Sydney Thiam
Venture Building Engagement Lead

Sydney serves as a Venture Building Engagement Lead at Catalyst Fund, where he guides portfolio companies by offering expertise on growth, expansion, go-to-market strategies, operational scaling, and the implementation of systems and processes.

Before joining Catalyst Fund, Sydney spearheaded expansion at Sendy, a Kenyan logistics scale-up, where he undertook various leadership roles, scaling teams across four African markets. As Head of Expansion and VP of SendyGo, he was responsible for the P&L of multiple commercial teams, crafting operating plans, and steering regional, country, and go-to-market strategies across Sendy's diverse business lines. He successfully launched operations in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, and Côte d'Ivoire. Earlier, as VP of Marketing, Sydney transitioned the firm from OOH to digital advertising during the COVID-19 pandemic, driving M-O-M increases in digital reach, campaign performance, and lead generation.

Prior to moving to Kenya, Sydney founded a software startup in London, serving as a recommendation platform for local services and businesses. As its co-founder & COO, he oversaw operations and business development, partnering with over 70 London-based SMEs and launching two apps that amassed 20,000 downloads combined.

Before his entrepreneurial journey, Sydney worked as a strategic planner at global agency networks SID LEE Paris and FCB Global in Hamburg. He crafted strategies scalable worldwide for accounts like Samsung, BMW, Citroen/DS, Ubisoft, Carlsberg, Moet & Chandon or illy Caffè.Sydney began his professional journey as an analyst at Airbus Group in Washington, D.C., working on the company's 2014 organizational redesign and rebranding.

Drawing on his vast experience across diverse organizations, industries, and geographies, Sydney is now devoted to nurturing the African entrepreneurial ecosystem, aiding teams in scaling ambitious projects across the continent.

Join Catalyst Fund

We are actively looking for early-stage startups that improve the resilience of underserved and climate-vulnerable communities in emerging markets.