Born Maverick
Future of sustainable food is here

Azhar Murtuza

Founder and CEO

Azhar is a biotechnology scientist with an International MBA from Queen’s University Belfast. Since inception of Born Maverick, he has worked on delivering cutting edge complex projects in a simplified way ranging from plant-based seafood, meat and dairy besides working on fungal and algal proteins. His thorough expertise and impeccable attitude of collaborative approach has helped him garner a leading network in food industry to make things happen.

Dr Andrew Lee

Commercial Director (NED)

Has over 25 years of experience in commercialising cutting edge science. He has worked with top UK and international universities in out-licensing technology in the food & drink, industrial biotech and pharmaceutical sectors as well as setting up and being part of the management of numerous spinout companies which he has helped to grow successfully. He is passionate about sustainability and the circular economy and aside from his part-time role at Born Maverick he is CEO of Lytegro, a biotechnology company making microbial growth enhancers from waste bananas. He holds three patents; two in the field of nutrition (pro– and prebiotics) and another related to improving the efficiency of fermentation.

Dr Parag Acharya

Alt Protein Expert

Brings his wealth of knowledge from both industry side, as an ex-Unilever employee and academic side, where he is currently involved with Natural Resource Institute as a senior research fellow along with being head of Innovation growth at Medway Food Innovation Centre. He is an integral part of alt protein consortium being built within UK with CPI and CAMPDEN BRI. He has a huge collective network of experts and facilities across Europe. He has managed to raise around £1.5 million in 2021-22 alone for the research work he’s been involved with.

Stephane Durand

Bio-process Engineering Specialist

Has his expertise in precision fermentation. He is currently involved with Institute of Global Food Security and ASSET labs at Queen’s University which ranks number one in Agri research within UK. He is involved with EIT programmes which help start-ups within UK to access state of art facilities for research work and leads on them as an expert mentor. He is also involved with Smart City Deals within NI to strategize on food research.

Tom Kinney

Institutional Alliance Specialist

Brings in a wide experience of working and leading with Enterprise Europe Network, Innovate UK and as strategic advisors for various companies across the globe. He leads as a senior advisor within Invest NI currently and also involved with growth and innovation within NI across various sectors. He along with Stephane could play a key role in helping Born Maverick to lead through smart city grants and be the crux of food innovation within UK.

Danny Chapman

Michelin Star Chef

Has an experience of around 25 years and has helped launch many brands in the market successfully which includes the likes of Deliciously Ella, Oumph! and many more. He has joined the team as an NPD expert who would help us develop and deliver products to individual companies in a customised way so that it suits their existing manufacturing facilities without heavy investments.