Head of DE&I
Jordana Semaan joined Investcorp in 2019 and currently holds the role of head of HR- Gulf and Asia as well as the Diversity Champion for the firm. Jordana has over 18 years of experience and has worked in different fields and markets that has allowed her to develop both her leadership style as well as have a multi-skill set. Her strength in people talent over the years has led her to direct her career to Human Resources where her emphasis is on change management and cultural change. Jordana holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and is CIPD certified.
Gail McManus founded PER to be the leading specialist recruiter for private equity funds. Coming from the industry, Gail understands what matters to her clients, and has built PER with a strong sense of purpose and a deep respect for the insightful, entrepreneurial and talented people that we work with. Gail believes that it is a privilege to be able to support and influence private equity people in their career choices. She is passionate about advancing diversity, equity and inclusion and it is a source of pride that PER holds a special vantage point from which to spot trends, influence thinking and share best practice.
Human Resources Director
Dorte Wigg joined IK Partners in 2009 and is the Human Resources (HR) Director, responsible for overseeing all aspects of the employee lifecycle. Based in London, she manages the firm’s HR functions across Europe, ensuring that the support and development structures in place allow everyone at the Firm to maximise their potential. Dorte works closely with the Leadership Team to align HR strategy with the wider business strategy.
Jamie leads ScaleUp Capital's Talent and People function, focused on developing strong relationships with scale-up leaders both pre- and post-deal. Since joining in June 2020, he has supported ScaleUp's portfolio companies in supporting and augmenting c-suite teams with high calibre talent, as well as supporting the Investment team around commercial due diligence, management assessment and origination. He previously spent four years with Private Equity-focused executive search boutique Skillcapital, operating in their TMTM practice.
ScaleUp Capital was founded in 2003 and has built a strong reputation in the UK as a leading specialist scale-up investor in the B2B digital sector.
Head of Talent
Ruby is part of Livingbridge’s growth acceleration team and leads the portfolio Talent capability, helping investees to design people strategies and creating employee engagement propositions central to building high performing businesses. Before joining Livingbridge Ruby spent 15 years in executive search, previous roles including global managing director at Sheffield Haworth and partner, head of financial services & banking, at Marlin Hawk.
Cathy joined Alderwood Capital in September 2021. A Partner in the firm, Cathy is Head of Human Capital and a member of the Management Committee and Investment Committee.
Cathy is an acknowledged expert on high value performance management in the asset management sector with a particular emphasis on succession planning, understanding how investment teams interact and make successful decisions, and sustaining thriving cultures.
She is an accomplished senior executive with broad senior management experience ranging from boutique asset management firms, to one of the world’s largest financial institutions.
From 2011 Cathy was one of the five original partners of Northill Capital having joined the firm shortly after its formation in 2011, leaving in 2021 when the firm had grown to over $95bn in AUM. From 2003 to 2011 Cathy was responsible for leading a team of 60 to provide HR services to 5,000 people in EMEA at BNYMellon.
Cathy’s experience spans nearly three decades, during which time she has led teams and advised senior stakeholders on all aspects of people engagement and management, including culture, employee relations/labour laws, change management, transformation, integration, and growth. She has worked closely with founders and boards to take their organisations through to the next generation of leaders, carefully and successfully, using proven international people experience. Her experienced and holistic approach helps executive management teams and company boards to define, assess and develop their organisational strategy and culture.
Cathy holds a Bachelor of Business and a Post Graduate degree in Human Resources Management and Industrial Relations from Victoria University, Melbourne.
Director, Head of Human Capital
Bridges Fund Management
Having joined Bridges in 2006, Millie is responsible for all things people related in the firm, which means there is plenty of variety in her role. Prior to joining Bridges, she worked in research assistant roles in Cambridge University and in Ireland at UCC. She graduated from UCC with a BA and an MPhil in Geography. She is a Chartered Member of the CIPD.
Senior Private Equity Board-Level Talent Advisor
ADIA / KLAR Partners
Conor is a senior advisor to private equity firms on board-level network development, recruitment and board effectiveness. His clients include the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (a leading global sovereign wealth fund) and KLAR Partners (a mid-market European private equity firm).
Conor previously served as the Head of Portfolio Board Development at Advent International from 2007 to 2019. His responsibilities included managing a network of top chairmen, CEOs and NEDs as well as leading the firm’s best practice talent initiatives in fields such as recruitment, management assessment and board effectiveness. Prior to Advent, he held senior marketing positions with Andersen, Linklaters and Mercer Management Consulting (now Oliver Wyman) before moving into private equity with 3i from 1998 to 2007.
International Head of HR
HPS Investment Partners
Naz Karimbhai is the International Head of HR at HPS Investment Partners. Prior to HPS, Naz was HR Director and Head of Talent for Bridgepoint, a global mid market private equity firm. In addition to being a senior HR business partner, she has experience in talent acquisition, diversity & inclusion, employee engagement initiatives, development, employee relations and reward. Prior to Bridgepoint, Naz was an HR director at PwC. She has a Business Commerce degree from Birmingham University and a Masters in HR. She is a Fellow of the CIPD.
Head of Talent Network
Cate joined BGF in 2012 to set up the Talent Network. This network has grown to be one of the most extensive networks of Board Directors in the UK, with a dedicated team continuously developing it, and matchmaking across the investment cycle. From originating investment opportunities, to tapping into the network to understand market dynamics; placing over 350 Non-Executive Chairs and Directors in portfolio company boards to date; and, supporting CEOs with the development of their leadership teams. Cate is also a Non-Executive Director of The ScaleUp Institute, and takes the lead role in BGF for championing more investment into diverse Founders and CEOs.
Before BGF Cate was with 3i Group plc, and had an earlier career in Executive Search and Leadership Assessment.
Head of People & Culture,Europe
Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan
Spencer is a highly experienced Human Resource professional and accredited executive coach and is currently the head of People & Culture Europe and Asia for Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, which is one of the world’s largest pension funds. During his career he has specialised in Financial Services, in particular Investment Banking and Asset Management, during his time at Bank of America Merrill Lynch he held a number of senior positions including head of Talent Acquisition for the front office in EMEA and Latin America, and Senior Business Partner for various trading and sales functions, Risk, Compliance and Transactional Banking.
In his Current role at Teachers’ Spencer sits on the People & Culture Global Leadership team and has overseen rapid expansion outside of the Teachers’ home country, Canada. He is also helping to drive the Plans’ people and cultural evolution and the ambitious goal of achieving CAD300 billion assets under management by 2030, a critical element of which is rebalancing the portfolio outside of North America and opening new offices to access exciting investment opportunities around the Globe, he is currently working on the opening of an office in Mumbai, India. As well as working with senior leaders and developing staff of all levels, Spencer holds a deep passion for DE&I, wellbeing and employee choice.
Helios Investment Partners
Will leads the Human Capital function at Helios Investment Partners, the pan-African private investment firm with $3.6bn AUM, where he partners with 25+ portfolio companies across questions of senior leadership, compensation & benefits, organisation structure and corporate governance. He previously worked for Skillcapital, an executive search boutique focused on private equity backed portfolio companies.
Amandeep Singh Johal
Legal Counsel Portfolio Governance
Amandeep is a UK qualified lawyer and part of the Triton ESG team as Legal Counsel Portfolio Governance focusing on legal, governance, insurance and compliance in transactions and portfolio companies. Amandeep has extensive experience in establishing and improving governance and insurance systems and leads due diligence in these areas in transactions. After completion of an acquisition, Amandeep works directly with portfolio company boards to realise operational and strategic improvements. Before joining Triton, Amandeep worked in private practice with SJ Berwin and in-house at the UK Financial Services Authority.
Richard joined ECI in 2019 as a member of the Commercial Team, supporting growth at its portfolio companies. Richard also leads the People & Talent function at ECI both at the fund level and also across the portfolio. This involves running several of ECI's own HR functions and promoting the people agenda within the portfolio by liaising with the various HR Leaders. He has eight years' experience as a strategy consultant at both Roland Berger and EY-Parthenon where he was a Director. Richard also spent two years working in industry at Argos.
Head of Platform
Fidelity International Strategic Ventures
Laura is Head of Platform for Fidelity International Strategic Ventures (FISV) where she works to provide operational support to a portfolio of fintech scale-ups. Her work focuses on human capital and people-centered organizational design with topics including hiring, ESG, performance management and reward as well as coaching senior executives and emerging talent.As a founding member, she has supported the fund since its inception in 2018 bringing together a team that builds and invests in fintech businesses and technologies that are strategically important to Fidelity International.
Prior to establishing FISV, Laura was Talent Partner for Eight Roads, the $9bn AUM global venture capital business. In that role she advised portfolio companies on board composition and hiring and worked to build out the investor and functional talent for the platform.
Director, Head of People
Suzie Ruffley joined Foresight Group in 2017, as Director and Head of People. She joined to set up the HR Function at Foresight and is responsible for all aspects of the People Strategy across the group. Prior to this, she was Head of HR Operations at Kew Gardens, and before that, held several HR roles within State Street.
Suzie is an Occupational Psychologist, with over 18 years of HR experience. Continually driven to understand how to support shaping individuals to perform at their best, she is currently studying her second MSc, this time in Coaching Psychology at Birkbeck University. Complimentary to her BSc in Applied Psychology and MSc in Occupational Psychology.
Global Head of Resourcing
Richard is the Global Head of Resourcing within Pantheon’s HR Team. He is also a member of Pantheon’s Inclusion and Diversity Committee. Prior to joining Pantheon, Richard managed resourcing functions at RBS, HSBC and Insight Investment and holds a BA in Classics from Liverpool University. Richard is based in London.
Portfolio Talent Director
Montagu Private Equity
Lisa Telford joined the Montagu Full Potential Partners team in February 2017 from Odgers Berndtson, where she spent 4 years specialising in board-level executive and non-executive appointment in the Technology, Media and Telecoms (TMT) sectors. Previously, she spent over twenty years working in Europe and the US in commercial and general management roles, ultimately as Executive Vice President, International Distribution at StudioCanal. Lisa holds an MBA from Cranfield School of Management and a Bachelor’s degree in French and German from Newcastle University.
Lynn Akashi is Co-Founder of Zetland Capital, a London based private equity fund focusing on European mid-market special situations. Lynn advises and leads the firm’s growth strategy and is the architect of Zetland’s culture and values. She is the thought-leader on Zetland’s ESG and DEI initiatives and approaches leadership with a holistic , whole person coaching style.
She was a founding member of the Citi Salomon Smith Barney Distressed & Special Situations proprietary trading desk in New York and Tokyo in the late 90s. She was also a Director at Citigroup’s European Leverage Finance group and a founding member of the Loan Sales Trading desk in London. Lynn began her career in M&A at Chase Manhattan Bank in New York. Lynn is an active mentor of young professionals and is on the steering committee representing Zetland on SEO-London, a charity dedicated to the promotion of diversity. In an advisory capacity, she has advised and coached numerous start-ups on business planning.
Lynn graduated from Wellesley college with a BA in economics and political science and spent her early life in Hawaii where many of her current values were founded.
Dr David Cooper
David is a recognised pioneer, international speaker and media commentator in the area of leadership risk in PE and he has spoken at SuperInvestor and SuperReturns. Using his proprietary framework, he works both with general partners and investee management teams in order to maximise value creation, develop greater foresight and address the ‘syndromes of PE practice’, which can cause value to be leaked. With over 20 years’ PE experience, he brings a depth of understanding of the specific leadership challenges which arise in the industry and of how to address these.
CEO and Founder
Natalia Ramsden is a business psychologist and the founder of SOFOS Associates - a brain optimisation clinic. SOFOS works with senior executives, entrepreneurs, and High-Net Worth Individuals to improve brain health and enhance cognitive ability.
After starting her career in clinical services, Natalia moved into talent consulting, specialising in leadership assessment and succession at board level. She’s worked with FTSE250 companies in the UK and global clients across EMEA and Asia-Pacific.
As a pioneer in neuroenhancement and its applications she speaks at events on boosting brain power and why its where the future of self-development and cognitive maximisation lies.
Line Heje Brekke
Head of People
Line Heje Brekke is Head of People in Summa Equity, a Nordic private equity firm founded in 2016 that manages c. EUR 4bn in assets. Summa was the first PE firm to align its strategy with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Line in charge of assisting the firm’s employees and portfolio companies in developing higher-performing organizations anchored with a passion for solving global challenges. Before joining Summa, Line worked as an Investment Director in FSN Capital and a Consultant in McKinsey & Company and Egon Zehnder. She holds a BSc from Babson College and an MBA from INSEAD.
Director of UK
Charlie is a Principal Consultant, Director of UK and a member of PER’s leadership team
He has been involved in securing roles for more than 1,000 people around the world, placing more people in the mid-market, growth and venture capital industry than anyone else in Europe since joining PER in 2006.
Charlie is recognised as a market leader for senior hiring, and spends much of his time managing client relationships.
He is a regular commentator in the industry's media and is published in Private Equity Internationals book "Inside the Fund Management Firm”.
Charlie' s market expertise and extensive network are underpinned by more than five years private equity and venture capital investment experience
Chief Operating Officer
Headway Capital Partners
Jason joined Headway Capital in 2018 as Chief Financial Officer. He previously spent over 5 years as Managing Director of EQT Services UK, EQT’s London based AIFM. Prior to this, Jason worked as the COO for Neovara LLP, the spin out of the Lehman Brothers European Mezzanine Fund which he joined in 2004. Jason has also held roles at Deutsche Bank, 3i plc and Nestlé. Jason is a qualified Chartered Accountant (CGMA) and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Surrey.