Chief Executive Officer
Michael is a qualified solicitor, qualified investment manager and successful corporate financier with a broad range of international commercial and legal experience.
After graduating from the University of Cambridge, he practised as a solicitor at Linklaters in London, Hong Kong and New York, working with leading global financial institutions. He then moved to Merrill Lynch International in London and New York, where he became a director of Equity Capital Markets, with responsibility for origination, execution and commercial negotiation of equity and equity-linked transactions, including major privatisations in the UK and EMEA regions.
Since then, Michael has held senior roles within the venture capital and mid & small cap broking sectors in London and Hong Kong. More recently, he was Business Development Director and an Investment Manager at JM Finn & Co and he continues to be involved in private companies which specialise in investing in international micro capital and seed financing opportunities. He was appointed as Chief Executive Officer in July 2018.
Beginning his career at the London Metal Exchange, James has spent the subsequent 34 years involved in stockbroking and commodities in a variety of roles, including research analyst, equity salesman and specialist corporate broker, which covered mining finance, origination and distribution. He has worked on a wide range of projects worldwide, ranging from industrial minerals, coal, iron ore, precious metals, copper, diamonds, lithium, uranium, plantations, forestry and palm oil. Lately, he has employed his corporate governance skills, having gained substantial experience as an independent director on the boards of several quoted and unquoted companies. In addition, Mr Leahy has direct experience in capital markets, having worked at James Capel, Credit Lyonnais, Nedbank, Canaccord and Mirabaud, where he gained invaluable experience with international institutional fund managers, hedge funds, private equity and sector specialist investors. Additionally, Mr Leahy has been involved in many IPOs, as well as primary and secondary placings, and the development of junior mining companies through to production.
He is currently a director of the listed fund Geiger Counter Ltd, Savannah Resources Plc and a private start up, Energy Minerals Investments Ltd.
Antonio is a qualified engineer with over 18 years' experience in logistics, operations, business development and project management globally and has an in-depth understanding of commodities export and global markets with a focus on woods and biomass-based fuels. He has a proven track record as a project manager, having been in charge of both the construction and the launch of a production facility in Eastern Europe, as well as overseeing the construction of biomass fired power plants in various locations worldwide. More recently, Antonio has managed the export of wood, wood products and other bulk commodities to South East Asia, India and Europe in addition to the procurement of wood supplies in excess of 5 million tonnes per annum. Whilst serving as Chief Operating Officer at Active Energy he was instrumental in the planning and construction of the Company's inaugural CoalSwitch™ plant in Utah, U.S. and the planned roll out of the Company's associated technologies including PeatSwitch™ in AEG's target markets.
Max Aitken is an entrepreneur who has founded and been instrumental in the financing of several businesses in energy, IT, and media. He is currently the CEO of Estover Energy Ltd. Over the last 10 years Estover Energy has established itself as a leader in the UK biomass industry developing 3 wood-fuelled biomass CHP plants producing up to 70 MW in the UK, financed with £375m of capital. He is also a trustee of the Beaverbrook Foundation London, and President of the Beaverbrook Canadian Foundation in Montreal. He is also a Non-Executive Director for 42 M&P, a fully integrated management and production company in the TV and film industry, based in London and Los Angeles.
Jason Zimmermann has over 20 years’ experience in the timber resource sector. He is currently the President of Zimmfor Management Services Ltd (“Zimmfor”), an industry leading consulting firm focused on sustainable forestry management. Jason has field and technical expertise relating to timberland assets worldwide and Zimmfor has worked with AEG in previous projects in Canada and Ukraine. He is a Registered Professional Forester and a graduate of the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Science in Forestry.