Tom is Design Director at IDEO in London, where he uses the innovation and design process to develop new business opportunities. A serial entrepreneur and angel investor, Tom has first-hand experience in building successful enterprises and, as a result, a very thorough understanding of business. He is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum and was listed in WIRED UK’s top 100 “digital power brokers” in 2011 and 2012. In November 2012 he was included in the Evening Standard list of London’s 1000 most influential people. Tom is also a member of the advisory board of the Tech City Investment Organisation of the UK government, supporting the startup community in East London.
He is particularly interested in commercializing new products and services, and his IDEO clients and angel investments include technology, retail, fashion, fast-moving consumer goods, financial services, and hospitality brands.
Tom founded OpenIDEO, IDEO’s open innovation platform that won a 2011 Webby Award in the Community Category and presently has over 44,000 users from more than 170 countries. The technology is now being applied to clients to manage their own closed communities.
Prior to attending college, Tom spent a year teaching secondary school in Tanzania, contributing to his belief in the power of entrepreneurship for sustainable social good. Tom then earned a bachelor’s degree in physics (with honors) from the University of Bristol and an MBA from Harvard Business School, where he received the Baker Scholar Award of high distinction.
In 1998, he joined British sports-car manufacturer Marcos, where he became managing director and transformed the loss-making company into a profitable enterprise by diversifying the company into race and road cars. He sold the company in 1999. In 2000, he founded Fluid Conditioning Systems to commercialize the Magnom™, a patented magnetic filtration innovation system, now used in a diverse range of industries, including Formula 1. Current customers include Ducati, Fernox, Ferrari F1, and JCB. He oversaw expansion of the company’s operations to the United States.
Tom regularly speaks on the topics of entrepreneurship, technology, design thinking, open innovation, and industry disruption.
Follow @thulme on Twitter.
Consumer Experience Design