Ambassadors' Circle

Established in 2014, the Ambassadors’ Circle is a group of FBN members that have played a leadership role in shaping FBN. Its mission is to help FBN develop, grow and flourish by actively contributing to the network at an international and local level. The Ambassadors’ Circle is neither a governing body of FBN, nor an honorary circle of retired family members.
 

ambassadors circle

Andrew Wates, Chair

Wates Group Limited

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Andrew Wates was formerly Chairman of Wates Family Holdings, the ownership forum that oversees all Wates family interests, but still remains an owner/shareholder. Until April 2006, he was Chairman of Wates Group Limited, having originally joined the company in 1964.

Role within FBN-I

  • Chair of the FBN Ambassadors’ Circle
  • Chair of the Polaris Advisory Committee
  • Former President of FBN UK (IFB)
  • Former Vice President of the Board of Directors

Key Topics of expertise

  • The role of Family Business in the Economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • My family succession process and planning
  • Working with Non-Family CEO

Arun Bharat Ram

SRF Limited

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Arun Bharat Ram is the Chairman of SRF Limited and also the Chairman of SRF Foundation, the social wing of SRF, which manages its own schools and also supports education in villages: The Lady Shri Ram College (LSR) for Women in Delhi which has consistently been rated as one of the two best colleges of India; The Shri Ram Schools; CAF (India) – Charities Aid Foundation (India) and CAPED (A registered Society for Cancer Awareness).

Role within FBN-I

  • Member of the FBN Ambassadors’ Circle
  • Member of the Board of Directors
  • Former President of FBN India and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)

Key Topics of expertise

  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning

Alfonso Libano Daurella

Cobega, S.A.

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Alfonso comes from a family with a long history in the Family Business since the 19th Century. He is CEO of COBEGA, S.A and holds a number of company directorships within the Coca-Cola system, such as Director of the Board & Chairman of the CSR Committee of Coca-Cola European Partners (the largest European Coca-Cola franchise), Chairman of Equatorial Coca-Cola Bottling Company, S.L.,(Coca-Cola franchise for 13 African Countries), and Director of The Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Egypt. He has also been Trustee of The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation since 2004. In addition, he is a member of the boards of various public organisations including the AMCHAM (American Chamber of Commerce in Spain) and the MACBA Foundation (Contemporary Art Museum of Barcelona).
Alfonso has been involved in the Instituto de la Empresa Familiar (IEF Spain) since 1991 as a Founding Member and Secretary of the Board of Directors, and currently as Member of the International Commission. Since 2007, he was also Vice-Chairman of the European Family Business (EFB), until his appointment as Chairman in 2015.

Role within FBN-I

  • Chairman of the Nomination Committee
  • Member of the FBN-I Foundation
  • Former member of the Board and Treasurer of The Family Business Network International

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • Working with non-family CEO

Anne Berner

Vallila Interior

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Anne Berner is a third generation Family Business Owner of the Company Vallila Interior. She became the CEO of the company in 1989 at the age of 25 years. Already in 1992, she took the business to Russia and started to expand the company’s growth through export and a strong focus on design and design management. The company has grown into a well-known interior design and home textile brand in the Scandinavian countries and is now expanding in the US, South-Korea, China and Europe. Anne has a strong interest in the advocacy of the interest of ownership issues and is currently actively involved in the European Family Business Organization.

Role within FBN-I

  • Former member of the Nomination Committee
  • Former President of the Finnish Family Firms Association (FBN Finland) 2009-2011

Key Topics of expertise

  • The role of Family Business in the Economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • Her own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • Her family succession process and planning

Antonio Gallardo Ballart

Landon Group Corporativo

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Antonio Gallardo was formerly President of Almirall and remains now as Copresident of his Family Holding and Chairman of his Family Office.

Role within FBN-I

  • Member of the Board of the Family Business Network Foundation
  • Former member of the Board of Directors

Key Topics of expertise

  • The role of Family Business in the Economy
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning
  • Working with non-family CEO

Caroline Thijssen

Aliaxis

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Caroline Thijssen holds a Master in Business Administration & Management and has worked eight years in various management positions in Retail & Private Banking. She is currently Head of Talent in the HR Department of BNP Paribas Fortis in Belgium. As 6th Generation Member of the Emsens family, she has been involved in her family’s NxG committee for several years and has recently joined the Board of Directors of Etex Group. Caroline is former President of FBN Belgium NxG Committee and former Board member of FBN Belgium.

Role within FBN-I

  • Former Member of the NxG International Committee

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • Her role as FBN Member
  • Working with non-family CEO

Floor Breeman

Metal Treatment Technology B.V.

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Floor is a former member of the NextGen Committee of FBNed (Netherlands). Before joining the management team of Vecom Group in 2011, he worked for ABN Amro Bank N.V. as a business banker before working in the chartering department of a shipping company (Stolt-Nielsen). Floor holds a Masters’ degree in Business (Rijks Universiteit Groningen). Since 2013, he is Managing Director of Vecom Group

Role within FBN-I

  • Former member of the NxG International Committee
  • Member of the Organizational Committee for the FBN Global Summit in Amsterdam (2009)

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • His role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner

Frederick C. Tsao

IMC Group

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Frederick Chavalit Tsao is the Chairman of IMC Pan Asia Alliance Group. Under his stewardship, IMC has expanded rapidly with activities extending into lifestyle and property projects. Recognising the importance of family businesses in the global economy, Frederick is a strong advocate of robust research in areas such as business transformation, social engagement, leadership cultivation and succession planning to enable family businesses to learn more from each other.
Frederick holds a Master of Science in Engineering (Industrial and Operations Engineering) and a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering (Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering) from the University of Michigan.

Role within FBN-I

  • Chairman of the Family Business International Foundation
  • Founder and President of Family Business Network (FBN) Asia.
  • Former member of the FBN Board of Directors (2010-2016)

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • My own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner

Hans-Jacob Bonnier

Bonnier Holding AB

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Hans-Jacob Bonnier, born in 1948, 6th generation Bonnier family member, obtained his M.Pol.Sc. degree from Stockholm University. Hans-Jacob is Executive Vice President of Bonnier Business Press and working Chairman of the Bonnier Family Foundation, Chairman of the Swedish-Polish Chamber of Commerce and Chairman of the European Business Press federation. He started the Family Business Network Member Association in Sweden in 1996.

Role within FBN-I

  • Chairman of the Board (2004-2009)

Key Topics of expertise

  • His role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning

Ingrid Faber

Faber Halbertsma Group

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Ingrid Faber is the third family CEO in line after succeeding her father in 2006 when he retired. Ingrid holds several Supervisory Board positions in the Netherlands with interests in wood sourcing, research and waste management. She is also member of the Board of European Family Businesses (EFB)

Role within FBN-I

  • Former President of FBN Netherlands (FBNed)
  • Former member of the Board of Directors

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • Her family succession process and planning

Lena Jungell

Fazer Group

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Lena Jungell is a member of the 4th generation of the owner family of the Fazer Group and a member of the Owners Council; former chairwoman of the Family Council. The owner family today consists of 6 generations. Lena has a MSc from Hanken School of Economics, is a Certified Business Coach and runs her own consulting business. She is a board member of Perheyrityspalvelut Oy, a company producing educational programs for the member families of FBN Finland.

Role within FBN-I

  • Responsible producer of the FBN International Summit in Helsinki 2002
  • Member of the Board of FBN Finland 2003-2006
  • Programme Committee member of FBN Summit in Singapore 2011
  • Member of the FBN Executive Committee 2006-2011

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • My personal story as a Family Business member and owner
  • Family succession process and planning
  • Family Governance

Luc Darbonne

Darome

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Luc Darbonne represents the 4th generation of Darbonne/Daregal Family Business. Inventor of frozen culinary herbs, he lead the business to world leader and successfully passed it on to the 5th generation. Luc is a true advocate for Family Businesses and is working toward their continuity. Luc is a board member for ASMEP-ETI and EFB (European Family Businesses). He also seats on the board of Poclain Hydraulics; the Société des Agriculteurs de France (Association of French Farmers); the Association Nationale de la Recherche & de la Technologie (French Association of R&D), and is also a consultant for Banque de France (Bank of France).

Role within FBN

  • President of FBN France
  • Former Treasurer of the Board of Directors

Key Topics of expertise

  • His role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business in the Economy
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning

Matteo Fumagalli

SOL Group

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Matteo Fumagalli Romario represents one of the 6 family members of the third generation of the Annoni and Fumagalli families working daily in SOL Group. He is director in several companies of the Group and is in charge of the internal audit assisting SOL S.p.A. board of directors. Matteo joined SOL in 1993 after 4 years of experience in the marketing department of a multinational.

Role within FBN-I

  • Founding member of the FBN Italy (AIDAF). Still acting as Treasurer.
  • Former member of the Board of Directors

Key Topics of expertise

  • His role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner

Maurizio Sella

Gruppo Banca Sella

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Maurizio Sella is Chairman of Maurizio Sella S.A.A. (family holding), of Banca Sella Holding, as well as of Banca Sella and Banca Patrimoni Sella & C. His other present appointments include: Chairman of ASSONIME – Rome, the Association of the Italian joint stock companies (industry, finance, services and public utilities); member of the council for the U.S. and Italy; member of the Italian Group of the Trilateral Commission and of the Institut International d’Etudes Bancaires.

Role within FBN-I

  • Chairman of the Nomination Committee
  • Former Chairman of FBN Italy (AIdAF)
  • Former member of the Board of Directors

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • The role of Family Business in the economy and as a force for change
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner

Nisse Bonnier

Bonnier Holding AB

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Hans-Jacob Bonnier, born in 1948, obtained his M.Pol.Sc. degree from Stockholm University. He is a 6th generation Bonnier family member. Hans-Jacob Bonnier is Executive Vice President of Bonnier Business Press and working Chairman of the Bonnier Family Foundation, Chairman of Swedish-Polish Chamber of Commerce and Chairman of European Business Press federation. He started the Family Business Network in Sweden and has served as the Chairman of Family Business Network International.
Role within FBN-I (current and former roles) Hans-Jacob Bonnier started the Family Business Network chapter in Sweden in 1996 and has served as the Chairman of Family Business Network International during 5 years.

Key Topics of expertise

  • My role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • My own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • My family succession process and planning

Peter Therman

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Peter Therman is a 6th generation member of the Hartwall Family. He is executive chairman for KareliaUpofloor plc (flooring), Skanditrä Ab (hardwood) and HTT 6 gen (financial investment), vice chairman of the owner’s council and former chairman of the family council. He is also an active member in FBN Finland. The Hartwall family history evolves from mineral water and brewing in 1836 to a multi-business corporation involved in flooring, department stores, equipment rental services, lifting solutions, chemical polymers and wine production.

Risto Vayrynen

Sifter Group & LeipomoVayrynen

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Risto is the Managing Director of Sifter Group, a Geneva based Investment Fund and founder of Leipomo Väyrynen, a Bakery business located in Helsinki.

Role within FBN-I

  • Member of Next Gen Committee (FIN)
  • Former Vice-President of Next Gen Committee
  • Former member of the Executive Committee

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • His role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning
  • Working with as non-family CEO

Sam Maldonado

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Samuel Maldonado Degwitz is a 4th generation member of the Grupo Económico Maldonado (GEM) from Venezuela.  He has a BA in Psychology and a BS in Business Administration from The Citadel Military College of South Carolina.  He is an active member of the GEM Family Council.  He is also the acting president of FBN’s NxG International Committee.  He is currently pursuing a Masters in Family Entrepreneurship at Zeppelin University in Friedrichshafen Germany.  
 

Sophie Lammerant Velge

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After an international career in the private banking and pharma industry, Sophie Velge (MBA INSEAD) is Director of the Board of the Bekaert SAK (Family Council) and actively involved in the 5th generation’s ownership education programme «Bekaert Academy». Since 2011, she is Director of the Board of Sipef, an agro-industrial company listed on Euronext Brussels which holds majority stakes in tropical businesses, mainly palm oil. Sophie sits in various other Boards or Committees in the education, cultural and philanthropic fields.

Role within FBN-I

  • Co-founder of FBNet Belgium in 2005, Executive Director of FBN Belgium since 2012
  • Member of the Board of Directors of FBN-I (from 2008-2014)
  • Member of the FBN-I Nomination Committee since 2013

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • Her role as FBN Member
  • The role of Family Business in the economy and as a force for change
  • Her own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner

Subbu Murugappa

Murugappa Group (AMM fundation)

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After retiring as Chairman of the Murugappa Group in 2004, Subbu went to Kellogg business school "Centre for Family enterprises" and spent a year in sabbatical under Prof. John Ward, mainly working on the concept of "letting go". Currently, Subbu is the Managing Trustee of the Family Foundation viz., AMM Foundation. He is the past President of Confederation of Indian Industry. He is also the former Chairman of the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), a public – Private Corporation.

Role within FBN-I

  • Chairman of CII-FBN India
  • Former member of the Board of FBN International

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning
  • Working with non-family CEO

Tamas Kurti

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Principal owner: KÜRT Academy, Hungary (2nd Generation) 
As a NextGen in a high-tech family enterprise, Tamás grew up seeing outstanding performance, accomplishments, humility, creativity and power around him.
After a journey in online corporate strategies in Hungary and the US, he joined the family business where he founded and led its research and development center for five years, ending in a professional succession.
By working at the board level for 7 years and organizing the family forum for 10 years, Tamás realized how deep his love was for growing by sharing experiences. This is why he founded FBN Hungary and felt blessed to co-design and execute FBN-I’s New Leaders Circle program as member of the NextGen Committee.
Today Tamás co-leads KÜRT Academy - a future fit company that focuses on digital transformation of enterprises, agile transformation of C level leaders, and professional transformation of future jobs, such as data science, ethical hacking, and network marketing - with his wife, who is also a nextgen (new leader) of an environmental social company, specialized in the bioenergy sector. Tamás personally engages in developing leadership and ownership teams of entrepreneurial family businesses.
He holds an MSc. in Engineering Management and a Postgraduate Degree in Organizational Development, Coaching and Supervision. Resides with his wife and daughter in Budapest.

Thierry Lombard

Landolt &Cie S.A.

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After a degree in economics from the University of Geneva, Thierry Lombard, representing the 6th generation, served for 42 years up to the highest position of Senior Partner in Lombard Odier, a large Private Bank with 3 business lines, Private Clients, Asset Management and Technology for Banking, with 25 offices around the world in 19 jurisdictions, employing about 2300 people. In 2016, Thierry Lombard, joined his oldest son Alexis, as a shareholder and board member of Landolt & Cie SA, to help the transition, develop the asset management activities and organize the succession of the Bank. Thierry Lombard is a member of the International Committee of the Red Cross. He has developed during his career expertise in domains like Innovation, entrepreneurship and sustainability and has a keen interest for the Next Generation. He is active in various medical and humanitarian Foundations and published several books about Succession in Family Businesses Wealth and Philanthropy and Portfolio management. Thierry Lombard was involved in the development of the IMD-Lombard Odier Global Family Business Award and promoted a Family Business Award in France as well.

Role within FBN-I

  • Former President of the Family Business International Foundation (FBIF)
  • Honorary Member of the Board
  • Chairman of the Board (2009-2015)
  • Member of the Board (1999-2009)

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • The role of Family Business in the economy
  • The role of Family Business as a force for change
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner

Thilo Wersborg

Precitec Group

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Before joining the management board of Precitec Group in 2005, Thilo has worked for an internet start-up company in Silicon Valley and for an international consulting firm in Frankfurt, Germany. He holds a Master of Science from Stanford University and a Doctor in Human Biology from the University of Munich. Since 2010 Thilo is the CEO of Precitec Group. He represents the 2nd generation.

Role within FBN-I

  • Member of the Nomination Committee
  • Former member of the Board of Directors
  • Former member of the Executive Committee
  • Former President and Vice-President of the NxG International Committee
  • Member of the Program Committee for the Global Summit 2012 in London

Key Topics of expertise

  • The Family Business Network a unique organization across generations
  • His role as FBN Member
  • His own personal story as a Family Business member, manager and/or owner
  • His family succession process and planning