Our team has been operational across engineering, product management and investment roles in global deep tech companies for decades. Now we use our passion for technology, operational experience and commercial relationships to help startups reach their potential.
At Bloc we believe in truly understanding the areas we invest in. We conduct in-depth research and perform all due diligence in-house. We’re always on the hunt for people and companies that can teach us new things. Please reach out if that’s you.
Co Founder & CEO
Bruce understands the concept of creating customer pull rather than relying on technology push after spending 12 years at ARM, masters in this field. He employs the same strategy at Bloc and with its investments by bringing in larger industry players, including Bloc shareholders, to work with our partner companies. He is instrumental in helping Bloc’s partner companies align their strategies to scale commercially and quickly. Bruce’s tech expertise and commercial acumen led him to own the overall corporate strategy for ARM and, as part of this, create ARM’s investment activity. He was named one of the most influential CVCs in the Global Corporate Venturing Powerlist 100.
Co Founder & CTO
David was Chief Engineer for Technology Evaluation and led Vodafone’s corporate venture team in Europe during his 14 years at Vodafone. In this time the fund was ranked in the top 5 CVCs, David was included in Wired Magazine’s top 100 innovators’ list and he was named as one of the most influential CVCs in the Global Corporate Venturing Powerlist 100. He knows how to spot a commercial technology and test to ensure that it is defensible and disruptive. Starting in the defence industry he learned that with the right people and the right money anything is possible. He brings this invaluable expertise to Bloc and knows how to dig deep and personally look under the bonnet while understanding the commercial ramification of industry dynamics.
Michael comes with a strong track record in technology companies from a strategic, commercial and an investment perspective. Following 15 years in senior leadership position at ARM Holdings and TTP Communications – two of the UK's most progressive deep technology businesses. As co-founder of Accelerated Digital Ventures (ADV), acting as CIO, deployed over £85m. Michael helped build a portfolio of over 30 companies which included B-Secur, Push Dr, UIPath and deployed fund of fund investments in seven funds such as Entrepreneur First, IQ Capital and Seedcamp. During his career, Michael has led teams responsible for investing in excess of $500m in deep technology businesses.
Vien has nearly 20 years’ experience in finance, strategy and operations roles and is a former Group Head of Strategy for London Stock Exchange Group plc. (“LSEG”). He spent 10 years at LSEG working in Corporate Strategy and Development covering strategic planning, sourcing and screening investment and acquisition opportunities, M&A execution and integrations. After leaving LSEG, Vien spent five years in advisory and operating roles serving investment firms and technology startups (FinTech and Life Sciences). He started his career as a Chartered Accountant with PwC London across transactions and capital markets, and holds a Masters in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry from the University of Oxford. Having served in operating, strategic and advisory roles in public and private company environments, he brings the ideal skillset to the Bloc team. As COO, Vien works across Bloc’s finance and operations, embedding scalability throughout the company and its portfolio.
Head of Research
David is an experienced technologist with 26+ years pioneering in the mobile industry starting at Vodafone R&D where he led teams across four geographies and more recently at GSMA where as a Senior Technical Director he led strategic programmes with mobile operators and industry partners on a worldwide basis. During this time David has established a strong reputation across the mobile industry for thought leadership, strategic analysis, mobile technical knowledge, clear communication and effective development of new business opportunities with partners using existing and emerging technologies. David is a Chartered engineer with a Masters degree (MEng) in Electrical & Electronic Engineering from Imperial College, London and has seven patents.
Head of Finance
Richard qualified as a chartered accountant with Moore Stephens and has significant experience across both practice and industry roles of varying sectors and sizes. After spending 7 years in audit and transaction advisory, Richard made the move out of practice and has spent much of his time in small to mid-size finance houses with a strong focus on commercial support and the establishment of robust processes and controls, positioning these businesses to scale effectively. Outside of traditional finance houses, Richard has filled senior roles in global marketing and SaaS companies and contributes a breadth of experience to the role.
Head of Marketing
Ryan has spent his career working with startups to create effective marketing strategies. After three years launching products in the marketing team at Tech Nation, Ryan moved into VC as Marketing Lead for ADV (alongside Michael Dimelow) where he provided hands on support for 30+ portfolio companies. He then joined a startup, becoming Head of Marketing at Evolution AI, which extracts data from large sets of financial documents. Now he’s joined forces with Mike again as Head of Marketing for Bloc Ventures, leading all our communication efforts and supporting our portfolio companies as they engage with the world.
Our board of directors
We’re lucky enough to be supported by some of the most experienced technology and finance leaders there are. Each of our directors expands our network into new opportunities and provide direct boardroom introductions for our portfolio companies.
By having individuals with experience as Directors of companies like Arm, BT and S4 Capital, we ensure that Bloc is an attractive investment opportunity for investors of all kinds.
Non Executive Chairman
Paul has over 40 years’ experience in the Banking, Brokerage and Asset Management industries. Having started his career at the stockbroking firm Kemp Gee he subsequently became Senior Partner following the merger with Scrimgeour Vickers and Citibank. In 1988, he joined Smith New Court as CEO, and merged the business with Merrill Lynch in 1995 after which he became EVP and President of Merrill Lynch Global Markets and Investment banking. He left Merrill in 2003 to found NewSmith Capital Partners, subsequently acquired by Man Group in 2015. He is former Chairman of New River Retail plc and Sky Bet. He is currently serving as a non-executive director of S4 Capital, a new age/new era digital multi-national advertising and marketing services company. He is also senior advisor to Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Japan’s largest fiduciary and asset management company. He has a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Economics and an Honorary Doctorate of Law from Liverpool University.
Non Executive Director
Samantha (Sam) Wren, CEO of IPGL, has joined the Board. Before IPGL, Sam was Group CFO and COO of NEX Group Plc, the electronic FX and government bond markets and post trade operator where she also served in a variety of roles including Group Chief Commercial Officer, Divisional CFO/COO and Group Treasurer. She also held senior finance positions at the gaming company Rank Group Plc and business services group Rentokil Initial plc. Sam is a chartered management accountant, holds a degree in economics and is a non-executive director of both the UK equity income fund City of London Investment Trust plc and English winemaker Chapel Down Group plc as well as a number of other non-quoted companies in her capacity as IPGL’s CEO.
Non Executive Director
Sue Prevezer QC has over 25 years of experience arguing large complex commercial cases at every level of the UK judicial system and in arbitration and has sat as a Deputy High Court Judge in the Chancery Division of the High Court. She now practices at Brick Court Chambers as a mediator and arbitrator. Until recently, Sue spent 12 years as the Co Managing Partner of London office of Quinn Emmanuel Urquhart Sullivan, where her clients include d major corporates, funds, investors, trustees, office holders and high net worth individuals, for whom she managed complex, high value, domestic and international litigation. She is also a Non Executive Director at S4 Capital and Trustee of the Hampstead Theatre and Chair of the Trustees of the Freud Museum.
Andy Green CBE
Non Executive Director
Andy Green CBE spent 22 years at BT in leadership roles including as a board member, four years as CEO of Logica (a 4bn turnover business ahead of its acquisition by CGI in 2021) and five years as a NED at A rm (working with Bloc’s CEO, Bruce Beckloff a nd CCO, Michael Dimelow in the process). He’s held Chairman or NED roles at multiple global technology organisations and has in depth experience working with public companies. Andy was awarded a CBE in the 2020 New Year’s Honours list for services to the I nformation Technology Sector and to the British Space Industry.
Non Executive Director
Stephen has over 40 years’ experience in the Insurance industry. Having begun his insurance career in 1973 joining BL Evens & Others on Syndicate 264 at Lloyd’s, he founded Catlin Underwriting Agencies Limited in 1984, which later became part of Catlin Group Limited. Stephen served as the Catlin Group’s Chief Executive throughout its history and also served as the active underwriter of Lloyd’s Syndicate 1003 and later Syndicate 2003 until May 2003. He assumed the position of Executive Deputy Chairman of XL Group Ltd from May 2015 (upon the completion of XL’s acquisition of Catlin Group Limited) until May 2017. He was selected as Ernst & Young’s UK Entrepreneur of the Year in October 2011. Stephen was inducted into the International Insurance Society Insurance Hall of Fame in June 2015. He is Chair of the Insurance Development Forum. Stephen is a Visiting Fellow at the Oxford University Centre for Corporate Reputation.