Monday, 19 January 2009

Kenneth Olisa



Ken's technology career spans over 30 years, commencing with IBM where he held various posts in systems, engineering, sales and marketing, before joining Wang Laboratories in 1981.

Ken moved on to test his entrepreneurial mettle by founding Interregnum in 1992 which was floated on London’s AIM exchange in 2000.

At Interregnum, Ken worked at the forefront of the entrepreneur/technology growth cycle.

As well as serving on the Boards of many of Interregnum’s investment and advisory clients, Ken notched up some interesting firsts, including chairing the IPO of Vossnet, the UK’s first Internet Service Provider (ISP) DMATEK the first Israeli technology company to be listed on AIM. He was also a principal advisor to, and Director of, uDate.com - one the UK’s few dotcom successes which was sold to USA Interactive in 2003.

Ken retired from Interregnum in 2006 and founded boutique technology merchant bank – Restoration Partners. He is a Director of Thomson Reuters and Canadian software developer – Open Text, and serves on the Board of, or is an adviser to, several privately held and innovative companies including Prevx, BioWisdom, Independent Audit and Metapraxis.

A believer in the Victorian ethos that successful commerce is the fuel of public service, Ken is a Freeman of the City of London; a Warden of the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists; Director of the Reuters Foundation; Chairman of homeless charity Thames Reach; and was an inaugural Postal Services Commissioner from 2001 to 2004.

In 2003 Ken won the BVCA/Real Deals Private Equity Personality of the Year Award and in 2006 he was elected a Fellow of the British Computer Society, becoming a Vice President in 2007.

In 2008, a panel led by Baroness Amos of Brondesbury drew up the Powerlist 2008 published this week by Powerful Media.

Ken was recognised for his business and charitable achievements, including directorships of two FTSE 100 companies (ENRC and Thomson Reuters) and long-term chairmanship of Thames Reach - a charity determined to end street homelessness in London by 2012.

The Powerlist highlighted that there are only two FTSE100 companies whose boards include black directors, and Ken is two of them.

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