To select our 20 Under 20, we’ve brought together some of the most experienced and well-connected entrepreneurs, investors and experts in Europe.
Taavet likes things that are simple, reliable, and cost no more than they should. As Skype's first employee, he helped build a company that has changed hundreds of millions of lives. He’s also since helped various companies as an angel investor and advisor. At TransferWise, Taavet looks after marketing, product development, PR, and investor relations.
Niklas Zennström is CEO and Founding Partner at Atomico. He is an experienced technology investor and entrepreneur, having previously co-founded and managed globally successful technology companies including Skype, Kazaa and Joltid.
In 2006, Niklas founded the venture capital firm, Atomico, to help entrepreneurs, primarily from Europe, to scale their businesses globally. Atomico has partnered with and supported a growing number of highly successful technology companies, including Supercell, Klarna, Rovio, and many more. It raised its fourth fund in 2016, which was the largest independent venture capital fund ever raised in Europe. In addition to overseeing Atomico’s strategy, he works closely with a number of founders of portfolio companies and sits on the boards of Rovio, Mapillary, Pipedrive, Lilium and Farmdrop. Niklas is most excited about founders that are solving major world problems using digital technology.
Tijen Onaran is an entrepreneur, presenter and speaker. With startup affairs, she advises companies in PR and public relations work as well as in building and maintaining communities. With her Global Digital Women initiative, she supports networking and visibility of women in the digital industry. Tijen Onaran also publishes regularly as a member of the Handelsblatt Expert Council. She was appointed to the Faculty Board for "Digital Leadership" at the Management School St. Gallen. Before becoming self-employed, Ms. Onaran worked for members of the European Parliament and the Bundestag, for the Office of the Federal President, as well as for associations and a university in leading positions. She was voted Germany's top 40 among 40 by Capital magazine and declared top publisher by XING in 2018. Every week the podcast How to Hack is published in cooperation with Business Punk. 2019 she will publish her first book “Die Netzwerkbibel” at Springer Gabler.
Adam is the co-founder of innocent drinks, now the biggest juice brand in Europe. He led the international expansion to exit when he and his two co-founders sold their controlling stake to Coca Cola in 2013, they remain on the Board as advisors. He is also the co-founder of Jam Jar Investments, a venture capital firm which invests in consumer facing, high growth businesses such as Deliveroo, Tails.com, Bulb Energy, Babylon Health, Simba Sleep and Papier. Before this he held roles at McKinsey (London and Johannesburg) and Virgin. He read Economics at St John's College, Cambridge. Adam founded the Balon Family Foundation which primarily focuses on education and is a Trustee of the innocent foundation, which gives ten percent of innocent’s profits each year to charity.
Phoebe is CEO and co-founder of Brolly, the startup that’s changing the way insurance works. Powered by AI, Brolly helps people understand what insurance they need, finds the best policies and then helps manage them simply and easily. Phoebe developed the idea for Brolly at Entrepreneur First. She was previously an underwriter and product manager at insurance company, Aviva. Prior to founding Brolly, Phoebe co-founded Ambition First, a diversity and inclusion initiative that supports emerging business talent.
Suzanne Ashman is a Partner at LocalGlobe, a London-based VC fund. LocalGlobe has been seeding companies for almost two decades, backing companies including Zoopla, Citymapper, Improbable, Robinhood and TransferWise. Suzanne enjoys working with entrepreneurs using technology to solve some of humanity’s greatest challenges, from healthcare to agriculture, and education to space. Across all sectors, Suzanne is looking for practical science fiction and ambitious founders that are building groundbreaking businesses. Previously, Suzanne spent five years at Social Finance, an impact investing firm seeking to generate both social change and a return on capital.
Robin Wauters is a seasoned European technology journalist and founding editor of Tech.eu, the premier source of European technology news, data analysis and market intelligence. He was formerly the European Editor of The Next Web, and before that a senior editor at TechCrunch.
Rose won the TransferWise 20 Under 20 in 2018 and received a £10,000 investment for her ethical lip balm company, Pura Cosmetics. She impressed Taavet in the final pitching round with her strong sales pipeline and clear understanding of the ethical beauty industry. As winner of the 20 Under 20, Rose has been featured in The Telegraph and she's the youngest entrepreneur to ever appear on BBC Business Live. Rose founded her company with only £25 from her Yorkshire home and is now selling her products online, at events and fairs, and in stores across Yorkshire. Last year she turned over £50,000.