Laurence “Laurie” Olivier has been involved in venture capital since 1990, bringing decades of VC experience to the 4Di Capital team. A seasoned founder and early-stage investor, Laurie has advised, invested and helped manage start-ups across sub-Saharan Africa, Europe, Asia, the United States and Israel.
Laurie began his career at Anglo American, a leading global mining conglomerate. As Senior Vice President for Private Equity, he represented the company’s interests, serving on the boards of numerous venture funds, including East Asian private equity fund, MCPEPA, South African venture fund MCA and AAV, an Israeli fund managed by Veritas Venture Partners, the country’s first VC. Laurie subsequently maintained a 20-year partnership with Veritas and served on the boards of its various portfolio companies in both Israel and the United States.
While at Anglo American, Laurie also established new technology-driven businesses, and served on the boards of a variety of publicly traded and privately held companies, including Anglo American Industrial Corporation, Ltd and several of the group’s Asian joint ventures, including Mitsubishi, Temasek, Bangkok Bank and the Daewoo Group.
Widely sought after for his VC expertise, Laurie was a commercialisation advisor to the University of Pretoria and frequent judge in business plan competitions across South Africa. He has served on the boards of numerous US technology-related industry forums, including the American Israel Chamber of Commerce (Southeast) and the Southern Capital Forum. He has been a board director of more than 50 companies, including the industrial holdings of a Fortune500 corporation, and is currently an advisor to or member of the board of several technology companies in both South Africa and the United States.
Laurie holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Electronics) degree from the University of Pretoria and a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree with a Diploma in Datametrics from the University of South Africa. He is based in Atlanta, Georgia.
Justin Stanford has over two decades of experience in tech start-ups and venture capital on the African continent, as both an entrepreneur and investor. As co-founder of The Silicon Cape Initiative, he played a critical role in the germination of the venture ecosystem in South Africa. Widely acknowledged as a leader in the sector, Justin is frequently sought out for his expertise and serves as a board member, advisor to and investor in a wide variety of local and global technology companies.
Born and raised on a farm, Justin’s interest in the evolving convergence of software and connectivity influenced his decision to forgo completing high school, instead pursuing his dream of becoming an entrepreneur at the dawn of the Internet age. In the early 2000s, after several years of failed start-up attempts, Justin – together with 4Di Partner Erik van Vlaanderen – built 4Di Group, a pan-African online software company in the emerging cybersecurity industry, from a garage in the suburbs of Cape Town. The company remains privately held after a successful partial exit to a private equity group in 2017.
As his passion for entrepreneurship and the tech scene in South Africa grew, Justin sought ways to help catalyse the development of an ecosystem that could support start-ups and meaningfully address the lack of seed capital available to founders. Together with Erik, what began as early locally-based angel investing led – in 2009 – to his co-founding the Silicon Cape Initiative, a community-driven non-profit focused on promoting and growing South Africa’s nascent venture sector.
Spurred on by the positive reception, 4Di Capital was founded soon thereafter with the intention of replicating a Silicon Valley-type venture firm adapted for Africa. As a founding partner, Justin continues to spend his time working with and investing in early-stage technology companies across the continent. An avid pilot of both airplanes and helicopters, he lives in Cape Town with his wife and son.
Anton van Vlaanderen joined 4Di in 2009 when the company officially started its fund management activities, and became a Partner in 2011 at the launch of 4Di Capital Fund I. Anton brings more than 20 years’ experience as an entrepreneur, angel investor and venture investor to the firm and currently serves as 4Di’s Managing Partner, responsible for the general management of all its operations, as well as overseeing many of the firm’s portfolio investments.
Shortly after leaving university in 2000, Anton spent a year working with Old Mutual Properties – South Africa’s largest insurer – as part of an innovation team tasked with turning around poorly performing property assets in the company’s portfolio. Within that year, Anton acquired and turned around an ailing flexible office company in Johannesburg, which he then replicated to start a similar initiative in Cape Town.
Realizing quite quickly that corporate life was not his future, Anton launched a fresh fruit export marketing business with his father, Erik van Vlaanderen, that they owned and managed profitably for seven years. It was during this time that Anton became actively involved in some of 4Di’s earliest angel investment activities, which the firm pursued in its previous capacity as a private family office investment vehicle.
Anton holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of South Africa and a Postgraduate Diploma in Management from the University of Cape Town. He lives in Cape Town with his wife and two children.
A seasoned corporate executive and serial entrepreneur, Erik van Vlaanderen brings more than 20 years’ experience in VC and tech start-ups as a founder, angel and venture capital investor to 4Di Capital.
Erik holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree from the University of Cape Town. A Chartered Accountant, he is a general partner of 4Di Capital where he advises – and previously served on the board of – many of the firm’s portfolio companies, imparting his wisdom and leadership to the next generation of African entrepreneurs.
A chartered accountant by training, Erik was a partner at Deloitte (South Africa) prior to holding various senior corporate executive positions over the subsequent decades. In 1991, Erik was appointed General Manager Finance of Unifruco Limited and, in 1994, CEO of subsidiary Vinfruco, the wine export business founded and launched by Unifruco, which would later merge into Stellenbosch Vineyards. In 1997, he took over as CEO of Unifruco (South Africa). Two years later, Unifruco would go on to merge with Outspan International to become South Africa’s largest fruit exporter, simultaneously partnering with the major banana company, Fyffes of Ireland. As Executive Director International Marketing of the new entity, Capespan Limited, Erik was responsible for the global marketing and distribution of a wide range of fruit varietals across Europe, North America, the Middle East and Asia from the company’s offices in London, Antwerp, Milan, Hong Kong and Tokyo.
In 2001, Erik pivoted to an entrepreneurial path and – together with his son, Anton – built a successful international fruit marketing business. Around the same time, he also helped to co-found 4Di with Justin Stanford. In 2010, Erik and Anton made the decision to close the fruit export business and focus full-time on 4Di, which – having rapidly grown off the back of the successful expansion of its internet security businesses throughout Southern Africa – was prepping to launch a venture capital fund management business to formalise its investments in start-up activities.
Sian Cathrall began her career in finance as an Audit Manager at Ernst & Young in London, where she completed her ACCA qualifications with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. After four years in the UK office, she returned to South Africa to join the firm’s Corporate Finance team where she quickly “fast-tracked” to the role Senior Manager.
After completing school at St Mary’s with academic colours, Sian went on to study at the University of Cape Town, graduating (Dean’s List) with a Bachelor of Business Science degree specialising in Finance and Accounting (Honours). She is a registered member of the ICAEW.
Over the next few years, Sian gained extensive transaction experience working with her EY colleagues on some of the region’s largest private equity deals. Until her passion for the sector and focus on technology serendipitously led to due diligence work on a start-up founded by Justin Stanford and Erik van Vlaanderen, who soon after offered her a position at 4Di.
Born in Johannesburg to a serial entrepreneur mother and career accountant father, Sian attributes her eclectic mix of high energy numbers fanatic and interest in people, innovation and the start-up ecosystem to her upbringing.
Samantha Campbell joined 4Di in early 2017. As the Operations Manager for the firm, she is responsible for marketing, investor reporting requirements and all compliance matters for 4Di Capital’s funds.
Born in England and raised in South Africa, Sam started her career in London working for a well-known special events company, managing talent and helping to organise logistics; roles which eventually led to her joining Springer Nature, the leading publisher of the world’s most prestigious journals and a prominent voice in scholarly communications, where she oversaw client services and corporate events.
Sam attended Stellenbosch University, where she majored in Value and Policy Studies before transferring to AFDA, where she earned a B.A. in Motion Picture Medium. She has completed post-graduate courses in Marketing Management (UNISA), as well as Graphic Design and Operations Management (GetSmarter).
Born and raised in New York, Meredith started her career at Time, Inc before leaving for South Africa, where she worked as a financial reporter for Business Day in Johannesburg. True to her lifelong passion for conservation, Meredith soon began publishing feature stories about the intersection of business and the environment and, over the years, has become known for her in-depth knowledge of and reporting on issues associated with sustainable development.
Her expertise covering business, combined with her extensive knowledge of political and regulatory environments across the African continent, eventually led to her appointment as Managing Director for Africa at Aldwych Capital Partners; Partner at Constant Ventures, an African-founded, African-led venture fund; and, most recently, Senior Advisor at 4Di Capital.
An experienced business development strategist, Meredith continues to consult to various entities – from media companies and non-profits to development finance institutions – and has served as an Executive Director, Development Director and non-Executive Board Member to various cause-related organisations. In 2018, she launched Africa House, an innovative business development platform that functioned as a pop-up members club during UN General Assembly, bringing together high-level policymakers, thought leaders, business executives, entrepreneurs and creatives to participate in a program of events focused on “Changing the Narrative in Africa.”
Meredith holds a B.A. in Political Science from Columbia University and a Graduate Diploma in Modern Art Studies from the University of Cambridge. She is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, serves on the advisory board of Big Life Foundation and is a Trustee of ERuDeF (Cameroon). When not in Africa, Meredith lives outside of Washington, DC.
Greg Rawbone-Viljoen joined 4Di Capital as an Investment Analyst in March 2023 after completing an internship at the Cape Town-based private equity firm, Lionhead Capital Partners. Prior to that, Greg worked at the Standard Bank Group in Johannesburg as a Marketing Graduate.
Born and raised in South Africa, Greg completed both his undergraduate and graduate studies at the University of Cape Town, earning a Bachelor of Social Science degree in Industrial Sociology and International Politics and a Postgraduate Diploma in Entrepreneurship and Management. He holds two Master in Management degrees from the Yale School of Management and HEC Paris.
Kim Robertson | Financial Manager
Kim Robertson brings nearly two decades of experience in the financial services sector to her role as 4Di Capital’s Financial Manager.
Kim began her career at PWC in Cape Town, where she completed her accounting articles and worked as a Senior Auditor. Prior to joining 4Di in August 2019, Kim spent 11 years with the Macquarie Group in Cape Town, initially as a product accountant in equity derivatives and structuring where she was responsible for all aspects of accounting practices, including daily P&L reporting, new product approvals, regulatory reporting and month-end balance sheet sign-off; and, later, in the firm’s Corporate Centre, where she served as a Senior Manager responsible for legal entity control, including regulatory reporting and tax compliance.
Kim holds a Bachelor of Business Science degree specializing in Finance and Accounting (Honours) from the University of Cape Town. She is a member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accounts (SAICA QE and IRBA PPE) and has successfully completed Levels I-III of the Chartered Financial Analyst exams.