What is a dealmaker?

Our dealmakers are experienced entrepreneurs

It is a unique role in Government and requires in-depth and hands-on knowledge and experience of scaling fast growth tech companies. It includes mentoring founders by acting as counsel, adviser and strategist.

This can involve all aspects of running a business as well as advising on areas including funding, sales strategies and investor readiness.

They are part time roles so they remain entrepreneurs first and foremost with relevant and real-time experience.


Dr Alan Lowdon

North East region of the UK

Alan has over 30 years’ experience as a practitioner within the international energy and utilities sectors.

Alan has also led 3 university start-up companies and been a Director of Technology & Innovation at the UK’s National Renewable Energy Centre.

Alan’s experience also includes energy technology investment, IP commercialisation and new venture creation.

Alan currently operates a portfolio of interests which includes adviser to Carbon Limiting Technologies, MD of two technology commercialisation investment vehicles, adviser to a global subsea technology business, Royal IHC, and consultant to the New Bedford Offshore Wind Innovation Centre.


Alpesh Patel


Alpesh is an authority on investing & entrepreneurship. He is founding CEO of a Private Equity/Hedge Fund, an international best-selling Financial Times author, and a TV presenter with his own investing show on Bloomberg TV.

Alpesh co-founded the UK chapter of world's largest entrepreneur mentoring organisation (TiE.org).

Formerly a barrister, he is the founder of Investing Software, part of the award-winning UK's largest private investor software company.


Anubhav Jain


AJ is a facilitator and builder of world-class technology products, management and development teams, with speciality in both early stage and growth startups.

Over time, he has developed proven fundraising and networking skills, building successful partnerships with several clients and delivering multi-million-dollar bottom-line growth.

AJ has been associated with various governments & blue-chip multinationals like Intel, Microsoft, IBM, HP, SingTel, Softbank JP and many more.

He has managed to develop rich experiences of the Australian, Singapore, Japan, United States, United Kingdom & Indian markets.

In 2020, he was appointed as Country Director by the British Government, built and launched the UK India Tech Hub, which was set up for Indian technology entrepreneurs to assist in building sustainable businesses locally and formulate their global expansion.


Aziz Emre Gunel


Aziz is a successful tech entrepreneur and after an exit in Turkey is now an adviser and investor in a number of start-ups.

He is connected to many of the Turkish entrepreneurial networks and has also been involved in a couple of successful GEP edtech/healthcare businesses from Turkey.


Eamon Tuhami


Eamon is a successful and impressive entrepreneur/founder and investor having built his own tech companies after running sales teams for larger tech companies such as Experian.

He is also a Non-Executive Director of Fintech Wales whose CEO provided the introduction.


Elizabeth Varley


Elizabeth is a serial entrepreneur who spent the last decade supporting tech companies globally through TechHub and board roles.

Broad experience cross-sector, including fintech, health/med tech, SaaS, consumer and creative. Worldwide focus, US (NY-LON corridor) and African companies, and strong support especially for Black founders, and women and non-binary founders.

She is a specialist with skills in strategy, commercial, comms, branding, PR, high-level product and service design, team/people and operations.


Jack Hampson


Jack is passionate about entrepreneurialism and technology. Having founded and successfully exited two technology businesses in the UK and APAC, his first, a consumer electronics brand, at the age of 25.

He has raised over £5M of investment for his own businesses within the UK as well as investing in and mentoring startups to achieve exits for themselves.

He has hands on experience building companies overseas especially in APAC, Western Europe and the US and therefore understands the challenges and risks an entrepreneur faces in choosing a new market to operate in.


John Ferris

Northern Ireland

John spent his early career coding for a healthcare tech company in Pittsburgh, PA before a 15 year stint in media. A journalist and editor at an Irish newspaper, John helped launch more than a dozen newspapers and magazines as well as independently launching Ireland’s most successful food and drink website, Forked.

In 2013 John launched a wifi software technology start-up, which was used in restaurants, cafés, hotels, stadiums and vehicles around the world. John joined Entrepreneurial Spark in 2015 to help support ambitious start0-ups throughout Ireland. The social enterprise was bought by NatWest Group in 2018.

Since joining the bank, John has worked to support more than 750 start-ups across the UK and Ireland. John has also helped start-ups raise more than £35m in investment and £15m in grant funding. Since 2019, John sits as a member of Ulster Bank's Regional Board, leading on climate and sustainability and entrepreneurial diversity.


Jolyon Martin


Jolyon is a founder of a clinical-stage biotechnology company spun out of his PhD at the University of Cambridge, and non-exec director of another biotech. He sits at the interface between science and business and is passionate about how each can enable the other.

He is well versed on the journey of a biotech founder as he is an inventor on patents, has raised $50M in equity investment, spun out technology from an academic institution, and led on partnering deals with global pharma companies. In 2021, Jolyon was named one of the '30 under 30' in European Science and Healthcare by Forbes.


Jude Ower


Jude has spent the past 17 years in gaming, focusing on games ‘beyond entertainment’ and crossing over into other sectors; education, training, advertising and marketing/communications.

Jude has founded 3 companies and worked with corporates, governments and charities on a global scale.

Jude is passionate about ’profit with purpose’ business models, innovation and achieving the SDGs by 2030.


Martin Ring

Central and Eastern Europe

Martin is a very experienced accountant/banker with decades of experience of the UK and Central/Eastern Europe.

He has been an adviser to fintech start ups in Ireland (where he is from) and scaled various financial services companies in Poland, where he has lived for last decade or so.

A couple of years ago he acquired the “Wolves Summit”, a very successful Poland-based tech event for start ups/scale ups, VCs etc.


Mike Jackson

South-West of England

Mike is an entrepreneur who built and sold his business in London. He then moved to Bristol to found his own tech incubator and became an active local investor and mentor.

In 2018, he took on a national role as Entrepreneur Success Director at Government supported Tech Nation responsible for rolling out a UK- wide network of support for ambitious UK tech entrepreneurs through local activity and national growth stage and sector specific programmes.

Having completed his mission, he left Tech Nation in April 2021 to pursue new challenges and has recently taken on the role of Dealmaker.


Nicky Van Domburg


Nicky has a tech business in Singapore and provides policy advice and analysis to some of Asia's key technology companies and other clients operating in the region.

She also used to run Australia’s DIT Investment Team initially from Sydney and then from Singapore when she moved back there. She has a lot of relevant public/private sector experience.


Olivia Sibony


Olivia (Liv) Sibony is an award-winning entrepreneur and trailblazing ethical investment champion. She is co-founder of Impact Amplified, where she works with industry experts, entrepreneurs and academics: empowering purpose-driven leaders with the means to be catalysts in the journey towards business as a force for good.

Liv left a career at Goldman Sachs to launch her foodtech startup, GrubClub, which she sold to Eatwith in 2017. As well as her work with Impact Amplified she an advisor for the UK Department for Business and Trade (DBT), enabling more impactful entrepreneurs from around the world to scale their businesses, relocating to the UK.

She is also a Board member of UCL's Fast Forward 2030, which aims to inspire the next generation of entrepreneurs to launch businesses that address the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as well as being Vicechair of the Mayor of London's Women in Cleantech Taskforce. She is Head of Impact at Angel investment Network, the world's largest online angel investment platform.


Paul Forrest


Advising businesses large and small, Paul is an accomplished entrepreneur and business leader with a 30-year track record founding and scaling successful companies. With experience in management consultancy, corporate finance and film production, he is an investor and board member of several disruptive businesses.

Paul has advised governments globally and worked with numerous FTSE 100 and Global 500 companies including Ford, Virgin, BAE Systems and Walmart on raising finance, market entry and exit planning.

Recognised as a thought leader in finance, innovation and leadership, Paul is a Freeman of the City of London with the Company of Entrepreneurs and fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Chartered Institute of Management and Institute of Leadership. He lends his expertise as a course tutor in Entrepreneurial Finance at LSE. Paul continues to share his insights as an advisor, with his work on start-ups and scaleups spanning greentech, AI, data and mixed reality. His vision and strategy expertise consistently guide companies to growth and success.


Russell Dalgleish


Scottish serial entrepreneur and board advisor, Russell Dalgleish sits at the heart of the burgeoning entrepreneurial ecosystem in Scotland which he supports through his broad global network.

As a multi-discipline, multi-sector innovator and investor working in both the public and private sector he is uniquely positioned to support those looking to scale their entrepreneurial venture into global markets from a base in the UK.


Shirley Gilbey


Shirley has been head of South Africa’s Tech Hub for the last couple of years and worked very closely with us bringing companies into our pipeline.

She is also an adviser to startups in South Africa as well as an angel group so is well connected to the ecosystem there as well as the GEP.


Simon Sprince

The North-West region of the UK

Simon’s background is in digital product development with over 20 years' experience of application production.

He has an in-depth understanding of digital industry’s key sub-sectors as well as the technologies and markets that drive them.

For GEP clients, Simon provides strategic support across product market fit, networks to access the market, research relationships, routes to R&D and venture finance.


Stephen Mooney


Stephen has over 20 years’ experience as an entrepreneur in high-growth start up and Fortune 500 environment.

As co-founder of ENXSuite he led customer acquisition and was also responsible for successfully leading that company’s expansion into the UK/EMEA market until its acquisition in 2010 and has been founder and director or 2 further software acquisitions.

Stephen currently serves as a director within a number of UK growth companies with a special interest in the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

He has previously served in a various roles for Pfizer and holds a Bachelor of Arts from The University of Calgary and a Masters of Business Administration from The University of Victoria.


Tim Luft

The Midlands region of the UK

Tim is the dealmaker based in the West Midlands. He focuses on digital, computer games, advanced manufacturing, rail and the automotive supply chain. Tim has extensive experience across digital media, AR/VR, ICT, advanced engineering, e-learning and simulation.

Tim has set up University Institutes and currently runs his own VR/AR studio in the Midlands.

He also sits on the Telford Business Board, and remains on the board of early stage technology start ups.

Tony H

Tony Hughes


Tony has vast experience in media and technology related businesses. He established the UK’s first Digital Media incubator in the late 1990s, with an international focus working with incubators in the US, Europe and Asia.

Tony works with start-ups to introduce them to relevant networks, whether academic or commercial, along with potential mentors, partners and founders.

He has worked with the UK Government for 10 years, supporting 100s of overseas Creative & Tech companies landing in the UK from Asia, Europe and the Americas.

Tony K

Tony Kypreos


Tony is an entrepreneur, corporate innovator, and angel investor with over 25 years of leadership experience. He is an authority on start-ups, corporate venturing, building high performing teams and international business development.​

He is especially focussed on building high-value, technology enabled health, environmental & sustainable development impact-driven organisations.


Yerim Koo

South Korea

Yerim is an entrepreneur whose first business was actually a GEP alumnus, having successfully established a UK HQ four years ago.

She was also the youngest member of South Korea’s National Constitutional Advisory Committee which advised the President on a range of issues including entrepreneurship.

She is also working on developing more cooperation between start-up companies serving as an executive director of Yonsei University's alumni association, which forms Korea's solid business network.

Looking to accelerate your business?

Send your pitch deck to us at global.entrepreneurs@businessandtrade.gov.uk.

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