June 30, 2017

July News and Upcoming Events

Welcome to the July newsletter. We have so much to share we couldn’t wait, so we’re sending it while it’s still June.

The summer is beginning to sizzle and we had a great June to celebrate. We kicked off the month with our happy hour at the Blue Lion in Holborn. A few days later we followed up with the Walking Tour round Wapping. Finally, our inaugural panel series on disruptive technology platforms on the 20th June rounded off the month. We were joined by the Columbia Experience Overseas (CEO) interns for some of these events which was a privilege.

But we’re not slowing down. Next week we’ve two events including our July 4th happy hour held in Hyde Park and a Columbia Business School event on the evolving luxury travel industry.

Please look at our events round ups for more details for the future and what we’ve done so far.

The CUCL Board

Meet the Board

Tom Hou | Board member

web_Tom_Hou_100px.pngTom holds a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Economics from Columbia College. He grew up in Asia, Europe and the US and has been living in London since 2011. Tom is a Managing Partner at EMH Partners and runs the firms’ London office, which covers growth equity investments in Scandinavia and the UK. Previous to EMH, Tom ran investments in the financial sector at TPG and started his career at Goldman Sachs Principal Investment area.

Daniel Perdomo-Rodriguez | Board member and SIPA Liaison

web_Daniel_Perdomo_100px.pngDaniel works for Carbon Trust as a Senior Manager–Latin America. He has over ten years of international experience working on clean energy, sustainability, and finance with public and private institutions such as the Inter-American Development Bank, United Nations, the Insurance Deposit of Colombia, and KPMG. Before joining the Carbon Trust he worked for two years in Chile securing international climate finance for large-scale renewable energy projects and energy efficiency programmes. Joining the Carbon Trust in London, he has worked on renewable and energy efficiency projects in Colombia, Chile, Panama and Cuba. He received a BSc in Industrial Engineering in Bogota, a Master’s degree in Public Administration in New York, and an Executive MBA in London. Daniel is a board member and SIPA liaison at the Columbia University Club of London.

Events Roundup

CUCL Walking Tour | Wapping | Sunday June 11th

The group met at Wapping overground station right by the river Thames. The walk leader, Susana Seijas, lives in Wapping and considers it one of London’s best kept secrets! It has become gentrified and is a quiet spot near Tower Bridge and Canary Wharf which we could see in the distance. The area was known for shipping and imports of tobacco and cinnamon and other commodities up to the 1960s. Now the dock buildings have mainly been converted or are going to be sold to developers. Some of the history is quite macabre with the last hiding place of the infamous British Judge Jeffries being pointed out in a pub—in which the cellar was used for hiding all sorts of people. The two hours passed very quickly with some good socializing going on. It was great to see so many fellow Columbian’s there and to welcome the Columbia Experience Overseas interns who are in London this summer. So many thanks to Susana for such an excellent tour.

Disruptive Technologies: Are Platform Business Models Eating the World? | Tuesday June 20th

In an evening full of stimulating discussion, fine wine and inspiring networking, Columbia Business School alum Benoit Reillier (BUS '05) kicked off the evening as moderator and expert on the topic of the platform business model. Contributing panelists included Jan Valentin, Head of Europe for Kayak / Priceline, Rune Sovndahl, CEO of Fantastic Services, Laurence Bret-Stern, Senior Marketing Director (EMEA/LATAM) at LinkedIn who shared about the challenges of securing reliable suppliers, launching in new countries and how to maintain a brand amongst rapid growth. Attendees from a variety of Columbia schools as well as other Iveys and the startup world enjoyed the first of our Disruptive Technology events, and we all look forward to the next.

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Benoit’s book, Platform Strategy: How to Unlock the Power of Communities and Networks to Grow Your Business, available on Amazon.

Upcoming Events

July 4th Happy Hour in Hyde Park | 7:00-10:00pm


Major League Baseball is hosting an exciting Fourth of July party in London on the British Summer Time Hyde Park music festival site. While not officially associated with MLB, Columbia University Club of London is taking advantage of their hospitality for our July Happy Hour and a chance to celebrate America's Independence Day.

The FREE event, called MLB Battlegrounds, will run from 5.00-10.00pm, mixing baseball, street food and music and culminating in a Home Run Derby featuring former stars from the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers.

CUCL will be meeting HERE at 7.00pm but feel free to arrive early and explore. You can view a map of the festival site HERE (we'll be meeting near the Merchandise stand across from the Carnival Stage). For updates, please be sure to follow us on Twitter @ColumbiaClubLon in the event of changes or weather issues.

We hope to see everyone there.

  • What: CUCL Happy Hour & MLB Battlegrounds
  • When: 7.00-10:00pm
  • Where: Meeting near the Merchandise stand across from the Carnival Stage HERE (bookmark to your Google Maps)
  • RSVP here to let us know you're coming!

Columbia Business School Alumni Club of London | Adventures in Luxury Travel Innovation

Wednesday, 5 July | 6:30pm for a 7pm start


Please join alumni from CBSL, CUCL and INSEAD for wine, light canapes and a lively panel discussion around the evolving luxury travel industry as presented by leaders from three innovative companies redefining customer experience in this dynamic sector.

Should your curiosity stem from a business, consumer or purely social perspective, we invite you to join us for what is sure to be an engaging evening!

Attend and be entered in a draw to win 2 return tickets to Ibiza on a Surf Air private jet.


  • Planes:  Coen VanNiersen, Chief Membership Officer, Surf Air (INSEAD GEMBA ‘13)
  • Trains: Marina Linke, Director, Golden Eagle Luxury Trains
  • Automobiles:  Darshana Ubi, Director and Co-Founder, Verve Rally

Moderator: Maren Coleman (CBS ’06), Strategy & Marketing Consultant
Cost: £15 dues paying alumni / £20 non-paying alumni / £25 guests

Full event information and RSVP: HERE

The Savile Club
The Grand Ballroom
69 Brook St, London W1K 4ER

Dress Code:
The Savile Club has no formal dress code, other than a rather undefined rule of not offending other members, so although for example jeans and trainers are not permitted and a jacket is required (except in very hot weather when a notice will be posted on the board), a tie is not de rigueur.

Save the Date | Future events

August Happy Hour

We're working on a weekend picnic event for members and their families in early August. Stay tuned.

Outreach Event in Holland Park | 16th September

We are arranging to have our annual Outreach day outdoors in Holland Park this September. This will be doing meadow work and possibly cutting meadow grass as volunteer workers! The day is being run by the Ecology Centre in Holland Park, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. We are going to join in with this.

Hopefully lots of alumni will want to do this. More information to follow nearer the time. We plan to have a picnic, sandwich, lunch during the day.

Stay Connected

For the most up-to-date events and news, be sure to follow is on Facebook and Twitter.

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