Our people

Our people are vital to our success.

Our highly differentiated team are experts at what they do. Our life sciences investment team members have deep technical scientific background, supplemented by strong commercial experience ranging from venture capital investment to pharmaceutical launch. This skill set has resulted in a strong network in life science, enabling the best talent to be attracted at the level of Syncona's portfolio companies. 

Martin Murphy

Martin Murphy

Chief Executive Officer

Martin is Chief Executive Officer of Syncona Investment Management Ltd and was co-founder of Syncona.

Previously, he was a partner at MVM Life Science Partners LLP, a venture capital company focused on life science and healthcare, where he led their European operations and was closely involved in investments including PregLem SA, Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc, Healthcare Brands International and Heptares Therapeutics Ltd. Martin has held roles with 3i Group plc and McKinsey & Company. He has a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Cambridge.

Chris Hollowood

Chris Hollowood

Chief Investment Officer

Chris is the Chief Investment Officer and a Managing Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, he was a partner of Apposite Capital LLP, a venture and growth capital healthcare investment company.

During his time at Apposite, he was involved in a number of investments, which included Ambit Biosciences, Convergence Pharmaceuticals, Birdrock and the acquisition of a portfolio of nine US healthcare companies which included Zonare Medical Systems and Ulthera. 

Before  Apposite, Chris had roles with Bioscience Managers Ltd, Neptune Investment Management Ltd and in the pharmaceutical industry. Chris holds a degree in Natural Sciences and a PhD in Organic Chemistry, both from the University of Cambridge

John Bradshaw

John Bradshaw

Chief Financial Officer

John Bradshaw is the Chief Financial Officer of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

He has worked extensively with companies in the life science sector as a part-time and interim CFO. He was previously CFO of Gyrus Group PLC and qualified as a chartered accountant with Arthur Andersen. John has a degree in Law from the University of Liverpool.

Arabella Cecil

Arabella Cecil

Head of Fund Investments at Syncona Investment Management Limited

Arabella is Head of Fund Investments at Syncona Investment Management Limited.

She was Chief Investment Officer of BACIT UK and co-founder of BACIT Ltd. Arabella trained at Finbancaria (corporate finance, Milan) in 1987, Banque Hottinguer (Paris), and Credit Lyonnais Laing (London) where she headed food manufacturing research. Between 1998 and 2008 she owned and ran Gravity Pictures, specialising in IMAX®. Most recently she was an investment manager and a member of the investment and risk committees of Culross Global Management.

Iraj Ali

Iraj Ali

Managing Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Iraj is a Managing Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, he was an associate-principal at McKinsey & Company where he specialised in product launch. He has been involved in several major pharmaceutical launches across developed and emerging markets. Prior to joining McKinsey, Iraj held roles in scientific research: EMBO Research Scholar (UCSC), Drug Discovery Scientist (RiboTargets, Cambridge). Iraj has a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Cambridge.

Edward Hodgkin

Edward Hodgkin

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Edward Hodgkin is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

He is a Director of Syncona’s portfolio company, Autolus, having served as its first Chief Executive Officer. Prior to Syncona, he was Chief Executive Officer of Biotica Technology (Cambridge, UK), President & Chief Business Officer of BrainCells (San Diego, CA) and Vice President, Business Development & Marketing at Tripos (St. Louis, MO). Ed holds an MA and DPhil in Chemistry from Oxford University.

Elisa Petris

Elisa Petris

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Elisa is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, she was a Senior Associate at Michel Dyens & Co. working on transactions covering the healthcare space, and a member of the Life Science team at L.E.K. Consulting based in London. While at L.E.K. she worked on projects for biotech, pharma and private equity clients. Elisa has a PhD in Molecular Biology from Imperial College and an MBA from London Business School

 Dominic Schmidt

Dominic Schmidt

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Dominic is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Prior to joining Syncona, he worked for strategy consultancy L.E.K. Consulting. Dominic received his PhD from the Department of Oncology at the University of Cambridge, where he was a Cancer Research UK scholar. He also holds a German Diplom Degree in Biochemistry and his research has been honoured with national and international prizes and published in Cell, Nature and Science.

Toby Sykes

Toby Sykes

Managing Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Toby is a Managing Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, he was a Managing Director at Essex Woodlands, a healthcare venture capital and growth equity company. Whilst at Essex Woodlands, Toby led the firm’s pharmaceuticals practice, and was responsible for investments in Europe and Latin America. He was involved in a number of investments, including EUSA Pharma (sold to Jazz Pharma), Molecular Partners (SWX:MOLN) and Healthcare Brands International (sold to Meda). Previously, Toby was a Director of Business Development at Cephalon. He has a PhD in Development Biology from King’s College London.

Magdalena Jonikas

Magdalena Jonikas

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Magdalena is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, she was an Associate Partner at McKinsey & Company where she specialised in pharmaceuticals Research & Development, portfolio management and Business Development and Licensing. Magdalena holds a PhD in Bioengineering from Stanford University and was a postdoctoral fellow in Harvard Medical School’s Computational Health Informatics Programme.

Alex Hamilton

Alex Hamilton

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Alex is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, he was a member of the Healthcare Investment Banking team at Jefferies, where he worked on a range of financings and mergers and acquisitions across the biotechnology, pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors. Alex  has a PhD in Immunology from the University of Cambridge.

Michael Kyriakides

Michael Kyriakides

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Michael Kyriakides is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Previously, Michael was a member of the Life Sciences team at L.E.K. Consulting, where he worked in projects for pharmaceutical, biotech and private equity clients. Prior to joining L.E.K. Consulting, he was a clinical project and NMR manager in the Faculty of Medicine at Imperial College London. Michael obtained his doctorate degree in toxicology and metabolic profiling at Imperial College London.

Alice Renard

Alice Renard

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Alice is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Prior to joining Syncona, Alice was an Investment Banking Analyst within Barclays’ Healthcare Corporate Finance and M&A team, where she worked on transactions involving pharmaceutical and other healthcare companies. Prior to Barclays, Alice worked briefly at AbbVie and Janssen. Alice holds a Doctorate degree in Pharmacy from the University of Lille 2 (School of Pharmacy, Lille, France). She holds a Masters in International Health Policy & Health Economics from the London School of Economics (London, UK).

Freddie Dear

Freddie Dear

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Freddie is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, he was a member of the Investment Team at the Wellcome Trust, which is responsible for the management of its £23 billion global investment portfolio. Freddie joined Syncona full time after a six-month secondment from the Wellcome Trust graduate scheme. Freddie holds a degree in Biochemistry from the University of Edinburgh.

Hitesh Thakrar

Hitesh Thakrar

Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Hitesh is a Partner of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

He has 24 years’ experience of global public equities. He managed Innovation funds for several asset management companies including Aviva and ADIA, where he was a top-rated portfolio manager. He has an interest in the convergence of life science with other innovationled sectors such as data sciences and the application of industrial technology in medical diagnostics. He has a degree in Chemistry from King’s College London and is a CFA.

Andrew Cossar

Andrew Cossar

General Counsel

Andrew is the General Counsel of Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, he was Chief Investment Counsel at the Wellcome Trust, responsible for legal issues arising from its £23bn global multi-asset investment portfolio, and where he was involved in the initial formation of Syncona Partners LLP.  Prior to that he worked as a corporate lawyer in London and Edinburgh.

Andrew has an LLB from the University of Glasgow.

Siobhan Weaver

Siobhan Weaver

Head of Investor Relations and Communications

Siobhan Weaver is Head of Investor Relations and Communications at Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Previously, she worked at Tulchan Communications, a financial communications agency, where she was a Director providing advice to a range of clients across a wide range sectors, projects and transactions. Siobhan has spent seven years in financial communications, having previously worked for one of the leading consultancies in Australia. She has degrees in Law and Media Communications from the University of Melbourne.

Nikki Padden

Nikki Padden

Head of Finance

Nikki is Head of Finance at Syncona Investment Management Ltd

She is a chartered accountant with experience in practice and commerce. Previous roles include business operations at GlaxoSmithKline and project management for AEA Technology and its biopharmaceutical contract manufacturing spin-out. Prior to this she worked in research at King’s College, London and the University of Reading. Nikki has a PhD in Biotechnology from King’s College and an MBA from Warwick Business School.

Annabel Clay

Annabel Clay

Investor Relations and Communications Manager

Annabel is Investor Relations and Communications Manager at Syncona Investment Management Ltd

Previously, she was a Consultant at Greenbrook Communications, advising clients on a wide range of projects and transactions. Prior to that, Annabel spent several years at a leading financial communications firm, where she worked with companies across a number of sectors. She has an Honours Degree in History from the University of Bristol.

Ross Carswell

Ross Carswell

Fund and Financial Accountant

Ross is the Fund and Financial Accountant of Syncona Investment Management Limited.

Ross became a chartered accountant (ICAEW) on PwC’s fast track programme, with experience in both practice and commerce. Ross has a Business, Accounting and Finance degree from Newcastle University.

Fiona Fernandez

Fiona Fernandez

Office Manager

Fiona is the Office Manager of Syncona Investment Management Ltd overseeing the daily operations of the office and supporting a number of the partners.

Prior to joining Syncona, Fiona held various senior support roles, most recently as an Executive Assistant at AnaCap Financial Partners, supporting two of the Partners, Legal Counsel and the Mergers and Acquisitions team.

Fiona holds a degree in Geography and Management from Leeds University.

Caroline Horsford

Caroline Horsford

Executive Assistant

Caroline is an Executive Assistant at Syncona Investment Management Limited supporting the Senior Management Team and the Board.

Prior to joining Syncona, Caroline held senior support roles in a number of sectors, most recently at Odgers Berndtson where she supported the Global Head of Marketing and Head of Research.

Caroline holds a degree in Hispanic Studies and History from the University of Nottingham.

Abbey Webb

Abbey Webb

Team Assistant

Abbey is Team Assistant of Syncona Investment Management Ltd. supporting a number of the partners, assisting with events and other operational functions.

Prior to joining Syncona, Abbey was Manager at Clues & Co. a digital forensic and Expert Witness consultancy and she has also held music industry related roles.