European Union Logo

Ian McFarlane-Toms – Business Ready Programme Manager, University of Warwick Science Park

With over 30 years’ experience Ian has held senior management posts in sales, marketing, operations and finance. Ian counts himself fortunate to have had the opportunity to have lived and worked outside of the UK for eleven years and can rightly claim to have a broad range of experience in terms of cultures, industry sectors and business disciplines.

With a track record of success in business turnaround, business development, change management and M&A, his passion is working with SME businesses to help them to be more successful.


Dirk Schaefer – SME Engagement Lead, University of Warwick Science Park

Dirk is a Business Adviser for the University of Warwick Science Park. He runs the technical marketing activity and start-up incubator helping companies get started and scale. During his professional career which spans over two decades, Dirk has advised over 1,000 businesses resulting in the creation of multi million-pound businesses, as well as significantly growing scale ups.

With an eye for innovation and markets, Dirk has helped companies launch hundreds of new products, raise millions of grant, equity and debt funding and identified profitable markets to facilitate their growth and innovation.


Matthew Lawrence – Business Growth Adviser, University of Warwick Science Park

Matthew is a qualified accountant, business adviser/mentor and business angel experienced in Equity, Debt, Grants and other financial instruments.

10 years financial management roles in industry, banking and commerce were followed by 10 years as owner/manager of a £15m turnover, import and manufacturing business in the construction industry. The last 15 years have been spent working with owner managed businesses, mainly in the Midlands, connection with growth planning, finance raising and management. He currently combines business finance consultancy with a business advisory role at the Science Park.

Gaynor Matthews – Business Growth Adviser, University of Warwick Science Park

Gaynor is a start-up business expert and investor in tech. With over 25 years’ experience and knowledge Gaynor has, and continues to, help entrepreneurs survive the “roller coaster” years.

Having successfully set up a private investment club and exited a telecoms business in 2015, she then went on to found WOW HOW and Sway Solutions in 2016 and more recently myNexus in 2019. With first-hand experience of the trials and tribulations of the start-up world Gaynor is looking forward to helping and supporting fellow entrepreneurs.


Carol Bull – Programme Delivery Assistant, University of Warwick Science Park

Carol has over 15 years’ experience working for the University of Warwick Science Park in administration and has worked on various programmes within Business Support, these include: Team Start, Investment Readiness, Rural Growth Network, Minerva Business Angel Network (the largest angel investor network outside of London), Ignite and Business Ready.

Prior to this, Carol worked in administration and secretarial roles for the public and private sector, ranging from SMEs to large corporate businesses.

Contact Us