Sherry Coutu

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Sherry Coutu CBE
Sherry Coutu speaking at Policy Exchange.jpg
Born 1964
Alma mater Harvard Business School,
University of British Columbia,
London School of Economics

Sherry Coutu CBE (born 1964) is a serial entrepreneur, former CEO, Angel investor and Non-executive director based in Cambridge, UK and originally from Canada.


Coutu graduated from University of British Columbia, with a first class honours BA, in 1986, with distinction from the London School of Economics, with an MSc, in Economics, and from Harvard Business School, with an MBA, in 1993.

As an entrepreneur, Sherry founded interactive investor international in 1994. She ran it until 2000 when it was floated on the London Stock Exchange and she stepped down when it was acquired by AMP in 2001.

She became an angel investor in 2000 and since then,[1] she has worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs and specialised in consumer internet, information services and education. She has made angel investments in more than 50 companies and holds investments in 5 venture capital firms. She was voted by TechCrunch as the best CEO mentor / advisor in Europe in Nov 2010. In May 2011, she was voted by Wired magazine as one of the top 25 'most influential people in the wired world', and one of the top ten most influential investors and women. In 2015 she was voted one of the most inspiring women in Europe and named as one of the most philanthropic entrepreneurs[2] in the UK.

Coutu was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2013 New Year Honours for her services to entrepreneurship.[3]

In November 2014 Coutu authored the "Scale-Up Report"[4] which was commissioned by the Digital Economy Council[5] which report urged the UK government to support 'scaleups' and not only 'startups'.[6]

In June 2015, partnering with Reid Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn, Coutu launched the Scale Up Institute a non-profit body to support UK businesses to scale up.[7] The support for businesses will include help in improving leadership skills, accessing network of advisers and raising finance.

In early July 2015 it was reported[8] and later confirmed by Coutu,[9] that she would be curtailing her angel investing activities in favour of investing philanthropically in charitable endeavours in the future: Founders4Schools,[10] a charity to improve the employability of young people. In 2017, Founders4Schools launched their work experience service for 16–24-year olds, Workfinder. Workfinder is an TripAdvisor style app to easily connect young people with fast growing companies across the UK.


Coutu is the Chairman of Founders4Schools, Workfinder and The Scaleup Institute and also serves on the Boards of Cambridge University (Finance Board), Raspberry Pi, Zoopla,[11] London Stock Exchange plc.[12][13] She serves on the Advisory Board of the Royal Society.

Past positions include serving on the Advisory Boards of Linkedin and the Natural History Museum


Coutu was awarded with the Commander of the Order of the British Empire for "services to entrepreneurship".[14][15] She was named Most Influential Women in UK IT 2017, Barclay's Entrepreneur of the Year 2017, Top 50 inspiring women in Europe by the Management Today and Top Entrepreneur contributing to 'Queen and Country' by Sunday Times Magazine. In July 2015 Computer Weekly named Coutu in the top ten[16] most influential women in UK IT industry. In the same year she was ranked 29 on Wired's The 2015 WIRED 100.[17]


Coutu supports Founders4Schools, Prince's Trust, Crick Institute, Cancer Research UK and serves on the Harvard Business School European Advisory Council.[18]


  1. ^ "BBC Bottom Line – Angel Investors". BBC. Retrieved 29 October 2015.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "The New Year Honours Lists 2013". Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  4. ^ "The Scale-up Report". Archived from the original on 9 November 2015. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  5. ^ "The Digital Economy Council is developing a long-term strategy to drive the growth of the Information Economy sector". Archived from the original on 21 October 2015. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  6. ^ Dredge, Stuart. "British government urged to support 'scale-ups' not just startups". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  7. ^ Hurley, James. "Web giants begin search for the next big thing among Britain's start-ups". The Times. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  8. ^ "Cambridge angel Coutu hands in her wings". BusinessWeekly. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  9. ^ "How to Get Any Job You Want (even if you're unqualified)". LinkedIn. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  10. ^ "Trustees". Retrieved 21 February 2017.
  11. ^ "About Zoopla". Zoopla. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  12. ^ "Non-executive Directors Appointed to the Board of Directors of London Stock Exchange Group Plc". Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  13. ^ "London Stock Exchange plc Board". Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  14. ^ "The New Year Honours Lists 2013". Government of the United Kingdom. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  15. ^ "Guide to the Honours". BBC News. 10 June 2015. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  16. ^ Bateman, Kayleigh – Computer Weekly reveals the 50 most influential women in UK IT 2015 – 8 July 2015
  17. ^ "The 2015 WIRED 100". Wired. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  18. ^ "Sherry Coutu CBE Entrepreneur, Non-Exec Director, Investor and Advisor to Companies, Universities and Charities". LinkedIn. Retrieved 8 November 2015.

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