John C. Cook

John C. Cook

  • Chairman, Rock Lake Advisors GmbH
  • Director, Wishpoint / Travelx / Scandid
  • Director, Kyron Capital Limited
  • Director, Yfret, Inc.
  • Director, Sanguine Investment Management
  • Advisor, Viamagus Technologies
  • Advisor, Rockton Vision
  • Advisor, Block Aero Technologies
  • Co-Founder, MR Access, Inc.
John Cook is Chairman of Rock Lake Advisors, which he founded in 2009 following a successful career in international business & financial services. He hails from Milwaukee, Wisconsin and has spent his entire professional career in London, Brussels, Frankfurt and Zurich. His prior corporate positions included Director, WJ Hopper & Co Ltd (London); Abteilungsdirektor and Head of Global Equity Origination, Security Pacific Merchant Bank / Bank America (Frankfurt); Senior Account Executive, Merrill Lynch International (Brussels); Managing Director, Univestors Family Office (Brussels); and Associate Marketing Director Middle East, International Harvester (Brussels).

John serves on the boards and/or advisory boards of several organizations including Kyron Capital Limited, Wishpoint Inc. (Scandid, Travelx), YFret Technologies, Viamagus Technologies and MR Access. John is a member and supporter of the Swiss Private Equity and Corporate Finance Association (SECA); Horasis Global Visions Community; InvestEurope; Swiss American Chamber of Commerce; Swiss Swedish Chamber of Commerce; Swiss Indian Chamber of Commerce; Select USA Investment Summit and Thunderbird School of Global Management.

John is Chairman Emeritus of the Thunderbird Global Private Equity Center, a thought leadership platform he founded at Thunderbird School of Global Management in 2004. He was awarded the distinguished Jonas Mayer Award, chaired the Thunderbird European Alumni Association and is a long-standing member of the Thunderbird Leadership Councils.

John graduated cum-laude with a BSIM from the Krannert School of Management at Purdue University (1974), completed the pre-med curriculum at University of Washington (1977), obtained an MBA in International Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management (1979), and has completed advanced management studies at Oxford University, England.
Jay Vontobel

Jay Vontobel

Jay Vontobel has 15 years of experience in international investment management and capital advisory. He specialises in fundraising for private market funds and capital placement for direct opportunities. He has experience in energy infrastructure project finance working alongside German ASEAN Power in Thailand and Vietnam and earlier Themis Energy in Africa. He is also an advisor to fintech and medtech start-ups.

Previously, he was senior associate at emerging market focused Abraaj Group where he developed funds targeting energy infrastructure, private debt and real estate through strategic acquisition and organic hires. There, he also engaged as project manager for funds targeting growth and buyout investments in Sub-Saharan Africa, North Africa, Turkey and Latin America raising USD2.2b in investor commitments. Prior to that he was on the fundraising team at Doughty Hanson.

From 2006 he was a shareholder and director of Vietnam Holding Asset Management leading the firm as first local manager to fully integrate ESG in 2010. In 2020, he helped arrange a management buyout of the business by a group including the investment team in Vietnam. Before that he was an analyst at Swiss Life Asset Managers and Julius Bӓr Bank, as well as political analyst at the United Nations 64th General Assembly in New York.

Jay holds a Masters in economics from the University of Zurich and a MBA from INSEAD. He is based in London and has lived and worked in Zurich, Singapore, Dubai and Ho Chi Minh City. Whenever possible, he enjoys time with his young family as well as playing fives, tennis or skiing depending on the season. He speaks English, German and French.
Alessandro Bronda MA, MRICS

Alessandro Bronda MA, MRICS

Alessandro is currently a real estate consultant advising a family office in their direct commercial property investments in Western Europe and Recore, a UK asset manager. He is an experienced real estate investment professional with a strong research and strategy background and has an extensive global network of real estate investor contacts.

Previously, from 2014-15 he was Head of Global Real Estate Investment Strategy and an Executive Director at Zurich Insurance Group, responsible for global real estate strategy, cross- border investments, and transaction sourcing and analysis and asset management.

From 2010-13 he was Head of Global Investor Solutions at Aberdeen Asset Management in Brussels, advising clients and responsible for business and product development; and was a Board member for Aberdeen’s multi-manager funds.
From 2005-10 he was Head of Global Investment Strategy at Aberdeen Property Investors, responsible for investment strategies for the European and Asian funds and segregated accounts.
From 2001-05 he was Head of European Research at Catella Property Group in Brussels, running a pan-European team and projects for Investment Management companies.

From 1998-2001 he was Senior Researcher at Security Capital in London & Brussels; his earlier career included research roles at Eurostat (European Commission) and Ifo-Institute for Economic Research in Munich.

He has a MA Degree in Economics from the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, Germany, is a member of RICS and speaks English, German, Italian and French.

Advisory Board

Javier Rivas CFA FIA

Javier Rivas CFA FIA

Javier Rivas is a Senior Director at Vesttoo, an AI tech-enabled investment company in the uncorrelated insurance linked securities space connecting the reinsurance world with the capital markets. Javier has global experience in both life insurance, corporate finance and alternative investments. With over 20 years of experience, he has worked for a range of top-tier firms in asset management (Credit Suisse), insurance (Zurich, Generali), reinsurance (Swiss Re), private equity (Elliott) and actuarial consulting (Tillinghast – currently Willis Towers Watson). Initially developing his career as a senior actuary, he moved later on to more transaction focused roles, holding executive positions as Head of the EMEA Life & Health Structured Reinsurance Solutions in Swiss Re and as responsible for a USD700m fund within the Insurance Linked Strategies hedge fund unit of Credit Suisse. In private equity, he worked with Elliott Management as Head of Business Development of MedVida, their leading European asset intensive life run-off proposition, and was a Managing Director at Rock Lake Advisors where he assisted the full range of clients across real estate, venture capital, private equity and technology. Javier is a qualified actuary (FIA), fellow of the UK Institute of Actuaries, and the Spanish Institute of Actuaries. Additionally, he holds the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) qualification. Prior to that he obtained university degrees in Business Administration and in Financial and Actuarial Science in ICADE (Universidad Pontificia de Comillas).
Robert J.W. Van den broeck

Robert J.W. Van den broeck

Robert J.W. Van den broeck has more than 50 years of international banking and corporate management experience. He serves as independent director on several Boards and is an Advisory Board member in a few companies. Furthermore he is active in management consulting through his company Hudson Finance nv, focussing on strategy, organization, corporate finance and M&A.

He was co-founder and chairman of Privast Capital Partners, a venture capital fund in Brussels, which he started in 1999 and which was liquidated in 2012, after the exit of 13 portfolio companies in the Benelux, France and the U.K. In the past he held senior management positions with Exxon, Citibank and Bank Brussels Lambert, and until 1996 he was Managing Director and CEO of Plouvier-Kreglinger, an international transport, trading and investment group, based in Antwerp. Until 2016 he was a consular judge at the Commercial Court of Antwerp.

He holds a Master degree in commercial engineering (“ingénieur commercial”), as well as in applied economics from Antwerp University, and an MBA from INSEAD, Fontainebleau in France.
Past independent directorships include: Barco, Bank Indosuez Belgium, Bank Corluy, LBC Tank Terminals, De Smet Group, and V.E.V.

Languages: Dutch, French, English, German, Italian and Russian.
Jason Yap

Jason Yap

Jason Yap is a Senior Executive with over 18 years of experience in the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industries.

He has worked for a range of large, mid-size and pharma/biotech startups. Jason Yap is an experienced executive with a special focus on regulatory drug development, having overseen various early (pre-Phase I) and late stages (Phase II-III) development assets through to commercialization in global markets including the USA, EU and rest of the world. Additionally, Jason Yap has developed developmental expertise in diverse therapeutic areas such as oncology, rare diseases, autoimmune and cardiovascular diseases.

Jason Yap has an Executive MBA in General Management from the Thunderbird School of Global Management. Additionally, he holds a Masters Degree in Toxicology and Bachelor Degree in Biochemistry.

He has lived in Malaysia, UK and USA, and over the last ten years, in Switzerland.
John Murray

John Murray

John Murray is a Global Marketing and Digital Strategy executive with commercial and technical experience in a wide range of industries, including digital health, FMCG, greentech, insurtech, traveltech, martech, consumer electronics, data and construction chemicals. With 35+ years’ experience, John has held senior-level positions within Fortune 500 and startup companies in the US and Europe where he has led business expansion, strategic partnerships, and digital transformation initiatives in over 55 countries worldwide. In his most recent corporate role, he led global performance partnerships for the smoke-free division of Philip Morris International and prior to that held similar positions at Markel Corporation, Blue Cross Blue Shield, InfoGroup and Coleman. John has been a co-founder of three different startups and a participant in various innovation hubs and technology accelerators. He received his MBA in International Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management at Arizona State University. John is based in Geneva and speaks French, Italian, German and Spanish.