WAIN & Mindshift Capital
Has 18 years of experience in venture finance, entrepreneurship, emerging markets, angel investing, financial technology, credit and impact investment. She is an activist investor with a passion for global fintech and women-led start- ups. She is a Founding Partner of Athena CFO, now known as Growth Partners, an outsourced CFO and finance advisory firm for start-ups, SMEs, growth companies and investors. Previously, she was Investment Director with Eureeca, a regulated global equity crowdinvesting firm, where she was responsible for curation, products, and investments. Heather founded Balthazar Capital, a social enterprise investment advisory firm for the Arab region in 2010. As the founding general manager of Grameen-Jameel, a social business jointly owned by Grameen Foundation and Abdul Latif Jameel Group, she originated, structured and closed $44 million in leveraged commercial debt financing for microfinance institutions in Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia. In 2013, Heather started the Women’s Angel Investor Network (WAIN), the first women’s angel investment group in the Middle East, and served as Interim CFO for Little Thinking Minds, WAIN’s first investment, and is currently CFO of NeedsList, a WAIN investee refugee aid matching platform. Heather started her career on Wall Street where she worked for Standard & Poor’s as a corporate bond ratings analyst in the capital goods and auto supplier sector. Past roles include project finance, 3G wireless consultant for Middle East & Africa and Vint Cerf’s internet architecture group at WorldCom. Over the last 20 years, she has lived and worked in the UAE, Egypt, Lebanon, and Palestine, and she speaks Arabic and French. Heather is on the Investment Committee of Next Wave US Impact Fund; Board Director and Investment Committee Member of Dubai Angel Investors; cofounder of impact angel investor club Rhodium45; and advisor to CoFund, a Dutch microfinance private equity fund. Heather is a mentor for start-up companies at in5, Flat6Labs Abu Dhabi, 1776 and the Dubai Technology Entrepreneurship Center (DTEC). She serves on the Advisory Council of BR Microcapital, Cornell University’s microfinance fund; is a Board member of the Cornell Club of the UAE and past Co-Chair of the Johnson Middle East Alumni Club; served as the Middle East Advisor to Cornell’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Initiative; is co-founder and past Chair of the Dubai Microfinance Club. Heather represents Oikocredit’s investment on the Board of Directors and Audit & Risk Committee of the Sekem Holding Group. Heather holds an MBA from the Johnson School at Cornell University, where she was a full-merit Park Leadership Fellow scholarship recipient, and a BA from Oberlin College. Heather studied abroad at The American University in Cairo (AUC), where she was a Presidential Fellow. Heather lives in Dubai, UAE.