There are as many opinions as there are experts


Meet the 2013 panel – view the 2014 panel here


Alex Macpherson, Head of Ventures, Octopus InvestmentsAlex Macpherson Octopus

As head of the Ventures division of , a firm which manages investments worth over £2 billion, including £250m of venture capital and private equity funds, Alex Macpherson has built his professional reputation on identifying, assessing and nurturing talented young businesses. His team specialise in identifying emerging businesses with the potential for market disruption. Alex started his career with SG Warburg before becoming fascinated with small business and co-founding Katalyst Ventures which he led before its sale to Octopus in 2007. Within the Octopus team, Alex takes responsibility for evaluating the potential of companies for investment, finalising deals, and managing portfolios with a view to maximum returns. He currently represents Octopus on the board of Calastone.


Pierre Suhrcke, Managing Partner, PRE AG

Pierre SukrePierre has spent more than 17 years in various senior management positions in Investment Banking at Deutsche Bank in London and Frankfurt with responsibilities for venture investing, equities trading, hedge funds and risk management. Pierre is an owner and General Partner of PRE AG, an international investment advisor for single and portfolio venture assets as well as a serial angel investor and founder of companies.  As Partner of ABS Ventures he acquired most of Deutsche Bank’s venture portfolio through an MBO. Pierre has been on the board of many private companies in the US and Europe. He held board positions in Adeptra (London),  RiskMetrics (New York), Trema (Stockholm), end2end (Aarburg), Execution (London), Clearforest (NewYork), Inxight (Santa Clara) and Gomez (Boston)




Eddie Harding, Investment Director, ICON Corporate Finance 

Eddie is an Investment Director & Head of FinTech at ICON Corporate Finance, a specialist Corporate Finance Advisory focused on Equity Fundraising and M&A for high growth Tech companies. Eddie joined ICON in 2000 and has since completed over 40 transactions including the sale of my-Channels (ultra low-latency Financial Messaging) to Software AG and the VC funding of both Tamesis (Financial Risk Management Software) and Velsys (a SaaS-based FX Trading Platform). ICON was voted 2013 Corporate Finance Advisory Firm of the Year (Technology Industries) & Global Dealmaker Corporate Finance House of the Year in 2012. Prior to ICON, Eddie was at Arthur Andersen where he worked in both the Corporate Finance team in Sydney and also the Private Equity group in London specialising in TMT deals.



John Chaplin, President, Ixaris/Consultant, Anthemis Group                                                                                       

John Chaplin has been highly influential in the development of the payment card business for more than 20 years. In July 2010, he was appointed as President of Ixaris, a developer and provider of open payment applications. John is also a consultant for FS investment and advisory firm, Anthemis Group. John contributes to the development of the Anthemis Group advisory business and serves on the board of several companies including InterSwitch, the largest switch in Africa. John has previously worked in senior positions at First Data Corporation and Visa where he started the B2B payments business. He has been credited as one of the driving forces of the phenomenal growth of card payments across Europe. Since 2008, John has been a member of the Payments Market Expert Group that advises the European Commission.



Nick Ogden, CEO and founder, CashFlows

Nick Ogden is the CEO and founder of CashFlows, a new agency business bank. CashFlows is interesting as it offers lower charges and pays interest on current account balances, making it a significantly better offering for British businesses. Nick is a serial entrepreneur in the financial technology, having founded WorldPay in 1997 before it was sold to RBS. The CashFlows Account is the culmination of Nick’s experiences in British business and aims to dramatically change the way businesses in the UK handle their finances.




Roy Vella, Managing Director, V2 Ltd.

Roy-Vella-2-bwRoy is a mobile financial services expert, advisor and consultant to players large (such as Visa & Vodafone) and small (startups) in the space.  Prior to offering his services-at-large, Roy created and led RBS Group’s global mobile efforts.  Before RBS, he spent 5 years with PayPal from launching the Merchant Services team to being the Head of Mobile Payments in Europe.  Roy has worked in startups, venture capital and co-founded NetAbacus Corporation.  Roy received a BA in Mathematics (with High Honors) from Holy Cross College, a JD from Stanford Law, and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.



Christian Erlandson, Entrepreneur


Christian Erlandson is an industry veteran with 20+ years of demonstrated success in the financial technology sector.  Most recently Christian was CEO of CarryQuote and grew revenues from $0 to $15 million in less than two years.   Prior to CarryQuote Christian had been the UK Head of Sales for Thomson Reuters, driving more than $1 billion in annual revenues.  Before joining Thomson Reuters, Christian played a key role in driving annual revenues of several high-growth financial technology companies including: Multex; RIMES Technologies and Global Securities Information.






Gareth Lodge, Senior Analyst, Celent

Gareth Lodge is a leading analyst at Celent’s Banking group, covering the payments space. His research will focus on payments. His research covers electronic payments, including ACH & cards, and well as cash and cheques, as well as technologies such as payment hubs. He is well known speaker and market commentator, and widely quoted by the press.




Nicola Koronka, Associate Director, HotwireKoronka monochrome

As the head of the FS&Tech practice at Hotwire, a global communications and PR agency, Nicola leads the delivery of PR campaigns for established and challenger brands in FinTech. She has specialised in the sector for more than six years, enabling organisations to increase their profile in front of a diverse range of stakeholders from VCs, angels and investors to technology executives and industry influencers. Nicola was listed in the 2013 PR Week ’29 under 29’ for her work in raising Hotwire’s profile as the leading FinTech PR agency in the UK.




 Alex McCracken, Relationship Director, Silicon Valley Bank

With over 18 years’ experience in financing technology companies at all stages of growth, Alex joined Silicon Valley Bank in 2010, where he focuses on business development. Alex works closely with technology companies and the venture capital community to deliver financial services and debt solutions, and leverages Silicon Valley Bank’s extensive global network to help companies succeed.


J Barrett 2012.3

Jon Barrett, Manager, Global Treasury Sales, Silicon Valley Bank

Jon is a Treasury Management specialist for Silicon Valley Bank, working closely with UK VC backed start uptechnology firms. Previous to joining SVB, Jon spent 6 years at J.P. Morgan advising FTSE 100 & 250 companies on their Global Cash & Treasury Management strategies.