Stephen Paine (1984, Law)

Chairman, Downing Enterprise
Co-head UK Investment Banking and Global Head of Infrastructure, UBS Investment Bank

Stephen studied law at Downing and then did his articles at Clifford Chance where he qualified as a banking and finance lawyer. Following an MBA at Insead, he joined SG Warburg/UBS in 1994. He has worked on a broad range of equity, debt and M&A transactions primarily in the infrastructure, transport, energy and utility sectors. He is now global head of the infrastructure sector team and co-head of UK investment banking at UBS Investment Bank. He is on the investment committee for the UBS Infrastructure Fund.






Parsa Akbari (2016, PhD Statistical Genetics)

COO, Downing Enterprise


Parsa Akbari is a PhD student in Statistical Genetics at the Department of Public Health continuting his studies at Downing after completing the Natural Sciences course. In addition to his role at Downing Enterprise Parsa is also the founder of Cambridge Data Lab which develops software and performs statistical analytics for companies around Cambridge. In the past Parsa has worked for UCB Biopharma to develop Machine Learning algorithms to predict side effects of drug compounds and working with genetic and environmental data collected from Alzheimers patients to predict age of onset of disease.


Robert Markwick (1979, History)

Advisory Director, Goldman Sachs International

Robert is an Advisory Director at Goldman Sachs. He is MD for their Principal Strategic Investments, and sits on the Commitments Committee. On leaving Downing, and after collecting an MBA in Manchester, Robert began as a fund manager at Foreign & Colonial. He then moved to Oppenheimer as a US equities sales man, before joining Goldman Sachs in 1994. There he ran the UK shares desk, the Pan European shares desk, and then ran the distribution of Capital Markets products in Europe. In 2007 he joined Principal Strategic Investments, and is now an advisor to the desk. Outside Goldman Sachs, he manages his own portfolio of private companies, and he is trustee to Medicinema.


Eric Coutts (1980, Law)

After reading law at Downing, Eric spent a year as an Assistant Lecturer in Law at Paris University II and subsequently qualified as a solicitor and worked on M&A and corporate finance transactions with Slaughter and May. He moved to Goldman Sachs in 1993 and has advised clients on range of M&A transactions in London and in Paris and was Co-Head of the bank's European Restructuring Group. He then worked with Citi in Paris from 2007-2012, where he was Citi Country Officer and Head of Banking for France. He returned to London in 2014, where he is Chief Executive of Edmond de Rothschild UK.

Eric is a Deputy Chairman of the British School of Paris, a member of The Downing Enterprise Board, Chairman of the Board of the International Piano Competition of Ile de France and an active campaigner for Amnesty International.


Charlie Green (1983, Law / Management Studies)

Charlie joined Morgan Grenfell after leaving Downing, and has worked in private equity since 1992, first at Morgan Grenfell, then at Candover Partners and currently as a partner of 24Haymarket, a business angel group, which he helped establish. He is currently a non-executive director of four investee companies, one of which he chairs, and is a trustee of Impetus- The Private Equity Foundation.


Mark Green (1979, Natural Sciences)

Partner, UDL Intellectual Property

Mark graduated in Natural Sciences, in particular in biochemistry, and is a partner at the London office of UDL Intellectual Property, a specialist firm of patent and trade mark advisers. As well as private practice, Mark has had experience of working in industry within Unilever’s patent department.

Mark advises all sizes of business in developing, defending and exploiting their IP protection. He works in both the patents and trade mark fields, and has litigated cases up to the European Courts.

Outside the business world, Mark has an interest in Art History, Tottenham Hotspur and - finding rowing a bit hard work on the Thames – time trial cycling.


Muoi Lien (2014, Executive MBA)

Muoi recently completed her Executive MBA at Cambridge Judge Business School. Her career in investment banking has spanned across multiple assets classes and functional areas within Capital Markets, and her role has encompassed both operational and change management. Her recent work has focussed on strategic change and business development. She is an avid supporter of disruptive technologies and has invested in a number of start-ups.


Dr Susan Lintott (1972, English)

Senior Bursar, Downing College

Educated at Girton, Susan taught English for four years at Tufts University in the US while completing her doctorate. After studying at the New York University Stern School of Business, she joined The Chase Manhattan Bank in New York in 1983 becoming a Managing Director in Corporate Finance in 1989, specialising in leveraged buyouts in the chemical industry in the 80s. She then transferred to the Chase Investment Bank in London, where she was first in charge of the bank’s business with the chemical sector across Europe and then served as a founding member of the bank’s Recoveries and Restructuring Division, specialising in workouts in the 90s.

After a career break prompted by maternity leave, she became Bursar of Downing College in October 1997. She was a member of the Board of Scrutiny, the University’s watchdog, from 1998-2002, serving as its Chairman from 2000 to 2001; a member of the University Audit Committee, 2008-11; the University Tribunal, 2008-14; and the Nominations Committee, 2011-15. She also served on the board of the Christ's Hospital Foundation from 2002-11, and as Chairman of the Cambridge Colleges' Bursars' Committee from 2008-11. She is currently Treasurer and board member of Cambridge in America and a non-executive director of the Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. She is married with two children.




Michael Downing (1988, Natural Sciences)

Partner and Founder, Downing IP

Michael has worked in intellectual property since 1991, joining Fry Heath Spence in 1994. He qualified as both a UK Chartered Patent Attorney and as a European Patent Attorney in 1995, and became a partner in 1996. In 2001, the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys awarded Michael one of the first Patent Litigator Certificates, enabling him to bring cases in the High Court on behalf of clients. In 2012 Michael founded Downing IP an independent firm of patent attorneys.

As a Patent Attorney, Michael focuses on the implementation of IP rights. He specialises in general mechanical electrical/electronic and metallurgical inventions; litigation; trade marks and designs.


Jonathan Franks FCA

Partner, Hillier Hopkins LLP, Chartered Accountants

Jonathan is the head of the Business Group at Hillier Hopkins LLP, responsible for the firm's policies and activities in providing services to business clients. He is a senior audit partner with special interests in business structures, valuations and transactions, and is based in the firm's London office in St James's. Having qualified at what is now BDO in 1986, he set up a new firm in 1993 which, ultimately, he merged to form the London practice of Hillier Hopkins LLP in 2008. Jonathan has authored and acted as reviewer for several article series and publications, including guidance for accountants on preparing business plans, as well as taxation issues.