Bayes Innovate 2022: How entrepreneurs can regroup and restart post pandemic

Interdisciplinary event welcomes business leaders and practitioners to look into the future of entrepreneurship.

Bayes Innovate returned for its fourth iteration to celebrate entrepreneurship under the theme ‘Regroup. Restart.’

The interdisciplinary event resumed after a three-year hiatus, its first under the Bayes name, to hear different perspectives on business leadership, entrepreneurship and innovation from successful entrepreneurs, business practitioners and Bayes Business School students past and present.

This year’s event focused on the future, following two years of uncertainty and change because of the pandemic. Entrepreneurs were one group that was significantly impacted, pushed to new limits amid the evolving demands of businesses and clients.

Professor Andre Spicer, Dean of Bayes Business School, opened the event: “I want to give everyone two challenges, firstly, to reach out to three people you haven’t met, and to broaden your networks, ideas and knowledge. Also, take away one new idea – you will hear many – and share it with someone else. You will be crosspollinating like all great innovators.”

Dinesh Dhamija, founder of online travel agency Ebookers, gave the keynote speech and offered his experiences of working in 12 countries around the globe, and his top tips on how to handle setbacks.

Dinesh Dhamija

“We regroup and restart every day, and we need to. I can’t tell you how many setbacks I have had during my career, but I was able to solve them. Things often happen at the wrong time but there are ways to navigate these challenges. These days we need huge capacity to be successful – on the internet and in ourselves – and we need to be able to grow. Each of us, with the right application, can do this.”

The first panel event discussed how to break into venture-capital, and was led by Triin Linamagi, Founding Partner of Sie Ventures. Former Bayes Business School students made up the panel – Akash Bajwa (BSc in Accounting & Finance), of Earlybird VC; Juliette Souliman (MSc in Entrepreneurship), of Portage Ventures; and Michelangelo Valtancoli (BSc in Business Management), of Stride VC.

The first chat From L-R: Triin Linamagi, Founding Partner of Sie Ventures; Akash Bajwa, of Earlybird VC; Juliette Souliman, of Portage Ventures; and Michelangelo Valtancoli, of Stride VC.

The speakers described the need to be a quality thinker and to be unique. Mr Bajwa said: “Relationships are so important. I love going to the entrepreneurs and explaining why I’m the best person for them to partner with.” Ms Souliman added that while she loved aspects of her job there were elements that were hard to accept, admitting ‘our job is saying no all the time, and that is daunting’. Mr Valtancoli said he takes ‘great pride in contributing to someone’s journey and stepping back to see how things are changing’.

Afternoon sessions began with a discussion on the value in creating affordable workspaces. Simon Magness of Betterspace discussed the significance of co-working with Joyce Ogunade, Head of Affordable Workspace at Islington Council; Bénédicte Kalombo, Founder of PinMedia and PinAfrica; and Polly Robbins, Manager at Space4.

The second panel L-R: Simon Magness, of Betterspace; Joyce Ogunade, Head of Affordable Workspace at Islington Council; Bénédicte Kalombo, Founder of PinMedia and PinAfrica; and Polly Robbins, Manager at Space4.

A session on raising funds was moderated by Ypatios Moysiadis, Managing Partner at Wattcrop, with panellists Lukky Ahmed, founder and CEO at Climate X; Olamide Ogunrinola, Portfolio and Investment Analyst at Bayes Entrepreneurship Fund; Sam Hyams, Founder and CEO at Springpod; and Jess Clemans (MSc in Entrepreneurship), Investor at A/O PropTech.

the third panel The panellists discussed the value of building relationships over time, nurturing contacts with partners and the importance of face-to-face contact.

The final panel session of the day was titled ‘Platforms vs. Creators: Who will web3 favor?’ and was moderated by Dr Nettra Pan, Lecturer in Entrepreneurship at Bayes. Joining Dr Pan were Paola Vivoli, of Speedinvest VC, Caspar Lee, founder and CEO at Influencer, and Alex Winterbotham, co-founder and CEO at Echobubbles.


L-R: Paola Vivoli, of Speedinvest VC; Dr Nettra Pan, Lecturer in Entrepreneurship; Alex Winterbotham, co-founder and CEO at Echobubbles; Caspar Lee, founder and CEO at Influencer.

The panellists discussed changing perspectives, creating in the metaverse, and said they hoped for web3 to make changing algorithms easier to navigate and for a more empowered creative community that can control content and its transmission to better inform an audience.

The final thoughts of the day were presented by Axel Threlfall, Reuters Editor-at-Large, with panellists Professor Spicer, Sophie Meislin Baron, founder and CEO at Mamamade; and Tram Anh Nguyen, co-founder of the Centre for Finance, Technology and Entrepreneurship.

fireside chat

L-R: Axel Threlfall, Reuters Editor-at-Large, Tram Anh Nguyen, co-founder of the Centre for Finance, Technology and Entrepreneurship; Professor Andre Spicer; Sophie Meislin Baron, founder and CEO at Mamamade.

The panellists discussed the changing face of business because of the pandemic, the evolution of fintech and becoming an entrepreneur post-pandemic.

Masterclasses were led by Dr Dimitris Paraskevopoulos, Associate Professor in Operations & Supply Chain Management, who discussed the role of business and mathematics; Professor Simone Ferriani, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, who spoke about networking, creativity and innovation; Professor Stefan Haefliger, Professor of Strategic Management and Monica Varriale, Chief Operating & Financial Officer at The Serpentine Galleries, spoke about digital transformation in the world of museums; and Dr Florian Lucker, Senior Lecturer in Supply Chain Management, and Andrew Farnhill, Business Developer at LiquidX, spoke about risk.

final panel

Panel 2

third talk

final talk

Aurore Hochard, Head of Entrepreneurship Programmes at Bayes, closed the event by thanking the attendees and speakers for their contributions.

“These events are a melting pot of thought-provoking ideas and a brilliant platform for academics and business leaders to share their research findings and expertise. I hope everyone enjoyed the day as much as I did and l look forward to similarly engaging events in the months ahead.”


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