The Blue Ribbon programme offers a range of tailor-made advisory services and financing options for selected companies. The programme aims to create a network of high-growth, high-potential “champion” SMEs and enable their organic growth, innovation and competitive edge in accessing wider domestic and international markets. The champions stand out for their market leadership qualities and high-growth potential. The Blue Ribbon network covers 29 countries and meets in Sarajevo to share best practice, strengthen the relationships and discuss the challenges facing SMEs.
Invitation Only – Enquiries:
8:30 – 09:00
Registration, Welcome coffee, administration, introductions
09:00 - 09:15
Welcome Remarks and Video
Nadia Petkova, Director, Regional Network, SME Finance &Development, EBRD
9:15 – 9:30
Keynote by Alain Pilloux, Vice President, Banking, EBRD EBRD
Digital Transformation and SMEs: opportunity or threat?
Alexios Seibt, Principal, Arthur D Little
Preparing and presenting your company to outside investors
Andrey Mitchenko, Ecosoft , current Blue Ribbon Member
11:15 – 11:30
Motivating compliance and good governance for SMEs
Introduction: Lisa Rosen, Managing Director, Chief Compliance Officer, EBRD
Speaker: Gemma Aiolfi, Head, Corporate Governance, Compliance and Collective Action, Basel Institute on Governance
Update on Blue Ribbon programme
Alex Paine, Associate Director, SME Finance & Development, Financial Products, EBRD
13:00 – 14:00
Head of Compliance, Corporate Governance and Collective Action, Basel Institute on Governance
Gemma Aiolfi is Head of Compliance, Corporate Governance and Collective Action at the Basel Institute on Governance. She was previously Legal Counsel to the Integrity Department at ABB Zurich, in connection with the US Deferred Prosecution Agreement. She was Global Head of Anti-Corruption at UBS AG and also worked in the Group Money Laundering Prevention Unit. Whilst employed by the OECD’s Working Group on Bribery in International Business Transactions she worked with the Chairman of the OECD Working Group, Professor Mark Pieth, and together they established the Basel Institute on Governance.
Gemma studied Law at the London School of Economics, and was called to the bar of England and Wales. She also undertook postgraduate law studies at Basel and Stockholm Universities.
Chief Executive Officer, Ecosoft
Andrii Mitchenko is CEO of ECOSOFT, a water treatment systems company in Ukraine. Since 1991, it has manufactured and market engineered water purification solutions for residential, commercial and industrial applications. It operates production facilities in Ukraine and Germany and distributes water filters in Europe, the Americas, and CIS countries. He has contributed to 40 scientific publications dedicated to water treatment methods. He is a graduate of the Department of Chemistry, of M. V. Lomonosov Moscow State University and holds a PhD in Ecology and Protection of Natural Resources.
Associate Director, ASB, EBRD
Alex Paine is EBRD Associate Director, Advice for Small Business (ASB) and heads a development group that designs new financial programmes for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Some of the programmes currently in development focus on deploying advice and financing to women-led businesses; trade finance for SMEs; IPO and corporate bond listings for SMEs; and supporting development of early stage enterprises. Alex also leads the EBRD’s Blue Ribbon programme and oversees strategic development of EBRD’s International Advisory programme (formerly EPG/TAM).
Alex was previously a partner at IMAP (2008-2014), a leading network of merger and acquisition companies, and managed IFC’s SME Advisory Programme in the Balkans. He holds an MBA from Cranfield School of Management.
Director, Regional Network, SME &F&D Regional Network, EBRD
Vice President, Banking, EBRD
Alain Pilloux is EBRD Vice President, Banking with overall responsibility for delivery of the Bank's new investment, portfolio and advisory activities, as well as contributing to policy engagement. Before his appointment to this post in 2016, Alain was Acting Vice President for Policy and Partnerships, a role that included coordinating strategies and policy engagement, mobilising and managing donor funding and overseeing EBRD's engagement with key external partners.
Alain joined the EBRD in 1992 as a senior banker. He has held various management roles: Country Director for Poland (1995-97), Business Group Director for Central Europe and the Baltic States (1998-2005), Managing Director for Russia (2006-09), and Managing Director, Industry, Commerce and Agribusiness (2010-15).
Managing Director, Chief Compliance Officer, EBRD
Lisa Rosen is EBRD’s Chief Compliance Officer, responsible for ensuring that the highest standards of integrity are applied throughout all Bank activities. This includes providing advice to all EBRD departments in evaluating integrity and reputational risks relating to proposed and on-going projects; conducting integrity and anti-money laundering (AML) training courses; advising on conflicts of interest; investigating instances of staff misconduct and investigating allegations of fraud and corruption in EBRD projects. She also oversees the EBRD’s Project Complaint Mechanism which provides redress for complaints by local groups adversely affected by Bank projects.
She is a graduate of Vanderbilt University (BA), London School of Economics (MSc) and Fordham University Law School (JD).
Principal, Arthur D. Little Austria GmbH
Alexios Seibt is a Principal at Arthur D. Little (ADL) in Vienna with over 7 years of experience in management consulting working on converging industries, incl. automotive, mobility and telecommunications. Projects range from top-level to functional strategies for sales, after-sales and IT, and concepts for the cutting-edge technologies. He is responsible for expanding the Public Service Practice in Vienna and for key mobility initiatives for private and public players. Prior to ADL, he was a head of finance for a luxury vehicle dealership.
Alexios holds a degree in international business administration from Vienna University of Economics and Business, a Masters in International Management from CEMS and a Masters in International Studies from the Diplomatic Academy Vienna.