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MEST expands globally with deeper Silicon Valley roots
From: Ghana l Myjoyonline.com          Published On: September 18, 2013, 01:38 GMT
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MEST expands globally with deeper Silicon Valley roots

Neal Hansch joins MEST as Incubator Managing Director

The Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST, which provides training, investment and incubation to aspiring high technology entrepreneurs in Ghana, announced on Tuesday September 17 that Neal Hansch will has joined the team as the Managing Director of the MEST Incubator.

Neal joins MEST with over fifteen years experience in venture capital, technology operations and investment banking. Most recently, he was a General Partner with Rustic Canyon Partners (RCP), an early-stage focused investment fund with $500 million under management.

Prior to RCP, Neal was a Corporate Development executive at Macromedia, a venture capitalist with Technology Crossover Ventures (TCV), and an investment banker at,Robertson Stephens & Co.

Neal’s proven leadership and track record developing US based start-ups will play an important role in MEST’s future success, while deepening the program’s presence in Silicon Valley.

This senior addition to the MEST organization will further bridge the gap and strengthen connections between the rising African technology scene and leading global technology hubs.

Hansch said, “since its launch, MEST’s training and investment program has been at the forefront of the emerging high tech ecosystem in Ghana, which has one of the fastest growing economies in the world. I’m excited to join MEST as its own growth continues to accelerate and its reach extends across Africa and onto the global stage.”

Established in 2008, MEST has trained more than 125 technology entrepreneurs and its associated incubator program has invested in 15 start-ups in Ghana.

MEST companies have raised external capital from Silicon Valley and European institutional investors, competed in notable technology events such as TechCrunch Disrupt, DEMO, and the Launch Festival, and have gained admittance to top accelerator programs including HealthXL and 500 Startups.

MEST, is a not for profit program fully funded by Meltwater Group, the leading provider of online intelligence solutions with over 50 offices and 20,000 clients around the world.

Founded by visionary Jorn Lyseggen, both MEST and Meltwater share a fundamental belief in people and the individual potential to excel.

“Talent is evenly distributed across the globe, opportunities are not.We hope to create role models that will in turn inspire the upcoming generations of Africa to become successful software entrepreneurs,” comments Lyseggen.

“Neal’s wealth of experience will be invaluable to the MEST program and we feel very privileged to bring a person of his capacity to MEST”, he added.

MEST has strong ties to Silicon Valley, where Meltwater is headquartered, and London where it also has a satellite office.

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