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Our team

Home/About/Our team

Aurora combines in-depth UK, German and EU policy experience with knowledge of academic research in energy, the environment, and finance.

Our directors and advisors define the company’s research agenda, in consultation with clients, and their expertise shapes Aurora’s forecasting models, analyses, and reports.

Bright economists, engineers, and programmers from the world’s best universities make up Aurora’s team. We think through the economics, and follow the evolution of policy meticulously, undertaking modelling and research to make it easy for our clients to answer the questions that matter for their organisations.

John Feddersen

Dr John Feddersen

Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer
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John Feddersen

Dr John Feddersen

Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer

John Feddersen is Chief Executive Officer and a Director of Aurora Energy Research.

Prior to co-founding Aurora, John advised major government and private sector clients with the Boston Consulting Group throughout Australia and South-East Asia. Earlier, John began his business career with Deutsche Bank.

John is a Visiting Fellow of the University of Oxford. His commentary and analysis regularly appears in major international press and he has published in leading peer-reviewed academic journals. John holds a first class honors degree in Economics and Mathematics from the University of Melbourne, and MPhil and DPhil degrees in Economics, awarded with the George Webb Medley Prize, from the University of Oxford, where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar.

Dieter Helm

Prof Dieter Helm

Director

Dieter Helm serves on Aurora’s Board of Directors. With his energy expertise, acquired during decades advising at the highest levels of business and government, he defines and guides the company’s research and analysis.

Dieter has published widely on energy, infrastructure, and climate change. Dieter’s latest book Burn Out – The Endgame for Fossil Fuels was published in March 2017 and The Carbon Crunch – Revised & Updated, was published in 2015 by Yale University Press. He is Professor of Energy Policy at the University of Oxford and a Fellow in Economics at New College, Oxford.

Cameron Hepburn

Prof Cameron Hepburn

Director

Cameron Hepburn serves as Chair of Aurora’s Board of Directors.

He advises governments, corporations, and international institutions around the world (especially in the UK, EU, China and Australia) on energy, environment and climate policy.

His expertise helps shape the company’s environmental economics research. He has had an entrepreneurial career, co-founding successful businesses in economics and energy and investing in social enterprises.

Cameron is Professor of Environmental Economics at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of New College, Oxford. He is also Professorial Research Fellow at London School of Economics’ Grantham Research Institute. Cameron has degrees in law and engineering, a doctorate in economics, and peer-reviewed publications in environmental economics, public policy, engineering, law, philosophy, and biology.

John Hood

Sir John Hood

Director

Sir John Hood advises Aurora on corporate governance and energy market dynamics.

He is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Robertson Foundation. He currently serves on the Boards of Blackstone and WPP, and as Chairman of Study Group Ltd and BMT Group. Since 2011, Sir John has served as Chair of the Rhodes Trustees and from 2004 until September 2009, he was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford.

He was formerly Vice-Chancellor of the University of Auckland and has also been a director of a number of New Zealand-based companies, including the Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd and ASB Bank Limited, a subsidiary of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. Previously Sir John served as Chairman of Tonkin & Taylor Ltd.

Colin Mayer

Prof Colin Mayer

Director

Colin Mayer is a Director of Aurora.

He is an expert on corporate finance, corporate governance and regulation, and has advised corporations, governments, and international agencies on these topics for nearly three decades. He is currently a member of the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal and the UK Government Natural Capital Committee.

Colin is the Peter Moores Professor of Management Studies at the Saïd Business School, Oxford, a Fellow of the British Academy, a Fellow of the European Corporate Governance Institute, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, an Honorary Fellow of Oriel College and St Anne’s College, Oxford, and a Professorial Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford.

John-Paul Whyatt

John-Paul Whyatt

Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer
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John-Paul Whyatt

John-Paul Whyatt

Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer

John Paul Whyatt is the Chief Operating Officer of Aurora Energy Research.

After beginning his career as a consultant working primarily in Russia, John Paul spent 7 years in investment banking, initially covering Russian oil & gas majors at Dresdner Kleinwort Benson and later joining Bear Stearns, where he became a Managing Director in telecoms and media. In 2005 he co-founded a Tanzanian agribusiness, originally conceived as a primary producer of biodiesel, which he and his partner grew in 10 years into the largest rice producer in East Africa.

John Paul has a BA in Philosophy and French from Oxford, and a MGA from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Thouron Scholar.

Rick van der Ploeg

Prof Rick van der Ploeg

Shareholder Advisor

Rick van der Ploeg works closely with Aurora’s team to model resource extraction and macroeconomic policy.

He is Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford and Research Director of the Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies. He is also Senior Research Fellow of New College, Oxford and Adjunct Professor at the VU University Amsterdam. Rick is a former financial spokesperson, Member of Parliament, and State Secretary of Education, Science and Culture in the Netherlands.

Rick is a macroeconomics and public finance scholar, but his current research interests are natural resources, energy and climate. He has advised the IMF, the World Bank, the OECD, the EU, and various national governments, and he is a board member of several profit and non-profit organisations.

Hugo Batten

Hugo Batten

Managing Director, Australia
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Hugo Batten

Hugo Batten

Managing Director, Australia

Hugo is Managing Director of Aurora in Australia. He was previously Head of UK Renewables and ran Aurora’s UK consulting team.

Hugo advises clients on all aspects of the Australian and European power markets – regulation, strategy, transactions, financing, and operational optimisation.

While at Aurora, Hugo has:

  • Authored several major cross-industry studies on a range of topics – from the participation of renewables in balancing and ancillary markets; to an examination of the role of additional interconnection in Australia’s National Electricity Market (NEM); to the impact of Brexit on the UK’s power sector
  • Led buy- and sell-side energy due diligences for assets totalling over ~£5b since 2015 in Australia, Ireland, and the UK
  • Modelled the evolution of Middle Eastern energy markets for a major oil & gas player
  • Led Aurora’s NEM modelling team as they have modelled the wholesale and frequency response markets

Prior to Aurora, Hugo spent 6 years at McKinsey & Co where he worked as a Project Leader in energy and resources and spent time in the Sydney and New York offices.

Hugo undertook his undergraduate studies at the University of Melbourne in Law, and completed an MBA and MPA at the University of Oxford.

Manuel Koehler

Dr Manuel Koehler

Managing Director, Germany
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Manuel Koehler

Dr Manuel Koehler

Managing Director, Germany

Manuel leads Aurora’s German and Continental European activities and advises financial investors, utilities and policy makers on power and commodity markets.

While at Aurora, Manuel has:

  • Advised BEH on their 1.4 EUR billion acquisition of the market leading energy-from-waste company EEW in German
  • Advised on various multimillion EUR gas pipeline transactions in central Europe for Private equity investors and infrastructure funds
  • Quantified total system costs of coal-to-biomass conversions to support regulatory engagement for major power utility
  • Developed an investment strategy in decentral generation assets for infrastructure fund

Prior to joining Aurora, Manuel spent 5 years at McKinsey and Company in Berlin. Projects he led during his time at McKinsey include strategy development and valuation for a portfolio of lignite plants and mines in Eastern Germany, bidding strategies for wind offshore farms as well as a major research initiative on the impact of capacity mechanisms in the European power market.

Manuel studied Mathematics and Physics at the University of Gottingen, holds a PhD, magna cum laude, in Mathematics from the University of Gottingen and University of California, Berkeley where he studied as a Fulbright scholar.

Ana Barillas

Ana Barillas

Principal

Ana is a Principal in Aurora’s Commissioned Projects team. Ana has over ten years of professional services experience with an extensive energy market modelling, forecasting, and advisory background across energy companies. She has consulting experience across the energy value chain gained through working on a wide range of projects, from energy retail market strategy for utilities to policy and regulation support to government.

Prior to joining Aurora, Ana worked at CRA where she focused on energy disputes and policy and regulatory work. Ana also worked at KPMG in the Power & Utilities Strategy team, as well as in the Commodity & Energy Risk Management team. Ana started her career with a US-based energy consulting firm specializing in wholesale electricity price forecasting, power plant dispatch and gross margin modelling, portfolio strategy, energy market advisory, and risk and uncertainty modelling for utilities, financial institutions, and infrastructure developers in the US, Latin America and Europe. She was also operations manager for a team in charge of energy management and energy procurement for large industrial and commercial clients in the UK and mainland Europe.

Ana holds an Energy MBA from Warwick University and a BSc. Economics from George Mason University.

Jonathan Black

Dr Jonathan Black

Head of Modelling

As Head of Modelling, Jonathan leads the development of Aurora’s modelling capabilities.

While at Aurora, Jonathan has:

  • Advanced Aurora’s modelling for the cross-industry study on ‘The New Economics of Offshore Wind’
  • Been responsible for the modelling behind multiple Aurora forecasts and commissioned projects

Prior to joining Aurora Jonathan worked at The National Physical Laboratory in the Mathematics, Modelling and Simulation group where his main work involved developing optimisation algorithms for the placement of sensors in an electricity grid.

Jonathan holds a MSci in Theoretical Physics and Applied Mathematics from the University of Birmingham and a DPhil in Applied Mathematics from the University of Oxford.

Felix Chow-Kambitsch

Dr Felix Chow-Kambitsch

Head of Commissioned Projects
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Felix Chow-Kambitsch

Dr Felix Chow-Kambitsch

Head of Commissioned Projects

Felix leads Aurora’s Commissioned Projects team in the Oxford head office, advising utilities, investors and policy makers on European energy markets.

While at Aurora, Felix has:

  • Advised on over £5bn in transactions of power infrastructure across Europe
  • Led the development of Aurora’s GB Distributed and Flexible Energy Service that now has dozens of company subscribers
  • Advised a UK government department on the trade-offs between renewables and nuclear, helping shape long-term infrastructure policy
  • Developed a power market balancing services strategy for a major utility

Felix started his professional career as a researcher at the Bank of Canada and was a lecturer at St Hilda’s College, University of Oxford.

Felix holds MPhil and DPhil degrees in Economics from the University of Oxford. He also studied at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management from which he holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree.

Dr Benjamin Collie

Dr Benjamin Collie

Principal

Benjamin is a Principal in the Commissioned Projects team at Aurora, where he has led projects covering regulatory design, business strategy and asset valuations. He has over nine years of consulting experience, with a focus on helping clients make better data-driven decisions.

Benjamin’s work at Aurora has included:

  • Leading a study on the development of the electric vehicle sector and its implications for the energy system, including evaluating potential business cases for charging infrastructure
  • Overseeing a project on the possible effects of different future subsidy design scenarios for GB renewables, assessing system-wide costs of different deployment rates and technology compositions
  • Leading commercial due diligence projects for generation and storage assets in Great Britain and Ireland

Before joining Aurora, Benjamin worked at Oliver Wyman, managing consulting projects across a range of sectors including energy, financial services and retail. He was aligned with the firm’s Pricing, Sales and Marketing practice, and collaborated closely with teams of technical specialists to turn clients’ largest data sets into actionable insights.

Benjamin holds a PhD in Mathematics from the University of Cambridge.

Richard Howard

Richard Howard

Research Director

Richard is Aurora’s Research Director and is responsible for managing and developing Aurora’s suit of market intelligence services across European power markets, renewables, flexible and distributed energy, and global commodities.

Before joining Aurora he was a Director and Head of Energy and Environment at Policy Exchange, where he authored a number of influential reports on energy and environmental policy and regulation. Prior to that he was the Chief Economist at The Crown Estate.

Richard has a first class degree in Economics and an MSc in Environmental Policy.

Sebastian Just

Dr Sebastian Just

Commercial Director

Sebastian is Head of Commercial and is responsible for developing and marketing Aurora’s market intelligence services.

Prior to joining Aurora, Sebastian spent 5 years working for Gazprom in Berlin, where he was responsible for Strategic Business Development. Prior to that he was a project leader at BCG and advised European utilities on strategic, organisational and operational issues.

Sebastian holds a PhD in energy economics from University of Duisburg-Essen. His research on short-term flexibility markets for electricity in Germany was published in Energy Economics and Journal of Regulatory Economics. He studied business administration at Leipzig Graduate School of Management.

Hanns Koenig

Hanns Koenig

Principal

Hanns is a Principal with Aurora and one of the founding members of the Berlin office. He advises utilities, policymakers and investors on all aspects of Central European power and gas markets – regulation, strategy and financing, with a focus on flexible generation, including batteries.

While at Aurora, Hanns has:

  • Authored numerous influential studies for corporations, think tanks and industry associations in the context of the German coal exit debate. Hanns is a regular contributor to the Energiewende debate in international and national media and speaker at events
  • Led a study for the management board of a major German utility on the dynamics of power markets with high renewables and storage penetrations
  • Evaluated the impacts of a split in the German power market price zone in projects for an energy-intensive industrial company and a German TSO
  • Supported investors and project developers in the German balancing markets (PRL, SRL)
  • Been instrumental in driving Aurora’s expansion into Central Europe, including the Polish power market
  • Advised on numerous large M&A transactions, including on-and offshore wind, CCGT & coal plants, batteries, gas storage assets and pipelines

Prior to Aurora, Hanns worked as the executive assistant to Professor Roland Berger, founder of consulting firm Roland Berger, and with the Boston Consulting Group, the German Foreign Office and the International Energy Forum.

Hanns holds a first-class degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Oxford and a master’s degree in International Relations & Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Bologna and Washington, D.C, where he was a Haniel scholar.

Deepak Malhotra

Deepak Malhotra

Finance Manager

Deeps is the Finance Manager at Aurora, responsible for the financial management and control of the business.

After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deeps has accumulated over 15 years of commercial finance experience. Prior to joining Aurora in 2017, he assisted Camelot Plc in all aspects of financial management, including securing the ongoing licence to run the national lottery; managed all financial aspects of the English Language Teaching division of Oxford University Press; and was heavily involved in the newly set-up Apprenticeships enterprise at Activate Learning Group.

A member of the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales), Deeps holds a BSc in Management Sciences from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST).

Benjamin Merle

Benjamin Merle

Principal

Benjamin is a Principal and one of the founding members of the Berlin office. He advises investors, utilities and policy maker on all aspects of the Central European power market – regulation, strategy and financing with a focus on renewables.

While at Aurora, Benjamin has:

  • Led a multi-client study on financing renewables post subsidies with a focus on valuing renewable PPAs
  • Driven commercial due diligences of several major offshore assets and onshore portfolios
  • Authored several studies on electrification of transport and heating
  • Supported clients in the acquisition of biomass and biogas portfolios
  • Led Aurora’s expansion in the Dutch and Belgium market
  • Advised on several large thermal M&A transaction including CCGTs, EfW, heating networks, gas pipelines

Prior to Aurora, Benjamin spent 3 years at McKinsey & Co and gathered experience at Goldman Sachs, Deloitte, and Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact Research.

Benjamin undertook his undergraduate studies at the Rotterdam School of Management, and completed an MSc in Environmental Change Management at the University of Oxford.

Stuart Tricklebank

Stuart Tricklebank

Software Engineering Director
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Stuart Tricklebank

Stuart Tricklebank

Software Engineering Director

Stuart started his career as a Software Developer and has gone on to build and lead a number of large software teams working on very complex and high transaction cloud services. This includes heading the development for a large and complex service which transformed exam paper marking and is widely used to support marking GCSEs, Baccalaureates and other high-stakes tests around the world.

Stuart has a first class degree in Computer Science (BSc) from Leeds University.

Caroline Appleton Turner

Caroline Appleton Turner

Head of Operations

Caroline Turner is Head of Operations for Aurora Energy Research, where she is responsible for the design, implementation and ongoing enhancement of the company’s operations, HR, IT, compliance systems and culture. Caroline is an experienced and dynamic business leader with a proven track record in delivering business procedures to enhance company performance and to achieve key financial and strategic goals. Her experience includes delivering major digital transformation projects for global clients: utility providers, oil and gas, CPG and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to joining Aurora, Caroline spent eight years developing and leading the global business processes and client operations department of a high-growth, international and award-winning SAP consultancy using cutting edge technologies.

Mateusz Wronski

Mateusz Wronski

Head of Product Development
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Mateusz Wronski

Mateusz Wronski

Head of Product Development

Mateusz is the Head of Product Development at Aurora. He develops Aurora’s market intelligence services, including forecasts, strategic insight reports and Aurora’s data and analytics platform – EOS.

While at Aurora, Mateusz has:

  • Authored multiple market insight reports quoted in major media outlets, on topics spanning energy finance, decarbonisation of electricity, security of supply, gas and oil
  • Led Aurora’s influential research into critical policy issues including the Capacity Market design and interconnection support
  • Developed GB Power Market Forecast – Aurora’s flagship publication used by over 80% of GB electricity market participants
  • Led the design and development of EOS – Aurora’s data and analytics platform
  • Developed Aurora’s monthly research notes on electricity markets

Prior to joining Aurora Mateusz gained experience with UBS Investment Bank in London, where he was a member of the M&A Execution Team. Earlier, he began his career as a quantitative modeller for a London-based collateralised debt boutique.

Mateusz holds a BA degree in Economics and Management from the University of Oxford. Before Oxford he studied in Poland, where he was a Prime Minister scholar.

Sophisticated economic modelling with deep knowledge of policy and practice of energy markets