Irene is the inaugural CEO of the ScaleUp Institute and Board Director. A former senior banker at Standard Chartered Bank where she held both European and global managing director roles, she set up, ran and scaled several of the bank’s key client and product businesses and led several global M&A activities. Before joining the ScaleUp Institute she was Managing Director at the British Bankers Association (BBA). She led the Business Finance Taskforce set up by the CEOs of the UK banks which resulted in the creation of the BGF, the Enterprise Research Centre, the SME Finance Monitor, and Mentorsme as well as many other key export and business policy initiatives on which Irene advised Government and industry. She is a Visiting Professor of Entrepreneurship at Strathclyde University and sits on the advisory Board of Stratford Circus Arts Centre. The ScaleUp Institute was co-founded in 2016 with a range of private sector partners to focus on how to develop a UK ecosystem to support fast growth businesses and make the UK the best place to not only start but scale a business.