Startups & Investment Matching | Speakers

Tim Ferriss

Entrepreneur, Investor, Author

Tim Ferriss has been listed as one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Business People” and one of Fortune’s “40 under 40.” He is an early-stage technology investor/advisor (Uber, Facebook, Shopify, Duolingo, Alibaba, and 50+ others) and the author of five #1 New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers, including The 4-Hour Workweek and Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers. The Observer and other media have called Tim “the Oprah of audio” due to the influence of The Tim Ferriss Show podcast, which is the first business/interview podcast to exceed 100 million downloads. It has now exceeded 900 million downloads.

Christine Esserman



Christine Esserman joined Accel in 2017 and focuses on software, internet, and mobile technology companies. Since joining Accel, Christine has help lead Accel’s investments in Blackpoint Cyber, Linear, Merge, ThreeFlow, Bumble, Remote, Dovetail, Ethos, Guru, and Headway.

Barbara Matthews

Chief People Officer


Barbara is the Chief People Officer of Remote, focused on leading global teams through planning, implementing and scaling, Remote’s cultural vision, to make opportunities accessible to everyone. In Barbara’s most recent role at Stripe, she built the company’s global HR function as its International Head of HR, EMEA & APAC. Prior to Stripe, she spent more than 12 years on the People team at Google. Barbara has over 20 years experience working for fast-paced scale-ups to large enterprise business, with a keen focus of building and nurturing high-performing distributed teams.

Sitar Teli

Managing Partner

Connect Ventures

Sitar focuses on early-stage investments across a range of areas including vertical networks and software, health and consumer enablement. Prior to Connect, she was with Doughty Hanson Technology Ventures, where she led their Series A round in SoundCloud. Sitar’s expertise is in products with network effects, PLG and/or community-led growth. Portfolio companies include Kheiron, aiCoustics, Faks, Outverse, Woolf University and Lifebit.

Luther Lowe

Head of Public Policy

Y Combinator

Luther Lowe is currently the Head of Public Policy at Y Combinator, where he fights for little tech in the public policy arena. Prior to his time at Y Combinator, he was the Senior Vice President of Public Policy at Yelp. Lowe’s career has been marked by his advocacy for competition policy, open data, and consumer free speech. Lowe’s work has earned him recognition, including being named to Vanity Fair’s ‘New Establishment’ list and being listed among Washington DC’s 500 most influential people. Lowe’s background also includes serving as an aide to retired NATO Supreme Allied Commander General Wesley Clark and working on various Democratic campaigns.

Mike Sigal


Sigal Ventures

[Investor] Mike Sigal is a recent transplant to Lisbon after 35 years as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and investor. He now serves as an advisor and coach to startup founders, corporate executives and fund managers to accelerate their strategy, fundraising, leadership skills and organizational development. He serves on the Investment Committee of SCVentures, as a Venture Partner at GPO Fund, MiddleGame Ventures, Pella Ventures and Revolution DAO, and as an advisor to Unbounded Capital. Mike’s a globally recognized expert on fintech and innovation on financial services, a frequent speaker at corporate and industry events, and a guest lecturer on corporate venture capital and innovation at Stanford and UC Berkeley business schools. Previously, Mike was a Partner of 500 Startups Fintech Fund responsible for over 80 early-stage fintech investments and a 7-time startup founder with three exits including one IPO.

Katy Huang

General Partner and Fund Manager

MAKR Venture Fund

“Katy Huang is an asset manager-investor with over three decades of financial management experience at leading firms including Deutsche Bank, AllianceBerstein, and State Street. She innovated the structured finance market in 2005 with launch and management of a $1.4 billion SIV-Lite. In her extensive multi-decades experience, Katy has managed billion-dollar portfolios for institutions and UHNWI families and has successfully completed over $20 billion in structured transactions including aircraft, real estate, and private company loans.

Today, she focuses on opportunities in early-stage AI and data-driven companies as a General Partner of MAKR Venture Fund, a global ecosystem fund to be launched in Q1 2024. She is also Founder and CEO of Eclarus, an advisory company, as well as Co-founder and CEO of ECHO Innovations, where she delivers and integrates emerging technology solutions for smart city projects. When Katy is not busy connecting dots to find solutions for her clients, she guides start-up founders. Occasionally she serves as advisory board member to start-ups which currently includes Bounty Hunter World, a company that is revolutionizing job recruitment with “bounties”.
Katy has a bachelor’s degree in biology and a minor in business administration from Boston University, USA. She holds CAIA, FDP and CWMA charters and is a 100 Women in Finance FinTech leader and global angel. She regularly contributes to CAIA curriculum development and exam grading.”

Sean Seton-Rogers



[Investor] Sean is a founding Partner at PROfounders Capital, an early-stage venture capital fund investing in European digital startups. The fund looks to invest in technology companies that fix broken customer experiences and has invested and supported leading startups such as Unity, GetYourGuide, Small Giant Games, SideQuestVR, and Busuu. Sean co-founded PROfounders in 2010 after joining from Benchmark Capital, and in 2019 and 2020 he was selected by Forbes for the Midas List Europe. Sean has an engineering degree from Rice University and an MBA from Wharton.

André Eiras dos Santos

Founding Team and GM of International

Sword Health

André is part of the Founding Team at Sword Health and he’s the General Manager of International, leading the expansion to new markets and seeking for new business opportunities.


He combines his academic background in Biomedical Engineering with his essence as a natural entrepreneur to developing technological solutions for healthcare. He is now leading a new business vertical at Sword Health, and before that he co-founded Exa4Life, a medical devices brand from Exatronic.


Constantly looking to turn problems into opportunities, André is also co-founder and partner of EX Capital, exclusively focused on funding founders with diverse and underrepresented profiles.

Cristina Fonseca

General Partner

Indico Capital

[Founder, Investor] Cristina Fonseca, 35, is one of the most successful female entrepreneurs in Europe. Having co-founded Talkdesk in Lisbon and San Francisco, the company reached decacorn status and is a market leasder globally in SaaS for call centers. She subsequently founded Cleverly, an AI company sold to Zendesk confirming her reputation as a global level serial entrepreneur. She also co-founded as a General Partner, Indico Capital Partners, the leading VC based out of Lisbon who has backed 5 unicorns and is only of the most prestigious venture capital firms in continental Europe. Cristina is a global speaker and role model.

Paul Miller

Managing Partner and CEO

Bethnal Green Ventures

Paul Miller is Managing Partner and CEO at Bethnal Green Ventures, Europe’s leading tech for good venture capital firm. He co-founded the firm in 2012 and has helped invest in and support over 150 startups that aim to create a more sustainable planet, an inclusive society and healthy lives. Paul’s also written widely about supporting early stage technology ventures. Previously he was co-founder and CEO of an education technology startup and worked for two UK-based think tanks – Forum for the Future and Demos. He was awarded an OBE for services to startup investment in 2020.

Helena Moniz

University Professor, Consultant

Universidade de Lisboa/INESC-ID, Unbabel

Helena Moniz is the President of the European Association for Machine Translation (2021-) and the President of the International Association for Machine Translation (2023-). She is an Assistant Professor at the School of Arts and Humanities at the University of Lisbon, where she teaches Computational Linguistics, Computer Assisted Translation, and Machine Translation Systems and Post-editing. Helena graduated in Modern Languages and Literature at the School of Arts and Humanities, University of Lisbon (FLUL). Since 2015, she is the PI of a bilateral project with INESC-ID/Unbabel. She was responsible for the creation of the Linguistic Quality Assurance processes developed at Unbabel for Linguistic Annotation and Editors’ Evaluation. She now is working mostly on research projects involving Linguistics, Translation, and AI. She is the Chair of the Ethics Committee for the Center for Responsible AI, within the Recovery and Resilience Plan. In a sentence, she is passionate about Language Technologies and Responsible AI!

Mike Butcher



Mike Butcher, MBE, is Editor-at-large of TechCrunch, and co-founder of ThePathfounder.com magazine and its editorial events. Mike has been named one of the most influential journalists in European technology by Wired and The Daily Telegraph. He co-founded The Europas Awards for European startups, the non-profits TechVets and Techfugees, the co-working network TechHub. He is a regular tech commentator on the BBC, Sky News, CNN, CNBC and Aljazeera and has been a judge on The Apprentice UK. GQ magazine named him one of the 100 Most Connected Men in the UK and he’s a “Maserati 100 innovator”. He has advised the UK government on tech startup policy and was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Ricardo Valente

City Councillor for Economy, Employment and Entrepreneurship, and City Councillor for Finance, Economic Activities and Inspectorate

Porto City Council

Ricardo Valente is City Councilor for Economy, Employment and Entrepreneurship and City Councilor for Finance, Economic Activities and Inspectorate. He is Board Member of Porto Vivo – Porto Urban Rehabilitation Society. Mr. Valente is also a professor at the School of Economics and Management of the University of Porto and at PBS – Porto Business School. Ricardo Valente was City Councilor for Economy, Tourism and Commerce and City Councilor for European Funds (2017 – 2021), City Councilor for Economic and Social Development (2016 – 2017), and Non-executive City Councilor (2013 – 2016).


He was also the President of Porto Convention & Visitors Bureau (2018 – 2020), President of the Board of GO Porto – Municipal Management and Works Company (2016 – 2017), and Member of the National Bidding Commission for the Relocation of the European Medicines agency (2017).


From 1992 to 2016, Mr. Valente worked in risk management consulting, capital markets (as director and board member of brokerage firms), asset management (as CEO of one of the largest independent asset management firms in Portugal), investment banking (as member of the board of a bank), and was also an investment consultant. Mr. Valente has a Master’s degree in finance and a MBA in finance from the Catholic University of Lisbon, and a degree in Economics from the University of Porto. Mr. Valente is the author of several books on risk management.

Jason Esseboom

CEO & Co-founder

Joyned Capital

Jason is the founder of Joyned Capital and a former athlete who found his calling outside of sports. He made it his mission to change the athletes’ narrative and the face of investors in technology.

Anabela Ferreira

Board Member and Co-Owner

Intraplas S. A.

Anabela Ferreira is Co-Owner and Executive Board Member of Intraplás, a packaging company with a solid know-how in extrusion, thermoforming and printing that offers products mainly for dairy industry, based in Portugal.


She has been for over 20 years with Intraplás as Executive Board Member. Also, manages other family´s portfolio assets like Cidnay Charming Hotel in Santo Tirso. She just founded Yogoody, an innovative instant yogurt shake. She is Vice President of Styrenics Circular Solutions (SCS), an European join value chain initiative to make the circular economy a reality for styterics plastics.


Also, Anabela is a Board Executive Member at PPP, Portuguese Plastic Pack, an initiative to reinforce the packaging circularity and Founding Board Member of Endeavor Portugal. Anabela holds a Management Degree, a Global Executive MBA from IESE. Participated in several advanced management programs like IMD Family Business; Venture Strategy, Deal Flow & Opportunity Assessment at 500Startup. Anabela is also an Angel investor, Mentor, LP and CoLP in the StartUp ecosystem.

Nuno Pinto

Founder & CBO


Co-founder & CBO at Coverflex (B2B compensation as a SaaS), founder & CEO at Kide Fashion (online fashion marketplace, exited to Minty Square), co-founder & MD at Nortal Seguros (insurance broker with +120 agents).


15+ years experience in Insurance & Digital, PhD ABD in Management, Marketing and Strategy at University of Porto.


Curious, Passionate, Proactive, Engaged, Ideas Man, Driven, Energetic, Entrepreneurial, Innovative I am a serial entrepreneur with extensive experience in growing, managing and scaling high growth tech and non-tech businesses. My journey has been exciting – I have worked in large multinationals, managed biz dev teams, lead transformation initiatives and lifted startups from the ground up. I have created value, spent money, founded, exited, made a lot of mistakes and hopefully learnt from them. By the way, I never give up. I always produce results.

Hedi Mardisoo

CEO, Co-Founder


I’m Hedi Mardisoo, CEO and Co-Founder of Cachet. Our team is reimagining insurance for the platform economy. We’re focused on new mobility and the platform economy across Europe, covering ride-hailing, e-scooter fleets, gig workers, and much more.


Previously, I was Head of Corporate Affairs, Group Business Support & Group IT at Swedbank, one of the largest banks in the Nordics and Baltics, and CMO at a leading telecommunications provider and visiting CMO in many startups in Estonia. In 2020, I was listed among Sifted’s “Women to watch in fintech”.


Titles and industries have changed. But throughout, I’ve been drawn to behavioral psychology, disruptive technologies, and human-centric services. All are amazing tools for creating a positive social impact, a worthy mission that I hope our current work at Cachet helps along.

Calvary Rogers

Product Manager

Google Cloud AI and Industry Solutions

Calvary Rogers is a product manager, sociologist, and computer engineer. He is currently an Outbound Product Manager for Responsible AI at Google Cloud AI & Industry Solutions, where he ensures alignment between Google’s AI principles and product offerings, assessing the benefits and risks of technology for a holistic and ethical approach.


Calvary has significantly shaped Cloud AI’s product strategy for Responsible AI, ensuring that AI technologies are developed and deployed guided by ethical principles and rigorous evaluation. He has conducted extensive bias and safety evaluations on Vertex AI offerings, identifying potential risks and developing mitigation strategies across Gemini, text-to-code, text-to-image, and video description/Q&A. His research and insights have been widely leveraged cross-functionally at Google, including DeepMind.


Calvary’s expertise extends to creating and deploying AI governance products, such as Explainable AI and bias evaluation tooling. He has collaborated across teams to scale customer growth on domain-specific Responsible AI issues, leading high-impact global customer engagements and partnerships with notable organizations like Snapchat, Ulta Beauty, JP Morgan Chase, Uber, Generali Italia, and Spotify.


Prior to his current role, Calvary worked as a Strategy and Operations lead at Google.org, managing a $320M+ annual portfolio, overseeing commitments to Covid-19 relief, racial justice, and an AI for Social Good portfolio. Calvary graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2019 with a degree in Sociology and studied Computer Science post-grad. He also founded Seneca Labs, an early-stage research collective exploring ways to create new pathways to community, ownership, and creativity with AI.

Sara Gonçalves



Founder and CEO of Actif, a social impact startup focused on healthy aging. Sara has a degree in Agricultural Engineering and a specialization course in Bioinformatics.


She is co-founder and former COO of Trigger.Systems, an IoT technology startup to save water in irrigation systems. Co-founder and board member of Quebra-Dados Association. Tech advisor at C-MORE. Was recognized with the EIT Women Awards in 2019.


Her personal mission is to use technology to solve social problems.

José Salgado

Co-founder and Chief Growth Officer


José is responsible for driving the growth strategy at the company, leading its main growth engines – new markets, new product expansion and new business segments.

Maria Moura Oliveira

Executive Director - Business


UPTEC Executive Business Director and Program Co-Director of the Executive Master in Business Innovation at Porto Business School, where she also teaches.


With more than 20 years’ experience working in technology transfer, entrepreneurship and innovation management, Maria worked in several capacities in Portugal and abroad, namely in innovation consultancy, heading of U.Porto Innovation, invited fellow of Boston University, Executive Director of UTEN, a component of the UT Austin | Portugal Program.


She is regularly invited as an external expert to evaluate proof of concept proposals for the European Commission and to participate in conferences and seminars.

Ben Joffe



Benjamin Joffe is a partner at SOSV (www.sosv.com), a global deep tech fund focused on planetary and human health. SOSV has been the most active investor in climate tech since 2017 with over 200 startups backed. Benjamin works on deal flow, ecosystem and events such as the SOSV Matchups, the largest virtual matchmaking events in deep tech, and annual SOSV Climate Tech Summit (www.sosvclimatetech.com), a virtual and free event featuring top VCs and founders like Bill Gates and Chris Sacca, that attracts thousands every year.


Born in France, Benjamin graduated with two MSc in Engineering, and worked in consulting, telecom, gaming for over a decade in China, Japan, South Korea and more, and was the founder of a cross-border consultancy on digital innovation. He is an angel investor in 20 startups including one unicorn. He has lectured at top universities including Berkeley Haas, National University of Singapore and Zhejiang University where he gave a course on Deep Tech Ventures.


He has written for TechCrunch, Forbes, VentureBeat and IEEE Spectrum, been featured on Bloomberg TV, WSJ, The Economist, Nature, Wired and spoke at tech events in over 30 countries. Benjamin practices seven languages, and his hobbies are Brazilian jiu-jitsu, drawing/painting, and python programming.

Verónica Orvalho



Verónica Orvalho is the founder and CEO of Didimo. She has translated years of research, data science, and computer graphics expertise into a patented technology platform to create digital humans, empowering people to engage more authentically and humanly in digital spaces. This breakthrough provides the next evolution of how humans will engage the world around them. Veronica earned a Ph.D. in Computer Graphics and is a professor at Porto University. She has lived and worked on three continents, with companies like IBM, Sony, Amazon, Universal Studios, and more.

Robin Wauters



Robin Wauters is a seasoned technology journalist, analyst, keynote speaker and event curator, as well as the founding editor of Tech.eu, the premier source of European tech news, data analysis and market intelligence. He was formerly the European Editor of The Next Web, and before that a senior editor at TechCrunch. Robin is also one of the co-founders of BeCentral, the digital campus located in Brussels Central Station that has helped thousands of people learn technologies, grow a startup and have a positive impact on society, as well as a founding member of Belgian angel investment collective Syndicate One.

Sandie Costa



Sandie is a Transaction Services Partner at PwC and a Startup Programs supporter. With over 20 years of international experience in financial due diligence, across different sectors, she is used to providing invaluable insights to businesses.


As a Tech Enablement and Deals Analytics leader, driving innovation and implementing cutting edge technologies are a relevant part of her work. Within her collaboration with the Scaling Up by Unicorn Factory Lisboa program and the Startup Braga Acceleration Program, she has been empowering startups with strategic financial guidance, driving their success in today’s competitive landscape.

Pete Benedetto

Head of EMEA


Pete Benedetto is Head of EMEA for Endeavor Catalyst, the venture capital fund of Endeavor, which is the leading community of high growth, high impact entrepreneurs around the world.


Of the fund’s 315 investments, 52 have become $1B companies. Pete has been with Endeavor for nearly 10 years and served in a variety of rules, from entrepreneur support to international expansion. Previously, he was the Director of Michigan Corps, a nonprofit focused on social entrepreneurship and economic development in Detroit.


Pete is a graduate of the University of Michigan, where he studied Philosophy.

Anne-Charlotte Joubert


INVEST'HER project

EU funding leader connecting stakeholders to tackle societal challenges, Anne-Charlotte Joubert is an expert in securing EU funding with over a decade of experience in interdisciplinary fields including research, innovation, environment, and energy.


Her breadth of knowledge and expertise in European affairs positions her as a leader in the field. Anne-Charlotte’s passion for connecting stakeholders within the innovation ecosystem is grounded in her belief that meaningful solutions can address pressing societal needs. Her holistic approach to project management inspires her to navigate the complexities of multiple projects at once, creating a more inclusive world.


As a dedicated advocate for supporting organizations in their pursuit of public funding, Anne-Charlotte has helped numerous businesses grow and make a positive impact on society. Her unwavering commitment to empowering women in STEAM has led her to serve on several boards, offering a voice to women entrepreneurs and enabling them to reach their full potential.

Simon Small


SaaS Elevator

Co-Founder of SaaS and Gen AI Unicorn Arria NLG. AI Governance expert and founder of Kegai, an AI Governance practise in the City of London. Renowned for introducing GovernanceTech to UK & EMEA (MD of Diligent, now a $7bn company). As a Founder of SaaS Elevator, Simon is a trusted Capital Advisor to Founders (helping to raise $45m to date) and Deal Coach to Sales Execs (helping progress large deals). Author, podcaster, and host of London’s top Enterprise Gen Ai meetup.

Lurdes Gramaxo

Partner Bynd VC, President Investors Portugal

Bynd VC & Investors Portugal

Lurdes Gramaxo is a partner and member of the Executive Committee of Bynd Venture Capital, a venture capital company that manages Early Stage funds.


She is currently President of the Portuguese Association of Early Stage Investors – INVESTORS PORTUGAL. She has 8 years’ experience in venture capital investments in the pre-seed, seed and early stage phases, In 2020, she was awarded the Europe’s Female Investor of the Year award by BAND- Business Angels Netzwerk Deutschland.


Previously, she had more than 20 years of experience in the corporate world, where she held various management positions in a multinational group based in the Netherlands, Royal Lankhorst Euronete Group, BV, from which she left after a successful exit to an international private equity firm

Kai Zenner

Head of Office, Digital Policy Adviser

European Parliament

Kai Zenner is Head of Office and Digital Policy Adviser for MEP Axel Voss (European People’s Party Group) in the European Parliament. Describing himself as a digital enthusiast, he focuses on AI, data and the EU’s digital transition. Currently, he is involved in the political negotiations on the AI Act, AI liability directive, eprivacy Regulation and GDPR revision.


In his individual capacity, he is pushing for reforms within the European Parliament and for bringing back the Better Regulation agenda to EU policymaking. Mr Zenner graduated in political science (M.Sc. at University of Edinburgh, B.A. at University of Bremen) and in law (State Exam at University of Munster). Before moving to the European Parliament, he worked as research associate at the European office of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Brussels.


He is member of the OECD.AI Network of Experts and of the Expert Group that supports the ‘High-Level Advisory Body on AI’ of the United Nations. Zenner was awarded best MEP Assistant in 2023 (“APA who has gone above and beyond in his duties”) and ranked Place #13 in Politico’s Power 40 – class 2023 (“top influencers who are most effectively setting the agenda in politics, public policy and advocacy in Brussels”).

Juliana Lim

Executive Director, Talent


As Executive Director, Talent, Juliana tackles the same challenges surrounding tech talent that many companies and industries face but approaches them differently. She leads SGInnovate’s work in strengthening individuals’ capabilities in the Deep Tech space, building a strong mentors & multipliers network, as well as in expanding the talent marketplace, where ambitious and capable people and high-potential startups can seek each other out.

Benoit Simeray

Co-founder and CEO


Global tech executive with a proven track record of success in scaling startups and leading diverse global teams.

– Joined TomTom pre-revenue and scaled it to $1.5 billion+ in net sales in less than six fiscal years.
– Launched and operated a joint venture with Nike, pioneering sports tech and performance tracking.
– Scaled Jawbone, an A16Z and Sequoia-backed wellness tech venture, from $100 million to $450 million in less than three fiscal years. Jawbone was sold in over 50 countries globally and valued at $3.5 billion.
– CEO of Catapult Sports (CAT.ASX) consumer venture, addressing the largely untapped performance tracking prosumer market.
– Held C-level positions covering a broad functional spectrum, having hired and led diverse teams ranging from design, engineering, product, marketing, sales, and operations globally.

I currently run an executive coaching practice working with founders and executives in the US, Western Europe and Australia, serve as the fractional strategy officer for a new regenerative farming venture and shadow the CEO of a large hospitality group in Portugal called [Vida Plena](https://vida-plena.com/)

My personal mission is to be that spark in other people’s lives, helping them to grow personally and professionally towards reaching their true potential. I strongly believe in the power of mutualising our expertise, knowledge, struggles and opportunities.

This is how and why Squadra was born. Join me on that journey.

Inês Santos Silva

Co-Founder and Chief Activist

Portuguese Women in Tech

Inês Santos Silva is a strong diversity and inclusion advocate, serving as Co-founder and Chief Activist at Portuguese Women in Tech, a community focused on increasing the number of women in technology and supporting those already working in the industry. In addition, she is the Founder of Women(dot)Business, a social enterprise that works to create more corporate procurement opportunities for women-owned businesses. Through her efforts, Inês is helping to break down barriers and create more opportunities for underrepresented groups in the tech industry and entrepreneurship.

António Dias Martins

Executive Director

Startup Portugal

António Dias Martins is the Executive Director of Startup Portugal, a non-profit organization with Public Utility Status, whose mission is to develop activities to promote entrepreneurship, in constant liaison with public and private organizations operating in the national entrepreneurship ecosystem. 


In the last year, António has been involved in promoting national entrepreneurship, closing new partnerships and promoting programs aimed at supporting and showcasing startups in the national and international markets.  


António has an extensive experience in investment management, venture capital and private equity, management consulting, having worked in the automotive, real estate, tourism and construction sectors.   

After graduating from Católica Lisbon School of Business & Economics, António completed an MBA at NOVA School of Business and Economics.

Rita Vilas-Boas


Angel Invest

Rita Vilas-Boas is a Partner at Angel Invest. With over 20 years of experience as an operator, she has held various leadership positions in seven countries across three continents.

Rita spent 10 years working for FMCG companies (P&G and L’Oréal), taking on multiple regional and global commercial roles. She also worked for five years in family businesses delivering exceptional global P&L results. Rita lived in Shanghai for four years, leading the Portfolio and Marketing Strategy for a startup company, one of the leading beverage companies in China, where she played a crucial role in its acquisition by an Australian publicly listed company. Rita is a founding member of the first liberal party in Portugal.

Born, raised, and educated in Porto, Portugal, Rita holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biotechnology with a major in Microbiology, a Post-Graduate Degree in Bioethics, and has received executive education in Leadership, Finance, and Marketing. She is a wine connoisseur with a WSET Level-3 Advanced Certificate. Fluent in English, French, and Spanish, she divides her time between Lisbon, Porto, and the Douro Valley.

Bernardo Correia

Country Manager

Google Portugal

Bernardo Correia is the Country Manager for Google Portugal.
He holds a degree in Economics from NOVA University of Lisbon and has extensive international management experience, particularly in the digital field.


Bernardo began his professional career in Portugal with L’Oreal’s beauty and Unilever’s Homecare brands.
In 2006 he was expatriated to Unilever’s headquarters in London for international management positions within the company, actively participating in the development of global brand digital strategies.


In 2008, while still in the UK, he joined Google to lead the consumer goods industry relationship area and later assumed the role of leading Google’s international relations with the Media and Entertainment industry. During this time he actively developed a portfolio of projects with some of the world’s largest brands focused on the use of digital technologies, including the creation of new methodologies to help brands assess the value of digital and support the creation of new content distribution models with Hollywood’s largest film studios, gaming companies and record labels.


He returned to Portugal in 2016 where he currently holds the position of Country Manager for Google Portugal, leading the company’s operations during a period of strong expansion of the presence in the country. Projects launched included a global operations center, submarine fiber optic cables to connect to other continents, the digitization of dozens of Portuguese museums, and digital skills programs to increase the digital literacy of Portuguese people and their companies such as Atelier Digital or Professional Certificates.


He is also currently a member of the board at the American Chamber of Commerce and at APDC.

Will Bennett



Will is an investor at Seedcamp. Seedcamp is Europe’s oldest seed fund is was the first backer of companies like Revolut, Synthesia, TransferWise, UiPath, Pleo, Sorare and many more.

Sissel Hansen

Founder & CEO

Startup Guide

Sissel is the founder of Startup Guide, acclaimed for its Startup Guide” series, launched in 2014 and now spanning 60+ cities globally.


After studying briefly at Kaospilot in Aarhus, she dedicated herself to developing Startup Guide full-time, leading the business and team for the past decade.

Andreas Klinger


Remote First Capital

Andreas Klinger é um investidor globalmente ativo, tendo participado em mais de 90 negócios, incluindo Remote.com, Lumalabs, Fly.io e Acquire. Anteriormente, foi fundador e CTO da Product Hunt, VPE da CoinList, Chefe da Remote na AngelList e CTO na On Deck.

Fernando Cabral

Managing Partner

Djassi Ventures

Fernando Cabral is a global leader in the Financial Services industry, where he has been driving large-scale digital innovation and transformation efforts for leading institutions across multiple geographies in Europe and Africa. He is a relentless advocate of accessible, affordable, and inclusive Digital Financial Services as a key enabler to reducing poverty, boosting prosperity, and triggering social and economic impact in underserved communities.

Fernando is also on a mission to create more inclusive and equitable startup and innovation ecosystems, leveraging his organisation Djassi Africa to advance, enable funding allocation, and levelling the playing field for underrepresented founders across Europe.

Miguel Santo Amaro



Miguel Amaro is a tech entrepreneur and investor, known for his role in co-founding Uniplaces and Coverflex, two pioneering Portuguese startups. His entrepreneurial journey underscored the significance of mentorship, leading him to establish the Entrepreneurs Organization Portugal and become a lead mentor at Techstars. Co-founding Coverflex, a company revolutionizing the world of compensation, further showcased his expertise, propelling it to become the largest pre-seed round in Portugal.

André Forte

Head of Business Development (Arts)


André Forte is the Head of Business Development for the Arts at UPTEC – Science and Technology Park of the University of Porto, where he supports and mentors companies and entrepreneurs hacking creative projects, blockchain, educational technologies, and sustainable businesses.


André majored in communications, having worked both in the Portuguese startup scene and in the cultural and creative industries, as a freelance journalist and communications specialist for several festivals, art venues, and cultural producers.

Catarina Peyroteo Salteiro

Cabinet of MEP, AI enthusiast

European Parliament

Catarina Peyroteo Salteiro has a diverse background in global communication, artificial intelligence, entrepreneurship, policy, and a passion for promoting gender equality.

She holds a degree in Communication Sciences and a postgraduate degree in Political Science and International Relations. Catarina gained professional experience in marketing at corporations such as Fox International Channels and Universal Music Group. She then joined Defined.ai, a then-startup focused on artificial intelligence training data, where she led the Global Communication and Brand team. While at Defined.ai, she spent a period in Seattle, WA, participating in the company’s exponential growth. Afterward, she was responsible for Internationalization and Special Projects at Startup Portugal, supporting the national ecosystem expansion and growth. She then moved to Brussels to work in the cabinet of the Member of the European Parliament João Albuquerque, where she advises on policy and legislation.

Catarina is a member of a youth reflection group by the President of Portugal and won the Silver Lion in the Portuguese competition of the Young Lions of Cannes in the Public Relations category in 2022. In her spare time, she promotes and participates in initiatives and debates around gender equality and artificial intelligence.

Alex Santos

General Partner


Alex Santos is co-founder and general partner of Chamaeleon – a quant-driven early stage VC firm based in Silicon Valley, investing globally in startups. He is an experienced investor and operator, with several roles in product and business development, as well as responsibilities as CFO and Board director in his 15 year stint in the Telecom and Internet sectors.

Prior to Chamaeleon, he co-founded one of Europe’s top corporate early-stage venture builders & venture capital vehicles, and helped in the initial ramp-up of a Corporate VC, with more than 250m Euro under management at the time, handling directly more than 30 investments in the US, Europe, and Israel. He has been an advisor and board member in a wide variety of startups, is a guest speaker and jury in startup events and business schools.

Vijaykant Nadadur

Co-Founder & CEO

Stride.AI Inc

Vijaykant Nadadur, serving as the Co-Founder & CEO of Stride.AI, is recognized for his expertise in Artificial Intelligence, Entrepreneurship, and Consulting. An eloquent public speaker, he has been featured at prominent events such as the World Forum for Responsible Economy in France and Digital Banking in the USA. Beyond his corporate role, Vijay is deeply involved in mentoring up-and-coming talent, contributing his knowledge to accelerator programs including Techstars in Paris, Dubai, and Atlanta, as well as the Lisbon Challenge. His international flair is evidenced by his ability to speak several languages and his experience living in six different countries. He holds a Master’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Kentucky, underscoring his technical acumen in the field.

Joana Rafael

Co-founder, COO


Joana is a co-founder and Chief Operating Officer (COO) at Sensei. Founded in 2017, Sensei is a European leading company of autonomous stores technology with presence in Europe and LATAM. With its proprietary Computer Vision and Artificial Intelligence technology, Sensei has been a pioneer by opening the first autonomous store in continental Europe with SONAE (Lisbon, 2021), the first autonomous supermarket in Latin America in Brazil with Muffato Group (Curitiba, 2022), and more recently the first autonomous store in Italy with DAO (Verona, 2023). Sensei autonomous stores and plug-and-play formats can also be found in retail clients in Spain and France.

During her career, Joana worked and studied in Portugal, the USA, Italy, and Germany. She holds an Executive Master and doctoral studies (DFA) from Instituto Superior Técnico under the MIT Portugal Program in Sustainable Energy Systems (in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and holds a postgraduate certificate in Sustainability at Harvard University. She graduated in 2009 from the Technical University of Lisbon and La Sapienza in Rome. She was a founding partner of the software house META before founding Sensei and has been a member of the Executive Committee and Vice-President of the Portuguese Industrial Association – Chamber of Commerce and Industry (AIP-CCI) since 2019 until present.

Joana was awarded the Women Entrepreneurship Award by Católica Lisbon Business School/Center for Technological Innovation and Entrepreneurship in 2019 and the Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2021 (Startup Lisboa).

Mark Hogarth


Techstart Ventures

Mark is a Partner at Techstart Ventures, which is a pre-seed VC firm focused on extraordinary founders who are pursuing uncapped global opportunities with unreasonable levels of conviction. Techstart portfolio companies include Desana, Enzai, Spectinga, Cloudsmith and Continuum Industries.

Ricardo Mesquita

Managing Director

Endeavor Portugal

Entrepreneur and founding Managing Director of Endeavor Portugal, a global community of high-impact entrepreneurs present in 40+ markets. Our mission is to help build a strong, supportive and globally connected entrepreneurial ecosystem in Portugal by selecting and servicing high-growth entrepreneurs.


By providing global exposure and increase international reach to top founders and their companies, we are fostering opportunities to pay it forward to the local economy and nurture the entire ecosystem. Leading to Endeavor, I’ve launched and managed new ventures in Europe and the Americas and helped design and deliver corporate innovation programs and bootcamps in multiple geographies.


Interested in the intersection of technology, education and data, my daily learning happens by working with diverse and multi-disciplinary teams, engaged in doing a great job through the power of initiative and collaboration. Self-starter and lifelong learner, I am active as a mentor, investor and advisor. Multicultural exposure by living in China, Brazil, Chile, France, Spain and the USA. Extensive world travel through 50+ countries.

Rita Branco

Impact Investor

3XP Global

True believer that Investing is a way of living but Impact Investing is the right one.

On the lead of the first Iberia Impact Fund.
Supporting Impact companies making good while making money.


As an Impact Partner at 3XP Global leading the first Iberian impact fund, specializing in driving positive social and environmental change through strategic investments.

As Board Member in 3XP, my role encompasses overseeing and actively participating on our sustainable investments while closely monitoring and supporting the performance of our various funds and investments.

Our organization operates across three key verticals:
Health & Life Sciences: where we aim to improve healthcare access and outcomes through innovative investments.
Responsible AI: focusing on the ethical development and deployment of artificial intelligence solutions.
Impact Investments: my primary responsibility is within this vertical, where I lead the effort to identify, invest in, and nurture impactful projects and companies.


Additionally, I provide guidance and support to our other verticals, leveraging my expertise to ensure holistic success across the organization.

I am passionate about driving meaningful change and am dedicated to advancing sustainability and social responsibility through our investments.


Not just talking the talk but walking the walk.

Jon Fath

Co-Founder & CEO


Jon Fath is the Co-Founder & CEO of Rauva. He started his journey as a tech entrepreneur after an international M&A career.

He was involved in the creation of Equivvy, the first blockchain rental sharing platform for B2B equipment, as well as of FANA, a blockchain fintech initiative for charity where he is a Board Advisor. Jon has worked and lived in over 20 countries, including China and in several Mediterranean countries. He has demonstrated world-class achievements in blockchain, AI (Artificial Intelligence) and fintech ventures.

His achievements include enabling the successful international expansion of Transmetrics, the leading AI platform dedicated to logistics, where he was previously CEO. Most recently, he was the COO at bunq, one of the largest digital banks in Europe, where he actively contributed to closing the largest series A funding round in Europe’s fintech history.

Jon has an entrepreneurial, M&A and investment background and is a keen problem solver with a strong focus on B2B companies. He has dedicated his career to developing new ways of helping businesses improve their efficiency and effectiveness.

Marcelo Lebre

President and co-founder


[Founder] Marcelo is the co-founder and President of Remote. Marcelo was previously VP of Engineering at Unbabel and has held several CTO positions. He frequently speaks at events about leadership and managing remote teams. Marcelo is also a startup advisor and mentor to entrepreneurs. He is a passionate engineer, proud dad, and sci-fi nerd. Reach Marcelo on Twitter @marcelo_lebre.





Patricia Cuenca Margüenda

CEO & Chief Collaboration Officer

imatch innovation collective

Patricia hails from Spain and has called Lisbon home since 2010. She began her academic journey in Business Management in Málaga, further enhancing her expertise at Universidade Lusíada de Lisboa and ISCTE.

With prior experience in sales and retail, Patricia embarked on her innovation journey at imatch in 2012. She initially delved into open and internal innovation programs, collaborating with companies like Vodafone and Lisbon Municipality. Over time, her focus evolved towards fostering innovation within company cultures through collaborative projects with companies such as McDonald’s, Sonae and Capgemini Engineering.


Through diverse roles as a project manager, consultant, facilitator, and mentor, Patricia has collaborated across various sectors, helping startups and organizations in enhancing collaboration, transforming behaviors, and reshaping company cultures.


Now serving as imatch’s general coordinator, she remains dedicated to harnessing the power of collaboration to make a difference.

Paulo Dimas


Center for Responsible AI

Paulo Dimas is the VP of Product Innovation at Unbabel, contributing to building the world’s first Language Operations platform combining AI and human intelligence. Paulo is also the CEO of the Center for Responsible AI, a consortium led by Unbabel joining AI startups, research centers, one law firm, and industry-leading companies with the mission to spark the next generation of AI products driven by the principles and technologies of Responsible AI.

Felipe Avila da Costa

CEO, Co-founder


Felipe Ávila da Costa is the CEO and co-founder of Infraspeak, a global tech company that is transforming the world of Facility Management through data, intelligence, and automation. Felipe is also a co-founder of Founders Founders, a community-driven scale-up incubator. Previously, Felipe was responsible for the Technological Center and the Startup Acceleration Program of UPTEC (University of Porto Science and Technology Park), where he supported the start, early development, and growth of more than 250 startups and innovation centers. Deeply involved in the Portuguese entrepreneurial ecosystem and featured as one of the “40 business leaders of the Future” in Portugal by FAE, Felipe is an experienced mentor and speaker. He holds a Master’s Degree in Software and an Executive MBA by Porto Business School.”

Ana Casaca

Global Head of Innovation


Ana has over 20 years of experience in innovation & tech transfer. She began as a researcher in San Francisco with a Fulbright scholarship and moved to become a corporate entrepreneur.

She drives growth and innovation through technology, startups and ecosystems development.

Ana graduated in Microbiology by the Portuguese Catholic University and has an MBA from Porto Business School, where she is an Invited Professor She extends her academic involvement to ISEG, serving as an Invited Associate Professor.


Ana is also an Expert Evaluator in Horizon Europe for European Commission.

Ricardo Marvão



Co-founder of Beta-i, a collaborative innovation agency with global reach started in 2010 and the main builder of the startup ecosystem in Lisbon, experts in designing and managing projects from strategy to pilot testing & venture building. Our main industries are Energy, Oceans & Sustainability.
I’ve founded also a number of educational projects in Portugal like Próxima Geração (academy for the next generation of politicians), the Singularity University Portugal, the European Innovation Academy (entrepreneurship summer school for university students), and Space for Business executive program.

I have over 10 years international experience in the Space Industry, sending satellites to space, working with ESA, Inmarsat, Airbus and many others in several continents.

Humberto Ayres Pereira



Humberto is the co-founder and CEO of Rows.com. He likes Spreadsheets, software, tech, comics, Portugal and Europe.

Neide Vieira

Chief of Business Officer


Dr. Neide Vieira, holding a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences, has seamlessly transitioned from in-depth research to entrepreneurship. Her foundational work delves into molecular mechanisms underlying infectious and neurological diseases, setting the groundwork for healthcare innovations.


Co-founding IPLEXMED was a strategic progression, where Neide’s robust research background fuels the development of innovative diagnostic devices that are rapid, portable, and accurate. This entrepreneurial endeavor is a translation of her complex scientific insights into practical and accessible healthcare solutions.


Beyond the lab, Neide is an active community contributor, managing public relations and coordinating science outreach activities for the last 10 years. Every step of her journey is dedicated to bringing science and community together, fostering innovation and communication for accessible and personalized healthcare.

Gil Azevedo

Executive Director

Unicorn Factory Lisboa

Gil Azevedo is the Executive Director of Startup Lisboa and Unicorn Factory Lisboa.


Prior to his current position, he was a Senior Vice President of Emirates NBD Group, in United Arab Emirates, between 2011 and 2022. Earlier, he was a consultant at McKinsey & Co from 2000 to 2011.


Gil Azevedo completed the Industrial Engineering and Management degree and holds an MBA from Columbia University in New York.

António Miguel

Managing Partner

maze impact

António founded Maze and is responsible for the Investment work area which includes the MSM impact VC fund as a Managing Partner. He has worked in impact investment for +10 years in the UK, Canada and Europe. Antonio teaches Impact Investment at NOVA SBE and previously was an Analyst at Social Finance UK. He holds a MSc in Business Administration from Católica Business School and is a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum. His motto is that 99 is not 100.

Patrícia Almeida

Innovation Delivery Coordinator


Patrícia’s professional path is marked by a blend of creativity and strategic innovation. She joined Beta-i, a leading innovation consultancy in Lisbon, in January 2018. Currently with the position of Innovation Delivery Coordinator and part of the organization’s management team, her responsibilities include overseeing multi-project operations, ensuring high-quality standards, supporting & mentoring of innovation consultants, staffing & capacity management of consultant pool and talent assessment in the recruitment process.


Her knack for leadership and strategic oversight saw her quickly ascend from an entry position to managing and leading cross-sector innovation projects such as energy, tourism, FMCG, fintech, smart cities and healthtech.

She started her career in the tourism and hospitality sector in Lisbon, where she sharpened her skills in digital content creation and brand strategy. She was instrumental in developing online and offline campaigns, managing digital platforms, and playing a key role in the hotel’s opening team.


In 2013, Patrícia ventured into the international wine export/import industry with Mistral Importadora in São Paulo, Brazil, as a Brand Ambassador (an INOV Contacto internship). Here, she promoted Portuguese wine, expanding customer databases and enhancing brand preference through strategic communication and event management.

Patrícia’s educational journey laid a strong foundation for her career, beginning with a Bachelor’s in Marketing and Advertising from the Instituto de Artes Visuais, Design e Marketing (IADE) in Lisbon, followed by an Executive Master in Management with a specialization in Digital Innovation from Católica Lisbon School of Business & Economics.

Born in Maputo, Mozambique, Patrícia holds dual citizenship in Portugal and Mozambique, reflecting her cultural heritage and international perspective.

Stephan Morais

Managing Partner

Indico Capital Partners

Stephan Morais, 50, is the co-founder and Managing General Partner of Indico Capital Partners, the leading early stage VC based out of Lisbon and one of the most prestigious venture capital firms in continental Europe. In the last decade the Indico team was involved in 6 unicorns in Portugal, Spain and Germany and have developed and reputation as hands-on lead investors with its past and portfolio raising close to 3bn USD. He is a former entrepreneurs, CEO, banker and consultant who has lived in 10 different countries including the US where he decided to become a VC while doing his MBA at Harvard Business School. Stephan is a global speaker and recognised media personality.

Marcelo Sousa



Marcelo works on deep tech for the future of software development and security.


He is a Google PhD Fellow, holds a PhD from Oxford on automated software verification and has previously worked at IBM, Microsoft Research, Google and Sonar.


He co-founded Reviewpad, a SaaS product startup to streamline code reviews with a policy as code approach. Reviewpad was acquired by Snyk in 2023.

Igor Ryabenkiy

Managing Partner

AltaIR Capital

Igor Ryabenkiy is the founder and managing partner at AltaIR Capital, a global VC firm with 300+ tech startups and 9 unicorns in its portfolio, 6 of which were backed at an early stage: Miro, Deel, PandaDoc, OpenWeb, Socure, and Turing.

With assets totaling $600M under management, AltaIR Capital focuses on Productivity Tools, FinTech, Future of Work, and Digital Health.

Before starting AltaIR Capital Igor launched and brought to success his group of companies and invested as a business angel. His 20 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur and angel investor formed the basis of his book Adventures in Venture Capital. 

Caterina Foà

Management and Organization Specialist

Casa do Impacto

PhD at ISCTE-IUL (Portugal) and Bocconi University (Italy). Management and Organization Specialist, Capacity building trainer at Casa do Impacto, impact and sustainability hub of Santa Casa da Misericordia de Lisboa. Assistant Professor at ISCTE- Instituto Universitário de Lisboa. Researcher at CIES-IUL Research Center, OberCom, OPAC and IBERIFIER Observatories.

André Jordão



Andre is the Founder and CEO of Barkyn, a pet health subscription combining personalized nutrition and telemedicine, growing in multiple European countries.

Guilherme Coelho

Co-founder and CEO

Maven Pet

I don’t know what life is without pets! 🐶 And 68.3% of pets’ deaths can be avoided – just by acting in time! That’s why we’ve built the first AI-Vet™ capable of detecting the onset of health issues in cats and dogs. With Maven Pet, for the first time, veterinarian teams can diagnose earlier and treat smarter.

Manuel Caldeira Cabral

Member of Board


Member of the board of ASF. President of Conselho Estratégico da Startup Portugal. Minister of Economics of the Portuguese Government (between 2015 and 2018). Professor of Economics of Universidade do Minho.

PHD in Economics in The University of Nottingham. First Degree and Master in Nova SBE.

Pedro Meireles Figueiredo

Business Developer Manager

Beyond Vision

Pedro Meireles Figueiredo is an experienced Global Business Developer at Beyond Vision, a leading company in aerospace technologies and drone systems, based in Lisbon. At Beyond Vision, Pedro plays a crucial role in market expansion and exploring new business opportunities, actively collaborating in the commercialization and development of innovative products such as the HEIFU Pro, the VTone, and upcoming launches, BVQ418 and BVVT25.


A manager for over 20 years with a solid career in international business development, Pedro has a remarkable ability to identify and implement market strategies that maximize growth and penetration across various sectors, including military, civilian, and agricultural. His experience and dedication have also contributed to Beyond Vision becoming a NATO supplier and establishing a significant partnership with NVIDIA.


Beyond his professional success, Pedro is passionate about shooting and horse riding, hobbies he pursues at his farm, where he lives surrounded by various animals. These personal interests reflect his adventurous nature and commitment to an active and outdoor lifestyle.


Pedro is constantly seeking new challenges and investment opportunities for Beyond Vision, aiming to elevate the company to new heights in the global technology scene.

Michael Cockburn

CoFounder, CEO


Michael is the Cofounder and CEO of Desana. Since starting from Scotland in 2019, Michael has grown Desana to operate in over 70 countries, transitioning the company to predominantly serve the US market and maintaining impressive growth since doing so.


Desana is revolutionising the way some of the world’s largest companies such as Microsoft, Nike, Github, and many more use office space globally, helping them at scale with the emerging challenges around how they get their teams physically together in a more flexible and distributed world, and in some cases becoming the only way these companies use office space globally.

Miguel Damas

MD, Founder

Prime Human Performance

Miguel Damas MD is a doctor on a mission to unlock human potential. Board-certified in family medicine with a background in precision, functional and sports medicine, he merges his expertise with a fervent interest in nutrition, psychology, and health technology.

Dr Miguel crafts personalized, precision medicine strategies to elevate the health and performance of those aspiring for greatness. Miguel’s own battle with obesity fuels his passion for overcoming limits and into the interconnectedness of body, brain, and mind.

Having worked with entrepreneurs, C-level executives and high-achievers across the globe, Dr Miguel brings a truly international perspective to his work. He’s shared his wisdom on biohacking, human optimization, and surpassing limitations on stages across Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.

David Magboulé



With a degree in Biology (University of Nottingham, UK, 2004), David has over 15 years experience across the full scope of the health sector.

He started as a Pharma Sales Rep at ITF-Farma, then an internship as International Business Developer in Imbiosis, a Spanish Biotech, David later became Marketing Manager for Spain & Portugal for Medical Imaging company Carestream in 2008. In 2013 he moved to FUJIFILM’s ultrasound company, SonoSite. Since 2014, he’s been working as a strategy consultant for several industries.

Late 2017, David founded LabToMarket to help startups, clinicians and researchers across Europe launch their products in the market, having helped over 200 startups globally so far.

Between 2022 and 2023, David was also working with government-supported Startup Portugal, as Head of Growth & Acceleration for the national entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Pedro Lami

Managing Director, Head of EMEA Private Capital


Pedro is responsible for Citi’s Private Capital franchise, based in London.

Raised over US$15bn for private companies in multiple sectors, as financial adivisor, and brings an extensive network of private and public investors, along with a deep understanding of capital formation across stages.

Prior to joining Citi in 2020, Pedro spent 14 years at J.P.Morgan in multiple roles in Madrid, London and San Francisco.

Pranav Arya

Director, Ecosystem Strategy

Startup Genome

Pranav Arya works as the Director of Ecosystem Strategy at Startup Genome.


He has advised 25+ governments on collecting, analyzing and utilizing data and inputs from their local startup ecosystems to develop strategies for accelerating innovation outputs and deriving economic value.


Prior to Startup Genome, Pranav worked with Kearney, an global management consulting firm, where he worked closely with Private Equity Firms and Corporations on Due Diligence and Investment Strategy.

Eduardo Barroso

Senior Manager


Senior Manager at PwC Portugal, with responsibilities as Head of Startup Ecosystem and Emerging Tech.


It bridges the gap with the startup ecosystem in its different aspects, as well as in the areas of emerging technologies, which include themes of augmented reality, virtual reality and artificial intelligence.


His vast experience in the entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem also comes from a stint at one of the national unicorns, as well as the main fintech incubator in Portugal.

Sama Siddiqui


Startup Genome

Leading communication and fostering engagement within Startup Genome’s global client network. Worked closely with 60+ governments on projects ranging from policy analysis to supporting the production and launch of the Global Startup Ecosystem Report. One of my key focus areas lies in facilitating connections and building a strong, interconnected network of ecosystem builders across the globe.

Diogo Mónica

Co-Founder and President

Anchorage Digital

Diogo Mónica is the Founder and President of Anchorage Digital. Anchorage Digital brings the world’s most advanced and proven security architecture to cryptocurrency custody, to deliver the services institutions expect from a traditional custodian.


Before founding Anchorage Digital, he was security lead at Docker, an open platform for building, shipping and running distributed applications. While at Docker he worked on the security foundations of the container and orchestration subsystems that are now used as core building blocks of modern IT infrastructure worldwide.


Diogo Mónica was an early employee at Square where he led the platform security team and built the security infrastructure used by Square to move over $80B in annualized volume. He has a BSc, MSc and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science has published several papers in peer-reviewed security conferences on the topic of distributed systems and information security, and is the author of several patents in secure communications, encrypted hardware, and payment systems.


Diogo Mónica is a sought-after public speaker having keynotes, lectures and technical briefings on the topics of usable security, infrastructure security, and distributed systems security. He is also an angel investor and an advisor and board member to numerous startups.


CEO | Founder | Angel Investor | Security Engineer

Carlos Esteban



Carlos Esteban is a Partner of the Ocean / Climate Tech Fund at Faber. With more than 8 years experience in VC, he co-leads the fund early stage investments in deep tech startups aiming for positive impact on ocean sustainability, climate action and decarbonization of the global economy.

Carlos holds a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Valencia (Spain) and an MBA from Imperial College Business School (UK). He was a postdoctoral researcher at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (USA) and at Imperial College London.

Filipa Matos

VP of Special Operations


Filipa Matos is the Vice President of Special Operations at Remote, where she steers the execution of pivotal projects and the strategic positioning of the company in the global market.

With a background in leading strategic initiatives, Filipa excels in deploying complex operational solutions that drive global growth and technological innovation.

Her expertise encompasses a comprehensive understanding of organizational dynamics and market challenges, enabling her to orchestrate efforts that enhance operational efficiencies and product innovations.

Marlos Silva

R&D Director

MC Sonae

Graduated in Business Management at University of Pernambuco (Brazil) and M.Sc. in Accounting and Auditory at University of Aveiro (Portugal), following a career in finance accumulates 20 years of experience in innovation, serving in leadership positions throughout government agencies, universities, start-ups, large corporations and clusters, plus successfully creating businesses and as a consultant. He currently leads the R&D and Incentives Department at Sonae group leading the team who manages annually around 35 M € in R&D investment and engage group subholdings into collaborative projects from biomaterials to food innovation, robotics, smart logistics, clean energy and digital transformation. He also currently serves in diverse European and national boards and as President of the Portuguese Blue Bioeconomy Collaborative Laboratory, Colab B2E.

Bruno Andrade Alves



At PwC since 2007, he is currently a Partner of the Tax department and is responsible for the Individual Taxation area. He specializes in matters of personal income taxation and social security, at a national and international level.


He has extensive experience in providing tax and social security consultancy services to national and foreign companies, particularly in the context of benefits granted to employees, as well as to individuals, including in the startup ecosystem. He is a guest lecturer and trainer in several institutions and universities in the areas of individual taxation and social security and participates regularly as a speaker at conferences and seminars on these topics.


He frequently collaborates with the media as a specialist in personal income tax and social security matters.

Márcio Santos

Customer Engineer

Google Cloud

Lifetime geek since touching my first computer in 85, a brilliant cartridge based Philips VG-8020 MSX system.


Father, Founder and Lifetime Learner, discovered this weird thing called “The Cloud” in 2010 and was totally blown away by the possibilities this new computing paradigm could bring.


Hanging around with the head in the Cloud ever since, supporting Customers in their growth journeys, helping them leverage Cloud technologies to blow past their Business objectives.

Carlos Brito


Porto Business School

Carlos Brito is a professor of marketing at Porto Business School, President of the Port Wine Observatory, President of the Portuguese Management Association, member of the Strategic Council of Porto and Northern Portugal Tourism, member of the General Council of the Ordem dos Economistas and a member of various advisory boards. He is author of several management and marketing books, as well as dozens of articles in international scientific journals. He also participates regularly in the media and is frequently invited as a speaker and motivational speaker on marketing, innovation and entrepreneurship. Between 2011 and 2018 he was Pro-Rector of the University of Porto for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and between 2019 and 2021 he was Vice-Rector of Universidade Portucalense for Research and Internationalization.

Nelson Luciano

Head of Cloud Native, Startups and VC


Spent 16 years at Microsoft building solutions and advising enterprise customers on their journey to the cloud and how to infuse analytics, AI, personalization, and agility into their products.


Now helping companies becoming new unicorns at Google.

Katelijne Bekers

CEO and Co-Founder


Kate has a dual background in science and business development. She graduated from her MSc in Biotechnology in her home country at Wageningen University in 2009. After following a PhD trajectory at TU Delft, she decided to switch to industry and work as fermentation scientist at Corbion, followed by her focus on the scaling of bioprocesses at the Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant in Belgium. In 2016, she moved to Hamburg, Germany to start her career in sales at Ohly. While graduating from her EMBA at Rotterdam School of Management, she developed from her initial position as technical sale to a strategic position as technical sale to a strategic position as business development manager.

Kate brings together all passion for fermentation, excitement for the future of the agri-food supply chain and an intrinsic drive to change the world for the better.

João Monteiro Fernandes


Plug and Play EMEA Fund Management

Focused on impactful growth and investment.


The drive to help grow innovative ventures from both an operating and investing lens, has consistently grown over time. My contributions within the former, particularly regarding Strategic Partnerships, Growth Management and Investor Readiness at an early stage, have eventually led to a natural progression into venture capital, supporting founders with funds and services that are often instrumental to their scalability.

Academic pursuits in Management and Investment Management support the industrial experiences that I have had on both sides of the venture spectrum.


Born and raised in Portugal, living across Europe for the better part of a decade. Particularly passionate about the ocean, its importance and its potential.

Luís Pedro Cardoso

Head of Services & Innovation


Experienced Telco and Tech professional, with a variety of experiences and knowledge in multidisciplinary, dynamic and international environments, in different areas within the organizations, from technical, to marketing, commercial and product development, with a global vision of the business and adjacent areas, together with the critical factors for decision making.


Responsible for Vodafone Power Lab the company Innovation program for entrepreneurs and Startups.

Guilherme Coelho

Co-founder and CEO

Maven Pet

I don’t know what life is without pets! 🐶 That’s why I’m building the first AI+Human capable of detecting the onset of health conditions in cats and dogs.


For the first time, veterinarian teams can diagnose earlier and treat smarter, at no cost or extra work for them.


With Maven, 68.3% of Pets deaths will be prevented.

Pedro Almeida



Pedro is an investor at Armilar, a 24-year-old European VC based in Lisbon.

Pedro covers B2B SaaS and invests in Seed and Series A stages across Europe. Pedro also writes about the Portuguese ecosystem in his free time.

Carlos Resende


Techstars Startup Digest

Curator @Techstars StartUp Digest; Expert Evaluator @European Commission; Expert Evaluator @Sovereign Fund; Mentor @SmartUP Europe; Deloitte Alumni

João Ribas

Head of Vodafone Boost Lab


Working in technology for the telecom industry for the past 12 years.

Recently launched Vodafone Boost Lab, opening the next generation network to innovators and partners, boosting great ideas into successful products.

Luís Vieira



Setting up B-Parts was my very fist job: I went straight from being a student to a founder. I was too ambitious, I guess, and going into consulting or a corporate career seemed too traditional for me.


Cars seemed to be an obvious place to start as they’re one of my biggest passions. So I took a sinking company and reinvented it.
It took effort and dedication, but it was worth it.
It was almost like giving an old car a second, brighter life.


B-Parts is building a trusted, global e-commerce brand for the used auto parts marketplace. We believe in an effortless experience of searching and buying used auto parts. We are solving real life problems, helping every day hundreds of auto repair shops and end customers finding the best parts for their vehicles.

Afonso Ramos

Co-Founder & CPO


Afonso Ramos is one of the Co-Founders and Chief Product Officer at Powerdot, one of Europe’s major Infra Tech companies focused on EV charging.


With more than 10 years of experience in Product Management, Afonso has led teams and developed new products in various industries. Prior to his role at Powerdot, he has advised multiple companies in sectors ranging from hospitality to last mile logistics.


Afonso has also been a guest lecturer at several universities in Portugal, bringing real-world insights to academic settings.

Francisco Ferreira Pinto


Bynd Venture Capital

Francisco is currently a partner and executive director at Bynd Venture Capital. He leads investments in promising Iberian startups, with a focus on pre-seed and seed stages across sectors like IT/Digital, Consumer Goods, Sustainability, and Blockchain. Bynds portfolio includes over 35 active investments, guided by a strong connection to the Iberian peninsula, either through founders, technology hubs, or market priorities.

Mariana Gorjão Henriques

Managing Director

The Fintech House

Currently leading the Fintech House, dedicated to building and expanding the FinTech ecosystem in Portugal.
Passionate about entrepreneurship, technology and innovation. I have been involved in businesses of all sizes, from startups to publicly traded entities, from retail to financial institutions.

Fábio Azevedo

Chief Innovation Officer

Beyond Vision

Fábio Azevedo has been working in the Aerial Robotics Field for 7+ years, currently acting as Chief Innovation Officer at Beyond Vision, where he leads a team of experts to develop cutting-edge projects involving drones. He finished his Autonomous Systems Master’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2018, at ISEP. Currently, he is enrolled in the Ph.D. program of FEUP, ensuring he remains at the forefront of technological innovation and contributes to shaping the future of robotics.

He has been awarded the Best Master Thesis 2019 by the Portuguese Society in Robotics for his work in real-time powerline detection and modeling using LiDAR. His main scientific contributions include works in control, navigation, and computer vision.

Rogério Tavares

Project Manager


I am part of the project management and mentoring team at the INOVAGAIA technology incubator, located in the municipality of Vila Nova de Gaia. As a mentor, I regularly provide guidance and mentoring to incubated projects at INOVAGAIA, also supporting entrepreneurs in fundraising efforts. Additionally, I am also part of the project management team at the incubator, assisting in INOVAGAIA’s own projects.

Álvaro Samagaio


Founder Tales

O Álvaro é co-host do único podcast que conta as histórias dos fundadores e empreendedores Portugueses e em Português. Engenheiro Biomédico de formação, atualmente é Data & Analytics Engineer na Rows e tem um segundo podcast sobre tecnologia e negócios – ‘Shutdown’.

Diogo Malafaya


Founder Tales

Passionate about Data and AI. Currently using Data to improve performance of an EV charging network at Powerdot. On my free time I can be seen collecting and sharing founders’ stories at Founder Tales podcast.