Alex van Klaveren - Founder & CEO

Photo Credit: James Finlay 

Alex founded Kandidate after 15 years of frustrations finding startup talent.

Before launching Kandidate, Alex was at onefinestay (Index Ventures) where he ran the hardware and software team for Sherlock, a virtual key product.  At Take Eat Easy (Rocket Internet, DN Capital) Alex built the sales team as the first person on the ground as Country Manager.

Previously, he founded and built sales and engineering teams for Our Wedding Day Inc. (Acquired by TPG and Leonard Green Private Equity), developed a sales team in New York for MedicExchange Inc, and established the engineering team at Monocle Order Inc.

With over 200 hires for his own startups under his belt, Alex has worked with countless recruiters, and interviewed thousands of candidates in sales, marketing and engineering roles.  At Kandidate, he wants to change the way top startups find and hire the best talent. 


John Faal                                           Senior Talent Acquisition Consultant

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Prior to joining the Kandidate team in late 2016, John was a key member of the Talent Team at Qubit, where he hired 40 people in less than a year across all departments and seniority levels. 

At Kandidate, John focuses on senior roles in sales and marketing and has worked with clients including Shopological, Aphix Software, Gradtouch, Kayako and Codec. John holds a BA Honours degree in English and Italian Literature from the University of Warwick and is a member of the Institute of Recruitment professionals.

Outside of work, John is currently training as a classical/operatic tenor at the Royal College of Music. He is also a very keen sportsman, and was captain of his university’s 1st XI cricket team.


Mathi Narayan                                  Senior Sourcing Consultant

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Before joining Kandidate in May 2016, Mathi spent several years working as an IT and engineering resource consultant for various companies, most recently as Resource Consultant(IT) for London-based recruitment firm, BDW Resourcing.

During this time she gained considerable experience as a sourcer specialising in technical and sales roles. She is an expert at Boolean search and finding new techniques to uncover hidden candidates, which she has done for many notable businesses, including Airbnb and Quora.

A mother of two, Mathi lists nature camps and hiking among her interests, and has a huge passion for volleyball. She is a member of the Institute of Recruitment Professionals and has a Master of Business Administration from Bharathiar University, India.


Katariina Salomäki                             Talent Advocate


Katariina joined RiseHigh in spring 2017 before the company was acquired by Kandidate, and had her first day immediately after returning from her travels across Japan. Despite the jetlag, Katariina hit the ground running with great enthusiasm and is now focusing on senior sales and operations roles.

Katariina previously worked in the charity/social enterprise sector, and in her spare time still spends a few hours a week supporting an international human rights association where she monitors media freedom in Nordic countries. She holds an MA in education science from UCL/Stockholm University.

Outside of work, Katariina enjoys Iyengar yoga, strives to become a better cook and travels to meet her friends in Helsinki and Berlin. Sports have always played a big role in her life, and she holds two Finnish championships in Taekwondo.