Meet our Speakers!
Project Manager, Bank of Lithuania
Andrius Adamonis works as a Project Manager at the Bank of Lithuania, by the Digital transformation and advanced analytics division, and he is leading the LBChain – blockchain sandbox project. Andrius graduated his Master’s degree in computer science at Vilnius Gedimino Technical University, theses: Research of Blockchain technology. Andrius was a member of OECD Blockchain Expert Advisory Board, while he got interested into blockchain since 2016. He is an active speaker in various local and international conferences.
Co-founder, Head of Service & Product Design, GivingStreets
Elena Avatangelou is Co-founder and Head of Product Design at GivingStreets, a social enterprise enabling cashless donations to vulnerable groups and charities. She has been actively involved in Open Innovation projects for more than twenty years as a research consultant and project coordinator, working with and managing multi-national, interdisciplinary teams, driving all phases from concept definition to go-to-market strategy and pivoting. Elena is also a Design Thinking facilitator and coach, aiming at improving her clients’ product offering, services, and internal procedures. Her empathy skills, combined with her technological background, enable her to design services and solutions that resonate with and give value to end users of all ages and backgrounds. She is also founder of the Young Thinkers Club, training children and teenagers on the principles of empathy and user-centered design, and volunteers as domain expert at 50plus Hellas, a non-profit organization supporting and empowering people above 50 years of age in Greece. Her fields of expertise include social and financial inclusion, wellness, culture, and education.
Head of Finance Department, Hefboom
Piet Callens graduated as Master of Business Economics. He started his professional career at Flemish Public radio and television (VRT) and took the opportunity to become commercial manager. Piet was responsible for media sponsoring. He built a wide network in the Flemish cultural and creative sectors (CCS).
In 2008, Piet made his entry into the financial world and became investment manager at CultuurInvest, a venture capital fund CCS. Today, Piet leads the finance department at Hefboom. Hefboom supports social-profit organisation and enterprises, by granting credits, consultancy and offering services (www.hefboom.be). Through Impulskrediet Hefboom also grants microcredits to entrepreneurs who are not able to get a loan with a bank (www.impulskrediet.be). In 2018 Hefboom started granting cultural loans (www.cultuurkrediet.be) to the CCS in close cooperation with the Flemish government and Cultuurloket, a consultancy agency for the cultural sector. Piet has experience in developing and managing additional financing products for individuals, organisations and enterprises having difficulties in accessing traditional finance, such as SME’s active in cultural sector, social-profit sector, etc.. He truly believes that additional financing products developed in close cooperation with public and private partners are key to finance social and economic welfare in a sustainable way.
Co-founder and CEO, Fyorin
James Camilleri is the co-founder and CEO of a fintech start-up, Fyorin. With all the co-founding team being Maltese, Fyorin is changing the fabric of business banking, on an international level.
Before Fyorin, he has spent a decade doing international business, on a B2B level, in the area of sales & marketing and business strategy. Whereby he was instrumental in generating millions of euros for the companies he represented. His industry experience ranges from IT software to fintech to iGaming.
Head of Acceleration, MAZE – decoding impact
Rita Casimiro leads Maze X, our pan-European impact startup accelerator, where she works side-by-side with our startups to help them live to their highest potential and impact. Previously was a finance analyst at CrossRail in the UK and was also a consultant in Aga Khan Foundation. BSc in Management from Bath University and MSc in Management from NOVA SBE.
De Paula Coelho Francisco
Dean, EIB Institute
Francisco de Paula Coelho is the Dean of the EIB Institute. Prior to that he was Director for EIB Operations in Asia and Latin America (2004-2015), after having been Director of the Department for Planning and Settlement of Operations in the EIB Financial Directorate (2000-2004).
Francisco started his career at the EIB in 1987, as a loan officer for the ACP countries. In 1989, he became Manager of the EIB’s bond portfolio at the Treasury Department after which he became Head of the Loans Back Office. After graduating from Solvay Business School, University of Brussels, and before joining the EIB, Francisco de Paula Coelho held successively the following positions: financial analyst with Unido, assistant lecturer in Economics at the University of Lisbon and consultant in investment promotion for Emerging Countries in New York, before joining the World Bank, in Washington DC.
Chairman, Founder, IMPACT Ventures Lt.
Elemér Eszter founder and CEO of PBG FMC Ltd. (VC fund since 2014) and chairman of the Board of Directors at IMPACT Ventures Lt. (Impact VC fund since 2018). He graduated as a historian, and studied political sciences and economics in the United States. Afterwards he became a serial entrepreneur. Between 2004 and 2008, he was the cofounder of Cryo-Innovation Inc., which was acquired in 2012 by the Swedish public listed company Vitrolife. In 2009, Elemér contributed to the founding of SSP Inc. in the US on behalf of investors and is an observer member of the board ever since. In 2015, he was a cofounder of the Hungarian Social Impact Investors Association and from 2017 the President of the Association. Elemér is also a Supervisory Board member of Susterra Ltd., a fund management company which will manage the Water Impact Fund specializing in water and environmental impact investing. Since 2019, Elemér Eszter is the Chairman of the Hungarian Ventura Capital Association.
Executive Director, EUROCROWD
Oliver founded EUROCROWD as an international NGO in 2013, serving since as Executive Director and Chairman. The past decade, Oliver has worked with venture capital, microfinance, technology and social entrepreneurship in both commercial and non-profit settings in Europe and the USA. A former journalist, he started his career in the early 1990s in the publishing and business information industries. Oliver holds Master’s degrees from Solvay Business School and from the University of Hamburg and studied at SEESS (UCL) in London. Oliver is a member of the Executive Board of EUROCROWD.
Deputy Director, Equity Investments & Guarantees, European Investment Fund
Uli Grabenwarter, is Deputy Director – Equity Investments at European Investment Fund (EIF). In this capacity he oversees EIF’s activities in Venture Capital, Impact Investing, and Technology Transfer, with EIF being Europe’s biggest Fund-of-Funds Investment platform in these markets. Previously he was responsible for EIF’s strategic development in the equity space and in this context has led the build-up of the Social Impact Accelerator, the first pan-European social impact investing fund-of-funds. From 2010 to 2012 he conducted a 20 months research project on impact investing in collaboration with IESE University of Navarra in Barcelona and the Family Office Circle Foundation based in Switzerland, analysing best-market-practices for impact investing in the private equity and venture capital space. He is a visiting Professor for Private Equity and Venture Capital at IESE University and is an angel investor in life sciences companies. Since 2018 he is a Trustees of the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment (www.GSGII.org) and serves on the Board of several asset management companies and family office structures. He regularly publishes articles and white papers on venture capital and impact investing. Uli is also member of several expert groups on impact investing and impact metrics across Europe. Uli holds a Master’s degree in Business and Finance of the University of Graz.
CEE Regional Director, SME Banking Club
Olena Gryniuk is responsible for the development of the SME Banking Club in the CEE region. Before getting involved in the SME Banking Club activities, Olena
was in charge of SME products and sales in Raiffeisen Bank and Eurobank groups. The SME Banking Club was established by a team of former SME bankers in 2010
as a professional network of bankers to exchange information and experiences
in the segments of micro, small and medium-sized businesses. The SME Banking Club organizes regional SME banking conferences and webinars that bring together financial institutions, technology companies, and development finance institutions to share knowledge, spur innovation and promote the growth of SMEs in the region. Moreover, it provides its members with access to detailed analytical market reports and annual studies. SME Banking Club’s main activities are focused on Central and Eastern Europe.
Head of Social Impact Investments, European Investment Fund
Cyril Guiffes has been an investment manager within the venture capital team of EIF for the last seven years. Since 2019, he is heading the team in charge of managing EIF equity social impact investments and portfolio, from social impact funds investments, social impact bonds and investments in impact incubators. His entire career within EIF has been dedicated to impact related activities, starting with microfinance in 2008. In this context, he was responsible for the implementation of the JASMINE programme, an EU initiative aimed at boosting the institutional capacity of microfinance institutions in Europe. Prior to joining EIF, Cyril gained unique field experience working with microfinance institutions in the Middle East.
Information Security & Risk Management Expert, Macroprudential Policy Section, Financial Stability Department, Regulatory Sandbox Project Coordinator, Bank of Greece
Dr. Alexandros Kaliontzoglou obtained his Diploma in Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2000 and his Ph.D. in information systems security in 2006 from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece. He has extensive experience in the consultant and banking industries and has participated in several E.C. research projects in the fields of information systems security, e-business and e-government. He has over 20 scientific publications in the above areas. Since 2009 he has been working as an expert in information systems security and risk management for the Financial Stability Department of the Bank of Greece. He has worked for 10 years in the field of Payment Systems Oversight, with significant contribution in payment instrument related policy development, especially in the context of PSD2. Since 2019, he has been working in Macroprudential Policy, and his responsibilities currently focus on FinTech, cyber security and real estate related risks. He has been a member of the Bank of Greece FinTech Hub team since March 2019 and the coordinator of the team since April 2021. He is the coordinator of the Bank of Greece team that contributed to the implementation of the Regulatory Sandbox project and member of the Regulatory Sandbox Operations Team. He represents the Bank of Greece in the ESRB European Systemic Cyber Group, the European Forum of Innovation Facilitators and the Eurosystem Innovation (Innov8) Forum.
Senior Editor, Researcher, Investment Monitor
Sofia Karadima is a senior editor and researcher at Investment Monitor, focusing on FDI in financial services and ESG investing. Prior to Investment Monitor, she covered institutional investment across private markets for financial news and research provider Acuris. She has reported on private equity, venture capital, private debt and infrastructure, among other topics. Sofia is currently based in London, after living in Chile, Denmark, Spain and Greece.
Executive Director, Alliance of Microfinance Organizations
Goran Lazarevski holds a Master of Science in Economy Degree in International Management and a Bachelor Degree in Economy, both from the Ss. Cyril and Methodius University of Skopje as well as a Bachelor diploma in Applied economics of the Moessinger Institute in Zuerich, Switzerland. At his positions as COO, CEO and Management Board President as well as Director of the office in Kosovo for a leading ICT system-integrator, he had the opportunity to work on financial management challenges, liquidity and cash-flow issues and resource optimization, business transparency and ethics, corporate governance principles and introduction of best practices in the field of operational management, finance, sales, marketing and research/development in the ICT business.
After four years as Senior Advisor at the USAID’ Investment Development and Export Advancement Project, in charge of the Public-Private Dialogue (PPD) Component, working with a wide range of stakeholders from the public, private and civil sector to
1) improve existent forms of PPD (business associations, clusters, chambers of commerce etc.), 2) introduce new mechanisms for a national-level PPD and 3) work on the review and improving of the national public consultation platform ENER to strengthen an inclusive and transparent approach in the regulatory legislation process. As Senior Advisor, he continued his work in the field of PPD, Sustainable business, CSR as General Manager of the Center for Development Policies IDEAS DePo Skopje.
In the past years he continued his activity as expert lecturer, speaker, presenter at different conference and events focusing on Access to finance and financial management as well as a mentor for SME’s and large businesses in obtaining financial assets and sustainable liquidity to overcome cash-flow challenges. In his capacity as executive director of the Alliance of Microfinance organizations and Director of the USAID Microfinance Innovation and financial inclusion Project, focusing on access to finance for SME’s and financial literacy, procurement of new IT platforms for the leading microfinance organizations, development of Fintech solutions, compliance and trainings of personnel of non-banking microfinance institutions as well as PPD, in the field of lobbying and advocacy, working with the regulators and the civil sector to improve existent legislation and introduce new policies. Goran specializes in Management, Access to finance; Traditional and alternate Financial instruments and financial literacy of businesses; PPD, Policy creation, lobbying, advocacy, Business enabling environment, Regulatory Impact Assessment/Inclusive Legislation drafting, CSR/Sustainable business, legal reforms, public-private partnerships, industrial policy, Regulatory Guillotine and E-Society and E-Government solutions in different areas as well as Access to finance and mechanisms to financial inclusion.
CEO, deVere E-Money
Dimitris Litsikakis holds a BSc in Information Technology from Piraeus University and a MSc in Project Management from Lancaster University. He worked at IBM UK as a Project Manager delivering large scale IT projects. He then joined Edenred Greece as Digital Transformation Manager where he led the entire digitalization of the company’s solution offering, issuing hundreds of thousands of prepaid cards to beneficiaries. In 2018 he was appointed Country Manager Greece, Cyprus & Malta for Revolut the fastest growing FinTech in Europe with a $1.7B valuation, delivering 400% client growth. He’s now spearheading the digital transformation of deVere Group, a financial consultancy with global presence, delivering cutting edge FinTech solutions. Since 2014, he also acts as Athens Chapter Director for Startup Grind, the largest independent startup community, actively educating, inspiring, and connecting entrepreneurs.
CEO and Founder, La Bolsa Social
José Moncada is CEO and founder of Bolsa Social, a community of impact investors and social enterprises built around a crowdequity platform created in 2015
in Madrid. Bolsa Social was the first platform authorised in Spain by the CNMV and the first that provided positive social and financial returns to the investors. Bolsa Social counts with a community of 7,500 impact investors and has channeled 5M to 25 social enterprises.
As from October 2019 José leads Bolsa Social Impacto, a €20M impact Fund. In his previous life, José worked in financial policy at the Public Treasury (Madrid), the European Commission (Brussels) and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA, Paris). José teaches Financial Markets at the University of
La Sorbonne, in Paris.
International Relations Manager, Qredits
Evelyne Oprel is International Relations Manager for Qredits and has been with the organization for nine years. She maintains close relations with international peer and network organizations and was actively involved in setting up Qredits locations in the Caribbean Netherlands over the past few years. Prior to her joining Qredits, she worked for several non-profit organizations in Central and Eastern Europe and lived and worked in the US for 15 years. She has a background in International Business & Languages and Communication.
Network Services, Product Manager, SIA S.p.A.
Mattia Ozzello is an industrial engineer with a Master in Business Administration and a Master of Science in Digital currency.
Covering the PM position in SIA, Mattia has been committed to grow the services based on SIAchain, which is the private infrastructure developed by SIA, enabling to create innovative blockchain applications. SIAchain aims to support mission critical business applications targeted to Financial Institutions, Corporate and Public Administrations, ensuring high level of transparency, confidentiality and security. To date, 104 banks connect daily to a private network hosted on SIAchain to reconcile their mutual interbank accounts.
CEO & Founder, a-Quant
Thomas Papapolyzos is CEO & founder of a-Quant, an AI & machine learning based algorithmic trading company. A serial entrepreneur, having founded companies in the fields of Internet, Financial Services, Consulting, SW development. Thomas received his Bachelor of Science in Physics from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece (1985-1990) and his Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from the New York University (NYU) Tandon School of Engineering, USA (1990 – 1992). Being a trader for more than 25 years and an owner of a Brokerage firm for more than 3 years, he has assembled a first class team with experts in trading, investments & machine learning in order to develop powerful tools for institutional and individual professional traders & investors. The first suite of tools for traders & investors based on machine learning for Stocks, Cryptos, Indices, Commodities & Currencies markets is available to use by downloading the a-quant mobile app from Appstore and GooglePlay. The “a-quant” app is among the 5 most downloadable trading apps in AppStore.
Project Manager & Communication Officer, Goteo
Chiara Rutolo is Project manager and Communication officer with a high level of proficiency in multiple languages, experience working in diverse cultural contexts, and a burning ambition towards a sustainable and collaborative future. She is currently involved in Mediterranean wide projects in the field of sustainable development, cultural innovation and exchanges, integration, social inclusion and education. Thanks to her experience travelling, working and studying in different countries around the Mediterranean, she developed a proactive mindset that made her capable of successfully working across cultural differences and merging communities. Her academic background is in EU-Southern Mediterranean relations, languages, history, literature, intercultural communication, human development, migration studies and decentralized cooperation. Currently is the person in charge of the Blue Crowdfunding project for Goteo. She is also specializing in the field of training on crowdfunding and alternative financing through the innovative participatory methodologies that distinguish the organization.
Professor, Munich Business School, Co-founder, European Center for Social Finance
Dr. Barbara Scheck is the Professor for Entrepreneurship at Munich Business School and co-founder of the European Center for Social Finance. Her research focuses on the financing of social enterprises, impact and mission-related investing and impact assessment. Prior to joining MBS, Barbara was assistant professor for social investment at Hamburg University. During her Ph.D. she has developed the Social Reporting Standard, guidelines for impact-oriented reporting. Other significant experiences include consulting for a social venture capital fund and projects for development cooperation agencies on social entrepreneurship. She was a Visiting Fellow at the Asia Centre for Social Entrepreneurship & Philanthropy at NUS National University of Singapore and is a co-founder of the digital mentoring platform Volunteer Vision. Barbara was a member of the EU’s GECES subgroup on impact measurement in social enterprise and the Impact Measurement Working Group of the Social Impact Investment Task Force established by the G8. She is member of the investment committee at GLS Treuhand.
Barbara holds a Diplôme de Grande Ecole and MSc from the European School of Management where she studied International Business Administration in Paris, Oxford and Berlin and a PhD from Technical University Munich.
Project Manager, CFO, KEPA
Neoklis Stamkos is an Economist holding an MBA in Business Administration. Neoklis acts as Chief Financial Officer at the Business and Cultural Development Centre (KEPA) and Head of Microcredit Department at KEPA. Neoklis is an experienced professional in financial management and services. He is a Certified Expert in Microfinance, by Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, from which he received Microfinance Center award of Financial Inclusion Ambassador for his efforts to stimulate microfinance in Greece, being one of the leaders of alternative financing of MSMEs, including micro-lending in Greece.
He has been working with KEPA for more than 10 years, acting as the Head of KEPA’s office in Brussels between 2011–2015, and as supervisor of the Department for International & European Projects. Additionally, he performed as an evaluator of investment projects of ROP / CSF III, responsible of the department of inspections for ongoing projects of NSFR 2007-2013 “1st call for Strengthening of Micro and Small Enterprises”.
Co-Founder & Chief Risk Officer, Finclude (f.k.a. Verge.Capital)
Ioanna Stanegloudi is a seasoned credit risk professional with 18+ years of experience in the banking & management consulting industry. She has served in positions related to credit risk assessment, management and mitigation. She possesses significant experience within the fields of financial business modeling, as well as financial analytics for financial institutions and management consulting firms. She has held senior executive positions with firms like EY and Grant Thornton.
Ioanna is the co-founder & Chief Risk Officer of Verge.Capital, a pan-European credit scoring provider for individuals that assesses affordability & creditworthiness through behavioral analysis on their transactional data. Verge.Capital was one of the ten finalists of a Global Female Founders competition powered by Microsoft’s Venture Fund and was the winner of the New Venture competition at 300K Entrepreneurs challenge of NYU Stern (May 2019). Verge.Capital and has won numerous awards and distinctions, since its founding (July 2018) and it was included in the Youth Solution Report for 2019 with the 50 solutions globally who promote the UN’s SDGs. Ioanna is also included in the “Fortune 40 under 40” list for Greece for 2019.
Deputy Minister for Development & Investments, Hellenic Republic
Yannis Tsakiris holds a BSc and an MSc in Mining Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens and an MBA degree from the Management School of the Imperial College in London.
He started his career in 1995 in S&B Industrial Minerals, a European major industrial minerals producer where he spent 5 years in production, marketing and sales in charge of new products. From 2000 to 2006, he was Partner in Vectis Capital, a venture capital fund based in Athens with an investment focus in Greece and the Balkans.
He joined Europe Investment Fund in 2006 as a Principal involved in certain European venture capital markets that were under development phase. Then he continued as Head of Region in the Regional Business Development Division, responsible for South-Eastern Europe and Head of Unit for Special Programmes in the Institutional Business Development Division. He was appointed Head of Division for South-eastern Europe and EU Neighbouring Countries in the Mandate Management Department and he continued as Head of Division for Business Development. He has set-up and developed several investment and SME financing initiatives and platforms such as Equifund for Greece, Western Balkan Enterprise Development & Innovation Facility, JEREMIE for Greece and Cyprus, Portuguese Venture Capital Initiative for Portugal, the Grater Anatolia Guarantee Facility for Turkey, DCFTA Guarantee Facility for Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova, etc.
From January 2015 until July 2019, he was Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund (“GEEREF”) which is an innovative public-private Venture Capital fund of funds catalysing equity capital into clean energy projects in developing countries and economies in transition. He is also an adjunct professor in Venture Capital in the Luxembourg School of Finance of the University of Luxembourg.
Head of Account Management, meniga
Eleni has over than 18 years working experience mainly in financial services & fintech. She is currently Head of Account Management in Meniga, an Icelandic software provider, where she joined in 2012 as a Sales Director. Her main responsibility is fostering relationships with financial institutions, strategic partnerships & existing customers. The team is overseeing and maintaining an on-going collaboration with existing customers in more than 35 countries across the globe.
Prior to that, Eleni was working in Citi & Piraeus Bank, supporting digital banking projects in Greece. Eleni was named in “Women in Fintech PowerList” and shortlisted in “Greek International Women Awards”. She is also a Mentor in ‘’Women in Banking & Finance’’ (WIBF) and ‘’Reload Greece’’ organisations. She holds a BSc Degree in Economics from National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.
Zilgalvis Pēteris J.D.
Head of Unit, Digital Innovation and Blockchain
DG CONNECT, European Commission
Pēteris Zilgalvis is the Head of Unit for Digital Innovation and Blockchain in the Digital Single Market Directorate in DG CONNECT and is the Co-Chair of the European Commission FinTech Task Force. He was the Visiting EU Fellow at St. Antony’s College, University of Oxford for 2013-14, where was an Associate of the Political Economy of Financial Markets Programme. From 1997 to 2005, he was Deputy Head of the Bioethics Department of the Council of Europe, in its Directorate General of Legal Affairs. In addition, he has held various positions in the Latvian civil service (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Environment). He was Senior Environmental Law Advisor to the World Bank/Russian Federation Environmental Management Project and was Regional Environmental Specialist for the Baltic Countries at the World Bank. He has been a member of the California State Bar since 1991, completed his J.D. at the University of Southern California, his B.A. in Political Science Cum Laude at UCLA, the High Potentials Leadership Program at Harvard Business School. A recent publication of his is “The Need for an Innovation Principle in Regulatory Impact Assessment: The Case of Finance and Innovation in Europe” in Policy & Internet. An upcoming publication is “The Law and Political Economy of Decentralised Digital Ecosystems”.
CEO & Co-founder, WOLI Fintech
Vasilis Zoupas is the co-founder & CEO of WOLI, the smart Money App for modern families. An experienced executive in business and product development, he has been key part of both established tech companies (Viva Wallet, OKTO, Vermantia) as well as early-stage tech ventures (Wepolitics). Vasilis holds an MBA from INSEAD and an MSc in Structural Engineering. He is constantly excited by innovation and creative ideas that can move the world one step forward.