■Founder of Shanti Life
■Over 15 years experience working in technology, venture capital, social entrepreneurship and philanthropy
■Nominated for the Microsoft Alumni Integral Awards 2012.
Sheetal is founder of Shanti Life, a microfinance UK, India and USA social enterprise. In 2009, she decided to apply her skills to help entrepreneurs in Indian slums and villages to build sustainable businesses by providing mentoring, training, microfinance and promotion of health and well-being. She is a spokesperson on the topic, having presented at Cambridge, LSE, Doha Forum, Big Society, House of Lords, TEDx and other prestigious forums.
Sheetal first went to India in 1996 to work at the SOS Children’s Villages in Bangalore. Since then, she developed a passion to work in under resourced communities.
Sheetal is on the board of MetaCert which provides child safety technology online and she is UK Deal Maker (by appointment) for the UK Trade and Investment’s Global Entrepreneur Programme.
Prior to this Sheetal was CEO at Innovative Social Ventures, a consultancy for start-ups to provide social impact through technology. From 2000- 2005 Sheetal was Director of VC Relations at Microsoft where she worked with the Venture Capital community in EMEA and the Silicon Valley to help their portfolio companies leverage the .NET initiative, access smart funding and go to market. Previously she worked with the Edmonton Police force working with children and women to alleviate domestic violence and assist victims with drug abuse.
Sheetal has received several awards:
■Asian Women of Achievement: Social and Humanitarian (Prince Charles and Cherie Blair) for her efforts on taking technology to developing communities in India and Africa (2005);
■Management Today Magazine 35 Under 35;
■Success Magazine No 5 of top most powerful Asian women in the UK (2006),
■Award for Entrepreneur of the Year by Asian Woman Magazine and No 3 Ones To Watch’ section of the Asian Power 100 list – the most influential and highest achieving Asian women in Britain (2007).
Asian Woman Magazine covered a story of Sheetal’s business in the Sept 2007 issue. Sheetal has been invited to Buckingham Palace for “Women in Business” reception hosted by Her Majesty, The Queen in November 2007, Alumni Award of Excellence from the University of Alberta and was most recently nominated for the Microsoft Alumni Integral Awards 2012.
Sheetal has a Masters in International Relations (Economics) at the London School of Economics and a BA (Honors) in International Politics at the University of Alberta, Canada. She is a yoga teacher and plays drums and dohl. She is married to entrepreneur Paul Walsh and is a citizen of Britain and Canada.