Star Studded Judging Panel Announced for TNW Pitch Event

We are very excited to announce a star studded array of speakers and judges for our November 7th Pitch Evening in London, including Anna Sofat, Founder & CEO Addidi Ltd; Dale Murray, British Angel Investor of the Year 2011; Maria Dramalioti-Taylor, Managing Partner x.Million Capital Ventures; and Vanessa Valelly, Founder WeAreTheCity, amongst others! Keep reading for more details.

The event, sponsored by Orrick, will give 8 women founders a first review of their business plan by experts and investors. After practicing their pitch in a friendly afternoon workshop environment, founders will present to the experienced investors on the judging panel, to be offered first-hand insights and feedback. Up to 20 guests will join the event in the evening to watch the pitches.

Click here to book your place to pitch at our November 7th London event, or to attend as a guest.

In addition to the London Pitch Evening, The NextWomen is running two similar events in The Netherlands: 2nd November in Amersfoort (few tickets still available) and 14th December in Eindhoven.

We are absolutely delighted to announce that the following special guests will be participating in the November 7th London event as speakers and judges.

Speaker: Maria Dramalioti-Taylor, Managing Partner, x.Million Capital Ventures

Maria is a Managing Partner at the Geneva-based x.Million Capital Ventures, focusing on digital media, and founder of the London-based Angellab. Since 2003, when she made her first angel investment, she been working with some of the most forward thinking entrepreneurs in Grafighters, Move Guides,, Improve Digital, Stingray (sold), Pervasic (sold), Ciphergrid and others. 

Maria is on the Advisory Board of Astia, a mentor with Seedcamp and the Accelerator Academy. She set up Incito Ventures for FinanceSE, an angel syndicate for female-led tech startups, co-founded Protos Capital Ventures to spin out corporate technologies and was on the Advisory Board of the award-winning PoCKet fund.

Speaker: Vanessa Valelly, Founder WeAreTheCity

In 2008, Vanessa started the networking as a vehicle to help city women connect. Today, WATC has become the Little Black Book for London’s female workforce, with 7000+ members. A year later, Vanessa co-founded the citywide diversity forum, The Networks of Networks (TNON), which includes the Diversity heads and heads of women’s networks from 40 FTSE firms. More recently she launched The Profile Coach, a consulting firm specialising in online branding.

In 2011, Women in Banking & Finance (WiBF) recognized Vanessa's work towards the Diversity agenda with the ‘Women’s Champion Award’. She is on every watch list following top women in the City, including the Financial News Top 100 Rising Star across EMEA.

Judge: Anna Sofat, Founder & CEO, Addidi Ltd

Addidi, the financial services boutique for women, helps women create, invest and enjoy their wealth. Providing help, guidance and advice on all aspects of personal finance, Addidi acts as independent financial adviser, wealth manager and financial agent. 

Over the past few years, Addidi has been at the forefront of a number of women-focused initiatives that  look to leverage the pooled resources of its clients and women in general, including an angel investment club, Addidi Business Angels.

Judge: Dale Murray, Angel Investor

Dale Murray is a Non-Executive Director and business angel investor in early-stage entrepreneurial businesses, named British Angel Investor of the Year 2011.

Dale is a Member of the Advisory Board of Incito Ventures,a network of female-only business angel investors.

Prior to being an investor, Dale was a successful entrepreneur in the mobile telecoms sector, co-founding Omega Logic in 1999, which she grew to revenues of £19m and sold within three years.

Judge: Ashley Ward, Executive Coach

A seven-times CEO with four public offerings and 20 M&A transactions behind him, Ashley led the IPO of Orchestream in 2000 to its £1b market cap, and as MD of Cray Communications/Anite Networks led the turnaround and executed its sale in two parts to Cable & Wireless and Intel. 

Today he designs and lead facilitates European Leaders’ learning and development workshops for GMs & CEOs and HR leaders as well as supporting coaching clients at various stages in their career. 

Judge: Karen Darby, Serial Social Entrepreneur

In 2002 Karen founded SimplySwitch, the price comparison service, in one of the UK’s most deprived areas, employed over 100 staff, raised £500k for charity and helped thousands of consumers save over £20m on their household bills. In 2006 she sold the business to the Daily Mail for £22 million.

Her new venture,CrowdMission, is the world’s first equity-based crowd funding platform exclusively for mission-driven business. 

Judge: Tim de Vere Green, Angel Investor

Tim is an active business angel and has invested in 14 businesses over the last 5 – 6 years, in sectors ranging from mobile software to pet health supplements! 

Alongside his angel activities, Tim is an Investment Director at Thames Valley Capital, which advises two early-stage private equity funds on new transactions and portfolio management. Tim also co-founded Qi3 Accelerator, which was voted “Early-Stage Investment Team of the Year” (2012) by the UK Business Angels Association and has recently earmarked £400,000 for investment in SEIS-qualifying businesses.

Agenda for 7th November London Event:

  • 3-6pm Workshop for pitching startups
  • 6-6:15pm Guests arrival and registration
  • 6:15-6:30pm Keynote: Maria Dramalioti-Taylor
  • 6:30-6:45pm Keynote: Vanessa Vallely
  • 6:45-7pm Networking break with drinks and nibbles
  • 7-8:30pm Funding pitches
  • 8:30-8:45pm Networking break with drinks and nibbles
  • 8:45-9pm Winner announcement and closing

Click here to book your place to pitch at our November 7th London event, or to attend as a guest.

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