"Been there, seen it, done it" probably sums me up best! A serial entrepreneur, I've founded a number of companies - some spectacular successes, some even more spectacular failures! I invented the range of Quest Games, with Scottish Quest alone having sold over 100,000 copies, and have over 20 years investment experience, founding, investing in, mentoring and nurturing a range of early stage technology and retail companies throughout the UK. www.scottish-quest.com
In my time I have served on over 30 boards and worked with a wide portfolio of technology companies – from pharmaceuticals and polymers, to prosthetics and optics – in a variety of Director, Chief Executive, fundraiser and advisor/mentor roles, as well as managing two early stage technology venture capital funds. I was the first Chairman of Touch Bionics, the world-leading upper limb prosthetics company, sold in 2016 for £27.5million.
I am currently focused on Emotional Sciences Ltd, an incredible computational linguistics company that detects emotions and the causes of emotions from any type of media. Our products "read between the lines" of what is being communicated and determine what people are really feeling at an emotional level. A variety of applications, such as wellness in the workplace, risk management and cyber security, and true game-changing technology. www.emotionalsciences.com
I also work with The Security Circle Ltd, which specialises in cyber security training and consultancy. As you can see, a bit of a theme here - security is my main area of interest right now - but I love working with all types of early stage companies, no matter what the sector. www.thesecuritycircle.com
I firmly believe it's important to give back and help others, so I mentor a number of young people, and I am proud to be Chairman of Women's Enterprise Scotland (WES), a Community Interest Company (CIC) which helps female entrepreneurs in Scotland start up and grow their companies. www.wescotland.co.uk
I am privileged to have recently been appointed Chairman of Scotland Advisory Board for Unicef UK, the world’s leading largest organisation working specifically for children and children’s rights.
I am a long-standing member of the Edinburgh Napier University Campaign Advisory Board – where I did my first degree in Life Sciences - and I am on the Edinburgh Napier University Business School Advisory Board. Together with my colleagues there we have recently launched a wonderful programme on Leadership in Board Governance (LiBG)...or, as I prefer to think of it...courses in Common Sense!
Other current (government) advisory roles include membership of the APPG on Women in Enterprise (UK), membership of the CPG on Women in Enterprise (Scotland), membership of the Ministerial Review Group (Enterprise and Skills - Scotland) and membership of the Strategic Labour Market Group (Scotland), all focused on diversity and entrepreneurs.
And when not working and giving back, I enjoy swimming, skiing, scuba-diving, travelling and eating really, really, really hot curries...