The top 100 investment specialists at single-family offices

Over the last two months, Family Capital has been gathering recommendations from our readers on the top investment specialists who work for family offices. After taking these recommendations into account and with further analysis, we have compiled a list of the top 100 investment experts who work for single-family offices and private investment offices.

Of course, any list like this isn’t conclusive – there are many excellent investment specialists who aren’t on this list for reasons that might be to do with anonymity – but what this list provides is a good snapshot of some of the top investment experts working in the industry.  It also shows the increasing professionalization of the sector with some of the best and brightest investment experts now working for private investment offices across the world.

This week, Family Capital lists the top ones among the 100 who are from Europe. Next week, we will publish the top ones among the 100 from North America. And the following week, the top ones from the rest of the world.


In alphabetical order


Alexandre Benais

Position: Managing Partner, Tethys Invest, the family office that manages the Bettencourt-Meyers family wealth, the major shareholders of L’Oreal.

Based: Paris,

Background: Lazard, Societe Generale

Education: N/A

Specialism: Corporate finance, deals

The ex-banker came in to lead Tethys Invest in 2016 when it was set up to diversify the assets of the Bettencourt-Meyers family. He has since built a team of investment specialists to invest in mainly private businesses, real estate, and funds.


Giacomo Bertoldi

Position: CEO, Bertoldi Holdings, which manages the assets of the Bertoldi family

Based: Tento, Italy

Background: family business

Education: Hult International Business School

Specialism: Venture investing

Bertoldi might be a member of the family that owns the holding company, which could otherwise exclude him from this list, but he’s including because of his considerable achievements in the venture sector and his age – he’s still just in his 20s. Investments he has led have included a number of fintech and property tech startups, including leading a Series A funding round for Walliance, Italy’s first real estate crowdfunding platform.


Morten Borge

Position: CEO, Ferd, the private investment office of Johan Andresen and family

Based: Oslo, Norway

Background: Company director, CFO

Education: MSc (Finance), Norway School of Management

Specialism: Private equity

Borge has been with Ferd for 10 years, having been co-head and investment director of the family office for much of those years until becoming overall head last year. A seasoned private equity specialist, Borge has a broad range of investment skills in line with the diversified portfolio of Ferd.


Jussof Breshna

Position: Partner, Reimann Investors, the investment office of members of the Reimann family

Based: Munich, Germany

Background: McKinsey & Co, social ventures

Education: N/A

Specialism: venture investment, social venture investing

Breshna has been with Reimann for over nine years and has been instrumental in building the group’s investments in venture and managing those assets. He has also focused on impact investing and social entrepreneurship.


Sebastien Coquard

Position: Head of Investments at FFP, Peugeot family Holding company

Based: Paris, France

Background: investment management

Education: Postgraduate Diploma in Finance, University of Grenoble

Specialism: Long-term investing, direct and indirect

Coquard has overseen FFP’s investment for more than 12 years, which has concentrated on taking big minority stakes in listed and non-listed companies, many of these family-controlled. He also has coordinated the holding company’s indirect investment efforts, which have concentrated on private equity, LBO funds, and growth funds in emerging markets. He has also coordinated FFP’s co-investment efforts.


Jonno Elliott

Position: Investment Director, Virgin Management, the investment group of Richard Branson

Based: London, UK

Background: investment management

Education: CFA

Specialism: Venture investing

Elliott has been instrumental in building up Virgin Managment’s substantial portfolio of investments in startups, which include stakes in Pinterest and Twitter, a portfolio of fintech investments, healthcare, and educational ventures.


Nils Foldal

Position: CEO, Ludvig Lorentzen, the family office of the Norwegian Lorentzen family

Based: Oslo, Norway

Background: family investment groups, asset management

Education: MSc, Norwegian School of Economics

Specialism: Broad-based investment, venture capital

Foldal has been with Ludvig Lorentzen for more than 11 years, previous to this he was investment director for Awilhelmsen Capital, another Norwegian family investment group. He has focused on investing in venture and disruptive technology, as well as more established companies. He also sits on the board of many portfolio companies.


Tilly Franklin

Position: Director, Alta Advisers, which manages the assets of members of the Rausing family

Based: London, UK

Background: private equity, Apax Partners, and university endowments

Education: MBA, London Business School

Specialism: investment management, private equity

Franklin has been with Alta Advisers for ten years, overseeing much of the asset management and private equity investment efforts. Those who know her say she is among the best family office investment specialists in London.


Bradley Fried

Position: CEO, Kirsh Family Office, the investment group of Nathan Kirsh and family

Based: London, UK

Background: CEO of Investec, private equity, McKinsey & Co, entrepreneurial (Grovepoint Capital)

Education: MBA, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

Specialism: Broad-based investing, private equity

South African born Fried has made a name for himself quickly in London financial circles having been CEO of Investec, a non-executive director of the Court of the Bank of England, and founder of private equity group Grovepoint Capital. He joined the family office three years ago.


Mattias Karlkjell

Position: CEO and CIO of AltoCumulus, the family-owned trading business now in its fourth generation of ownership and run by family member Antonia Margaret Ax:son Johnson

Based: Stockholm, Sweden

Background: Equity analyst, Deutsche Bank

Education: N/A

Specialism: broad-based, public and private equity

Karlkjell oversees a team of seven investment specialist that run the asset management and family office business of the Ax:son Johnson family. He sits on the board of some of the portfolio companies.


Eric Melloul

Position: Managing Director, Verlinvest,  the family investment group for the Spoelberch and de Mévius families, who are linked to the world’s biggest brewery group, InBev

Based: Brussels, Belgium

Background: Citibank; McKinsey & Co

Education: MBA, Harvard

Specialism: Private equity, general investing

Melloul oversees the investment and management of Verlinvest and has built up the family office’s investments in the consumer sector, and food and beverages.


Victor Meng

Position: Managing Director: private direct investment at Bscope, an investment group managing the assets for part of the Piech-Nordhoff family

Based: Oxfordshire, UK

Education: MSc.Management from the London School of Economics.

Background: Management consultancy, connections in China

Specialism: broad investment and deal-making, sustainability, clean-tech

Meng co-founded Bscope with members of the Piech-Nordhoff family and has helped them build up a portfolio of businesses linked to electric cars and fuel cell technologies.


Stéphane Pesic

Position: Head of Real Estate Investment & Acquisition, Groupe Arnault, the investment group of the Arnault family.

Based: Paris, France

Education: PhD, Université Paris Dauphine

Background: institutional real estate management

Specialism: Real estate investing

Pesci has been with Groupe Arnault for more than 11 years, where he has managed a substantial global property portfolio. These include offices, retail, residential, hotels and stakes in property companies. Through the Arnault family’s control of the luxury retail group LVMH as well as other retail groups, and separate investments, the family control one of the biggest property portfolios of any family investment group in the world. Pesci oversees this and also continues to make investments in the asset class.


Sylvio Petto

Position: Managing Director – portfolio North America for Wheatsheaf, which is part of the Grosvenor Estate – the overall holding group for the Grosvenor family

Based: London, UK

Background: Agribusiness, Cargill and Syngenta

Education: MBA, Dartmouth

Specialism: agri-tech, agribusiness

Petto has led Wheatsheaf’s efforts in agri-tech in North America since joining the group a little over a year ago. These include a number of investments in startups in the sector, including most recently Canada-based Enterra Foods.  


Jacob Polny

Position: CIO, Telemos Capital, which manages the money of a member of the Swiss-based Jacobs family

Based: London, UK

Background: TPG, private equity, Goldman Sachs

Education: MBA, Columbia University

Specialism: private equity

Polny joined Telemos Capital last year to be part of the executive team and direct the investment strategy, particularly in the private equity area. Telemos typically looks at long-term holdings in consumer, health care and business services sectors.


Giovanni Canetta Roeder

Position: CEO and CIO, Planven Investments, which manages the assets of the De Benedetti family

Based: Milan, Italy

Background: Merrill Lynch, Crédit Agricole and UBS

Education:  University of Bocconi

Specialism: Broad-based investment expertise, M&A, private equity, venture

Roeder has been with Planven for a number of years and has led its investments in private equity and venture capital, recently overseeing an investment in an Israeli-based startup called Wochit.


Severin Jan Rüegger

Position: Managing Partner, Saidler & Co, which manages the money of the Saidler family.

Based: Zurich, Switzerland

Background: entrepreneurial

Education: MSc, London School of Economics

Specialism: Venture, startups, private equity

Rüegger has been managing partner for three years at Saidler and was presumably hired given his considerable entrepreneurial experience, having launched a number of successful businesses. He also specializes in organising co-investing opportunities for the investment group with other families and institutions.


Jussi Salokangas

Position: CIO, Hartwall Capital, the family investment group of the Finnish Hartwall family

Based: Helsinki, Finland

Background: private equity, FSN Capital

Education: MSc, Helsinki School of Economics

Specialism: private equity, ethical investing

Salokangas has been with Hartwall for a little over two years and has solidified the group’s efforts in investing in both listed and non-listed businesses mostly in the Nordic region, as well as driving the success of the portfolio companies. He oversees a team of three investment specialists and tends to concentrate more on private equity investing and sits on the board of various portfolio companies.


Thomas Lau Schleicher

Position: CIO of KIRKBI, the investment group of the Kirk Kristiansen family, the biggest shareholders of Lego.

Based: Billund, Denmark

Education: MSc in Finance and Accounting, Aarhus School of Business

Background: Venture investing, worked for EQT Partners, which is partly owned by the Wallenberg family

Specialism: Venture and private equity investing

Schleicher has helped KIRKBI build up substantial holdings in private companies, with a focus on long-term goals. These efforts are backed by considerable support role in developing portfolio companies.


Ladislav Sekerka

Position: Partner, Consillium Family Office, the family office of Tomas Nemec

Based: Prague, Czech Republic

Background: UBS, private banking

Education: Lawyer, Masaryk University Brno

Specialism: Broad-based investment expertise

Sekerka joined Consillium two years ago after a 12-year career at UBS. He has helped to develop Consillium’s direct investment portfolio, as well as directing indirect investment efforts in private equity funds and alternative investments.


Julian Sinclair

Position: CIO, Talisman Global Asset Management, the family office of the Pears family

Based: London, UK

Background: hedge funds, BlueBay Asset Management

Education: N/A

Specialism: Broad-based investment expertise, hedge funds

Sinclair joined Talisman just after the financial crisis of 2008 and has been involved in multiple investment strategies at the London family office, which includes direct and indirect. Sinclair has recently been joined by a team of asset managers from Cambridge University’s endowment fund.


Dominik Socher

Position: Managing director, Serafin Group, which manages the money of members of the Haindl family.

Based: Munich, Germany

Background: KPMG, corporate finance

Education: PhD, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich

Specialism: Broad-based investment expertise, private equity

Socher joined the Serafin Group soon after it was founded in 2010 and has guided the investment strategy of the family office since. Much of this has been driven by taking majority stakes in small to mid-sized businesses in mostly German-based companies.


Andreas Tolpeit

Position: Head of Investments, Jacobs Holdings, the investment office of the Swiss-based Jacobs family

Based: Zurich, Switzerland

Background: Rothschild, M&A

Education: MSC, Bocconi University, Italy

Specialism: Direct investments, private equity

Tolpeit joined Jacobs Holdings in 2015 and was appointed head of investments last year after the departure of Tomas Aubell, who now is CEO of one of Jacobs Holdings portfolio companies. Tolpeit oversees a team of three investment specialists. He has continued Jacobs success in acquiring big stakes in public and private businesses. Jacob Holdings is one of the biggest family investment groups in Europe.


Philippe Vandeurzen

Position: Managing Director, De Eik, the investment group of the Van Waeyenberge family.

Based: Brussels, Belgium

Background: Investment banking, Fortis Bank, academia

Education: PhD, KU Leuven, CFA

Specialism: Broad-based investment expertise, private equity

Vandeurzen has been with De Eik since 2004, having been made CEO in 2014. He has overseen much of the investment and risk management of the group and oversees a team of five investment specialists.


Thomas Villinger

Position: CEO, Zukunftsfonds Heilbronn, an investment group linked to the Schwarz family, who own supermarket group, Lidl

Based: Heilbronn, Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Background: venture capital, startups, CapGemini

Education: MBA, Schiller International University

Specialism: venture, startups, entrepreneurial (founded a tech hub)

Villinger co-founded Zukunftsfonds in 2006 and has guided its investment strategy since. He sits on the board of many of the family office’s portfolio companies and has guided many to successful businesses and exits.


Vincent Vliebergh

Position: Managing Partner,  Korys, the family investment group of the Belgium-based Colruyt family

Based: Brussels, Belgium

Background: Goldman Sachs

Education: MBA, Yale

Specialism: Broad investment overview, direct and indirect

Vliebergh helped set up Korys and has worked closely with the Colruyt family to build a diversified portfolio of both direct and indirect investments.


Paddy Walker

Position: Managing director of J Leon & Co, a London-based family office that manages the money of the Slowe family

Based: London, UK

Background: with the family office

Education: Johnson Business School at Cornell University

Specialism: Broad-based investment expertise

Walker, who is the husband of one of the members of the Slowe family, has led the investment strategy of J Leon for many years, diversifying the family office’s investments away from property, although property still comprises nearly 50% of the portfolio of investments. Also, with his wife Tania, has directed the group’s philanthropic efforts.




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