Our Team

Carl Jones

Role Chief Executive Officer

Email carl@wntventures.co.nz

Phone 021 666 375

Carl Jones has a background across a broad range of asset classes via a career in investment management, private equity, property, funds management, venture capital and angel investing.

Prior to joining WNT Ventures as CEO in December 2014, Carl spent nearly five years at New Zealand Venture Investment Fund (NZVIF) where he worked as an Investment Manager on the Seed Co-Investment Fund (SCIF) investing alongside angel investors into early stage, high growth companies.  Carl also oversaw the Taiwan/New Zealand Co-Fund arrangement which is a USD200 million cross-border agreement between NZVIF and the government-owned National Development Fund of Taiwan. 

Prior to NZVIF, Carl was employed by the McConnell Group of companies primarily in property funds management.  Previous roles include working for an Auckland-based private equity firm; a share broker in New Zealand and with boutique investment management firm, Ruffer LLP, in London.

Carl has been involved in a number of early stage companies in a personal capacity and has a passionate interest in the development of start-up, high growth technologies.    

>

Michael Nguyen

Role Investment Analyst

Email michael@wntventures.co.nz

Phone 027 22 99 225

Michael is currently an Investment Analyst at WNT Ventures.  He brings five years of experience in Market Research, Due Diligence, Financial Planning, Valuation and Fund Management. 

His previous employment was with PwC where he worked as a Senior Analyst in its Corporate Finance team.  At PwC, he assisted a number of technology start-up companies in raising capital and developing their business plans.  He also delivered in-depth market research to various companies to deepen their understanding of supply and demand for their products and services.

Prior to PwC, Michael worked in the Banking Industry as an Investment Analyst and conducted analysis on companies in various industries.

He earned his BA in Finance with distinction in the U.S and is working on the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) level III to become a CFA charterholder.

>

Jon Sandbrook

Role Investment Manager

Email jon@wntventures.co.nz

Phone 027 22 99 229

Jon has a background as a corporate strategist, business developer, consultant and executive manager focusing on building and growing companies, primarily in the agriculture, food, small business finance and biotechnology sectors.

Prior joining WNT Ventures in 2017 as an Investment Manager, Jon spent eight years in the USA in roles including Regional Director for WWBIC, a small business investment fund, and Independent Advisor for Babylon BioConsulting, a specialist biotechnology consulting firm.  Most recently, Jon led Pan Genome Systems, an animal health biotechnology start-up specialising in vaccines and diagnostics development, to a strategic deal with a global animal health company.  Before moving to the USA, Jon served as a senior executive and led the corporate strategy function for New Zealand State Owned Enterprise AsureQuality Ltd.

Jon has a passion for cutting edge start-ups and innovative corporates with global reach, as well as interest in non-profits, social ventures and philanthropy.

>

Laura Faulconer

Role Investment Manager

Email laura@wntventures.co.nz

Phone 027 22 99 228

Laura Faulconer has built a career in entrepreneurship support, architecting and delivering major initiatives aimed at accelerating commercialisation of IP-anchored advanced technologies. Trained as a biomedical engineer, she has worked at the intersection of research translation, commercial development and fundraising with deep experience in medical devices and health technologies.

 

Before joining WNT, she was CTO for The Actuator/STC Australia where she designed and launched a seed-to-Series A accelerator for regulated medical devices, forming the basis for a dedicated $75M (AUD) seed investment fund. While there, she designed and launched Australia's largest and longest-running medical device startup competition, with ongoing support from major corporates, governments and publicly funded research organisations. She scaled this program from state-based to national and laid the groundwork for international expansion. She has also held roles including Associate Professor of Science at Monash University, in Global Challenges: science + entrepreneurship = impact; Marketing & Business Development Officer at MiniFAB, a contract point of care diagnostics manufacturer; Director of Innovation Projects at COIN, a not-for-profit entrepreneurship support initiative cultivating an emerging nanobiotechnology cluster.

 

She is an experienced entrepreneur, and is passionate about mentoring and enabling fellow entrepreneurs.

 

>

Kelsey Link

Role Executive Assistant

Email kelsey@wntventures.co.nz

Phone 027 706 8417

Kelsey Link joined WNT Ventures as Executive Assistant in August 2017.  Kelsey has a background in science and nutrition, with over 10 years of experience in project and programme management, across innovation and entrepreneurship, food, nutrition and health.  She has worked within a diverse range of industries including tertiary institutes, non-Governmental Organisations and FMCGs.

Kelsey’s interest in intellectual property, start-up businesses, innovation and commercialisation of research has grown following her role as Strategic Project Manager for the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, at the University of Auckland, and recent completion of a Postgraduate Certificate in this area. 

>