Meet the Team
Ingo has been involved in the finance and advisory business for the past 20 years. In that time, he helped raise more than $200M for the companies he worked with. His previous executive experience includes being the CEO of Wigu City Edutainment Centres PLC, London Mining PLC (Colombia), and International Coal Company Ltd. In addition to his C-Suite experience, Ingo has acted in a strategic advisory capacity for companies, senior executives and principals around the world and across a broad cross-section of industries, including with multinational and international investment banks. Some of Ingo’s strategic advisory work has been with companies such as Daewoo Ship Building and Marine Engineering Co. Ltd., BAO Minerals (BAO STEEL Group) and Petro China. He has also worked with Hard Rock Hotel and Casinos, Donaco Pte Ltd. (Genting Group of Companies) and Minera Santa Fe.
President, AgriFORCE Solutions
Troy has focused on innovative design and construction technologies throughout his career, most recently as V.P. of Design and Construction at AgriFORCE Growing Systems. Prior to this, Troy held executive and senior management roles at W!gu City, MGM Macau, Wynn Design & Development (Macau), Universal Studios (Japan) and several globally recognized design firms. Troy is a registered professional architect and received his Master’s Degree in Architecture from Montana State University.
President, AgriFORCE Brands and CMO, AgriFORCE Growing Systems
Mauro brings over 30 years of expertise to AgriFORCE Growing Systems. As President Brands and AgriFORCE’s CMO, Mauro oversees the creation, growth and P&L of the Company’s Brands division and leads the brand, marketing and communications teams for AgriFORCE Growing Systems – creating a holistic, integrated overarching brand platform across all our divisions. Prior to joining AgriFORCE Mauro was Chief Growth & Sustainability Officer at McCain Foods and he also led and held senior executive P&L roles at Combe Incorporated, Conagra’s Lamb Weston, Diageo and Procter & Gamble.
Richard has over 25 years of experience in both start-up and public companies in the consumer goods, fertilizer, manufacturing, and forest industries. Richard has served as the CFO of Emerald Harvest Co., Dan-D Foods, Ltd., was the Director of Finance and CFO of SUGOI Performance Apparel and a partner at First Choice Capital Advisors.
Gideon De Jager
Chief Strategist and Business Development
Gideon brings indepth experience in the development and implementation of automated growing systems and AgTech solutions across the globe and in providing strong, strategic leadership. Prior to joining AgriFORCE, Gideon held senior roles at Dutch AgTech company Codema for more than 19 years, the last nine as Chief Commercial Officer.
Dr. Laila Benkrima
Dr. Benkrima holds a PhD in horticulture from the University of Paris, with a specialization in tissue culture and the hybridization and selection of plant varietals. Her extensive experience includes working with organizations such as Inflazyme Pharmaceuticals, the University of British Columbia, and Celex Laboratory.
VP of HR
Dawn is a highly respected and award-winning professional recruiter and is a recognized leader in helping to shape the careers of many of Western Canada’s top human resources practitioners. With more than 20 years expertise in recruitment and H&R, she brings exceptional business acumen and HR knowledge in her role. In her career, Dawn has developed and built out HR departments, supported expansions in staffing across geographic boundaries and is a leading expert in sourcing, securing, managing and retaining talent.
Director of Investor Relations
Ian has spent more than two decades in the investment industry, starting his career in investor relations in 2007 with Canadian Nexus Ventures. Prior to joining AgriFORCE, Ian held senior corporate consultant roles at Payworks and Dun and Bradstreet, where he was a regular recipient of President and Winners Circle awards for Sales Excellence. Ian is adept at understanding strategic objectives and aligning initiatives to achieve corporate goals.
Director of Marketing and Communications
Denise brings 15 years of international experience, brand-building expertise, and a passion to move sustainable agriculture forward at AgriFORCE. Denise has held senior roles, including as managing director of Labbrand, a brand consulting firm based in Asia and Europe. Denise was responsible for successfully launching the business into the North American market. During her career, Denise directed teams and worked with high-profile companies across B2B and B2C, such as PepsiCo, L’Oréal, Unilever, Mondelez, Conagra, and Reckitt Benckiser, to name a few.
General Manager, un(Think) Foods
Hernando Ruiz-Jimenez is a growth-oriented leader with a consistent track record of building businesses and brands across different industries. At AgriFORCE, Hernando is the General Manager of un(Think) Foods, leading the development and commercial launch of a revolutionary new range of wheat flour products. Previously Hernando has served in a variety of senior management and marketing roles at a wide range of companies, including Pepsico, Diageo and Triple-S Insurance.
Director of IP Development, un(Think) Foods
David Naccarato is leading the research, technical and operational development of the revolutionary high-performance process and products: un(Think) and Awakened Grains. He is the primary inventor, researcher, developer and author of the patented process. Mr. Naccarato’s experience includes 20 years in the food processing, equipment, and technology industry; and an additional 20 years in the sustainable energy and integrated design-build industry. He has developed projects throughout the United States, Canada, Latin America, Western and Eastern Europe, Russia, Ukraine, the former Soviet Union, China and East Asia.