Candace Johnson is a co-founder of SES, the world’s pre-eminent satellite group and the architect of SES Global. She is also founding President of Europe Online Investments S.A., the world’s first internet-based online service and satellite broadband network, and founder of Loral Cyberstar-Teleport Europe, Europe’s first independent private trans-border satellite communications network. Ms. Johnson is also a founding investor and Member of the Board of Kacific, the high-throughput Satellite Internet System for the Pacific. She is also founding President of the VATM, the Association of Private Telecom Operators in Germany and founding President of the Global Telecom Women’s Network (GTWN). Under her presidency of EBAN, she has co-founded MBAN, the Middle East Business Angel Network and ABAN, the African Business Angel Network. Candace Johnson is also a Member of the Board of SES-ESL, Store Electronic Systems Electronic Shelf Labeling, a publicly quoted company on the EuroNext and President of Succes Europe, a French Investment Holding with an AMF Visa. President of Johnson Paradigm Ventures (JPV) which is a principal founding shareholder with AXA, Caisse des Depots, Bayerische Landesbank, and the SPEF of Sophia Euro Lab. She is also a member of the Advisory Board of numerous European and US ventures as well as being a Member of the Board of Governors of EDHEC (France), the University of Haifa in Israel, Sabanci University in Istanbul Turkey, and a Senior Enterprise Fellow for the University of Essex and its OECD-Leeds Program. Ms. Johnson has been decorated by the Government of Luxembourg with the Commander of Merit and the Officer of the Oak Leaf Crown for her work in founding and building SES to become one of the world’s largest satellite systems. She is also an Officer of the German Federal Order of Merit, bestowed on her for her work in privatizing telecommunications and media throughout Germany and Europe. Amongst many other honors, Ms. Johnson has received the “Lifetime Achievement Award” together with Vinton Cerf and Tim Berners Lee from the World Communications Awards for her work in providing universal access to telecommunications around the world. She holds Masters Degrees with Honors from the Sorbonne and Stanford Universities, a Bachelors Degree from Vassar College and her high-school degree from Punahou, Honolulu Hawaii.
Board of Directors (2016-2018)
JOHNSON Candace, President
Sophia Business Angels, FRANCE
ASIKAINEN Riku, Vice-President
Riku Asikainen is an entrepreneur, angel investor and growth hacker. He started his first company while in high school, and sold it as Finland´s leading internet bookstore at fifteen years later. Since then he has been a founder, active investor and board member in more than 35 companies. Riku has had several nice upswings, ten exits and one IPO, but is still looking for his first billion dollars. Riku Asikainen was one of the Co-founders and chairman of FiBAN (Finnish Business Angel network) which has been awarded Europe´s best business angel network in 2013 by EBAN. He is a proud co-founder of Startup-foundation, the organization behind both SLUSH, Europe´s biggest tech conference and Startup sauna, a leading incubator program for the region in which Riku currently serves as Head Coach. Riku Asikainen graduated from Aalto University School of Business (M.Sc, Helsinki) and was nominated as the Alumni of the year 2014.
Peter E. Braun has 20 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur and in various senior and top management positions in the aerospace and automotive industries. He has successfully launched two industrial companies and two finance-related enterprises, and completed two IPOs, one in the United States and one in Germany.
During his career, Peter gathered profound knowledge of the capital markets and the finance sector with activities in Germany, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Canada, USA and Asia. He is a much asked for coach for start-ups, a compelling speaker and a sought after senior advisor and board member.
In his most recent activity as a Co-Founder and CEO of the Mountain Club AG, he created a peerless e-banking solution for business angel and private equity investments in collaboration with the strategic partner UBS AG.
Business Angels Network Catalunya, SPAIN
Albert has been at the forefront of the angel investor movement in Spain. In 2002, he co-founded and became executive director of the Business Angel Network Catalunya BANC, the first Spanish angel network, which he led. Additionally in 2006 he co-founded ESBAN, a private foundation to raising awareness and promoting angel investment and Business Angels Networks in Spain. Since 2003, Albert is member of the Board of EBAN.
Albert has been appointed by the Parliament of Catalonia as member of the Advisory Board of the Catalan Institute of Finance, the public credit institution of the Government of Catalonia.
During his career, Albert has gathered a profound knowledge of the entrepreneurship skills. As a consultant, advisor, coach or business angel, His experience in entrepreneurial field, over 25 years, has helped thousands start-ups and entrepreneurs to born and grow. He is co-founder (1986) and executive director of CPAC (Fundació Privada per a la Promoció de l’Autoocupació de Catalunya), an independent charity with a mission to help people and organizations to be entrepreneurs.
National Business Angels Association, RUSSIA
Konstantin is a serial entrepreneur and investor. After graduating from MBA program at Cranfield University School of Management (www.cranfield.ac.uk/som) in 2003 Konstantin returned to Moscow and together with his partner established the first Russian classic business-angel network.
In 2005–2006 Konstantin joined Ministry for Economic Development of Russia (www.economy.gov.ru) to create a network of private-state regional venture funds and business incubators. In 2007–2008 Konstantin managed Strogino Technopark in Moscow (www.tpstrogino.ru). In 2009 was appointed the President of Russian Tech Tour 2009 (www.techtour.com), together with his small but enthusiastic team implemented the second in history visit of the leading world venture investors to Russia.
In the end of 2009 Konstantin was elected President/CEO of a newly created Russian industrial association of business angels, seed funds and other early stage investors — NBAA (www.rusangels.ru). Starting from 2011 Konstantin became the representative of Greater Geneva Berne area (www.ggba-switzerland.ch) with authority to assist growing Russian companies interested in European (international).
In 2012 Konstantin was among the initiators of establishing the Moscow Innovation Development Centre (www.inno.msk.ru), which was later created by the Department of Science, industrial policy and entrepreneurship (www.dnpp.mos.ru). Konstantin became the CEO of the Centre in June 2012. The main aim of the Centre’s activities is to coordinate all Moscow policies aimed at supporting the innovative development of the city and create workplaces for qualified professionals in Moscow.
Michael O’Connor is the CEO of CorkBIC, a private-sector led organisation, specifically set up to identify and build knowledge intensive companies based on promising technology usually involving international growth. Michael provides an integrated process for incubating and growing high potential technology driven companies. Previous experience was manufacturing and sales start ups with Raychem Corporation before co-founding Intepro, a venture capital backed Irish IT startup.
Austrian Angel Investors Association, AUSTRIA
Selma Prodanovic is an entrepreneur and philanthropist. Known as the Business Angelina or Startup-Grand-Dame, her passion lies in unlashing the untapped entrepreneurial potential of millions of creative and innovative future-makers from around the world.
She invests in the development of entrepreneurial ecosystems. With her business developer Brainswork she supported over 300 startups, investors and CEOs. She is co-founder and board member of the Austrian Angel Investors Association, board member of EBAN and member of GBAN, as well as Lead Investor in the Rising Tide Europe 1 Program. She is founder and CEO at 1millionstartups the first worldwide campaign and community dedicated to promoting entrepreneurial spirit and inspiring founders and investors to create the world class startups we need.
As an inspirational speaker Selma was over 1000 times on stage. For her innovative approach to business, and commitment to entrepreneurship and social change, Selma received numerous awards, most recently the Vueve Clicquot Business Woman Award. She is happily married to her first love and proud mother of two fantastic teenagers.
Nordic Female BAN, FINLAND
Audra is an expert in Women Entrepreneurship and Angel Investment in the EMEA region. She promotes Entrepreneurship and Angel Investing through Programs, Mentoring, Business Plan Competitions, Business Angel Networks and Women Economic Empowerment within the EU and MENA region. She consults for international organizations such as OECD, UNEP, UNIDO and the European Commission, and teaches courses on Entrepreneurship to the Grandes Ecoles such as ENSCP, X, ParisTech, CELSA. Audra has played a key role in launching the Enterprise Financing Network within the MENA-OECD Investment Programme which creates a unique platform to connect entrepreneurs, financiers, research bodies and policymakers in order to improve the conditions for financing entrepreneurship. She is past Vice-President of the Femmes Business Angels and currently serves on the Board of BADGE (Les Business Angels des Grandes Ecoles), the Advisory Board of Tenmou-Bahrain First Business Angel Company, and the Paris Executive Business Accelerator. She is also Chair of the Mentoring Taskforce within the American Chamber Women Leadership Committee and is an accredited Mentor for the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, the Tony Elumelu Foundation, and BiD Network. She is a Member of the Board at NFBAN – Nordic Female Business Angel Network.
Eleven Accelerator Venture Fund, BULGARIA
Daniel Tomov is a founding partner at Eleven Accelerator Venture Fund that is focused on early investments in some of the most promising and exciting tech startups throughout whole Southeastern Europe and is supported by Google and Springboard. Daniel has been involved in startups since 2000 as early stage investor and funded (in some cases bootstrapping) entrepreneur in diverse fields from software, mobile and consumer goods to renewable energy. Daniel has met and befriended some of the greatest tech entrepreneurs in the region and continues to support the innovative young minds. Honors from the Sorbonne and Stanford Universities, a Bachelors Degree from Vassar College and her high-school degree from Punahou.
CONNECT Sweden, SWEDEN
Anna Wilkens' bio: Coming soon
ALTUNTAS Baybars, Vice-President
Founder of Deulcom lnternational, the first vocational training school of Turkey and named by the Economist – Turkey as one of the top 100 franchise companies of Turkey. Deulcom lnternational became one of the fastest growing trademark of Turkey and was prised by Eurowards.
Founder of UFRAD – Turkish Franchise Association. lntroduced lATA Educational System to Turkey.Elected as the Best Businessman – 2010. Was one of the 150 entrepreneurs invited by US President Barack Obama to the White House Presedential Summit in Washington DC. He was the only participant who was given a personal audience by the US President before his summit. After the US President’s speech, CNN lnternational interviewed Baybars Altuntas live at its Washington studios the only delagate interviewed. One of the dragons of Dragons’ Den – Turkey, entrepreneurship TV show.
His book ‘My way to Dragons’ Den’ has been the best- seller in Turkey. LinksAngel BAN with his leadership is acting as a business angel platform supporting start-up businesses in Turkey. President of TBAA – Business Angels Association – Turkey. Married and has 2 children.
JARLBÆK Jesper, Treasurer
Business Angels Copenhagen, DENMARK
Jesper Jarlbæk is a business angel investor and professional board member of a number of growth businesses. Jesper is currently vice-chairman of DVCA (Danish Venture Capital Association). Jesper is Chairman of BA Copenhagen, Denmark’s largest and most successful Business Angel network. Jesper is a member of VL7. In 2009, Jesper was awarded “Business Angel of the Year” by DVCA.
Jesper Jarlbæk is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Bang & Olufsen A/S, an NASDAQ OMX listed company. Jesper has previously served on the Board of 3 other NASDAQ OMX listed companies in Denmark and one US listed company. Jesper is Chairman of CataCap, a Danish PE fund as well as member of the Board of Polaris Invest III fund, the second largest Danish PE fund.
Between 1975 and 2002, Jesper Jarlbæk was employed with Arthur Andersen, ultimately holding dual positions as Managing Partner, Denmark and Nordic Managing Partner – Assurance and Business Advisory. From 2002 to 2006, Jesper was Managing Partner – Advisory services at Deloitte and as such, one of the four members of the senior management team. In both these executive positions, Jesper had bottom line responsibility for 1000+ highly qualified professionals. Jesper consistently delivered growth and profitability well above the market and the closest competitors. In some years, organic growth exceeded 25% p.a. One of the key challenges was building and maintaining a strong performance and corporate culture amongst highly motivated professionals. This task required building team spirit across personal skill sets, competencies, nationalities and experience levels.
Platinum Seed Incubator, POLAND
Michal Cieminski is an expert in TMT market with over 20 years of experience and wide network of contacts among Polish TMT sector. Michal is a founder and CEO of Platinum Seed Incubator, which focuses on providing seed capital to projects connected mainly with TMT, health and lifestyle and renewable energy sources. Platinum Seed Incubator works for international cooperation in the territory of Europe to decrease the costs for starting up the company by using local software developers, internationalize Polish startups, give an access to Polish market for successful “Western Europe startups”, investing and mentoring to startups.
Michal is also involved in consulting activities on the level of the board for one of largest Polish CATV operator as well as he manages local branch of Entrepreneur Country and acts as and investment director at Bastion Group, group of VC/PE funds.
He proofed his ability to effectively re-organize projects, startups, and corporations into highly effective businesses. He run i.e. “The City of Plus” – first social media project with mobile operator which was awarded in 2003 at The Globe Award competition as one of the five best projects in the world in New Media category.
Michal holds a Master degree in Administration and Capital Investments from Private Higher School of Business and Administration (Warsaw). He also completed several programmes at INSEAD (Fontainebleau), LBS (London) and IESE Business School (Barcelona). His values and attitude focus on creating positive contribution to entities he helps, society and life itself.
Halo Business Angel Network, IRELAND
Michael Culligan, specialist in international business development for early stage companies, has direct business experience in London, China, Japan, mainland Europe and North America and has applied this expertise to assist many Irish companies make their mark on a global market.
With a particularly strong track record in raising seed capital for start-ups from both public and private sources, Michael has been involved in helping over 80 companies attract over €30 million in investment funding. Michael combines his role of Dublin BIC business consultant with his position of programme manager where he ensures that the breadth of services and quality of advice offered to entrepreneurs by Dublin BIC continue to be relevant, results driven and unmatched in the in the market.
Michael is the National Director of Halo Business Angels Network, the island’s umbrella organisation for angel investment. He has lectured on Business Strategy for the Michael Smurfit MBA programme at UCD, holds a degree in Applied Physics & Electronics from NUIG and is a first class MBA graduate of the UCD Smurfit School.
Federação Nacional de Associações de Business Angels, PORTUGAL
Miguel Henriques is President of FNABA, the Portuguese National Federation for Business Angels Clubs and Associations. He has been involved with the creation of new ventures for a long time now. From traditional industry to IT, health science, services or energy, he has always been an active part in the process of launching new companies, both as entrepreneur and investor. Miguel as also created a few incubators and different entrepreneurship contests, as early on as 1996. He led a VC Fund for five years, as well as APCRI, the Portuguese Association for Venture Capital and Private Equity. Miguel developed his managerial skills as an executive and CEO of large Portuguese companies in the environmental business, energy and financial investment. His basic skills as an economist, MBA and PhD researcher underpinned his vast professional experience which has provided him with the necessary expertise to read markets and devise the appropriate strategies to deal with them. As an investor, his chief focus is the energy and environment sectors.
Luxembourg Business Angels Network, LUXEMBOURG
Hedda Pahlson-Moller is a full-time Business Angel focused on impact investing at the seed capital stage through OMSINT (Omnisource International). She sits on the boards of the European Business Angel Network (EBAN), the Luxembourg Business Angel Network (LBAN) and Chameleon Invest, a venture capital fund. Ms. Pahlson-Moller is adjunct professor of Entrepreneurship at Sacred Heart University’s Jack Welch College of Business for Executive MBAs.
She is currently active in building a co-working space and community for entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs called ‘the Impactory’, based in Luxembourg.
Hedda has an MBA from Copenhagen Business School, an M.A. in Political Economics from Lund University and an undergraduate degree from Brown University. She is also currently enrolled at Nyenrode University’s executive PhD programme.
Juan Roure is a Professor in the Entrepreneurship Department at IESE and has been a member of its International Advisory Board (IAB) for the last ten years. He was a Visiting Professor at Stanford University, INSEAD, Harvard Business School and CEIBS (China). He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), an MBA from ESADE, an ISP from Harvard Business School and a PhD from Stanford University.
He is an active private investor himself and Founder of IESE Business Angel Network and President of AEBAN the Spanish Federation of Business Angels Networks.
He has served in several Advisory Boards related to private investment (The Carlyle Group, Vallis Capital, ICF, …) and has consulted with the top management of leading corporations (CaixaBank, Repsol, Telefónica, Gas Natural, Deustche Bank, …)
Estonia Business Angels Network, ESTONIA
An active member of the local startup and angel investor community. Ivar is the founding member and President of Estonian Business Angel Network (EstBAN) which started its activities in late 2012.
He is the founder and partner of WNB Project, an investment company founded in 2007 with a focus on seed and early stage StartUps. Ivar spends majority of his time on board-level mentoring of these companies.
StartTech Ventures, GREECE
Dimitris Tsigos is an Athens-based serial tech entrepreneur and early stage investor, he also is the Founding Chairman of the Hellenic Start-up Association and a Board Member at EBAN – The European Trade Association of Business Angels, Seed Funds and other Early Stage Market Players.
Having co-founded Virtual Trip, the first student start-up in Greece, and then co-founded or invested in a dozen of high-tech companies, he currently is the CEO of StartTech Ventures, a next generation venture incubator in Athens, Greece. Dimitris is an active citizen strongly believing in faster and deeper European integration.
President Emeritus Advisory Council
Paulo Andrez is an angel investor. He is Vice-President of FNABA (Portuguese Business Angels Federation), President of Cascais Business Angels, Member of the Board of DNA Cascais (BIC). He chaired (2010-2012) the EBAN Research Committee, which produced the first EBAN Co-Investment and Tax Breaks reports, in cooperation with BDO.
Paulo Andrez was chairman of the World Business Angels Leaders Forum (Estoril, 2007) that decided to create the World Business Angel Association, and participated under FNABA scope in the design of the first Business Angel co-investment fund in Portugal. In 2010 he also participated in the design and implementation of the first Business Angels Tax Break in Portugal.
Paulo Andrez has a background as serial entrepreneur and has created several companies in areas like IT software, training, real estate and industrial resins. In 2000 he participated as entrepreneur (seller) in the IPO in Euronext, of Novabase, the largest national IT provider in Portugal, with more than 1900 employees, working in 33 countries and from then he became Business Angel, helping entrepreneurs to achieve results. He is an IT Engineer and has a MBA from Nova University in Lisbon.
Anthony Clarke is the co-founder and CEO of Angel Capital Group which includes London Business Angels where he also has the role of CEO. Anthony qualified as a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Secretary with Deloitte Haskins & Sells (now PWC) in 1980. Thereafter, he worked on a full time basis as Finance Director and Chief Executive of a number of privately owned SME companies and since 1995 he has been a Business Angel investor in more than 30 start-up/early stage businesses.
Between 2002 and 2009 Anthony was Managing Director of GLE Growth Capital and also sat on the main Board of GLE. Anthony has been involved with London Business Angels for 20 years and took on the role of its CEO when it became part of GLE Group in 2002. London Business Angels was the UK’s most active angel group in the UK by 2013 closing 22 deals.
Anthony is also co-founder and currently sits on the advisory Board of the UK's first £30m Enterprise Capital Fund Seraphim Capital which was launched in 2006. He was Chairman of the UK Business Angels Association (UKBAA) from 2004 - July 2012 and remains on its Board and is President Emeritus of European Business Angels Network (EBAN) which he Chaired from 2004-2009. Anthony also sits on the Venture Capital Committee of the BVCA.
Brigitte Baumann is the Founder and CEO of Go Beyond Investing, is an active Business Angel and serves on a number of selection and investment committees in Europe including the WEF’s Tech Pioneers. She is a Member of the Präsidium of KTI, the Swiss commission for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Brigitte is President Emeritus of EBAN, the European trade association for Business Angels and Seed Funds, previously holding the title President for two terms and also chairs Young Presidents Organization’s global Angel Investing interest group. Brigitte has 15 years of experience in bringing new technologies to market in the US and Europe.
She was the CEO and Director of iWORLD Group, a VC backed, global developer of mobile content. She came to iWG from American Express Corporate Services where she held the position of Senior Vice President and General Manager Internet. Whilst there she launched a variety of new internet businesses including online travel (strategic partner of Expedia.com), e-Procurement, online servicing of cards and online payment. Prior to that, Brigitte spent three years as President for US and Canada of GEMPLUS (now Gemalto), the world’s leader in smart card technology and applications to orchestrate the introduction of smart cards to the US.
She moved to GEMPLUS from American Express TRS Inc., where she had spent over six years in different Vice-Presidential/General Manager positions in the UK, France and Switzerland. She also spent five years with McKinsey & Company Inc. as Senior Engagement Manager, based in New York, Paris and Tokyo. She began her career in manufacturing and sales with Rohm & Haas, a leading specialty chemicals company.
Brigitte holds a B.Sc. in Chemical Engineering from Tufts University, Boston and an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. She has been the subject of a Harvard Business School case study. Born and raised in France, Brigitte and her family now live in Zurich. Click here to contact Brigitte.
He holds an MBA from Cologne University, Germany. Starting his career in industry he became CEO of Strabag AG, Köln 1987, one of the largest European Civil Engineering Groups. After a successful turnaround of Strabag AG he founded Peter Jungen Holding GmbH in 1991, which holds investments in various industrial and service companies.
Peter Jungen is Co-Founder of or Investor in numerous start-ups in Europe and in USA, including Idealo Internet GmbH, the leading German prize comparison shopping platform, Berlin. He is a Partner of the Halo Fund, Palo Alto.
He is Founding President of Business Angels Netzwerk Deutschland (BAND) as well as Co-Founder and President of European Business Angels Network (EBAN) (2001-2004). He is a member of the New York Angels and founding member of the China Business Angels Network (Cban).
He is Member of several Advisory Boards: i. e. Deutsche Bank AG, Frankfurt / Berlin, Foster & Partner, London and Board Member of the New York Philharmonic.
He is a Member of the IAC, Columbia University. He is Chairman of the MENA-OECD Enterprise Financing Network, a Member of the International Josef Schumpeter Society and of the Mont Pelerin Society. He was Chairman of the Center on Capitalism and Society, Columbia University
In August 1999 Peter Jungen was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany by its President.
In September 2000 the leading German business weekly “Wirtschaftswoche“ named Peter Jungen one of the most important personalities to shape the future of the „New Economy“.