Amsterdam’s Most Influential AI Leaders

Amsterdam’s Most Influential AI Leaders

Dutch AI is powering solutions for a better world

12 July 2023

The Dutch capital, renowned for thundering electronic music, freedom of expression and get-shit-done mentality, has been working towards positioning itself as a thriving AI ecosystem. It’s unique culture of innovation, inclusiveness and diversity has culminated in the city receiving the European Capital of Innovation Award.

According to Techleap, about 650 AI startups and scale-ups are based in the Netherlands, making it the country with the highest density of AI start-ups in the EU per capita. The Dutch government recognises the importance of AI to the future and seeks to foster its development. Furthermore, the Netherlands is a leading green economy with a deep-rooted culture of sustainability, making it the perfect place to bring AI and sustainability together.

We spotlight (in no particular order) the leaders who are breaking new ground in the global AI industry and working with industry leaders including PVH Corp, Media Monks and Thoughtworks.


Dennis Tan

CEO & Co-Founder, Dashmote

Founded in 2014, Dashmote is a analytics solution and API that democratises Artificial Intelligence for all. Dashmote creates advance visual search & recognition powered offerings like analytics, systems, services, advise and research.

Dennis has been an entrepreneur since the age of 15, and has participated in the creation of over 25 companies. He is the co-founder of multiple entrepreneurial groups including Dutch Entrepreneurial Communities and Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurs Student Association. He is also involved in various European organizations such as Think Young, the European Confederation of Junior Enterprises and FACE Entrepreneurship, as well as being an international public speaker.


JC Heyneke

CEO at Slimmer AI, Slimmer AI 

Slimmer AI, is a venture studio, partnering with innovative founders to build, invest, and revolutionise the way people work. Founding member of ‘Samen Slimmer’ – the AI Venture Alliance’, an alliance with Keen Ventures and Dutch Founders Fund, to support founders to take their early stage venture to the next level.

Slimmer AI’s tech knowledge guarantees that the solution is designed for data, algorithm, and feedback scalability and they provide founders with unparalleled support and resources, including our deep expertise in AI and our extensive network of partners and investors.

With more than 20 years in B2B software, JC believes that AI is the single most important transformative technology of our time. His track record includes Executive Leadership and advisory roles with RELX, Biller, Sentinels, Vesper and Hadrian.


Lyudmyla Baron

Head of Marketing Technology, PVH Corp

Lyudmyla is a AI ethicist and an accomplished technology leader with over two decades of experience in Technology, Business, and Digital Transformation. She is driven by her passion for innovation and growth through the use of cutting-edge technology and value-driven leadership.

Her expertise in AI, coupled with her dedication to promoting diversity and ethical practices within the industry, has led to her involvement in notable associations such as AI For Diversity, Morality and Knowledge in AI, and the Dutch AI Ethics Community. As a distinguished international speaker, Lyudmyla’s insights and perspectives on the intersection of technology and society are both thought-provoking and impactful.


Roland Simon and Svetlana Kordumova


Meet the dynamic duo from Pixyle AI. Founded in 2018, Pixyle AI was originally a visual search app for consumers. The company pivoted early in 2019 to B2B as they discovered that they could make much more impact selling its image recognition technology to brands and retailers.

Roland and Svetlana met after Roland’s stint in corporate marketing (L’Oréal and AholDDelhaize) when he worked as an Entrepreneur in Residence for Swiss Entrepreneurship Program.

As a PhD student at the University of Amsterdam graduating in AI and computer vision, Svetlana couldn’t believe how tedious and frustrating the process of online shopping was. Pixyle AI originated from not being able to find the clothes that she was looking for, while knowing that there was advanced image search technology available to make it so much easier.


Eve Logunova-Parker

CEO, Evenness

With over 15 years  of experience working with multi-scale global businesses and their Innovation Labs, Eve is a visionary professional dedicated to driving inclusive innovation, circular economy, and enhancing digital capabilities for everyone.

Eve focuses on developing sustainable and data-secure solutions. In 2020, she founded Evenness, a rapidly growing startup that offers infrastructure for remote collaboration and co-creation. Evenness operates based on the IDEAS framework, emphasizing Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Sustainability to democratize Web3, Generative AI, and Extended Reality.

Driven by her passion for inclusivity and accessibility in technology, Eve has also been heavily involved in the awareness and community building of Women in AI for the last 5 years, and currently holds the position of WaiACCELERATE’s Global Program Founder and Director.


Vlad Metodiev

Head of AI at ThoughtWorks

Vlad has more than a decade’s experience within the Data domain. He has applied data and algorithms addressing a wide array of domains and use cases. Most recently, Vlad has focused on the application of AI to R&D. In the CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) domain he leads the development of solutions augmenting the work of product developers.

Prior to his role as Head of AI at Thoughtworks, Vlad worked as Data Scientist at, when he made the decision to join Fourkind, later acquired by Thoughtworks. During his time at Fourkind, Vlad was the 1st partner and employee in their Amsterdam office. He wore many hats, and took full ownership of lead generation, recruitment and technical project execution. Prior to the acquisition, Vlad was part of the team that delivered the initial pitch to Mondelez (which later became their biggest client by revenue), and led a interdisciplinary team developing an AI platform for the Mondelez R&D organisation.

Thoughtworks is a global technology consultancy that integrates strategy, design and engineering to drive digital innovation. Now, Head of AI at Thoughtworks, Vlad works on strategic projects while steering strategic aspects of the business and is responsible for the development and successful execution of the AI strategy for the Dutch market.


Ana Maldonado 

Director Data & AI at Avanade

For more than 20 years Ana has been working in international environments with multidisciplinary teams, translating clients needs and business questions into solutions with an innovative twist. She combines her passion for research, innovation and Data Science with here passion for people to build connections, partnerships and solving complex problems.

With an impressive track record in predictive modelling, data science and strategy, Ana’s background includes leadership roles at Qualogy, Altius and currently holds the position of Director of Data and AI at Avanade.

Avanadeis provides digital, cloud and advisory services, industry solutions and design-led experiences across the Microsoft ecosystem. Founded in 2000 by Accenture LLP and Microsoft Corporation, Ana’s initial role at Avenade was Group Manager for the Advanced Analytics Sub Talent Community Netherlands. She focussed on growing their offerings and capabilities, while helping clients on their path toward digital transformation.

Now as Director of Data & AI, Ana’s turns customer data into models. By using innovation as a key driver for value creation, they empower their clients to utilise the full power behind Data & AI.


Suzanne Jansen

Head of Data Strategy EMEA, Media Monks 

With an education Computer Science and Visual Arts, Suzanne employs technical expertise and analytical thinking to accelerate data-driven business and operations. She has been working in the field of Digital Marketing and Data Consultancy for 10 years, has headed several Data & Analytics teams and Analytics practice groups and is currently Head of Data EMEA for Media Monks.

Suzanne’s Data career includes leadership positions at Metapeople/NetBooster, Artefact and DPG Media. Her strong affinity toward Digital Marketing is supported by a strong foundation and understanding of engineering which she applies to deliver customer solutions for display marketing, affiliation, online media, eCRM and social networks.

Media.Monks, the digital-first operating brand of S4Capital plc, connects content, data & digital media and technology services across one global team built from the bottom up. AI forms a critical part of the agency’s offering. Suzanne and her team applies AI to client solutions to accelerate asset production, elevating brand experiences and automation at scale.

Check out how Media Monks is putting AI to use. 

Thanks to strategic geographical positioning and suave Dutch corporate taxation, Amsterdam has been a magnet for large corporations and banks for years. A few Fortune 500 companies and other giants such as Akzo Nobel, Heineken, ING Group, Cisco Systems, TomTom, Delta Lloyd,, Adyen and Philips have their HQs in the city.

This translates into a lot of work related to digital transformation and automation in the years to come. The city also offers a wealth of corporate capital that can pay for AI-enabled products ensuring the survival of an ecosystem that is ready to survive a hype.



Recruiting Data teams in Amsterdam?

Check out some of the partners we’ve partnered with on recruitment.