Mel Selvon Ellyard
Prinicipal, Sure Valley Ventures
The Yorkshire and Northern ecosystem needs an initiative like Silicon Yorkshire. We have amazing talent, incredible assets and cutting edge clusters of tech activity. However, we need a bold, ambitious, inclusive and outward looking organisation to act as the glue in bringing the community together.
Passionate about the North, I work with software entrepreneurs that will have a global impact.
In my role as Principal at Sure Valley Ventures I help software tech entrepreneurs grow and scale their businesses.
Sure Valley Ventures is a £95m seed stage fund set up to help exceptional founders of early-stage software companies achieve rapid scale up. We focus on areas high-growth and work closely with companies to provide them with funding, focus and insight to help them achieve their ambitions.
Recognising that the provision of capital is not the only way to support exceptional founders, I provide advice, operational expertise, access to far-reaching networks and insight.
I work with growing, and scaling breakthrough companies with ambitious founders in the following key technology sectors:
Artificial Intelligence (AI/ML) Immersive Technologies, Gaming, eSports, Metaverse, Internet of Things (IoT) Cybersecurity and Infosec.
Previously I worked in complementary roles for over 25 years, these include, British Business Bank the UK’s economic development bank – breaking down barriers in access to finance for businesses across the UK, Leeds City Region LEP in Innovation, Grant Thornton in the growth team, Capital Enterprise as CEO for the North helping to develop ecosystems for tech businesses, I also helped found a successful biotech company in Yorkshire.
Mel is a passionate supporter of diversity and inclusion across the North and mentors, sits on several steering committees and various project boards. My proudest achievements include the launch of Include Me, an open community platform focused on diversity, inclusion and entrepreneurship, the #Unmute campaign allowing organisations to talk about the ‘difficult’ bits that go along with becoming inclusive and the D-List a platform that showcases unheard and underrepresented talented business leaders.
Employment and Skills Senior Manager (Digital Skills) at Leeds City Council
Head of Talent at Hippo Digital UK
Co-founder and Non-Executive Director
Business Development Director, Hippo Digital
Talent Acquisition Specialist, cinch
Managing Director for EMEA, Rackspace Technology
Partner, Innov8tive Minds