Meet the Team | MSDUK

Meet the MSDUK Team

Mayank Shah

Founder & CEO

Mayank is the Founder and CEO of MSDUK. His passion for supplier diversity started in 2002 when he started his PhD in this area and twenty years on, his enthusiasm and commitment to see ethnic minority businesses succeed and corporations be more diverse in their supply chain remains intact. He brings with him nearly 35 years of entrepreneurial experience and is considered a global thought leader on supplier diversity. Mayank is married and his lovely wife Nisha is equally committed to MSDUK helping the team as and when needed. In his free time, he loves visiting their son in Bristol and daughter in Barcelona; he loves cooking and trying to get back to painting. He does think he is very good in table tennis but that needs some testing!

Reshma Sheikh

Managing Director

Reshma is MSDUK’s Managing Director, and she is at the forefront of steering MSDUK towards a future marked by diversity and innovation. Reshma brings to MSDUK the experience of leading diverse commercial businesses with a global client perspective, coupled with a detailed understanding of procurement processes and practices. Throughout her professional journey, she has navigated roles in corporate, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), and the non-profit sector. Demonstrating a consistent ability to achieve challenging objectives, whether leading senior leadership teams, implementing business strategies, or driving business growth. Beyond her professional role, she cherishes a spiritual connection, embracing a wellness-centered lifestyle, all while joyfully raising two children.

Jean Chawapiwa

Head of Member Services

Jean is the Head of Membership Services, and previously she was Country Director for WEConnect International in South Africa, working with many of the same Corporate Members as MSDUK. Her passion for entrepreneurship development has made Jean very familiar with the global SD&I opportunities and challenges. Jean has also held leadership roles in the mining sector, her last role (2007-2012) was Vice President External Affairs and Communications for Rio Tinto. She has also sat on varied Industry Boards and Chambers of Commerce; she was Chair of Junior Achievement Africa Board from 2015 to 2019.

Bao Tieu

Head of Business and Ventures

Bao is the Head of Business and Ventures at MSDUK. Bao Tieu has been working in enterprise education and supporting startups for over 8 years. He led the entrepreneurship team at UCL Innovation & Enterprise, making the UCL Hatchery startup incubator one of the UK's leading university startup support programmes. Bao joined MSDUK wanting to use his skills and experience to make a difference. His work at MSDUK aims to create new opportunities for ethnic minority entrepreneurs and ventures to realise their full potential by levelling the playing field in enterprise education, support and connections that many dont have access to. Diversity will always deliver value for all stakeholders and he hopes to contribute to demonstrating this in his own small way.

Nadia Forde

Head of Operations

Nadia is the Head of Operations with a portfolio comprising business operations, executive education programmes, marketing and communications, and events. She brings her extensive experience in projects and operations in the UK's higher education sector. Nadia is passionate about driving improvements across business processes and practices. She enjoys working with people and supporting them in their personal and professional growth. Nadia believes that by being inclusive and working collaboratively businesses can achieve a positive impact beyond what they had thought was possible or imaginable. In her spare time, Nadia enjoys painting and, recently, gardening.

Meghan Bradley

Marketing Manager

Meghan is our Marketing Manager. She heads the marketing and looks after all things creative, ensuring that the brand remains consistent across all aspects of the organisation. Meghan has been working in marketing for over 5 years. Whether itis strategy, print, digital or animation, she is a multidisciplinary professional who takes projects from ideation through to completion. She joined MSDUK because she believes supplier diversity is important as it helps drive competition, as well as creating equal opportunities for all, helping to reduce inequality. In her spare time Meghan likes going to restaurants and enjoying different cuisines, as well as having a passion for martial arts and all things creative.

Sheena Patel-Kotecha

Senior Corporate Relationship Manager

Sheena is the Corporate Relationship Manager at MSDUK. Sheena has vast experience in relationships management and she joined MSDUK because she wanted to be a part of something meaningful that was focused on a positive change, inclusivity whilst being sustainable, sifting the way we think, work and operate. She works closely with her corporate members to understand their needs all the while setting realistic and achievable goals. Rome wasnt built overnight and in the same manner diversifying supply chains will also require patience but with persistence. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with the family, cooking (and when permitted) travelling the world exploring new cultures and cuisines.

Karolina Jagodzinska

Senior Manager for the Innovation Hub

Karolina is the Programme Manager looking after the MSDUK Accelerator. As part of her role, she is responsible for nurturing and developing the MSDUK start-up community and ensuring businesses in the network grow and access new opportunities. Karolina joined MSDUK because she believes in the power of people coming together to make change happen. In her free time, Karolina likes crocheting and has recently picked up sewing. She enjoys good long films with popcorn.

Paloma Valles Marin

European Supplier Diversity Project Lead

Paloma is the European Supplier Diversity Project Lead at MSDUK. With her experience working in the UK, US, Canadian and European markets, she joins the MSDUK team to continue her passion for progressing the supplier diversity agenda across Europe. After many years in the world of technology, she changed career paths to dedicate herself full-time to the economic empowerment of underrepresented groups. Until recently, she was the Regional Director for Europe at WEConnect International - a global non-profit organisation with a mission to drive more money into the hands of women-owned businesses, enabling them to connect with some of the largest buying organisations in the world.

Kamila Rafiqi

Innovation Challenge Programme Manager

Kamila is the Programme Manager for the Innovation Challenge and is part of the Innovation Hub Team at MSDUK. Kamila joined MSDUK as she strongly believes in diversity and inclusion in the workplace and wants to see equal opportunities for all. As well as wanting to see more diverse teams in businesses, Kamila wants to help and support start-ups and SMEs realise their potential to achieve long-term growth and success. She has an ambition to visit as many countries as possible, and she also enjoys long walks and has a passion for crime fiction novels.

Hinda Ibrahim

Programme Manager

Hinda is responsible for the delivery of high-impact executive education programmes that are designed to allow EMBs to overcome challenges, build strategic relationships, and advance business capabilities. These programmes play a pivotal role in helping EMBs leverage their supply chain strategy to gain a competitive advantage with large companies. Hinda joined MSDUK to champion its aim of diversifying the supply chain and ensuring that it is inclusive of ethnic minority businesses. Furthermore, highlighting the values of having a diverse supplier base, as it will expose companies to a diverse range of ideas and solutions. In her spare time, Hinda enjoys spending time with family and friends, listening to a range of podcasts and baking.

Priyanka Chaudhary

Corporate Relationship Manager

Priyanka was appointed as the Member Services Associate during late 2021. She is responsible for providing support to the Members Team who manage over 100 Corporate members accounts, assisting in projects, looking after the team communication and process management, and also working and leading on the partnerships managed by the Members team. She is also responsible in supporting the business development team with EMB recruitment. She is keen on learning about the private sector development and joined MSDUK as she believes that the development of private sector can only be possible when businesses of all kinds have equal opportunity to grow. In her spare time, she like to travel to new places, meet new people, and explore new cuisines.

Shazeda Begum

Programme Co-ordinator

Shazeda is the Programme Co-ordinator for the MSDUK Accelerator. Her role is to support MSDUKs start-up community by aiding them through their development as entrepreneurs during their time on the programme. She joined MSDUK because she was passionate about working for a company that believed in making an impactful difference for the ethnic minority community and which supported the growth of this community. She hopes that she can learn more about business, the corporate world, and entrepreneurship whilst working for MSDUK. Outside of work, she loves to spend her time reading and writing, watching the latest films, and spending time in cafes.

Swapnil Majumdar

Corporate Relationship Manager

I joined MSDUK because I’m passionate about contributing to the growth of ethnic minority businesses at a global scale. I believe I can contribute to the organisation with my stakeholder management skills developed as part of working at a commanding position at a tech startup company and in an EU funded program to develop SMEs in the GBSLEP. Adding to my experiences in engineering internships during my engineering degree and effective data visualisation & analytics learnt during my master’s degree in business analytics allows me to be strategic, analytical, and work with people from diverse & multidisciplinary backgrounds. In my free time, I enjoy weightlifting, watching Formula 1, Cooking, music and reading.

Ashwin Ashokkumar Iyer

Interim Digital Transformation Manager

Ashwin is the Business Analyst at MSDUK, some of his responsibilities include analysing the data to inform business decisions, finding technological solutions to business needs, stakeholder management, and analysing the design of technical systems and business models. As an engineering graduate, he started his career working as a software engineer for 4 years with Accenture and later moved to the UK to pursue and complete his Masters in Business Analytics from Aston University. He uses his free time to play recreational sports like table tennis and snooker. Reading novels and strumming on his guitar are his major stress busters.

Mary Knighton

Junior Graphic Designer

Mary is MSDUK’s Junior Graphic Designer, she supports the marketing team and is based in Leicester. She has experience in the FMCG industry using her wide range of creative skills to produce aesthetic and functional designs. She is very passionate about sustainability and strives to incorporate eco-friendly and ethical practices into her personal and professional life. Mary finds the most rewarding projects are ones which utilise her creative skills to make a positive impact. This is why she joined MSDUK, she recognises supplier diversity as a catalyst for positive change, not only in large corporations but minority business by providing equal opportunities for all. When not working on design projects you can usually find her in the kitchen experimenting with new vegan recipes or exploring the the great outdoors. 

Vipan Koul

IT Analyst

Vipan joined MSDUK as an IT Analyst. He is passionate about getting insights from data and how these insights can help businesses grow. His role is to design and integrate efficient IT systems and reconcile needs of different teams to meet the business and technology needs. He has worked as a software engineer with Larsen and Toubro Infotech (LTI) for three years. He later moved to the UK to pursue a Master's Degree in Data Science at the University of Bath. He plays table tennis in his spare time and has won the Bath Table Tennis Summer League in 2022.

Ian David Lobo

Ian David Lobo

European Supplier Diversity Project Co-ordinator

Ian is the European Supplier Diversity Project Co-ordinator at MSDUK. He has over 6 years of event experience in the Indian, US and European markets. He joins the MSDUK teams as a vocal advocate for inclusion and diversity across businesses. Ian has worked extensively in conceptualising and implementing multi-pronged on-ground and digital strategies for Accenture, Abin Bev, Infosys, Daimler and an array of other multi-national corporations. In his spare time, Ian is an avid reader and film enthusiast.

Quynh Dam

Quynh Dam

Event Marketing Coordinator

Quynh is the Events Marketing Coordinator at MSDUK. With three years working experience in FMCG, E-Commerce and Marketing, as part of her role at MSDUK, she is responsible for marketing campaigns for both MSDUK and ESDP Conferences. Quynh joined MSDUK driven by her strong belief in the transformative power of collective efforts to drive positive change. In her free time, she loves to bring her camera and travel to as many new places as possible!

Vishakha Upadhyaya

Vishakha Upadhyaya

Marketing Executive

Vishakha is our Marketing Executive. She has previously worked for marketing agencies and handled numerous non-profit events focusing on gender equality. She assists the marketing team with internal communications and external social media communications. Vishakha’s passion for championing diversity stems from her own multicultural background and her belief in the power of inclusive business practices. Born to Nepali parents and completing her education in the UK she witnessed the challenges faced by minority-owned businesses and the need for equitable opportunities. Aside from work, she is an avid traveler, a passionate foodie, and an advocate for the arts.

Christine Kemp

Christine Kemp

Community Platform Lead

Christine is the Community Platform Lead at MSDUK. Christine has a background in managing events and building partnerships for the university sector, with previous roles focusing on business development, partnerships/sponsorship support, and internal and external management of major events. She is a people person and enjoys helping others connect to share their experience and expertise. In her spare time Christine enjoys running, pilates, exploring new places with her family and spending time outdoors as much as possible.

Heena Solanki

Heena Solanki

Events Manager

Heena is a seasoned professional with a passion for creating extraordinary experiences. With 15+ years of experience in the events industry she has successfully managed a diverse range of events, including corporate conferences, trade shows, galas, weddings, book launches, festivals, and concerts globally. Previously Heena has worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers and IBM in technology and with years of experience in events and hospitality sector she now wants to work with organisations with a purpose. Heena is involved in many charity projects where she leads and supports many impactful causes. She has a very busy social life but makes time for learning new skills.

Jenny Machary

Corporate Relationship Manager

Jenny Machary, our Corporate Relationship Manager, brings over eight years of diversified experience from both the non-profit and corporate sectors. Her strategic approach to relationship building is honed from her extensive background in business development, marketing management, and community leadership roles. With an MSc in International Business and a BA (Hons) in Marketing, Jenny adeptly applies theoretical knowledge to craft effective relationship management strategies. Beyond her professional role, Jenny is a non-executive director for a Luton-based mental health organization that supports ethnic minority women. She also holds a trustee position for a prominent local charity.

Uchechukwu Ogechukwu

Business Engagement Associate

Uche is the business Engagement associate at MSDUK, working closely with the ethnic minority businesses within the network. His roles include strategy, lead generation, retention, and advisory to minority owned businesses in the area oof growth. Uche brings along over 4 years' experience in the startup ecosystem having successfully helped a lot of entrepreneurs to drive their business from idea to fund-raising. Uche loves playing football, enjoys music and creatives at other times.

Mohammad Awais

Business Engagement Associate

Mohammad has led a consulting company that helped over 3,500 individuals and 1500 businesses nationwide through the £2 Billion kickstart scheme, for which he secured £3.4M in funding from the DWP, working with the London Mayor, helping families and ex-offenders in-partnership with Maximus alongside his active mentorship work with the Martin James Foundation for young entrepreneurs. He has also helped scale the third largest online estate agency in the UK with the founder. Mohammed has won numerous awards, including being nominated for and selected at the Aspen Rising leader fellowship.

Parth Sharma

Parth Sharma

Data & Research Analyst

Experienced data analyst with a knack for innovation and a passion for extracting actionable insights from complex datasets. Proficient in utilizing Python, SQL, and PowerBI tools to drive strategic decisionmaking. Adept at building strong client relationships and collaborating across teams. MSc. in Data Analytics, with a proven track record of optimizing processes and contributing to business growth. Excited to bring my expertise to MSDUK and make a meaningful impact.

Cynthia Ehapa

Cynthia Ehapa

Programme Coordinator for Innovation Challenge

Cynthia recently obtained a business management (consultancy) degree that has equipped her with a strong foundation in business principles, strategic thinking and key attention to detail which is crucial in effective decision-making in her role as a Programme Coordinator for Innovation Challenge. MSDUK's emphasis on inclusion and diversity, along with its openness to new ideas and initiatives, led her to join the organisation. MSDUK offers employees a platform for growth and a sense of belonging which is very valuable to Cynthia. Outside of work, Cynthia enjoys reading, creating music and traveling.