London Networking Breakfast 2019: Are Entrepreneurs Born or Made?

It’s an age-old question: Are entrepreneurs born with an ‘entrepreneur gene’ or certain genetic characteristics and personality traits that drive them to succeed, or can they can be created through education, experience and mentorship?

The MCS Waynflete Office is pleased to present the second in our Breakfast Briefing Series in London, organised by OW Jim Hawker (Co-Founder of Threepipe) and MCS Parent Peter Norris (Chairman of the Virgin Group).

There will be time for networking during registration and after the panel discussion – so bring your business cards!

This event is open to all members of the MCS community.

Cost: Free to members of the MCS community (Note: if you book and do not attend, we will suggest a modest donation to the school’s Bursary Fund in lieu of cancellation)

Dress code: Business attire (jackets, no jeans or trainers)

Time: 8 am (registration and breakfast) for 8.30 am (panel discussion)

Location: Ballroom, The Lansdowne Club, 9 Fitzmaurice Place, London W1J 5JD


Oli Barrett, MBE

Oli created schools enterprise challenge Tenner, which has challenged over 250,000 young people to see what they can achieve with £10 in one month. He launched StartUp Britain with the support of Number 10 as a national, business-funded campaign. He also co-founded social enterprise Volunteer It Yourself (VIY) which has helped thousands of young people to fix their own youth clubs, supported by DIY chain Wickes. He hosts the Great British Entrepreneur Awards and The Lens podcast with Business in the Community, and runs The Connector Unit which connects people and organisations around the world to make a difference. His personal statement: ‘My love in life is bringing people together’.

Rob Hamilton (OW 1992)

Rob trained as a Chartered Surveyor with what is now known as BNP Paribas Real Estate. Founded a business providing a free service to companies seeking serviced offices / Co-working worldwide in 1999. Grew the business as CEO until stepping down in 2011 and selling a significant stake in 2012. Sold the remainder in a secondary buyout to Bowmark Capital in June 2018. Founded a round the world cycle adventure in 2012, raising money for 1moreChild. 2019 will be Leg 8 (of 25). Angel Investor in various including Revvies, Giftwink, Saffron Robo & Frameworks.

William Reeve (OW 1985)

William is an internet-focused entrepreneur, angel investor and former ‘Undercover Boss’ on Channel 4, whose career began at school when he published the Pipeline computer game. He built two successful businesses (Fletcher Research, from scratch, and has helped found and grow numerous other UK success stories, including Graze, Secret Escapes, and Zoopla. He is currently CEO of a ‘proptech’ business Goodlord, and Non Exec Director of Dunelm PLC. He has an M.Eng in Engineering, Economics and Management from Oxford University.

Debbie Wosskow, OBE 

Debbie is recognised as one of the most prominent successful serial entrepreneurs in the UK. She is the current London Evening Standard ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ - awarded to her for her work in scaling businesses. Debbie co-founded AllBright, which aims to help women build the network, skills and confidence that they need to thrive in their careers. Debbie sits on the Mayor of London’s Business Advisory Board and is a Board member of the Women’s Prize for Fiction.