inavate 40 under 40 the class of 2021 – InAVate

In this year’s Inavate 40 Under 40 list we focus on AV professionals shaping, leading and often disrupting the industry across EMEA.

Covid-19 remains a strong theme, but growth is the other headline topic that ties together the Inavate EMEA 40 Under 40 Class of 2021. Much of the judges’ feedback this year highlighted individuals that had posted record growth for the companies they own, lead or work for. Read on to see who’s been shortlisted; we’ll release detailed write ups on each member of the Class of 2021 in a dedicated booklet that mails with the January print edition of Inavate EMEA.

Sercan Aktas
Redmouse
Director of Integration
Aktas co-founded Turkey-based system integrator Redmouse and has ambitions for it to be a leading AV company on the global stage. This year Aktas spearheaded a profitable push into Uzbekistan in a move that that spurred company growth.

Darren Barton-Taylor
Diversified
Director of Accounts
Barton-Taylor has held roles at AVMI and Focus 21 before heading to Diversified. He has a strong track record of increasing revenue and spend share from clients, maintaining margins despite fierce competition and price cutting.

Sven Berckmoes
Maverick AV Solutions
Business Development Manager
Berckmoes has taken the lead onboarding Bose, Crestron and Airtame as part of the distributor’s pan-EU management team. Working with sales and marketing he’s managed the launch of each brand as well as recruiting new resellers across the 15 countries Maverick operates in.

Hans Breugelmans (below)
Apex
Commercial Director
Despite the pandemic, Breugelmans spearheaded Apex’s diversification into new vertical markets, leading directly to a 30% increase in turnover in 2021. He has built partnerships and opened new sales channels to extend the company’s geographical reach and is working with Apex’s R&D team on new products to drive future growth.

Ben Da Costa
Bendac Group
Managing Director
At the age of 25 Da Costa is already in his sixth year of heading up visualisation technology specialist Bendac Group.
He puts the company’s success down to strong relationships with customers and suppliers and has an ambitious growth plan for the next four years.

Davut Onur Daglioglu
Aten
Senior Technical Manager
After five years as a software tester and developer, Daglioglu completed an MBA and embarked on a career in AV. Working for Aten in Turkey, he has contributed to a successful go-to-market and promotion strategy for pro AV products.

Efrat Elitzur (below)
Tecom Electronics
Chief Marketing Officer
Elitzur took an agile approach to marketing through the pandemic, reacting to evolving events as well as well as repositioning Tecom Electronics as a hybrid classroom AV solution specialist. This shift contributed to a 50% increase in Tecom’s integration activities over two years.

Martin Ellis
Pulse-Eight
CEO
Ellis is inventive and innovative at the helm of Pulse-Eight, constantly pushing the manufacturer on with new products and partnerships. Driven by the mantra “everything is negotiable”, Ellis won’t take no for an answer, working creatively to find a way to achieve the results he’s after.

Andrew Emmett
Uncoded
Principle Consultant
Emmett has built the consultancy division within Uncoded and is an integral part of the young company’s core team. He has a record of exceeding client expectations, recording strong growth through referrals. Within the company he is seen as a dependable and supportive leader developing himself and his team as the business grows.

Lucinda Faucheux
Diversified
EMEA Director of Purchasing
Before joining Diversified, Faucheux was promoted up through the ranks of integrator Vega. After joining Diversified early in 2021, she was promoted to the senior management team after three months at the integrator. Through Covid-19, Faucheux has navigated restructures, cash flow challenges, stock shortages and staff safety.

Nick Fichte
L-Acoustics Creations
Global Business Manager
Fichte sought out opportunity during the cessation of live events due to Covid-19. He worked to elevate the brand within the residential AV sector, strengthening partnerships with consultants and integrators to promote L-Acoustics.

Jessica Golding
Absen Europe
European Brand Manager
Joining the LED manufacturer during the pandemic, Golding quickly worked to highlight Absen’s capabilities in fixed installation to increase that side of the business as live events struggled. In addition to her role in Europe, Golding is working with the global Absen corporate team to develop a global communications plan.

Laura Harle
BenQ UK
Head of Marketing
Harle managed a transition from scientific marketing to a career within AV. At BenQ she has expanded the marketing team and been helped the display manufacturer step back from a vertical focus, developing to a more rounded approach to marketing.

Ben Holt
Diversified
Senor Design Engineer
Holt made a dramatic career change after a life-changing car accident. After gaining AutoCAD certification he started working within the AV industry, with a role at Pixel Projects before joining Diversified. In his current role, Holt has refined the integrator’s deployment methods and documentation directly resulting in increased efficiency and profitability.

Matthew Johnston
Runtech Group
Head of Procurement and Services
Driven by helping others succeed as well as forging his own pathway in the industry, Johnston overhauled Runtech’s internal processes through the Covid-19 pandemic, implementing a new ordering system that reduced costs and increased profitability.

Volkan Konuralp (below)
Atempo Group of Companies
Board President
Working with his brother Tayfun Konuralp, Volkan has successfully maintained the continued growth of Atempo after the brothers took over the running of the integrator when their father and company founder Mujdat Konuralp passed away in 2017.

Jack Laidlaw (below)
Middlesbrough College
HE Cross-College Coordinator
Laidlaw is a true champion of AV, developing AV apprenticeships and an AV degree. As an AVIXA Foundation Board Director, Laidlaw is also advising on policy to get young people interested in AV via schools/colleges

Graeme Little
Samsung Electronics
Head of Distribution
After working for distributors and establishing a successful distribution company of his own, Little has made the switch to manufacturer, overseeing record growth for LED at Samsung. He’s also played a part in pushing LFD growth to pre-covid levels for the display manufacturer.

Jonathan Owen
Wolfvision
Solutions Architect
Owen has managed AV for universities and was chair of the LTSMG (Learning and Teaching Spaces Managers Group) before joining manufacturer Wolfvision. He now applies that knowledge to meeting user requirements and advised universities through the pandemic on moving classes online and hybrid teaching approaches.

Yilmaz Özgenal
Remado Global
International Affairs Executive
Özgenal is always looking out for distinctive technologies and has worked to establish sustainable global partnerships, delivering mission critical installations for prestigious organisations including Turkish Petroleum, Turkish Electricity Transmission Company, Istanbul Water and Sewerage Administration and Turkish Airlines.

Michael Parker
Diversified
Director of Strategic Accounts EMEA
Working on global projects, Parker’s team has consistently delivered for strategic customers leading to repeat business. He’s also worked to develop new partnerships to forge into new markets with a strong record of profitability.

Faye Patterson
Runtech Group Limited
Project Sales Manager
Patterson has a strong record of delivering new business despite joining the AV integrator during a period of uncertainty due to the Covid-19 pandemic. She’s also overcome challenges of being a woman in a technology industry.

Nick Pidgeon
Visualization UK
Managing Director and Founder
After 16 years in business, over the last year Pidgeon has successfully transitioned Visualization UK from a service provider to a value added solutions provider and distributor, adding 12 new brands along the way.

Lloyd Platt
Midwich
Divisional Manager
Platt has contributed to the growth and strategy of the distributor’s UC division, supporting and engaging with resellers and integrators in the UK and Ireland to notch up impressive revenue gains.

Mike Ranpura
Smart Life AV
Director
Ranpura started from scratch in the industry, developing his knowledge through training, research and work experience to set up a business serving residential clients. Ranpura is enthusiastic about his job and the industry and as a CEDIA Commissioner has input into new industry certifications.

Steve Richardson (below)
Full Production
Managing Director
Working to adapt the company’s focus through Covid-19, Richardson created a new arm of Full Production called FullyImmerse.me, which provides virtual tours of event venues and corporate spaces as well as refocusing the company’s main business to permanent installations.

Craig Storey
Lightware Visual Engineering UK & Ireland
Sales Director
Storey helped guide Lightware react to Covid-19, pivoting the company away from live events and into corporate and education. As a relatively unknown player in new markets Storey had to work hard to generate new sales pipelines.

Luigi Schiavone
Prase Media Technologies
Applications Manager
Schiavone made a transition from live sound to fixed installations and says a grounding of working in an industry where mistakes are not an option taught him to champion high-quality, reliable and future proof systems.

Jinesh Shah
Alpha Data
Team Lead AV & ELV
Within three years Shah has seen his division grow from two people to a team of thirty. He has a client retention ratio of 90% and built a strong pipeline of projects related to Expo 2020, delivering growth of 150%.

Cassie Stuckey
Diversified
Senior Project Manager
Stuckey made the move from a sales manager to a project manager and quickly got to grips with multimillion pound projects at Diversified. Dedicated to role, she’s worked for long stints away from home in order to deliver projects despite Covid-19 restrictions.

Adele Thornton
Synergy SKY
Regional Manager UK & Ireland
Bringing 22 years of experience and loyal customer base to the role, Thornton has contributed to a quick increase of visibility for the meeting platform software provider. During her time with Synergy, Thornton has been promoted to head of UK, Ireland and South African regions.

Jon Tozer
Holovis
Project Director
Tozer played a key role in the founding of Holovis’ US entity based in Orlando, taking on a wide range of jobs and responsibilities to meet demand for Holovis services while building a team in America.

Araceli Vaello (below)
Volfoni 3D Group
Chief Commercial Officer
In the last 12 months, Vaello tackled Covid-related stock issues head on to put Volfoni 3D in a good position to take advantage of increased demand for VR products.

Marco Vorderstemann
Sigma System Audio-Visuell
Event Technician
Vorderstemann realised early that navigating Covid-19 would require extreme flexibility and in a short time specialised in fixed installation, learning new technologies, media controls and signal types in order to diversify.

James Wilder
Esprit Digital
Head of Special Projects
Wilder has grown in confidence during his time at Esprit and in the last 12 months secured more than £2.5million worth of project work over the globe as well as playing a part in the launch of a new product range.

Jack Wilders
Sharp/NEC Display Solutions Europe
UK Channel Account Manager
Wilders has helped the display manufacturer’s partners navigate the choppy waters of the last 12 months, working hard to minimise disruption and supporting customers through unprecedented challenges.

Adam Wilson
Aura Futures
Chief Sales Officer
Ten years after starting Intevi, Wilson sold the company and has gone on to notch up multiple successes: merging with Karlson to form Aura futures and then buying Reflex AV to form a 150-strong company bringing in £35 million in revenue.

Daniel Wordsworth
DNA Audio Visual
Director, Head of Technical Services
Wordsworth has grown the business from scratch and now provides AV and UC services and consultancy for some of the largest organisations worldwide. Throughout the pandemic he’s balanced high demand with hardware shortages while also overseing growth for DNA Audio Visual.

Richard Zamberlan
Sparq
Technical Manager
After 15 years in live events, Zamberlan had to completely overhaul his approach to meet the challenges of Covid-19. He quickly moved to support the company’s virtual events team, learning new skills and adapting to meet new demands.

Larry Zoll
The LED Studio
Director of Global Operations
Zoll has helped the LED Studio transition from a regionally focused business to a global entity. After successes expanding in the US, Zoll now has his sights set on Europe where he plans to position the company as a viable contender in the LED industry.

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