OFFICERS & DIRECTORS
PROFFESSOR STEFAN ALLESCH-TAYLOR CBE | CHAIRMAN
Professor Stefan Allesch-Taylor CBE, is a London-based financier, entrepreneur, charity chairman and philanthropist, with over 25 years’ experience of business startups, turnarounds and public companies. He has served on Boards in Europe and the USA as CEO, Chairman or Senior Non-Executive Director on both public and private companies.
Stefan is currently the Deputy Chairman of Action Hotels PLC; Co-founder and Supervisory Board Member of asset manager Global Evolution A/S and a Non-Executive Director of private equity firm Clearbrook Partners LLP. Stefan is authorised and regulated by the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority; he is regulated by the Danish Financial Services Authority; and is also approved as a ‘controller’ of a German deposit-taking bank by the Bundesbank, BaFin and Germany’s Deposit Protection Fund. Stefan is the Chairman and Founder of award-winning Department of Coffee and Social Affairs, a fast growing independent specialty coffee business in the United Kingdom. He currently oversees companies operating in 6 different sectors in 15 countries.
Stefan is the Founder and Chairman of South African registered The Afri-CAN Charity, operating in Malawi and South Africa providing employment and training to the most disadvantaged in those communities, through the creation of social ventures. The Afri-CAN Charity also builds ECD pre-school nurseries and provides over 350,000 Free School Breakfasts annually for the most vulnerable children in the townships of South Africa, over 2,000 pre-school children attend these nurseries.
Stefan is the Co-founder and Deputy Chairman of the London Rough Sleepers Committee (‘CLRSC’), providing support for the homeless in Central London.
Stefan is the Chairman of Pump Aid, an award-winning UK based charity providing over 10% of the national rural water supplies for both Zimbabwe and Malawi combined with over 9,500 community partners serving over 1.35 million people.
In 2016 he was appointed the first Professor in the Practice of Entrepreneurship at The Entrepreneurship Institute, King’s College, London.
Stefan was appointed a Commander of the Order of The British Empire (‘CBE’) in the 2014 Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.
MATTHEW GILL | VICE CHAIRMAN
Mr. Gill has been an executive director and an investor of a number of organizations, both public and private, over the last 15 years in the United States and the United Kingdom.
He has worked principally in corporate startups and turnarounds as a strategic advisor in a variety of sectors, including property, technology, food retail and financial services, helping to arrange finance when necessary. He serves as a Director of Pump Aid, an award winning UK charity that has provided clean water to over 1.35 million people in the poorest communities in rural Malawi and Zimbabwe. He is also a Director of The Afri-CAN Charity, an organization that focuses on training, permanent employment and providing free school breakfasts in South Africa and Malawi.
Mr. Gill holds a BSc in Business Administration from Coventry University.
ASHLEY LOPEZ | PRESIDENT & CEO
Ashley Lopez is a Chicago native who studied in Minnesota and subsequently in London. She became a Director of Department of Coffee and Social Affairs in March 2012. After spending a year heading up Human Resources Ashley moved to Chief Operating Officer in March 2013 and on 1 January 2015 she was appointed Chief Executive Officer.
Ashley Lopez is a Chicago native who studied in Minnesota and subsequently in London. She became a Director of Department of Coffee and Social Affairs in March 2012. After spending a year heading up Human Resources Ashley moved to Chief Operating Officer in March 2013 and on 1 January 2015 she was appointed Chief Executive Officer. Ms. Lopez led and executed the growth plan for Department of Coffee and Social Affairs, growing the business from two locations and ten employees to sixteen locations and one hundred and thirty employees within three years. Ms. Lopez has acted as a strategic advisor to the Goldfinger Factory, an award-winning design, and up-cycling factory creating bespoke furniture and interiors. In June 2015, she joined the Board of Business for Social Progress, a new forum established by UCL’s Institute for Global Prosperity, where business leaders discuss how to implement the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in today’s business world. In January 2016, she was appointed as a Trustee of the award-winning water charity, Pump Aid. She is a Founding Member of the Central London Rough Sleepers Committee (“CLRSC”). The CLRSC provides meals and services to the homeless and socially vulnerable in Central London and has served 10,000 meals since its inception.
Ms. Lopez holds a BA in Law from Winona State University, an MSc in Law & Finance from Queen Mary University, London and an MA in Management from the University of Westminster, London. In July 2016, she was chosen as the UK business magazine, Management Today’s, top 5 businesswomen in the UK under 35 years old.
PHILLIP MARITZ | CFO
Phillip is a Board level CFO with a demonstrable track record of influencing strategic decisions within fast growth mid-market organisations that are expanding via a buy-and-build or international expansion. A South African native who was trained at BDO, subsequently moved to the UK in 2009 where he spent several years building his finance career within Tesco, Omnifone Group and more recently Paperhat Group. He joined Paperhat Group in 2014, sitting on the main Group Board and was pivotal in leading and growing the Group’s revenue from £11mil to £30mil and staff from 30 to 200 over 3 years. Phillip has a diverse skill set across fundraising, M&A and Due Diligence, commercial and strategic decision making and international expansion making him a valued addition to any business with an ambitious growth strategy.
Phillip has recently been appointed as CFO for Department of Coffee and Social Affairs and will be joining the team in September 2018. A key hire in which he will be instrumental in achieving their ambition to create the UK’s first national speciality coffee group.