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News from our Network

2021 >>venture>> Finalists Prepare for the Next Jury Round with Pitch Training

Every year, our 50 finalists give their all in an attempt to secure one of three winning spots in each vertical for their chance to become a >>venture>> winner. In a 5-minute closed pitch session, the entrepreneurs face a group of jurors who will determine whether or not they move on to the final round in the competition.


In preparation for this, >>venture>> has partnered up with McKinsey & Company and several investors to best prepare the startups for their pitch session.


We're really excited to announce that we are working with the following industry experts for the 2021 >>venture>> Pitch Training.


Bernardo Bizzini: Bernardo joined investiere in October 2018 and is currently working as an investment associate. He graduated in Biotechnology from ETH Zürich and holds a Master in Bioscience Enterprise from the University of Cambridge. Further, he was active in several positions in the pharma industry where he co-developed an NLP-based data analysis software. At investiere, Bernardo partially focuses on data management systems and executed multiple ICT transactions such as guuru, Avrios and AlgoTrader.





Jiri Havran: Jiri joined Seed X in July 2019. Currently, he is working as a senior investment manager, focusing mainly on fintech and proptech early-stage investments. Prior to Seed X, Jiri was responsible for M&A and business development at eBay, covering EMEA. He also spent a couple of years at Credit Suisse working on private equity deals. He holds a Master’s degree in Energy Science and Technology from ETH Zürich.






John Elbing: John has experience in software (MS from EPFL), finance (MBA from Carnegie Mellon) and marketing (digital agencies). He launched two startups and now coaches entrepreneurs for several institutions in the Swiss ecosystem. He specializes in Value Proposition & Business Model Design and Marketing Storytelling. John delivers strategic marketing workshops for established companies at Standpoint. He helps people reinvent themselves using Design Thinking with his "Build Your Next Step" course. John also teaches at a number of universities and institutions.




Rafaela Marinho: Rafaela is a multilingual communications specialist from McKinsey & Company. Her experience spans through journalism, corporate communications, and management consulting. She is also trained in storytelling, design thinking, change management, efficient presentation, and community management.








Rana Lonnen: Rana is Managing Director at Novartis Pharma, Digital Investment Arm (dRx Capital), based out of Switzerland. She is board observer on portfolio companies and an advisory board member of Imperial College Data Science Design Studio in London. Prior to joining Novartis, Rana worked in the biotech arm of IP Group, an investment firm based in London and before this, was Head of Preclinical Development in a biotech, Auspherix. Prior to this, Rana was an entrepreneur, founder and chief scientific officer of a UK based biotech AxendosTherapeutics, a spin out funded by the Wellcome Trust. Before this, she was Group Head of Drug Discovery and Translational Medicine, after 6 years of being a postdoctoral fellow in the area of infectious diseases. Before her scientific and investment career, Rana was in sales in marketing at Bristol Myers Squibb in the MENA region. Rana Holds a PhD in molecular biology and an executive MBA from Imperial College.



Sabrina Vilhena: Sabrina has held senior roles across Europe, South America and in the Middle East over the past 20+ years, in the industrial sector, both product as well as service businesses. She was CEO of a private equity owned company (Quant AB), which helped industrial clients to improve productivity in 25+ countries with 2,400+ employees. Earlier she worked at GE, FANUC, and ABB, where she served in different roles in engineering, sales, operations, finance, general management, and mergers & acquisitions. Currently, she is a C-level interim executive; advisor to large companies, management buyout firms and Venture Capitalists; board member; deal leader; angel investor and coach/mentor.



Tom Röthlisberger: Tom is a professional venture builder and host of «The founder’s call». He is empowering founders to develop their business idea to a scalable business. His experience as a leader of international teams, a profound understanding of technology, and being a founder himself, allows him to impersonate almost every role within a technology-based startup.