Our team of experts in early stage investing ensures privileged deal flow and strong support for companies.

  • RICHARD COOK

    CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

    Richard has been Chief Executive Officer of Blackfinch since 2009. He has been involved in the structuring and management of investment assets for over 14 years. Richard conceptualised and launched the Blackfinch brand and has overseen the growth and expansion of the company within the UK retail market. Previously, Richard worked in senior banking roles within Merrill Lynch and the Bank of New York.

  • RICHARD SIMMONDS

    CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER

    Richard has 15 years’ senior experience in financial services spanning projects, corporate finance and fund management, with a specialism in asset-backed fund management. Prior to joining Blackfinch, Richard held roles at NatWest, FTSE and Credit Suisse in London and New York. Richard holds an Executive MBA, the Certificate in Discretionary Investment Management, and the Diploma in Financial Planning.

  • DR REUBEN WILCOCK

    VENTURES DIRECTOR

    Reuben is a multi-award-winning entrepreneur with 15 years’ experience founding and growing technology start-ups. His smart home energy spinout, Joulo, won a British Gas Connected Homes award and was acquired by Quby. He also co-founded the startup Bar Analytics. Reuben was a leading figure in entrepreneurship at the University of Southampton, founding the accelerator Future Worlds, and mentoring over 200 entrepreneurs and 50 companies. Reuben has a first-class honours degree in Electronics, a PhD in integrated circuit design and is an inventor on five patents.

  • STEFAN AGOPSOWICZ

    INVESTMENT DIRECTOR

    Stefan has been with Blackfinch since 2009 and is involved in the analysis and valuation of potential new investment opportunities for the company’s portfolios. He holds a current Statement of Professional Standing issued by CFA Society United Kingdom, having passed Level 1 of the CFA exam and achieved the CFA Level 4 Investment Management Certificate, and is a member of the CFA Institute.

  • NIC PILLOW

    VENTURES MANAGER

    Nic is an entrepreneur and leader in B2B technology. He co-founded EdTech start-up and Software-as-a-Service business Rhizome Live, raising £400k with access to a top accelerator. Prior to that he led a global team at Nokia, managing over 15 products, responsible for revenue growth from £50 to £250m. Previously Nic held roles including Product Manager at Logica and Solution Architect at Portal Software. Nic holds a first-class degree in Engineering & Computing from Oxford University and a Ph.D. in Robotics – Computer Vision from the Robotics Research Group at Oxford University.

  • STUART TYLER-LLOYD

    SENIOR INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Stuart joined Blackfinch in 2018. He brings over 20 years’ experience in investment management, focused on institutional investment, and has been responsible for multi-billion pound portfolios. Stuart is an Associate of the Society of Investment Professionals, a member of the CFA Institute, and a member of the Chartered Insurance Institute.

  • HAMISH MASSON

    HEAD OF LEGAL

    Hamish joined Blackfinch to lead its legal function. He has over 14 years’ experience practising as a Corporate and Finance Lawyer both in London and internationally. Prior to joining Blackfinch he worked at Addleshaw Goddard, Barclays Bank, DLA Piper, and Harneys in London and the British Virgin Islands. While in private practice Hamish was ranked in all the major legal directories as a corporate and banking lawyer. Hamish has a Masters’ degree from the University of London and a Bachelors’ degree from the University of Durham.

  • GORDON PUGH

    SENIOR BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Gordon joined Blackfinch in 2015. He started his career in 2001 as an analyst on the EIS team at Close Brothers. He moved to Octopus in 2005, distributing tax-efficient products. In 2008 he helped launch Stellar AM, involved with forestry, hotels, farming, and EIS funds and trading companies for IHT. He has also been involved with media sector investments since 1998, including films for UK television. Gordon holds the IMC, completed the first stage of the CFA and is a serial EIS investor.

  • WILLIAM SIMMONDS

    CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER

    William is a technology professional and business leader with nearly 20 years’ experience and a track record of successful projects. He has worked across financial services, aviation, e-commerce, energy and motorsports, including as a Consultant or Architect for Easy Jet, Compare the Market and ASOS. Having worked with cloud technologies since 2012, he specialises in highly scalable cloud-based systems and architecture.

  • PABLO FERNANDEZ

    INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Pablo is a private equity specialist with over 15 years’ experience. He has held senior positions in private banking, wealth management and asset management as well as private equity. These include a variety of investment management roles at Morgan Stanley, including Senior Associate and Caixabank as Senior Manager. His background covers strategy, project management, marketing and innovation. Pablo holds a BA in Business Administration with a major in Finance from Complutense Madrid, an MA in Marketing from Esade and an Executive MBA from IE. Pablo is fluent in Spanish, English and Italian.

  • HASSAAN MEHMOOD

    VENTURES ANALYST

    Hassaan joined Blackfinch bringing financial services experience. Previously he was an Investment Analyst at M&G Investments where he worked on its Small Cap fund and in its asset-backed securities team. He was also an Associate at mobile network Three and as an undergraduate gained experience in business and finance at a local level. Hassaan has a degree in Economics and Management from Aston Business School. He was Vice President of the Economics Society, Finance Director of the Islamic Society and elected representative for his course.

  • WINSTON MATHEW

    VENTURES ANALYST

    Winston’s previous experience includes a place on the junior proprietary trader programme at Samuel and Co.; as a Mechanical Engineer intern on the integrated stations programme at Transport for London, and as a Manufacturing Engineer intern at Jaguar Land Rover. Winston holds a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College London.

     

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