Ireland

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Squirrel AI Chief Scientist and co-founder Cui Wei received his PhD in 2012 from University College Dublin, Ireland, where he conducted research on artificial intelligence and its application to ultra-high frequency trading. Upon graduation, he joined web-based learning system provider Realizeit (DBA of CCKF) in Ireland, where he applied AI to adaptive education. Prior to co-founding Squirrel AI in 2016, he had founded Ireland’s first Chinese-language online shopping platform, which served 80% of the Chinese population in Ireland. 

Irish alt-protein foodtech Plantruption produces nutritious fish substitutes without artificial additives, leveraging the health benefits of sustainably sourced local seaweed.

Bristol Myers Squibb or BMS is one of the world’s largest biopharmaceutical companies developing medicines in oncology, hematology, immunology and cardiovascular disease. It invests directly and via VC funds, including Life Sciences Partners (LSP) and BioGeneration Ventures, as LP. BMS is headquartered in New York and has 10 offices and facilities within the US and 13 in overseas locations, namely, Puerto Rico, Canada, France, Belgium, the UK, Ireland, Germany, Japan and China. 

HATCH is an aquaculture-tech-focused accelerator program initiated by the aquaculture-focused seed VC investor Alimentos Ventures to help related startups reach commercialization and access further funding. Its inaugural program was held in Bergen, Norway, followed by a second batch in Cork, Ireland. Successful applicants get €50,000 cash and possible subsequent funding, plus free office space for up to 12 months in either of HATCH's offices in Bergen and Singapore. Its international partners include food corporates, state entities and aquaculture groups.

Carlos Gallardo is an industrial engineer with an MBA from Stanford University. He spent most of his career at the pharmaceutical company Almirall and was promoted through the ranks rapidly holding multiple C-level roles. He became the MD for UK and Ireland for over five years and joined Almirall’s board of directors in 2014.In 2015, he founded CG Health Ventures, a VC firm investing in early-stage digital health companies worldwide. He’s also an active angel investor and advisor for startups developing frontier technologies in the healthcare sector. 

A UK-based investor founded in 2018, Haatch currently has 14 mainly UK and Ireland-based companies in its portfolio, valued in excess of $160m. It has launched two funds to date and typically makes investments from £100,000 to £300,000 and up to £2m for Series A or B rounds. Its most recent investments include a £470,000 seed round in VR training soft-skills provider Bodyswaps, an undisclosed seed round in virtual office workspace Re-Flow, and a £155,000 post-seed round in tech development team provider Deazy. In many cases, Haatch is the sole investor.

A graduate from Trinity College Dublin in Ireland, Ian McKenna had worked for Ericsson (Hutchison Australia) and Vodafone before joining the University of Indonesia to learn the local language in 2010. Based in Jakarta, he joined Fusion Payments in 2011 as country manager and also became its VP of Product and Marketing in 2013.Ian had also co-founded online directory BangArif in 2014 and an on-site customer support service named “What the FAQ” in 2017. He exited both ventures and also left Fusion Payments to focus on establishing  PT Infra Digital Indonesia.

Daniel Sánchez is an IT engineer with a Computer Science degree from Universitat Oberta de Catalunya. He has over 10 years of experience working as a systems analyst for companies like Accenture, Vision IT group, Alten and Isban in Spain and on projects in Italy, Ireland, Germany and the Czech Republic. In 2013, he founded GetYourCause.com, a crowdfunding platform for social causes. He was also a teaching professor of the Influencers Campaign Management and Brand Ambassadors program developed by the USJ in collaboration with Socialnautas. In 2014, he became the CEO and co-founder of Influencity.

Bruno Bianchi always wanted to be his own boss. He started a Costa del Sol Spanish jewelry import business in 2004, sourcing from Thailand and India. Then he became the sales director of Miguel Ángel Palomo SA to expand the Spanish olive business internationally. He had also worked as a cook in Ireland and Denmark.The Argentinian speaks English, Spanish, French, Italian and Danish. The COO of Spotahome joined the startup as a co-founder at a later stage when the proptech idea was revived by CEO Artacho.

Daniel Araújo first became interested in startups while earning his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Management at Católica Porto Business School. He went on to earn his master’s in International Business Development from the American Business School in Paris. After five years working in research and analytics at Google UK and Ireland, Araújo returned to Portugal to launch startup Attentive in 2015. He also co-founded online Portuguese startup and events directory NovaWeb with his brother Pedro while at Google. Araújo is also a mentor at the accelerator Techstars and a Global Shaper for the World Economic Forum's Lisbon Hub.

Jennifer O'Brien qualified as a financial advisor at University College Dublin in 2010. She started her banking career in 2007 at AIB where she spent six years working with SMEs and investments. In 2013, she joined KBC Bank Ireland as a restructures executive and went on to work as an asset manager at Link Asset Services in 2016. O’Brien also worked in asset management for two years at O’Dwyer Real Estate Management while completing an MBA at Trinity College Dublin. She left the realty company in 2019 to realize her dream to create alt-protein seafood using locally sourced seaweed.

Sergi Roca Puertas obtained a bachelor’s degree (2014) and a master’s (2016) in Industrial Technology Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid. His master’s included Industrial Engineering at Finland’s Tampere University of Technology, where he participated in the research of glass fibers.In 2016, he also studied Foreign Trade, Logistics and Supply Management at Euroinnova Business School in Granada and completed work experience as a trading engineer at Madrid-based KL2B.Currently based in San Francisco bay area, he has been working as a deployment strategist at AI-powered analytics and marketing startup Jetlore in Silicon Valley since November 2016. In 2017, he co-founded Plant on Demand (POD) as CTO with an office in Ireland.

This Luxembourg-based venture capital firm was established in 2004 and has offices in Silicon Valley and Madrid, managing over €170 million in capital. It invests in early-stage, deeptech companies in the Iberian peninsula, France, the UK, and Ireland. The VC has a particular focus on AI, cybersecurity and big data. In 2019, it won the Spanish VC Deal of the Year 2019, alongside Caixa Capital Risc, for the sale of PlayGiga.Adara Ventures currently has 15 companies in its portfolio following eight exits totalling $1.2bn in value. Its most recent investments include leading the €2m seed round of medtech IOMED Medical Solutions, which converts medical text into extractable data, and in the €8m seed round of biotech startup QUIBIM – both Spanish companies. 

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