CEO of FlexEnable
Chuck Milligan is CEO of FlexEnable, the leader in flexible electronics technology for wearables & sensors. Chuck has over 20 years’ commercial & general management experience across the globe in the semiconductor, consumer electronics, communications, industrial & aerospace markets. Previously, Chuck was CEO of Heptagon, the leading micro-optics company, & EM Test, a PE-backed EMC company, & has held commercial leadership positions in Nortel, JDSU, Bookham & Harris. Chuck has spent 20 years in Switzerland & is now in Cambridge. He love skiing, hiking, live music & adventure in general.
"We all have different ways we can make the world a better place: for me, I do this through investing in next technology start-ups but great initiatives like Founders Pledge allow me to leverage my success even further for social good."
Jean-Charles is co-founder of Expliseat which has revolutionized aircraft seating for economy class through new technologies: weight divided by three, more comfort, more durability. Titanium Seat is certified worldwide and flying on several airlines, generating massive fuel and CO2 savings.
Most recently, Jean-Charles co-founded alan, a new startup which uses data to predict disease and send patients to specialist appointments before they start showing symptoms. The aim to change healthcare from passive and actuarial model to one of prevention and action.
He has been awarded French Industry Medal by French Industry Minister and 2 Montgolfier Prices from French "Society for the Encouragement of National Industry", and was selected among the 100 in European aerospace. Jean-Charles is also the founder of a French think-tank focusing on future of technology with French young leaders and an investor in topics such as AI and biotech. Jean-Charles has two degrees, an MSc from Ponts et Chaussés and an MBA from Collège des Ingénieurs.
Great initiatives like Founders Pledge allow me to leverage my success even further for social good.
Jean-Charles Samuelian, Founder
Co-founder & CTO of Digital Shadows
"I’m proud to support the Founders Pledge – there is real potential to make a meaningful and significant impact on the issues that concern us all."
James Chappell is the co-founder & CTO of Digital Shadows, the first company offering complete cyber situational awareness, protecting organisations from data loss & targeted cyber attacks. Headquartered in London & San Francisco, Digital Shadows services clients around the world, including some of the world’s biggest banks. In 2014 Digital Shadows was selected by the Bank of England to help define the CBEST framework for threat intelligence based security testing of the UK financial sector. James has over twelve years’ experience of technical information security acting as an advisor to large private sector & government organizations. Much of his work has involved counteracting the growth of crime & fraud in computer networks & developing effective ways of measuring & managing the information security big picture.
Chris is co-founder and CEO of Lyst, a fashion search platform. Previously, he was a VC investor at Benchmark Capital and Balderton Capital.
Chris has also been a startup mentor at programs including Seedcamp, Launchpad and Launch48. He has an MA in Physics and Philosophy from Cambridge University.
"I believe that every entrepreneur, regardless of the stage of their business should be able to help make a difference. The Founders Pledge makes that possible."
Andy McLoughlin is co-founder of Huddle, the enterprise cloud collaboration company.
Huddle is now used by more than 100,000 organisations worldwide and has raised more than $40M in venture funding from leading investors including Matrix Partners, Jafco Ventures, DAG Capital, In-Q-Tel (colloquially known as 'the venture arm of the CIA'), Eden Ventures, and WebEx founder Subrah Iyar.
A firm favourite with government organisations, Huddle works with 80% of central UK government departments, including the Cabinet Office and Crown Prosecution Service. Globally recognized brands such as SEGA, P&G, Kia Motors and Unilever also use Huddle to share and work on content with teams inside and outside of their organisations.
Based in San Francisco, Andy manages Huddle’s growing U.S. presence and is responsible for corporate development and product strategy. Andy is also an active early-stage angel investor, working with amazing companies like Pipedrive, Postmates, Buffer, Secret Escapes, Rolepoint, Intercom and Apiary.
"The Founder’s Pledge is a great way for entrepreneurs to get together to give back and make a much bigger positive impact on society as a collective than we can as individuals."
Alastair Paterson is the co-founder & CEO of Digital Shadows, the first company offering complete Cyber Situational Awareness, protecting organisations from data loss & targeted cyber attacks. Headquartered in London & San Francisco, Digital Shadows services clients around the world, including some of the world’s biggest banks. In 2014 Digital Shadows was selected by the Bank of England to help define the CBEST framework for threat intelligence based security testing of the UK financial sector. Alastair is a well-known industry spokesman with multiple appearances on Bloomberg, BBC World & CNN & was named in the Financial News’ Top 50 FinTech Innovators of 2015 & City AM’s 2015 FinTech Power List. In 2015 Alastair accompanied the UK Prime Minister on a cyber security trade mission to the USA. Alastair received a MEng in Computer Science from the University of Bristol.
Alastair is the CEO and co-founder of Digital Shadows, the first company to offer its customers complete Cyber Situational Awareness, protecting organisations from data loss and targeted cyber attack. Digital Shadows enables organisations to exploit social, cloud and mobile technologies while keeping their security and reputations intact. With its dual headquarters in London and San Francisco, Digital Shadows services clients around the world, including some of the world’s largest banks.
The company has been recognised for innovation by the UK Technology Strategy Board, SWIFT, Cisco and Gartner and was selected for the inaugural London FinTech Innovation Lab run by Accenture. In 2014 Digital Shadows was selected by the Bank of England to help define the CBEST framework for threat intelligence based security testing of the UK financial sector. In 2015 Alastair accompanied the Prime Minister David Cameron on his cyber security trade mission to the USA, shortly after which the company announced it had raised $8m in venture capital, led by Storm Ventures from Silicon Valley.
With multiple TV appearances on Bloomberg, BBC World, CNN and CNBC amongst others Alastair has become a well-known industry spokesman for cyber security and London’t technology scene in general.
Alastair was named in Computer Weekly’s top 10 rising stars of 2013, Financial News’ FinTech 50: Innovators shaping the future of finance 2015 and City AM’s 2015 FinTech Power List. Alastair co-authored ‘The Impact of Open Source Intelligence on Cybersecurity’, a chapter in the book Open Source Intelligence in the Twenty-First Century.
Alastair received a first class MEng from the University of Bristol in Computer Science and has spent most of his career working with secure government and FTSE 100 clients, specializing in ‘big data’ risk and intelligence projects.
Before founding Digital Shadows, Alastair was International Propositions Manager at BAE Systems Detica.
The Founder’s Pledge is a great way for entrepreneurs to get together and make a much bigger positive impact on society than we can as individuals.
Alastair Paterson, Cofounder
Co-founder of ustwo
"At ustwo our mission is to make a positive and measurable difference to the world through product development. Taking the Founders Pledge was a no brainer in terms of accelerating that mission. The pledge allows me to make a positive and measurable difference to the causes close to my heart."
Matt Miller is co-founder of ustwo, a digital product studio with offices in London, New York, Malmö & Sydney. Ustwo pushes the frontiers of digital product design to create some of the world’s best digital experiences & products. Ustwo is recognized for producing industry-changing technology. One of it’s biggest successes was the game ‘Monument Valley’ that won the Apple Design Award 2014, Apple Game of the Year 2014, 2 BAFTAs & 3 GDCs. In 2014, Matt also co-founded ustwo’s first joint venture, DICE, a music discovery & ticketing app. Matt’s true passion is inspiring & bringing people together; he brings unrivalled energy to his companies & has created a unique working culture focused on collaboration.
Before cofounding Vicarious, Scott was CEO of Frogmetrics (Y Combinator S2008), Entrepreneur in Residence at Founders Fund, CXO at OnlySecure (acquired by NetShops) and MarchingOrder (Ben Franklin Partners). Scott's design work has been featured in 16 magazines and 3 museums, including the Institute for Contemporary Art in Philadelphia. Scott earned his BAS in Computer Science and Entrepreneurship from the University of Pennsylvania.
Christian Faes is co-founder and CEO of LendInvest, the UK's leading online mortgage lender and one of the UK's fastest-growing FinTech companies. Christian and his business partner, Ian Thomas, launched LendInvest in 2013 to bring technology to the £1.2 trillion UK mortgage market, which is entirely offline and largely untouched by the FinTech movement. LendInvest's technology makes it easier and faster for creditworthy borrowers to access mortgage finance, and gives more people access to invest in secured property loans. Best known for its online investment platform, LendInvest also runs two discretionary, regulated funds for private clients and wealth managers, as well as several funding lines of behalf of UK and international banks.
Before LendInvest, Christian and Ian founded Montello which became one of the UK's leading short-term mortgage lenders, and out of which LendInvest was spun.
Christian is a qualified solicitor with corporate finance and real estate experience. He was previously a securitisation lawyer at Clifford Chance and in-house legal counsel for Deutsche Bank. Before founding Montello in 2008, Christian was involved in a mortgage lending business in his native Australia. Christian is also an active supporter of the FinTech and PropTech sectors, and an investor in startups such as Seedrs and Plentific.
Today, LendInvest is a well-capitalised and profitable company. By adopting a diversified lending model with a healthy mix of investors, the platform is well positioned for sustainable and sensible scale. To date, investors have invested more than £770m in loans to hundreds of borrowers to finance 2,600 new and rebuilt homes worth over £1.3 billion.
"The Founders Pledge is well aligned with my values and provides me with the opportunity to commit to social causes early on. Pledging publically comes with future responsibility that I am happy to take."
Rouven is Founding and Managing Partner of the Berlin-based (pre-)seed VC Cavalry Ventures at which he contributes his expertise in strategic decision making, e.g. investment strategies, portfolio management as well as fundraising support to back the growth of portfolio companies.
Prior to Cavalry, Rouven invested privately in more than 35 startups worldwide that have created over $1.5bn in shareholder value. Among them are companies such as Tradeshift (world's largest network for businesses), Simplesurance (leading online provider for product insurances).
Rouven started his career at KPMG as a consultant in the Financial Risk Management practice. He then supported Morten Sondergaard in his investment activities and joined the early/mid stage VC fund Capnamic Ventures.
Aside from being experienced in the digital economy, Rouven possesses strong ties to the old economy as he grew up closely connected to his family’s business, Dresselhaus GmbH & Co KG, one of the largest providers of screws and fastening parts in Europe. Other than taking the Founders Pledge, he is an avid supporter of and donor for YUNUS Social Business to generate sustainable social impact.
Rouven holds a M.Sc. in Business Administration from EBS Business School, Oestrich-Winkel (with distinction) and a Master of Finance from EAE Business School, Barcelona (honors).
"I've always been interested in applying the lessons I've learned about scaling companies to problems for which there's a social and moral imperative. Founders Forum For Good was an obvious way for me to formalize my commitment to making a difference, and leverage the dedication and resources of like-minded entrepreneurs."
Justin is co-founder and COO of DueDil a private company research tool for lead generation and credit risk management. DueDil has raised $24 million from US and European investors including Oak Investment Partners, Notion Capital, Passion Capital and a series of prominent angels, and is one of the fastest growing technology companies in the UK. Justin was previously involved with two other prominent venture-backed companies, establishing offices for them in Asia and Europe. He occasionally tweets @ojfutures.
Co-Founder & CPO
"Why wouldn’t someone make the pledge? Given it’s structured solely around an exit event I see no reason for anyone to veto given they’ll already be receiving some serious pocket money… The Founders Pledge represents a far more concrete intent to “do good” beyond generic CSR mantles and creates a win/win/win for the Triple Bottom Line of business conduct. It’s a fantastic initiative and I expect a myriad of authentic, people-centric founders sign-up."
Ry Morgan is Co-Founder & CPO of Unmind, a B2B mental health platform. Unmind provides clinically-backed tools and training to improve people's mental wellbeing – creating healthier, happier, more human organisations.
His prior venture, Yomp (from which he also pledged), was acquired in early 2016 by a global employee benefit provider. A big fan of almost all things tech/startup, Ry is always happy to connect with those passionate about the early-stage ecosystem. x
Co-founder & Head of Business Operations of Poq Studio
"I took the pledge because I believe that every business needs to give back to the society that allows it to thrive. Also, it's perfectly aligned with the goals as a startup founder creating a win win situation."
Michael Langguth is co-founder and head of business operations at Poq Studio, a mobile ecommerce platform that enables retailers to launch and maintain performance of mobile websites and shopping apps.
With clients including House of Fraser, Orla Kiely and Missguided, Poq Studio increases conversion rates and mobile revenue, whilst providing a delightful mobile shopping experience for customers.
Michael is a serial entrepreneur, having previously founded SIFE at University College London and HomeAbroad. Poq Studio is his second digital business.
Founder & CEO of Beamery
"As a founder it is often difficult to find the time for get involved with charitable endeavours. The Founders Pledge is a phenomenal initiative and superb way to bring like-minded people together to make a collective impact. I am honoured and humbled to be among many great entrepreneurs that are a part of this."
Abakar is the founder & CEO of Beamery, the world’s most advanced Sourcing and Recruitment Marketing platform on a mission to make recruitment better by empowering companies to treat candidates like customers, and focus on communication not process. Abakar started his career at Goldman Sachs and went on to be an investor at Francisco Partners, a technology focused private equity fund. He holds a first class honours in Economics from the University of Warwick.
"Knowing that any exit or profit made from the business will go to insanely great causes makes me a massive fan of the pledge. By attempting to change the world, we can make greater impact together."
Adit graduated from UCL with a MEng in Computer Science and then co-founded Lingumi, an interactive method for early years language learning. He loves building new tech products, reading books on personal development and drinking beer.
"I made the pledge as I want to be a part of a growing trend for those that succeed at capitalism to return wealth to the bottom of the stack. As entrepreneurship grows, it is so important that we become a beacon of social responsibility and not just another swelling body of greed."
Alex Foster trained as an engineer and having self-taught entrepreneurship through a series of (increasingly successful) startups, spent some time in mergers and aquisitions and venture capiltal. His current startup, WeSeeThrough, has just raised a seed round from several ex-founders, angels and the Saatchi guys. Alex has been giving away 50% or more of his income since university, is an active early member of the effective altruist movement and one of the founders of the Earning to Give movement. Alex believes that giving should be about reducing dispair - not vanity. Alex is a massive fan of this new Founders Pledge and keen to help however possible.
"I am very grateful to Founders Pledge for giving me a simple and seamless way to give back as an entrepreneur and amplify my impact beyond my natural ecosystem of start ups"
Alexis Bonte is the co-founder and CEO of eRepublik Labs, a dynamic games studio that gifts you moments of joy through games you can play with friends on any device. More than 6 million players worldwide have enjoyed its first game eRepublik.com and 1,5 million have already installed the recently launched Age of Lords. Prior to Erepublik Labs, Alexis was with lastminute.com as Managing Director (Italy). Alexis is also an angel investor with numerous investments mainly in the Internet space in Europe.
In 2012 the World Economic Forum (Davos) recognized Alexis as a Young Global Leader (YGL).
"The Founders Pledge represents something that is very closely aligned with the inherent aspirations of most startup founders. I think most of us want to make positive changes in meaningful and scaleable ways. The pledge feels like exactly that, along from the personal gratification of giving."
Andrew Crump is founder and CEO of Mitoo, a platform for the world’s sports where teams can share tables, fixtures, results and key statistics with their fans. Andrew also advises some start-ups.
The Founders Pledge represents something that is very closely aligned with the inherent aspirations of most startup founders.
Andrew Crump, Cofounder
Co-founder of Idio
"I believe that the journey is as important as the destination. Signing the Founders Pledge is important to me as one expression of a commitment to give back along the entrepreneurial journey."
Andrew is a co-founder of Idio, a predictive analytics platform that turns content into intelligence for clients such as JP Morgan, OpenText and Unicef. He previously co-founded a digital agency that built high-scale social media analytics systems for clients including O2, ITV and Number 10, and worked for Deloitte Consulting in their TMT division. When not writing in the 3rd person, he has a bias for action, enjoys working with problem-solvers, loves outdoor fun with his young family and relishes being the underdog.
Co-founder of Airlite
"Giving for me is the first step to appreciate the joy I continue to receive from this amazing world. Founders pledge made this even easier."
Arun Jayadev is a co-founder of AM Technology commercializing Airlite, an effective approach to mitigate air pollution, reduce the energy foot print and enhance lifecycle of built environment. He was previously a Venture Partner at Wellington Partners, a venture capital firm investing in the clean technology sector. He has served as advisor to Department of Energy and is a Kauffman Fellow from the Centre for Venture Education in Palo Alto. Prior to Wellington, Arun worked for two technology start-ups and a private equity fund.
Arun earned an MBA from IESE Business School, Barcelona and a Bachelor in Engineering from RVCE, Bangalore.
"I created Sober Grid to provide a vehicle to give back to the community, Founders Pledge is a tool in which I can fulfil our dream of giving back. Thank you for providing a way to do so."
Beau Mann is the founder and CEO of Sober Grid, the geo-social mobile networking app that connects sober people by allowing users to find one another based on their relative distance. Beau had the idea for Sober Grid while attending the Sundance Film Festival. Before starting Sober Grid, Beau helped a British software company expand into North America and become profitable after year 1. He also secured the largest contract in the company's 23 year history within his first year
"I guess you’re born with nothing and die with nothing so what happens in between that is important. The Founders Pledge was a very simple commitment to living and working for something more important than myself, and I’m keen for my kids to have that same commitment as they grow up."
Ben is co-founder of Unscriptd, the world’s first athlete publishing company and Cristiano Ronaldo was the first athlete to sign onto the platform in June 2015. Ben has spent the last 25 years in the sports & entertainment industry and is considered a global expert in sports marketing and storytelling.
Prior to Unscriptd, Ben was International Sports Marketing Director for NIKE Inc working with many of the world’s most famous athletes and teams to develop an emotional connection through uncovering the story behind the story and making a connection on not just a sporting level but also a human level.
Ben signed up to Founders Pledge in New York recently for the simple reason of reminding himself of the bigger picture of giving back to society. He was inspired by a quote from Karl Reiland: “in about the same degrees that you are helpful to others you will be happy”.
"Helping people has always been a big part of what drives me as a person. The knowledge that the time I have invested in a project has made an impact in helping the lives of others is something that fills me with inspiration."
Benjamin holds a Master’s degree in Communication Management with an emphasis in International relations and is trilingual. Originally from Paris, he founded iLemon in 2011, an advertising agency that helps companies to enhance their visual identity and automotive suppliers to design their booths for worldwide Auto-Shows. In early 2016, Benjamin moved to London as Co-Founder at AlertFilm, an app dedicated to movie lovers which helps you to track of all your favourite movies and notifies you when they are available on all your platforms.
"As a cancer survivor, I learned early in life that all the money in the world means nothing if you are not healthy. Taking the Founders Pledge and helping people through charity:water to get the most basic resource for a healthy living - clean water - is the least I can do to say thank you for still being alive."
Boris Pfeiffer is the founder and CEO of Riddle.com, where users can create interactive content, such as opinion polls and quizzes, for free. Starting companies has always been Boris' passion, setting up his first company when he was just 17 - importing American football and baseball equipment. Since then he has sarted multiple companies and set up the European operations for NetObjects Inc. and Kabam. He also worked as General Manager Europe for Monster.com’s internet advertising division. Boris is a husband and father of 2 wild boys, who keep him busy with all sorts of fun sport activities whenever he's not working.
CEO of Open Signal
"What really motivates us as founders is the impact we can have and the Founders Pledge is a great initiative to increase that further."
Brendan Gill is the CEO and Co-Founder of OpenSignal, a company that uses crowdsourced sensor networks to collect information on cellular networks, Wi-Fi hotspots and even the weather.
Previously, Brendan founded an e-commerce company based in California and studied physics at Oxford University. He is also an investor and mentor at the startup accelerator. However, the highlight of his professional career remains his days as a lifeguard at the local pool.
Engaging in philanthropy following a successful exit is one way a founder can recognise the good fortune inherent in success and 'give something back'.
I learned about Founders Pledge a year or so before my own exit, and quickly saw the value in both encouraging founders to commit to giving, and also providing a framework to facilitate the effective use of donations.
BEN MEDLOCK – CO-FOUNDER, SWIFTKEY
Engaging in philanthropy following a successful exit is one way a founder can recognise the good fortune inherent in success and “give something back”. I learned about Founders Pledge a year or so before my own exit, and quickly saw the value in both encouraging founders to commit to giving, and also providing a framework to facilitate the effective use of donations.
Following the exit, Founders Pledge helped me to think through where I should donate to maximise impact and to explore some of the more challenging questions around my motivation for giving. The process was efficient and painless, and I’m looking forward to working further with the team in future.
Altruism is always a combination of emotional and rational motivations, and it gives our lives a purpose.
Seeing Founders Pledge apply data-science to charitable giving was fascinating and really reaffirmed that this initiative was the one for me.
SARAH WOOD – FOUNDER, UNRULY
What I really like about Founders Pledge is that I feel like part of a movement. It is also very true to our mission at Unruly, measuring impact and sharing a message. Altruism is always a combination of emotional and rational motivations, and it gives our lives a purpose. Seeing Founders Pledge apply data-science to charitable giving was fascinating and really reaffirmed that this initiative was the one for me.
What I most liked about the process was that I was locked in. Sounds daft or even slightly scary, I know, but how many times do you think ‘oh I am totally going to do that’ and then it somehow falls down your priority list and you never get around to it.
I know if I hadn’t signed a Founders Pledge, that would have been me too.
ALEX DEPLEDGE – FOUNDER AND CEO, HASSLE.com
Hand on heart, I had never thought about exiting Hassle.com – of course I made up some companies that might buy us for my pitch deck, but I hadn’t actually ever thought I would exit or what that meant. So when I did, I actually found it quite traumatic. Oh, I know... first world problems and all that, but here I was - suddenly wealthy - and all I felt was guilt that I didn’t deserve it. Founders Pledge was a balm to that. A strange kind of therapy.
Signing up to Founders Pledge was very real for me because I was negotiating our sale at the same time. It wasn’t some far off event. I gave it very detailed thought and, quite frankly, it turned out to be a no brainer.
What I most liked about the process was I was locked in. Sounds daft or even slightly scary, I know, but how many times do you think ‘oh I am totally going to do that’ and then it somehow falls down your priority list and you never get around to it. I know if I hadn’t signed a Founders Pledge, that would have been me too.
What I was most surprised about is the level of support I received. The deployment team listened to what I was most passionate about (Mental Health and Sex Slavery of Women), went away, and then came back with a comprehensive research report that highlighted the best way I could support those charities. They identified the best charities in terms of outcomes, data-driven giving and transparency. I now know that the money I’ve donated will actually help to free women from sexual slavery. That means a lot to me. I know the outcome and the impact I have had. My giving was effective.
What I have been most impressed with is the connection to like-minded, off-the-chart empathetic, thoughtful and in some cases mind-blowingly bright people. The Founders Pledge dinners host fascinating speakers that have really opened my eyes to how much good and impact even small efforts can have. At Founders Pledge Forum I left with my intellect slightly bruised, but walking taller and more full of hope than I had been in years.
What I am most in love with is David Goldberg. He’s not only wicked smart, so I know my giving is in safe hands, but he has assembled a world-class team around him. He has started a movement - one I am very proud to be a part of!