Team

Maury Shenk is managing director of Lily Innovation. He is an experienced lawyer, investor and director, with particular expertise in information and communications technology, artificial intelligence, education, green business and China.

Maury is also advisor to global law firm Steptoe (where he has practiced since 1993 and was London managing partner from 2002-2006) and general counsel of China-based private equity fund Spring Capital Asia. He is a director of:

  • Valpak, the leading UK recycling compliance company
  • PeopleCert, a global examination and certification provider
  • RayGen (UK subsidiary), Australia-based concentrating solar power company.

Maury is an investor in UK start-ups that use artificial and machine intelligence to solve business problems:

  • Qlearsite -- AI and visualization for improving human resources
  • Sparrho -- science search and recommendation (see Maury's Sparrho pinboard on AI for text analysis)
  • CognitionX -- leading market intelligence platform for AI
  • Lexoo -- efficient business legal services
  • NorthRow -- customized and automated searches of multiple data sources for regulatory compliance
  • Memento -- virtual reality using AI-enabled assembly of crowdsourced photos and videos.

He is also an investor in pyjama e-tailer Desmond & Dempsey and property technology company Flatfair.

Maury is a graduate of Harvard College and Stanford Law School. He is a native speaker of English, and speaks French, Russian, Mandarin Chinese, Spanish, German, Italian and Norwegian. He is a competitive and recreational sailor, plays piano and guitar, is a regular author and speaker on technology and innovation, and writes novels under the pen name David Zen (represented by Tin-Can Telephone Literary Agency; second novel Enlightenment Inc. published by Endeavour Media).

Katharine Scarfe Beckett is a director and chief creative at Lily Innovation. Katharine is ​an experienced English writer and editor, and has assisted leading companies and institutions in many sectors, including technology, culture, government, education, luxury goods and consulting.​ She also works as a consultant with Forbes Associates in Qatar and ​a ​reporter​ of consultations at St George’s House, Windsor Castle, and previously worked ​​as a staff writer and researcher at the Hashemite Court in Jordan. Based in London, Katharine supplies excellent, clear, nuanced English to international clients. She is a graduate ​of Royal Holloway, King's College (masters) and the University of Cambridge (Ph.D), and has working knowledge of French and Arabic.

Ian Jones is a senior consultant to Lily Innovation. A highly experienced in-house lawyer, Ian has worked globally with organisations in multiple sectors and of various sizes for over 20 years, including BP and BT. His experience includes international work, cross border M&A, real estate, public service projects and ground-breaking legal transactions. In 2001, he led the legal team that negotiated the sale and leaseback of BT’s UK property portfolio. Ian is the author of the widely read Butterworths In-House Lawyers Handbook and a contributor to Butterworths Guide to the Legal Services Act 2007. He writes articles for various journals and blogs on issues specific to in-house lawyers.

Gohar Lputian is a senior consultant to Lily Innovation, and an experienced advisor on international finance transactions and regulatory matters. Gohar spent 8 years on the London banking and restructuring team at Weil, Gotshal & Manges and 3 years at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. She has handled numerous large, cross-border deals covering many areas of finance, with a particular focus on project finance, leveraged lending, restructurings and cross-border finance, and across a broad spectrum of industries and jurisdictions. She is also a principal of GHLex Associates Ltd, a consulting company servicing established corporate clients and start-up companies on finance and commercial matters.

Jasmin Kirkbride is a paralegal consultant at Lily Innovation. She began her career in the techology sector, specialising in data management and visualisation for clients such as Motorola and CAKE. She went on to work as a publisher and book trade journalist, editing books including a Pulitzer Prize winner and a Man Booker longlistee. A published author, Jasmin specialises in copywriting and technical rewriting for Lily Innovation, with whom she has worked with since 2017. She graduated from King's College London with an MA Ancient History, and is currently enrolled in a second postgraduate degree at the University of East Anglia.

Yunhan Fang is a researcher at Lily Innovation. She has experience in the UK business development for Chinese companies and UK start-ups, and previously in China at an Internet-based property portal and a hydropower engineering company. Yunhan has a bachelor's degree from Chengdu University of Information Technology and a master's degree from Leeds University. She is a native speaker of Mandarin Chinese, is fluent in English, and has working knowledge of French.

Charlie Gregg is a principal of Lily Innovation Advisors US, our US partner entity, providing consulting services and making investments in emerging technologies. Charlie has broad experience at the nexus of technical development, commercial viability and operations. Past start-ups include concentrated photovoltaic solar company GreenVolts, cross-media publishing solution NetPost, and targeted advertising company AllAdvantage. Early in his career, he worked for several years in the Corporate/M&A Group at Skadden as a paralegal. Charlie is a graduate of Harvard College, where he is Treasurer of his class, and is Board Chair of St. James Preschool.

Lily Innovation also cooperates with a global network of advisors as needed for assistance on projects.