Antler's next UK cohort: Meet the entrepreneurs shaping the future

Serial entrepreneurs. Tech leaders from household name brands. Investment bankers. PhD students. Meet some of the diverse and remarkably driven founders joining our next Antler residency in the UK.


Darren Murphy

Darren is Program Director in Antler’s London office and Head of Program for EMEA and Americas. Darren has over seven years of experience working with tech startups, helping them go to market and secure investment. He previously worked as Head of Innovation at Unbound, connecting 100s of startups with global corporations at events such as Unbound London, FinTech Abu Dhabi and Innovfest Unbound in Singapore. Darren has also worked at the UK’s leading advanced digital technology innovation centre, Digital Catapult, where he helped establish their first accelerators.

Darren is a Director at Antler in the UK, working closely with founders during our residencies. He has more than seven years of experience working with tech startups, helping them go to market and secure investment. Based in London, Darren enjoys travelling, yoga, swimming, and discovering the best foodie spots wherever he goes.

Antler’s next UK residency will start on the 5th of February 2024. 

Since making its first investment in the UK in 2019, Antler has created a portfolio of nearly 100 fast-growth companies. With over 30 investments in the UK alone in 2023 and a commitment to increase its investment rate this year, they include some of the most exciting early-stage tech startups now operating in the UK. 

The quality of the startups in our UK portfolio is a product of the high calibre of founders joining our residencies. We’ve received over 20,000 applications from aspiring founders. Each cohort includes individuals representing a diverse group with exceptional talent: entrepreneurs, business operators, technologists, and domain experts from various industries. 

The founders joining our next UK residency are no exception. They include serial entrepreneurs, tech leaders from household name brands, investment bankers, and PhD students. 

Before the residency starts, we are excited to introduce some of the founders joining us and the entrepreneurial motivations that drove them to choose Antler for support and access to a diverse network of like-minded experts. 

Deepti Aswani is a clinical doctor and medical professional with 10 years of experience. She told us what inspired her to start her own company now:

“Entrepreneurship has always been part of my psyche and has played in my life for over a decade. I would visit the Business Centre at the British Library, especially during my first hectic years of junior doctor training. Over the years, I have dabbled with many different ventures, both within and outside of healthcare, alongside my medical career. A decade on, with a wealth of clinical and pharmaceutical industry experience, professional and personal circumstances have come together so that I can entirely focus on creating my venture.”

Rasoul Behravesh, a machine learning and network optimisation specialist with a Ph.D. in Telecommunication, expressed his enthusiasm for joining Antler's upcoming cohort:

“The problem I'm most passionate about is optimising network resource usage in rapidly evolving telecommunications landscapes, especially with the rise of 5G/6G communication systems. My unique combination of machine learning, programming, and network optimisation skills, backed by my experience in different telecommunication technologies, positions me to address this challenge innovatively.”

Kevin Tang, Lead Product Designer at Dyson, reflects on how commitment to a field is empowering him to impact the lives of millions of others:

“With the average person inhaling around 11,000 litres of air daily, I believe it's essential for everyone to understand the air they breathe and its impact. My focus on Air Quality at Dyson has fueled this commitment, and I'm eager to apply the knowledge and experiences gained from that work.”

Mert Can Elkaya, a business operator, generalist and investor for many years, explains that a strong network in the entrepreneurial landscape is just as critical as insight into unique skills:

“Antler stood out as an ideal partner for my next startup due to their reputation for assembling a diverse pool of knowledgeable individuals. This environment de-risks finding a co-founder, a decision I recognise is vital to a startup's success. My interactions with Antler's team reinforce my confidence in their ability to support successful entrepreneurs.”

During the selection process for Antler’s UK residency, the team will often ask founders what they want in a co-founder. Prachi Garg, an experienced, growth-focused product leader, shared explained: 

“I am searching for someone who is customer-focused, adept at navigating ambiguity and mission-driven. Being empathetic and embracing open communication, respect, and a collaborative approach are qualities I value.”

Lydia Chen, an investment banker and climate enthusiast, highlighted the encouragement she’s already received during the selection process.

“My journey with Antler has been transformative, providing essential learning and growth. The team's expertise and support have refined my vision, and the inclusive culture is evident in every interaction. To prospective applicants: Just do it! Whether you have an idea or not, don't hesitate. Apply now, open to the possibility of success, and be pleasantly surprised!”

Ready to turn your vision into reality and build a world-changing company? The next Antler residency in the UK kicks off in February 2024 in London. Apply now to join the new generation of diverse founders we support in the UK and worldwide.

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