Our Team Will Take You Furthr

Our team runs the gamut of business experience.  With more than 100,000 hours behind them in a broad array of consultancy and business ventures, you can be certain that your personal advisors will have the expertise to best counsel you on how to reach your start-up goals.   

Richard Watson

Managing Partner

Leonie Kinsella

Operations Accounts Manager

Majella Muprhy

Business Consultant

Claire Devine

Programme Manager

Clive Brownlee

Board Chairman

John Phelan

National Director of HBAN

Meredith Salois

Programme Coordinator, HBAN

Laura Ahern

Programme & Event Coordinator

Siobhan Killen

Communications Manager, HBAN

Stephanie Bell

Marketing Manager

Niamh Sterling

HBAN Consultant

Fiona Nagle

Business Consultant

Gary Leyden

Business Consultant

Eamonn Sayers

Centre Manager, GEC

Maura Jones

Executive Assistant

Paula Finnan

HR Manager

Ronan Jennings

Chief Financial Officer

Donna Byrne

Social Media Executive

Colm O'Sullivan

Partner

Oonagh Fox

Consultant

Emma Curran

Digital Marketing Specialist

Saurabh Kumar

Investment Associate

Grainne Tallon

Executive Assistant

Michael Culligan

Chief Executive Officer

Martin Murray

Business Consultant

Dr. Rosalind Beere

Business Consultant

Fiona Slevin

Non-executive Board Member

Ciara Fitzpatrick

Non- executive Board Member

Eugene Smyth

Investment Partner

Deirdre Smith

Non-executive Board Member

Audrey Collins

Non-Executive Board Member

Ronan King

Non-executive Board Member

Conor Carmody

Business Consultant

Julian Seymour

Business Consultant

Lisa Doyle

Project Co-Ordinator

Working at Furthr - What our Team Say

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Lisa Doyle

Project Co-Ordinator

Lisa has been a part of the Furthr family since 2013. For 5 years, she worked in the GEC transforming the Marketing & Events activities of the centre – excelling at customer retention, digital marketing & public relations.

In 2018, Lisa was promoted to Operations Manager of Furthr’s second enterprise centre, Space on Dawson St. Space on Bride St soon followed in 2020, where she also led the team. 

Over the years, Lisa has been a part of the core team organising the Furthr Festival event at Dublin’s Convention Centre for 1,600+ people.

Now a Project Co-Ordinator, Lisa is a team player, analytical thinker with a ‘can-do’ attitude. She holds two degrees in Business also has vast knowledge and working experience in the Hospitality & Events Industries.

Siobhan Killen

Communications & Events Manager, HBAN

Siobhán is an experienced professional administrator who joined the HBAN team in 2017. Her primary background is in higher education and the arts from which she draws extensively as part of her work in the start-up eco-system.
With considerable experience in event management, recruitment and customer service, Siobhán brings a diverse range of skills to her role in HBAN. In addition, Siobhán specialises in social media, graphic design, website management. She has also worked in theatre across Ireland working as a stage manager and technical director.

Siobhán holds a BA Honours Degree in English (UCD) as well as a qualification in Film Production

Maura Jones

Executive Assistant

Maura joined Furthr in January 2022, as Operations Assistant in Space and is now an Executive Assistant at the GEC. Maura brings with her a wealth of experience as an Executive Assistant, delivering a high standard of support and customer service. Maura has worked in the non-profit sectors for 10 years with roles as Front of House and Room Hire Manager. Maura enjoyed a successful career working in insurance, underwriting and compliance for many years. Mauras role within the Furthr team is vital to keeping operations and the office running smoothly.

Eamonn Sayers

Business Consultant - General Manager of the GEC

A native of Kerry, Eamonn since 2012 has very successfully managed and promoted the Guinness Enterprise Centre. In 2018, the GEC was recognized as being the No. 1 Business Incubator – Collaborating with University in the world. He successfully lead an €11m expansion scaling the GEC to be Ireland’s global entrepreneurial super-hub, interconnecting the regional centres in Ireland with global university partners.

In this role, Eamonn works with entrepreneurs, start-ups / early-stage companies, state development agencies, not-for-profit organisations and commercial businesses in the areas of strategy, business planning, general management, fundraising and investment. He has strategically positioned the GEC as one of the leading start-up hubs in Europe through innovative projects like the Hub Partnerships and University program.

Early in his career, Eamonn worked with the National Safety Council where he introduced the hard-hitting road safety advertisements of the 2000s. He also worked with the IRFU and was responsible for developing Irish rugby’s strategic plan “Building on Solid Foundations 2008-2012” which coincided with the most successful time in Irish rugby history. He is also an international sevens rugby referee.

Gary Leyden

Business Consultant

Gary is an Investment Consultant for HBAN, sourcing & selecting investor ready deal flow for a network of over 700 Business Angels. Gary has been a leader in the start-up and innovation space in Ireland for over a decade, providing the commercial leadership at NDRC where he invested in over 300 early stage ventures. With over 20 years of experience as a founder, mentor to and investor in technology start-ups, he advises ventures on investment strategy, business model design and go-to-market strategies

Fiona Nagle

Business Consultant

Fiona is a consultant on BIC Dublin Investor Ready Programme and HBAN. Fiona is an experienced entrepreneur / business consultant, a self-starter and problem solver focused on building interpersonal relationships with integrity to define and execute strategic and business goals.
Over 10 years’ experience advising high performance start up and early stage tech companies on investor ready business plans, financial statement preparation, go to market strategy, later stage organisational design, defining business goals, business development & sales strategy, early stage seed fundraising and later stage funding.
Fiona has worked alongside an experienced /entrepreneur, Non Exec/Angel Investor, as part of a team which has advised a number of high profile companies on investment and strategic growth to ultimately deliver and realise value. These companies have included; Brown Bag Animation, an Oscar winning Animation company, Corvil an Irish Fin Tech Company, Clavis Insight, Dualog, Amartus, Tango all of which were successfully acquired.

Niamh Sterling

HBAN Consultant

Niamh has been a Consultant for the Halo Business Angel Network since 2017, with a responsibilities including sourcing, selecting and managing investment opportunities for the network, to deal closing. She manages HBAN’s 4 overseas syndicates – London, New York, Singapore and Dubai, and has lead HBAN’s promotion and awareness campaigns aimed at increasing the Irish female angel investors, closing the gender investment gap for a more resilient, innovative and successful economy.

Donna Byrne

Social Media Executive

Donna started her career in sales and client account management, which often incorporated elements of event management and administration, for companies such as Vodafone, eBay and Microsoft. Wanting to explore new career opportunities, Donna returned to education at age 25 and began a Bachelor’s Degree in Commercial Modern Music with BIMM Institute. Focusing her studies on business management, marketing and philosophy, Donna began to seek roles that would combine her new skills with her previous experience, which led her to Dublin BIC. She began her role in 2019 and has worked on projects such as the Dublin BIC charity cookbook, Funding & Scaling, FutureScope and many marketing activities. Donna has also coordinated programmes such as Sprint and Innovate. Donna manages social media, the ‘Startup Nation’ podcast and the ‘Ask the Investor’ webinar series.

Laura Ahern

Programme & Event Coordinator

Laura has worked in a variety of roles in both Ireland and Australia, including positions in administration, customer service, and recruitment. Since commencing her role with Furthr in 2018, Laura has coordinated workshops, training programmes, reporting, and events. Laura is a strong team player, always committed and willing to go the extra mile. Laura supports other projects, teams and events within the Furthr organisation.

Julian Seymour

Business Consultant

Julian is a business development professional with over 20 years international experience in Telecoms, ICT, Cleantech, Education, NGO and FMCG sectors. Currently he delivers investor-ready business planning and consulting to start-up and scaling companies. He also manages a number of Halo Business Angel Network syndicates and chairs the HBAN Dublin Investor Forum. Julian has a 1st class MSc in E-Commerce and a degree in Business and Marketing from DCU. He also holds postgraduate diplomas in Corporate Finance, and in Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Meredith Salois

Executive Assistant, HBAN

Meredith is an experienced communicator and administration professional. She brings extensive experience in working with government bodies, programme coordination and personal assistant roles across many companies. She is a natural networker with 3 years’ experience working with not-for-profit organisations in the areas of project management, programme content, events and operations, social media & marketing.

Meredith holds a Bachelor of International Relations and English as well as a Masters Honours Postgraduate Degree in International Studies.

John Phelan

National Director of HBAN

John, on behalf of Furthr, is the All-Island Director of the Halo Business Angels Network. He has created and managed companies in Ireland, the UK and in the USA. His domain knowledge is in the A.I, Analytics, ICT, MediaTech, Games & Animation sectors. John is involved with all stages of funding and development from M&A exit transactions, Series A, Seed and R&D.

Clive Brownlee

Board Chairman

Clive Brownlee is a former managing director of Guinness Dublin and Guinness Nigeria. He was deputy MD of Diageo Ireland. Clive is a past president of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce and CIMA Ireland as well as former chairman of the Coombe Hospital Board and of Headway. He is a non-executive director of Sicon Ltd, the holding company for the Sisk construction businesses. Clive is a qualified executive coach.

Claire Devine

Programme Manager

Claire joined Furthr in 2020 and is experienced in Project & Events Management and Administration across various sectors. In addition to managing Go Furthr, Claire looks after the coordination of various entrepreneurial workshops and programmes. Claire works along side Enterprise Ireland in identifying HPSU start-ups and supporting the start-ups on their scaling journey.

Majella Murphy

Business Consultant, Furthr

Majella has extensive direct experience in innovation, entrepreneurship, and commercialisation across a broad spectrum of technical and scientific domains. She has an intimate knowledge and appreciation of the challenges of starting and scaling businesses. Majella has designed, managed and delivered programmes on guiding new ventures through their difficult journey toward grant and venture capital investment.

Leonie Kinsella

Operations Accounts Manager

Paula Finnan

HR Manager at Furthr

Paula is an experienced Human Resource Professional with an extensive background in the insurance, customer service and retail sectors which she has consolidated and broadened in the start-up eco-system. She is a natural networker and communicator with 6 years’ experience working with start-ups and business angels in the areas of entrepreneurial workshops development, project management and events through her operational involvement at Furthr. Paula is dedicated to highlighting, growing and enhancing Furthr’s Employer profile and Employee Relations.

Ronan Jennings

Chief Financial Officer at Furthr

Ronan is a Chartered Accountant who has over twenty five years’ experience as a finance professional. Ronan spent much of his career working in financial services in London for companies such as Deutsche Bank, ING Barings and CIT Group, but has also spent time working as an independent financial control consultant and as a senior operational executive in the public sector. Ronan has extensive experience in supporting businesses which were both strategically dynamic and budgetarily constrained, and consequently recognises the importance of a Finance team that can provide a lean, commercially-orientated partnership to both the business and its clients.

Richard Watson

Managing Partner, Furthr VC

Richard is Managing Partner of Furthr VC, one of the most active early-stage VC investors in the country. He has worked in venture capital for over 15 years and, prior to this, spent almost a decade in industry in R&D and operations in the medical device and semiconductor industries in Sweden, Ireland and the US.

Richard has a 1st class honours degree in Electronic Engineering from Trinity College Dublin, a Research M.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering from Trinity College Dublin and a 1st class MBA from Durham University.

Colm O'Sullivan

Partner at Furthr VC

Colm is a Partner at Furthr VC. He has a decade’s experience in venture capital and private equity, investing in companies across Europe and North America. Colm has a passion for working with entrepreneurs and management teams to successfully grow and scale companies.

Previously Colm was a Ventures Principal at OGCI Climate Investments, a $1B+ fund that invests in solutions to decarbonise the energy, industrial, and commercial transportation sectors. Prior to this Colm was an Investment Professional at Pioneer Point Partners, a pan-European private equity investor focused on the energy and environment sectors.

Colm holds a BSc (Hons) degree in Finance from University College Cork and an MSc in Philosophy of the Social Sciences from the London School of Economics.

Conor Carmody

Business Consultant

Conor is a highly experienced business executive who has held senior management positions across all commercial disciplines in telecoms and retail functions. He is a highly professional, results-focused individual with strategic, operational and entrepreneurial qualities.

His core area of expertise is developing and implementing business strategies, mentoring and developing teams to deliver success with a clear focus on results. Conor has held a number of senior director level roles in the Irish Telecom Sector, heading up Marketing functions in Vodafone, Meteor and Eircom.

He is highly experienced in the areas of Business strategy, Commercial Strategy, Business Start Up, Marketing and Communications, People and Program Management.

Audrey Collins

Non-Executive Board Member
Audrey is a chartered accountant with over 25 years experience in Finance, Regulatory Compliance and Audit across a wide range of financial services businesses in Ireland, Australia and the United States. She has held senior executive roles in EBS, Westpac Group and Challenger Australia, having trained and worked in Ernst & Young Dublin and Chicago. She is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and has previously held executive director roles in investment funds, securitisation vehicles and a covered bond bank.

Ronan King

Non-executive Board Member

Ronan, a chartered accountant and management consultant, has 40+ years’ experience assisting early-stage companies and entrepreneurs. A former partner in BDO Simpson Xavier, Ronan has served as director and chair of several public and private entities and is a former president of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce. He was also on the board of Special Olympics Ireland.

Deirdre Smith

Non-executive Board Member

Deirdre is a Chartered Director of the IoD, a Lean Business Consultant, Mentor & Advisor. An Engineering graduate of TCD, Deirdre began her career in Digital (DEC) before starting her own entrepreneurial journey. She was co-founder and CEO of Zandar Technologies plc from 1999, which was acquired by Harris Corporation in 2007. Deirdre serves on the boards of BRE Global Ireland, Globalization Partners Ireland and previously NSAI, and is a great advocate of female entrepreneurship and women in STEM.

Eugene Smyth

Investment Partner at Furthr

Eugene is an Investment Manager for Furthr Managed Funds, including the €53m AIB Seed Capital Fund where he manages the fast-growth technology portfolio. He has been a retained management consultant in the venture capital industry for over 15 years and is a consultant on a variety of European Commission initiatives for cross-border investment and technology-led programmes. His specialist areas include telecoms, new media, ICT, eCommerce, games and emerging platform technologies.

Ciara Fitzpatrick

Board Member

Ciara has over 30 years’ experience working with start-ups, SMEs and large companies in IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland (EI) across a range of industry sectors. She combines strategic, business, financial, process and change management skills with a track record of client management experience. An MBA graduate of DCU, Ciara is currently Manager of the Commercial Evaluation Department within EI and has a deep understanding of the funding needs and challenges of companies at all stages of growth.

Fiona Slevin

Non-executive Board Member

Fiona has over 20 years’ experience as founder and director of life sciences startups, winning multiple awards in data science/AI and innovation, and achieving successful exit. She has also held international executive roles in Goldman Sachs and Diageo, and has experience managing major transformation projects. She is a Chartered Director and has been Chair and non-Executive Director of a number of commercial and not-for-profit entities, including Vhi Health & Wellbeing.

Dr. Rosalind Beere

Business Consultant at Furthr

Dr. Rosalind Beere is a Business Consultant with Furthr, with leading expertise and experience in the areas of strategy, franchising and entrepreneurship. She has designed and delivered strategic management training for a range of third-level institutions and has authored several books and publications. Ros blends a highly analytical and creative approach to problem solving in her consulting engagements, to aid clients in the identification, understanding and management of problems and opportunities.

Martin Murray

Business Consultant at Furthr

Martin is a senior business leader, founder, entrepreneur and mentor with 30 years’ experience in the telecoms and digital media sectors. Martin founded Interactive Return, Ireland’s first online marketing agency, then successfully exited the business when it was acquired by Publicis. Martin completed five years in senior sales management roles with Google, including Head of Global Agency Sales Operations and Country Manager France (SMB).

Michael Culligan

Chief Executive Officer

Michael is an internationally experienced business executive with a blend of technical, sales, financial, and entrepreneurial skills. He has assisted over 120+ companies attract over €60M in seed investment funding. Michael is dedicated to leading the Furthr team in supporting the next generation of Irish entrepreneurs.

Grainne Tallon

Executive Assistant

Saurabh Kumar

Investment Associate at Furthr VC

Saurabh is an Associate at Furthr VC. His role focuses on the origination, evaluation and execution of early-stage investment opportunities, leveraging deep knowledge of the ICT, IoT, Fintech, and AI sectors.

Previously an Investment Research Analyst at HBAN, prior to this Saurabh was a Senior Analyst in the global investment firm BNY Mellon, where he worked on a diverse range of technologies (Startups and Enterprises) used in financial institutions and led data science R&D projects for the BNY Mellon clients.

Saurabh holds a 1st class honours degree in Electronics Engineering with specialisation in Signal Processing & Wireless Communication from VIT, India and a 1st class MSc degree in Quantitative Finance from UCD Smurfit Business School and Yale School of Management.

Emma Curran

Digital Marketing Specialist

Emma is a highly passionate digital marketer, with a specific interest in SEM, SEO, and direct B2B & B2C marketing. Despite her expertise in digital marketing, during her 6 years working at Furthr, Emma has also worked across many brand experiential campaigns to include Furthr Festival and Funding & Scaling- not to mention her experience working as an events manager for global music icons while living in Canada.

Emma enjoys meeting and collaborating with founders at all stages of their journey. Her focus is now bringing this relentless energy to growing the Furthr brand by developing a best in class, results driven Digital Marketing Strategy.

Oonagh Fox

Communications Manager

Oonagh Fox is a corporate communications advisor and has worked closely with Furthr over the past ten years. She previously held a client director role at Drury Porter Novelli, Ireland’s leading public relations consultancy. At Furthr, Oonagh played a lead role in creating and developing Furthr Festival, the fast-growing annual event that explores the business opportunities arising from new innovations and emerging technologies. Currently Oonagh works on strategy and communications for The Innovation Exchange, a new initiative that connects large businesses facing digital transformation challenges to technology scale ups that can fast track solutions, accelerating business transformation for both.

Stephanie Bell

Marketing Manager

Stephanie is the Marketing manager at Furthr and managed the rebrand from DubinBIC. Previously, Stephanie has worked across a portfolio of global FMCG brands, including brand repositioning projects and new brand and category launches.

Stephanie has a BSc in Management & French, as well as studying for a MSc in Digital Marketing & Analytics. Over her 14 years’ experience in commercial and marketing roles, Stephanie has cultivated her passion for behavioural science, data driven marketing, and digital marketing.

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