Meet the team shaking up the world of investment

We’re a team of entrepreneurs from diversity backgrounds, for entrepreneurs from diversity backgrounds.

We’ve seen, first-hand, the challenges faced by those from diversity and underrepresented backgrounds. But rather than shrug and accept it, we set out to do something about it.

Equality in equity

Our mission is simple: To increase the number of diversity founders receiving funding.

We will do that by empowering diverse founders to prepare their businesses for funding and by providing greater access to investment when they’re ready.

Our ultimate vision is of total equality in equity. That may be a way off, but we’ll get there – one investment at a time.

The Txeya Team

Paula Pandolfino



Paula is a serial entrepreneur and investor with 20 years+ experience in banking and technology. 

She has held senior roles with some of the largest blue-chip banks in the industry, such as Deutsche Bank, Barclays Capital and RBC, managing teams across various sectors of financial markets. 

Paula loves to cook (and eat!) , read and do lots of sport  

Wayne Dam

Operations & Finance


Wayne is an executive leader with over 25 years of experience, most recently as Chief Pricing Officer of a large UK insurer, ReAssure.  

His career as an actuary within the Swiss Re group  took him to many cities but his roots are in Johannesburg where he was a partner in a software start-up, preceded by several years in consulting.

Wayne loves sci-fi, hiking and a good debate.

Annabel Zicker

Community & People


Annabel is a mindset coach and social-impact entrepreneur with 25 years of experience in banking, operations and  audit. 

Following a 20-year career in the City working in senior positions at Tier-1 investment banks she now mentors professional women and is passionate about creating positive change.

Annabel is a problem solver with a love for meditation, Pilates and long walks on the beach.

Sara Chahrrour

Growth & Product


Sara is a digital marketing consultant with a strong focus on content, influencer and social media marketing strategies. With roots in performance marketing and experience in web development, Sara’s professional interest are at the intersection of product, brand and audiences.

Jonathan Loretto



Jonathan Is the former Global Head of Security, Controls and Technology at HSBC, where he managed the application security and IAM for over 34 Million customer in 38 markets. 

He was also the IT controls and risk executive across digital retail banking. Prior to his role at HSBC Jonathan was a global partner at IBM managing and delivering some of the world’s largest Blockchain consortia.

Mike Silvey

Advisory Board


Mike is a serial entrepreneur and go to market specialist. He has co-founded the four leading service assurance technology companies, of which two held IPOs on NASDAQ and LSE respectively (Micromuse  & RiverSoft / IBM Tivoli Netcoo, Prelert / Elastic and Moogsoft) and a technology incubator.

Mike likes Land Rovers. fast cars, cycling and very good red wine.

Sonal Kadchha

Advisory Board


Sonal is a philanthropist, entrepreneur and financial services professional with 15+ years of business experience. She has held senior roles at Royal Bank of Canada & Prudential across risk, strategy, product and business development in a range of geographies from Europe, Asia to Africa.

Sonal loves to meditate and is also doing a masters in Psycho-spiritual Psychology.


What we believe in

  • We believe that unless you’re part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.
  • We believe that championing diversity isn’t just good for society, it’s good for business.
  • We believe that when entrepreneurs from under-represented backgrounds are given the chance to succeed, they do more than that – they excel.

Txeya – an unusual name for a remarkable woman​

Txeya was named in honour of Theodora of Constantinople – the X-rated Cinderella you may have never heard of.

Born into poverty in Syria around AD500, Theodora rose from child actress / sex worker to become an Eastern Roman empress and one of the most powerful women in history. An early and ardent feminist, she worked for women’s marriage and dowry rights, anti-rape legislation and to stop pimps making their money from sex workers. Her laws banished brothel-keepers from Constantinople and from all the major cities of the empire.

So, when you hear Txeya, think of Thea and everything she achieved.

Let's change the game together

We believe great business leaders are found in all cultures, countries, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, disabilities, beliefs, generations, backgrounds and experiences. If you believe so too, join us.

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