Hugh Stewart has over three decades experience in venture capital. In 1983, he joined Electra Investment Trust plc, a quoted investment company investing in a broad range of unquoted investments. In 1989 he moved to a subsidiary of Electra’s management company that was formed to focus on technology investments.
In 1997 he founded Strathdon Investments and as Chief Executive led it from start-up through to flotation on AIM prior to his leaving in 2006 to form Shackleton. Before joining Electra he spent seven years in industry in general management, marketing and planning. He holds an Economics degree and an MBA with distinction from INSEAD.
Steve is a career entrepreneur having co-founded two successful companies with venture capital backing – Nova Weigh Ltd and Pulsar Process Measurement Ltd – he subsequently cofounded Strathdon Investments plc and Shackleton Ventures.
He was previously Managing Director of Rolls-Royce subsidiary, Stresswave Technology, which he acquired in a management buyout backed by Electra. Steve is a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and is experienced in all aspects of building young companies, particularly the process of turning new technology into high-margin commercial products.
Deborah combines a strong operational background in technology with high level international strategy consulting gained over a 10-year period with McKinsey. She has served on the boards of over 20 growth tech businesses.
She was Head of Business Development and e-Commerce at Britannic plc, rapidly growing new business by launching a range of new investment products including pensions, ISAs, and the UK’s first online life policy. Prior to that, Deborah was MD of an international clothing company, Hardcore Jeanswear. Her early career was in technology development with British Gas plc. She graduated with the Henry Ford II Engineering Scholarship from Imperial College and holds an MBA with distinction from INSEAD. She is a director of Northern Venture Trust plc.
Jay co-founded the FinTech-focused Victoria Fund with Shackleton, and serves as a partner in the fund. He has 22 years of management and entrepreneurial experience in IT, software services, and business process outsourcing. His recent focus has been on early stage businesses, helping with fundraising, deal flow, market development, and exit. He now serves as Chairman and CEO of Gorilla Technologies (NASDAQ: GRRR), a leader in the field of edge AI and Shackleton portfolio company.
Jay has held senior operational roles at EXL, NPL, and Invensis, and his more recent corporate finance work has included secondary transactions, M&A, disposals and fundraising as a partner at Cortis Capital and Mathern Ltd, and as an independent advisor to Unisys, Goetz Partners, Snuko Plc, Delfigo Security and The Application Store.
Nicola Kennedy is an innovator, entrepreneur, and home decarbonisation specialist. She worked for Centrica as Head of Ideas Lab and as Commercial Director for Home Energy Management Ventures, where she lead the development of future energy businesses, products and services. One of these projects was the Cornwall Local Energy Market – a pioneering project that designed the first DNO flexibility market in the UK, testing the use of energy generation and storage across both the domestic and business sectors. Prior to her time with Centrica, Nicola served as a senior manager for Community Energy Plus, an energy focused social enterprise. She has also recently advised Innovate UK as an innovation and growth specialist
She has degrees in Entrepreneurship from Cambridge, Engineering from Manchester, and Sustainable Development from Exeter.
Nicola is now working with HEERO Technologies, a spin-out venture formed in December 2021.
Tofiq is a serial entrepreneur with twenty years of business experience, including ten years in the investment industry. His focus is on startup and early-stage opportunities in Fintech, Edtech, and general technology with a global footprint. He also has a personal investment focus with close friends and family, on UK-based ventures and overseas passive co-investment.
Tofiq has an MBA from Imperial College, London, and BSc in Electronic Engineering. He has been involved with financial institutions, such as Bank of New York Mellon, and in consultancy with Accenture. In his capacity as CEO of Innvotec, Tofiq has collaborated with Shackleton on a number of significant growth ventures.
Wendy Stewart joined the Shackleton team in August 2007, having previously worked at Strathdon Investments whom she joined in 1999, gaining extensive experience in all aspects of venture capital marketing, human resources and administration.
Wendy was previously assistant to the Chairman of Ducal Limited, the largest pine furniture manufacturers in the UK which grew to 800 employees during her time there. She has experience in training, tele-sales, customer services, and international exhibition management. She holds a BA Hons Social Sciences degree from Leicester University.
Susan Browne joined the Shackleton team as an experienced Finance Manager in 2011 with broad experience in Finance and over 22 years within the Finance Departments of financial sector entities as well as industry and commerce companies.
She started her career in the accounts department of a city based reinsurance company and joined Kleinwort Benson in 1992, becoming a key member of the Group Finance Department. While there she identified the need and implemented the set-up of an inter group company information system. Prior to joining Shackleton she worked for as an Interim Financial Controller for Adnetik Ltd, a growing media IT services company, alongside working for Rockarchive Ltd a fine art photography company. She qualified as a Chartered Certified Accountant in 2001 and is a Fellow of the ACCA.
Louise graduated from Queen Mary’s University of London with a degree in Geography and Business before training to be a Chartered Accountant at a mid tier accountancy practice. While there she completed both accounts and audit work for a wide variety of clients with both manual and computerised systems and records. She qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2013.
Prior to joining Shackleton she worked as a Senior Management Accountant for Care UK an independent provider of Health and Social Care.