in China through the Greater Bay Area.

Tony launched several initiatives locally and globally, and he gained experience in corporate innovation, accelerator programmes and building ecosystems as partner of and co-founder of Mettā.

He is a proud member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers community and he is also a representative of the Smart City Consortium of Hong Kong.

Thomas Sartori

VC Investor, Aster Capital

Thomas Sartori is Analyst at Aster, a Venture Capital firm with offices in 4 major innovation hubs (Paris, Cambridge, Tel Aviv and San Francisco) that help entrepreneurs transforming markets with disruptive offers and technologies. Within the investment team, he focuses on deals in Mobility and IT in France, UK and the Nordics. Prior to that, he gained experience in the Strategy Department of Allianz and co-founded an online network for health professionals. Thomas holds a MSc in Engineering from Centrale Lille and a MSc in Management from ESSEC Business School, with a specialization in data analysis. He speaks French, English and Spanish.

Steve Kirsch

Co-founder and Chairman & CEO,

Steve Kirsch is the CEO of Token and is an established entrepreneur and Silicon Valley heavyweight. He has a legacy as an inventor of ground-breaking technologies, including the optical mouse and the pioneering internet search engine, Infoseek. In 2000, he received the Visionary Award from the Software Development Forum of Silicon Valley given to pioneers leading the way in high technology. As the founder of 7 high tech companies, two with billion-dollar market caps, Steve is now dedicating his talents, energy and expertise to state-of-the-art payment infrastructure. In 2015, he launched Token; an open banking platform that allows a global ecosystem of banks and their customers to move money and information securely, without friction and instantly worldwide. Steve has a BS/MS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where the main auditorium in the EECS building is named in his honour. He is a regular speaker at leading industry events around the world.

Sami Nupponen

CEO, Goodio

Sami is the CEO and partner at Goodio - a chocolate company whose mission is to accelerate positive change in food value chain.

Sami has over 20 years of experience in international food business. He’s been leading multidisciplinary organisations in sales, business & marketing, R&D, production and logistics. He has a Masters degree in Food Science from the University of Helsinki.

At the moment, Sami’s main interest is to build a trustworthy transparency tool for Goodio. This tool might, in the future, help other purpose-driven companies to reach sustainability-focused consumers.

He is an outdoor sports lover and a food enthusiast who thinks that a balanced diet is having a chocolate bar in both hands.

Ryan Darnell

Managing Partner, Max Ventures

Ryan founded Max Ventures in 2013 with the Stenbeck family. Max Ventures is one of the most active early-stage investors on the east coast and primarily focuses on NYC and the Nordics. Ryan has also founded 4 vc-backed tech cos while at Max.

Fredrik Debong

Founder, MySugr and HiHealth

Fredrik is a serial entrepreneur with roots in Sweden and background in medical computer science and financial technology.
At mySugr, one of the first CE- and FDA-approved mobile health services worldwide, he headed R&D as well as many of the regulatory fields. The company was acquired by Roche in 2017.
Before that he also cofounded (acquired by Startup300 in 2018).
He now leads science and medical at, which brings health insurance, banking and medical technology together.
His interest as an angel investor lies in medical technology and population health.

Noora Vesterinen

Product Owner for customer-facing virtual agents, Nordea

Noora is passionate about improving customer and employee experiences using modern technologies. Her career started as a recruiter but today she is developing virtual agents for Nordea’s customers in the Nordics. Noora has seen the unrealistic expectations that are sometimes created by the hype around AI solutions, so as a Product Owner, her job is to translate customer and business needs and wishes into concrete technical requirements. Noora sees that bringing AI-based solutions to customer service is more than just the algorithms – a successful implementation requires a solid business case, quality data, supporting technology and architecture, and people to use the solution.

Marc Wesselink

Founder, VentureRock

Marc is a serial entrepreneur who started 12 companies between 1994 and 2008 and invested in over 150 between 2004 and 2018. His purpose in life is to help as many entrepreneurs become successful founders of companies which can create an impact. He is active in Europe & Africa.

As one of the founding partners of Startupbootcamp, he was part of the global roll out and recruited over 160 companies for the Amsterdam & Cape Town programs and have helped them raised over 150 MIO EUR funding. He was responsible of managing the portfolio of Startupbootcamp with a value of over 500 MIO EUR.

Since October 2018 he started his next challenge since the investment landscape in Europe & Africa is still in need of one: How to improve investment in Pre-Seed, Seed & Early Stage companies. He has created an entire digital way of investing in early stage companies at large scale and de-risk it at the same time. The platform will be capable in investing > 150 companies a year by using automated processes and follow on investment based on real time data. The fund will also offer execution power with a network of experienced professionals who will help single founders, founder teams & corporates to start & scale a company.

Tommi Rimpiläinen

COO, Sensible4

Jonathan Nelson

Managing Director, HackFund

Jonathan Nelson, Managing Director at Hack Fund V / Founder & CEO at Hackers/Founders spent the first three years of his life in a mud brick house in rural Honduras. He grew the world's largest network of entrepreNerds and has advised the SEC as well as development banks on improving how we fund entrepreneurship. For instance 10% of the world's economy speaks Spanish, but only receives $500M in investment via angel, venture capital and private equity each year. Together we can improve that by rethinking how we fund technology startups and using block chain technologies. And when we do that, we will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, create economic growth and we stand a good chance of eliminating poverty in our generation.

George Gogolev

General Manager, Severstal Ventures

Fred van Beuningen

Managing Partner, Chrysalix Venture Capital

Educated in the Netherlands, Business at Erasmus University in Rotterdam and at Insead, France. Fred had worked as general manager, Chief Executive Officer and Board member for international industrial companies and as an entrepreneur. Prior to his executive roles he started his career with Royal Dutch Shell in marketing and trading positions.
His industry experience ranges from oil, chemicals and industrial gas to packaging, logistics and shipping with companies such as Linde and Smurfit Kappa. He also successfully managed some business turn around situations. His experience is highly international with emphasis on Europe and emerging economies. He assisted in updating the sustainability strategy of Dow Jones Sustainability Index leader AkzoNobel and served as director innovation and strategic marketing of this global coatings and chemicals company. Fred serves on the investment advisory council of an international clean tech fund and on the Dutch ministerial bio renewable and business platform. His entrepreneurial activities are in health promotion and distributed energy. More recent Fred also started to act in public private roles to promote economic transition and the introduction of clean technologies. His expertise is in sustainability as business driver and innovation, as well as scaling up ventures. His interests are, among others, the role of business leadership for a more sustainable world, executive vitality and next level innovation practices. Fred is Board member of the Young President’s Organisation (YPO) Sustainability network, member of the European Leadership Platform and and Board member of hydropower company Aquazoom. He also is a Board member of the Erasmus University Center of Future Energy, Holland circular hotspot and Investment committee member of regional development company Oost NL. He participates in strategy group working on a Roadmap Next Economy with TIR, the consultancy of Jeremy Rifkin and on goverment advisory panel about transitions. Fred is Managing partner of Venture Capital firm Chrysalix and builds a global braintrust around emerging intelligent technologies and solutions that will disrupt a variety of industries and lead to next level productivity and sustainability.

Stefan Fällgren

Investment Manager Private Equity, Skandia Mutual Life Insurance Company

Stefan Fällgren is an investment manager in the Private Equity group at Skandia Mutual Life Insurance Company. Having joined the firm in 2017 and being based in Stockholm, Sweden, he focuses on investments in US and European venture capital and buy-out funds out of Skandia’s USD 5bn private equity program. Prior to Skandia, Stefan worked at Swedish life science venture firm HealthCap and with HealthCap portfolio companies in Sweden and California, e.g. helmet technology company MIPS AB. Other experiences include investment banking and later stage investing in London, United Kingdom.

Carman Chan

Founder & Managing Partner, Click Ventures

Carman Chan began her entrepreneurship journey when she was in university. In order to pursue her passion for the newly emerging Internet, she passed up a fully sponsored PhD from Imperial College to become a serial internet entrepreneur. Carman’s first company, English Street was acquired by HKET(0423.HK), a Hong Kong listed newspaper group. Her second company was merged with Hiiir in Taiwan and and later acquired by FarEasTone (4904.TW).
Carman is also a best-selling book author for several accelerated learning books. Spending eight years as a tech columnist for IT magazines, she developed her writing skills while analyzing internet business models. After several successful exits Carman started Click Ventures, her first angel fund. With a focus on providing seed and series A financing to technology startups, Click Ventures is differentiated by offering mentorship from entrepreneurs with over twenty years of first hand experience.
Click Ventures has grown into a leading investment manager, and two of its funds are featured as Top 5 Seed Fund (Vintage 2003-2015) in the world and Top 4 Funds to Watch by Preqin respectively.
Click’s current portfolio includes more than 40 investments including, Docusign,,, Due to her deep experience, Carman is frequently invited to speak or serve as a panel member for prestigious events around the world. She has appeared in over 10 countries at high profile events including the Web Summit, Slush, AVCJ Private Equity and Venture Forum, and Silicon Dragon.

Maxine Rior

Investment associate, Kinnevik

Maxine is a venture investor at Kinnevik. Kinnevik is a Swedish, 80-year old investment company with an entrepreneurial spirit and a DNA of building businesses. The company has a large public and private portfolio, which include Tele2, Zalando, Budbee and Mathem among others. At Kinnevik, Maxine works out of Stockholm with a focus on Nordic venture investments, where they invest in digital-native consumer facing businesses from a series A and upwards. She joined Kinnevik with the purpose to build digital businesses that provide more and better choice to the consumers after starting off her career in investment banking, working with M&A at both Danske Bank and Carnegie in Stockholm.

Akash Bhavsar

Co-founder & Director, WaterQuest HydroResources Management (I) Pvt. Ltd.


Akash Bhavsar has over 14+ years of experience in Technology Management and Problem Solving across diverse industries. He enjoys mentoring budding entrepreneurs or startups achieve their dreams through by extending his expertise to the companies by advising on strategy, marketing, business development, fundraising, IP Management etc.
Akash has conceptualized and led several flagship programs for S&T agencies, Development agencies, Private sector, R&D Platforms, Start-up clusters, Fortune 500 companies, etc. for both developing and developed ecosystems. He has been part of 40+ licensing deals & involved in fundraising of ~108+ Mn USD.

Akash has been working with following organizations in various capacities, as below:
● Co-founder & Director - WaterQuest Hydroresources Management India Pvt. Ltd. (AI Based water company)
● Co-founder and Managing Director - SkyQuest Technology Group; (Global Innovation Management and Research Organization)
● Chair - The Innovation & Competitiveness Task Force & Executive Council Member of the UN ESCAP, Sustainable Business Network-SBN (Thailand);
● The Chief Architect - Sustainable Development Goals Accelerator (SDGA).
● Founding Partner of Indo Swiss BlockChain Alliance

Ben Costantini

Cofounder & CEO,Startup Sesame

Ben runs Startup Sesame, the global network of Tech events. With more than ten years' experience in conference organisation, he has one of the most extensive and trusted network of event founders in the world. Expert in the creative industries, Ben advises entrepreneurs and investors in early and growth stages of their projects.

Daan Kip

Founder & CEO, XRBase

Ben runs Startup Sesame, the global network of Tech events. With more than ten years' experience in conference organisation, he has one of the most extensive and trusted network of event founders in the world. Expert in the creative industries, Ben advises entrepreneurs and investors in early and growth stages of their projects.

Patric Gresko

Head of Division - Innovation and Technology Investments, EIF

Patric Gresko is Head of Division– Equity Investments at European Investment Fund (EIF). In this capacity, he co-leads EIF’s activities in Impact Investing, Technology Transfer and Venture Capital. EIF is the largest European venture capital fund-of-funds with more than EUR 5bn under management and a portfolio of over 250 venture capital funds, technology transfer operators and business angels covering all major technology sectors, life sciences and social & environmental impact. Patric started his career with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Luxembourg as an auditor and consultant for the financial sector.

Kaisa Helminen

CEO, Aiforia Technologies

She has a strong background in life science sector where she has gained close to 20 years of experience in the global business. Previously she has worked in commercial roles in both large and midsize international life science companies, including Thermo Fisher Scientific, Sartorius and Finnzymes. Since 2014 she has led Aiforia (former Fimmic), a spin-off company from the University of Helsinki. Aiforia® Cloud revolutionizes image-based diagnostics, especially in the field of pathology, by bringing deep learning AI to improve the accuracy and efficiency of the analysis. As a result, experts can improve their decision-making workflow and patients get better, faster and more personalized healthcare. Kaisa holds a M.Sc. degree in biochemistry from the University of Helsinki.

Kia Tahvanainen

AI Lead, Telia Finland

Kia Tahvanainen is AI Lead in Telia Finland. She is constantly finding ways to apply and implement artificial intelligence and machine learning into the business processes. Her background is with information systems and robotic process automation, which has generated over 10 million € savings to Telia Finland during the last couple of years. Her goal at Telia is to make her co-worker's life more effective and meaningful and use innovations to create value to our customers and boost their business. She’s interested in new technologies but also people and change management. Finding new ways to solve business problems is her passion.

Konsta Saarela

Director of Accenture Liquid Studios, Accenture

Konsta is an experienced business leader and sales executive with track record of growing and running successful businesses both in Finland and in Europe. In his current role, Konsta is responsible for running Accenture Liquid Studios in the Nordics and developing Accenture’s AI Offering. Konsta also works as a startup advisor at Sniffie and a few other companies.

Roy Gunter

Partner, Mobility Ventures

Roy is a 30+ year mobile and technology industry veteran, innovator and seasoned entrepreneur. Recognised for his thought leadership and driving force in the development of the mobile internet, video streaming and smart connected devices (IoT) that are now so much a part of our everyday life.
Roy’s career started at the very beginning of mobile 30+ years ago, and innovation, consumer services and technology are his DNA. He is a pioneer, a thought leader, and loves this new world technology is creating. He was part of the creation of the mobile internet, video streaming, smart connected devices (IoT) and digital personal assistant sectors. Now his drive is working with entrepreneurs to create everything that this industry promises.
He’s a partner at Mobility Ventures, with a focus on disruptive cool mobile tech. He sits on the board of numerous startups and growth companies, steering them through the challenges of delivering innovation. He has multiple venture-backed startups under his belt and the added experience of running divisions of multinational corporations across the mobile value chain.

Stewart Rogers

Analyst-at-large, VentureBeat

Stewart Rogers has over 25 years of experience in sales, marketing, managing, and mentoring in tech. He is a journalist, author, and speaker on AI, AR/VR, blockchain, and other emerging technology industries, and is both Managing Editor at Grit Daily and Analyst-at-large VentureBeat. Prior to his roled in journalism, Rogers ran a number of successful software companies and held global roles in sales and marketing for businesses in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and the U.K. He has contributed to several sales and marketing publications. A digital nomad with no fixed abode, Rogers also emcees major tech events across the globe, and in addition to keynoting on the topics above, also focuses on mental health in the tech industry.

Taneli Tikka

CEO, Vake

Taneli Tikka is the CEO for The Finnish State Development Company Vake Oy. He is the former Head of Innovation for Tieto Plc and a seasoned entrepreneur and angel investor with multiple exits.Taneli Tikka is known for a long and multifaceted career in growth companies and as a board professional. He’s been awarded several recognitions for his work during the years. He is board member and former chairman of the AI group at the Technology Industries of Finland. Taneli is an active actor in the startup ecosystem, for example co-founder of the Startup Foundation (organises Slush).

Tom Vanhoutte


Tom Vanhoutte is founder and managing partner of imec.xpand, an independently managed early stage and growth fund that invests in start-ups where imec knowledge, expertise, network and/or infrastructure plays a differentiating role in the success of the company.

Tom has almost 20 years experiencesin private equity and venture capital. Prior to founding imec.xpand in 2016, Tom spent the first 12 years of his career at PwC in New York where he provided audit and advisory services to some of the largest and most reputed hedge and private equity funds in the world. In 2011 he joined Capricorn Venture Partners as CFO and member of the management committee.

Tom holds a master’s degree in business engineering from the Catholic University of Leuven. He is often asked as a guest speaker or panelist at start-up events.

Laura Ala

CMO & Head of XR Sales, Zoan

Laura Ala is head of marketing and XR sales at Zoan, the leading XR studio in Finland and creator of Virtual Helsinki (Unreal Experience Awards 2018).

She has worked with Zoan for three years with a significant role in widening the company's business from real-estate 3D to marketing and entertainment XR. Her background is in B2B marketing and business development in companies such as EY, Kasvuryhmä and OpusCapita. She also works as a journalist and writer. Laura has a Master’s Degree in business and passion for exploring new places, both in real life and virtually.

Makoto Shiono

NordicNinja's Board of Directors

Makoto Shiono is a Chief Investment Officer at JBIC IG Partners and a Partner at Industrial Growth Platform Inc. His professional career includes time with Citibank, Goldman Sachs, Bain & Company and Livedoor Securities where he was head of investment banking division. He has been provided strategic, M&A advice for a wide range of corporate clients in a variety of industries including Technology start-ups and governmental organizations. He has 15 years of experience in private equity investments. He also wrote several books on Business, Laws and Artificial Intelligence published in Japan.

He received BA in Law from Keio University and earned master’s degree from the Washington University in St. Louis, School of Law.

Alan Greco

Associate, Anthemis

Alan is an Associate at Anthemis, a leading early-stage investor in Fintech. At Anthemis, Alan works out of London and focuses on investments in the Financial Wellness space. Prior to joining Anthemis, Alan worked for over two years at Allianz X, the digital investment unit of the Allianz Group, where he specialised in the Fintech, Insurtech and Mobility sectors.
Born and raised in France, Alan has a double master’s degree in corporate finance and computer sciences from Audencia Business School and the Ecole des Mines.

Mika Raitola

Innovation Manager, Telia

Mika is an experienced technology leader at Telia. He has experience in technology, business, strategy development and business transformation roles both in Finland and the Nordics. Last two years, Mika has been building the Telia 5G program, being responsible on Telia Finland's 5G partnership network - 5G Finland, creating use cases for 5G together with customers and developing business around 5G with large business customers. Mika has already executed several 5G service pilots and trials with customers.

Mika has also a passion to build cooperation between startups and corporations, which he has done with success for many years.

Marek Kiisa

Partner, NordicNinja.VC

Janne Neuvonen

CEO, Bcaster

Janne is the man behind the super popular World Wildlife Fund live stream called “Norppalive”. Norppalive is a slowtv livestream that was built to help a very rare animal - Saimaa Ringed Seal. There were only 50 seals left in the world in the 1970’s and now the population is slowly raising. Norppalive was born as a side project for BCaster and garnered over a million views in just 10 days! Authenticated media flow from nature is now saving the seals from extinction.

Janne is an innovator and serial entrepreneur with 2 exits. Now, he is building a 25-member “dream team” from 7 nations to solve all problems around UGC.

BCaster is the most ambitious project in Janne’s life and he wants to change the way that people can monetize their own data in future. BCaster is disrupting how UGC is used and monetized globally.

Privacy, truth and copyright managing are the base for future internet. With BCaster, Janne wants to end fake news, media piracy and create a totally new kind of media flow with authenticated UGC.

Social responsibility and truth are the most important values for Janne. WOW - experiences make the world a better place to live in. That is the future that Janne wants to give to all people in the world.

Karri Liikkanen

Co-founder, Nowhere Boy

Karri is an entrepreneur, author, host, actor, and author. He has written three novels and a game script (, founded a video and music production company (, hosted tens of events and acted in tens of productions ( Karri has also been part of the startup ecosystem for years as he was the Chairman at Helsinki Think Company and Community Manager in Millennial Board.

Ilkka Kivimaki


Partner at This man does everything serial: entrepreneurship, investing, adequate jokes. Previous years included adventures of founding several companies, venturing the Nordics, and having knees deep in Slush as the chairman of the board – just to name a few. Straight talk and absurdly honest feedback are Ilkka’s way to share unconditional love.

Sami Ronkainen

Creative Director, Rovio

Sami works as the Creative Director for Extended Reality at Rovio. He led the development work for the Angry Birds First Person Slingshot which was the first 3rd party game released on the Magic Leap mixed reality platform in 2018. That was followed by the releases of the Angry Birds Isle of Pigs games first on virtual reality platforms, and lately on the Apple ARKit compatible devices. Most recently Sami has been heading the development work for Angry Birds Explore which is an augmented reality application supporting the licensing campaign of the Angry Birds Movie 2. Sami got his Ph.D in information engineering in 2010 and has been working at Rovio since 2012.

Carl Frauenstein

Director of Program, Content and Coaching, Monacotech

I am a serial entrepreneur with a specific interest in the longer term effects and benefits of entrepreneurial activity. This is also one of my key considerations when investing. I focus specifically on early stage.

Currently I am driving the startup program at MonacoTech, a Monaco government initiative. Here I am responsible for guiding the members growth journey which includes liaising with mentors, service providers and investors.

I also mentor companies in Estonia and Latvia as well as Cyprus and the Netherlands.

Sarah Sipilä

Partner (Corporate Finance), KPMG

Sarah is a Director at KPMG Global Strategy Group in Helsinki. She has 13+ years experience in strategy consulting and deal advisory. Her key areas of expertise include M&A, corporate, growth, and market entry strategy. Prior to joining KMPG, Sarah was the strategy platform leader at PwC Strategy& (formerly Booz & Company) in Helsinki. Sarah has worked extensively with companies in multiple industries, including real estate and construction, industrial manufacturing, telecommunications, and consumer and retail. Her work has helped clients develop and execute winning strategies and deals.

Tomosaku Sohara

Managing Partner, NordicNinja VC

Work background
● International banker of JBIC, Japanese governmental finance institution with one of the largest finance provider in the world.
● Worked as a representative at JBIC in Mexico City for 3 years
● Founding member of RJIF, Russia-Japan Investment Fund with 1 bil USD commitment.
● Latest job as Investment Director at JBIC IG Partners, Japanese VC/PE firm.

Personal life
● Japanese, Born in Hyogo 1984, grown up in Tokyo.
● Lives currently in Helsinki, three kids
● BA in Economics from Keio University (Tokyo)

Personal activity (hobbies, interest, passion, etc)
● Has been playing and teaching baseball (not Pesäpallo) in junior high school.
● Had the experience to teach baseball for a national team in Uganda and South-Africa under their government initiative for several months
● Established and became core staff of NPO AFAB to popularize baseball in Africa continental

Previous links to Nordics (interesting)
● In charge of financing to clean energy project in Europe, visited Helsinki in Finland, Reykjavik in Iceland and Vilnius in Lithuania several times

Jaakko Salminen

Investor, FiBAN

Jaakko Salminen is an Angel investor with a passion in helping startups and other growth companies succeed. Past experience in leading business units and professionals, and managing international accounts at international corporations. Jaakko is the former Chair of Board of FiBAN.

Jussi Paski

Lars Ropeid Selsås

Founder and CEO,

Lars is the technical powerhouse behind, and his groundbreaking code is the basis on which the company’s conversational AI is founded. He has a deep understanding of high-performance code, big data, deep learning and natural language technology. Lars spent a number of years in Silicon Valley working for some of the world’s leading artificial intelligence and natural language technology companies before returning to Norway to found

Mauro Yovane

Principal, Axon Partners

Investment professional with over 18 years of experience in both, private equity and venture capital. Currently leading Aurora Fund of Funds at Axon Partners Group, an investment, corporate finance and strategic advisory firm based in Madrid with five offices worldwide.

Before Axon, Mauro worked for 4 years as an Investment Manager at Talde Private Equity, a GP investing in the Spanish mid-market, with more than EUR 250m AUM. Previously, he also worked as a Senior Investment Officer for the Interamerican Development Bank in Washington and CAF Development Bank in Latin America, both multilateral institutions covering Latin America, with an overall portfolio of over EUR100b AUM. In this position he invested in more than 25 PE funds across different countries in LATAM and structured several equity and credit facilities for SMEs and financial institutions in the region. Also, he served as board member in several PE/VC funds and portfolio companies.

Mauro holds a Master in Finance Degree from London Business School and a MBA from Universidad Adolfo Ibañez in Chile.

Navin Thukkaram

Pia Erkinheimo


Pia Erkinheimo, ``jacquiline of all trades`` in innovation, is a co-founder at – culture analytics company driving change in organisations and the whole society by using AI and machine learning for natural language processing NLP. Besides that she chairs the board of SOLVED – The Marketplace for sustainability-related knowledge work and acts as a board member for Heart2Save, MedTech & AI company using algorithm for identifying arrythmia. Pia is an active angel investor and member of FiBAN – Finnish Business angels network. Pia has worked at Nordea's Startup & Growth team as responsible for investor deal flow. She pioneered platform thinking in DIGILE, The Finnish Strategic Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation in Internet Economy as Head of Crowds and Communities and in Nokia Corporate Strategy and CTO’s Office as Head of Innovation Crowdsourcing. Employee Transformation & M&A was in her focus during Capgemini Consulting years.

Pia holds an MA in behavioural sciences and combines it with industrial management and strategy studies (University of Helsinki, Aalto University, University of Minnesota). Her Ph.D. studies (on-going) at Aalto University has taken her to e.g. University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business, USA. Her motto is: “As for the future, your task is not to foresee it but to enable it.” – by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, father of “Le Petit Prince”.

Chris Pfaff

CEO, Chris Pfaff Tech

Chris Pfaff is a leading new media and technology producer and strategist. He is
renowned for integrating leading-edge technology into the media and entertainment
community. He was the first to use IRC for an interactive corporate webcast; produced
one of the first DVDs, in March, 1997; produced the first HD animated logo; produced
numerous multipoint broadband events in the late-1990s; produced some of the first
mobile short films in 2002-2003, and produced the first Twitter Wall in 2011.
His company, Chris Pfaff Tech/Media LLC, provides strategy and marketing
services for leading technology service providers, technology firms, and new media
companies worldwide. Since founding Chris Pfaff Tech/Media LLC in 2002, Chris has
represented a wide range of clients, including strategic ventures from Eastman Kodak,
PRIMEDIA, Cantor Telecom, and ASCAP, and firms ranging from mobile content
distributor Thumbplay, video encoding firm On2 Technologies (sold to Google), and 3D
face and body animation production studio face2face animation. He leads a global team
that works with a large, and growing, number of North American and European ventures.
Chris was one of the founders of the Producers Guild of America (PGA) New
Media Council East, and served as chairman of the group from 2007-2013. He served as
the vice chairman of the national PGA New Media Council from 2011-2013, for which he
served as a delegate from 2006-2013, and also served as a delegate on the PGA Board
of Directors from 2008-2013.
Prior to launching Chris Pfaff Tech/Media, Chris was involved with the early-
stage ventures GeoVideo Networks and MobileQ, and previously had helped launch
more than 16 ventures with the Lucent New Ventures Group and Bell Labs, including
Lucent Digital Radio (now iBiquity Digital), SyChip (sold to Murata), e-Ink, Flarion (sold
to Qualcomm), and savaJe (sold to Sun Microsystems), among many others. While at
AT&T Corp., he helped launch AT&T WorldNet Service and the AT&T NetWare Connect
Service, and also helped launch the AT&T Personal Online Services division. Prior to
this, he represented such clients as Sony Electronics; Viacom New Media, Sharp
Electronics, and Kyocera, among others. He began his career in the music industry,
representing clients including Yamaha Corporation; Hal Leonard Publishing, and working
with a wide range of musical artists and producers, including such notable figures as
Walter Becker, Chick Corea, Wynton Marsalis, and Phil Ramone.

Arne Schlenzka

CEO, Osgenic

Arne is a medical doctor and former surgeon-in-training who put his work as a doctor on hold in late 2017 and founded Osgenic. Osgenic has created a virtual reality based environment where surgeons can prepare for surgical procedures in a more intuitive way. Osgenic’s mission is to improve patient safety. Earlier this year Osgenic announced their partnership with Varjo

More speakers will be announced soon

Arctic15, Stockholm, Sweden

In 2019 the most effective networking startup conference in the Nordics and Baltics will raise the bar again.


Network and close deals with investors and corporates

Ticket for 2 days
Pre-event matchmaking tool
Deal Room during the event
Food and beverage
Full program and workshops



Meet startups and find ways to make your company more agile

Ticket for 2 days
Pre-event matchmaking tool
Deal Room during the event
Food and beverage
Full program and workshops



Discover and meet startups and syndicate with other investors

Ticket for 2 days
Pre-event matchmaking tool
Deal Room during the event
Food and beverage
Full program and workshops
Invitation to Investor VIP Reception


We believe that events are at the heart of business and entrepreneurship!

Arctic15 is the most effective matchmaking startup event in Northern Europe. The focus is on making deals and quality networking. The 2-day event brings together a focused international crowd of startups, investors, corporates, media and influencers.

15 Tracks are focused on various industries, technologies and topics ranging from Digital Health and AI to Social Impact and Scaling. Industry players can use the time efficiently and gather under one roof. The core of it all is one-on-one meetings in Deal Room.

The event is organized by ArcticStartup, a startup media covering Nordics and Baltics since 2007.