Dr John Lazar, CBE FREng
Co-founder and general partner at Enza Capital, and Chair of the Raspberry Pi Foundation
John Lazar is co-founder and general partner at Enza Capital, and Chair of the Raspberry Pi Foundation.
In 2019, with two partners he co-launched Enza Capital which backs founders and teams using technology to solve large and meaningful problems across Africa. Headquartered in Nairobi, Enza has invested in more than 30 African tech companies to date. John sits on the board of three of Enza’s portfolio companies.
He is a Fellow of the UK’s Royal Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of BCS, the UK’s chartered institute for IT. He is chair of the Academy’s Enterprise Committee which oversees the activities of its Enterprise Hub, supporting start-ups and scale-ups across the UK. For the past seven years, he has also been a judge and mentor on the Academy’s Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation, which backs 15-20 early-stage African engineering companies annually. He has also spent many years working on tech-related non-profit initiatives in Africa, especially building “digital blacksmiths” and maker labs.
John has also been an active angel investor and technology start-up mentor in the UK and Africa, with more than 40 individual pre-seed/seed investments.
In 2016, he stepped down as Chairman and CEO of Metaswitch Networks. He joined the company in 1987 as a software engineer and became Chief Executive Officer, and then Chairman, as the company established its leadership in cloud communications software. Metaswitch was acquired by Microsoft in 2020.
He was awarded a CBE for services to engineering in 2016.