Karen Forster Keynote Speaker
- Founder of Aliya Capital, the first female-founded Search Fund in the UK.
- Recognized as a member of the Young Leaders Circle by the Milken Institute
- Former M&A investment banker at Goldman Sachs
Karen Forster's Biography
Karen Forster is an accomplished entrepreneur, investor, model, speaker, and founder of Aliya Capital, the first female-founded Search Fund in the UK. An entrepreneur with a background in finance, investing, and technology, Karen founded Aliya Capital to buy and build an enduring UK technology company with a global remit. She is a dynamic and inspiring speaker who brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the stage.
Karen began her career as an M&A investment banker at Goldman Sachs, where she gained valuable experience and knowledge in the finance and investment industry. From there, she went on to build a successful career in private equity and venture capital, working for world-leading investment firms such as The Carlyle Group. During her tenure in these firms, she was able to gain a deep understanding of the industry and develop the skills necessary to transition to entrepreneurship.
In recognition of her contributions to the financial services industry, Karen has received numerous accolades. She was recognized as a member of the Young Leaders Circle by the Milken Institute, a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum, and one of 35 women under 35 by Management Today. Additionally, her work has been featured in several notable publications such as The Telegraph, The Financial Times, and TechCrunch.
Karen is also deeply passionate about education’s role in elevating individuals from marginalized communities. She has served as a board director for The Creative Education Trust, an academy trust of approx. 20 schools in the UK, and Digital Divide Data, a social enterprise focused on technology skills training for young adults based in emerging markets.
Born and raised in London, Karen holds an MA in History from the University of Cambridge, UK, and an MBA in finance from Columbia Business School New York, where she was a value-investing program graduate. As a woman, an ethnic minority of British, Jewish, and Ugandan heritage, and a former child in care, she frequently speaks on diversity and inclusion, entrepreneurship via acquisition, fintech, innovation and technology, juggling caring/parental responsibilities with career progression, mental strength and resilience, private equity and venture capital, women in business, and women in technology.
With a background in finance, investing, and technology, Karen has a unique perspective on a range of topics, including entrepreneurship, fintech, and women in business and technology. As a woman of British, Jewish, and Ugandan heritage and a former child in care, she is also passionate about diversity and inclusion, and often speaks on these topics as well. Whether discussing the challenges of juggling caring/parental responsibilities with career progression, the importance of mental strength and resilience, or the latest developments in private equity and venture capital, Karen’s presentations are always engaging, thought-provoking, and empowering.
Karen Forster's Speaking Topics
Why starting a business from zero is overrated
The benefits of buying and building a business as a path to entrepreneurship
Why building and scaling a technology business is one of the most purposeful acts you can do to contribute to Europe’s economies
The new cold war is digital not physical warfare
How to get a seat at the table as a woman and / or minority
Why excellence and meritocracy will always matter more than quotas / tick the box exercises
Why we need to look beyond gender and ethnicity when considering diversity and inclusion in the workplace
Diversity of Thought is what matters the most
Why it is important to fail and to fail more often
The importance of failure as feedback and using failure as a stepping stone to success
When it comes to business and entrepreneurship, courage > IQ
The importance of believing in yourself and your capabilities will propel you further than any intelligence will
How to juggle your career with caring responsibilities and self care
Why ruthless prioritization and letting go of perfection are crucial to juggling multiple personal and professional responsibilities