David Leftley

David has gained his experience of the global technology industry as an engineer, manager, director, and investor in both start-ups and corporates across Telecoms, Media, and Defence sectors. 

In 2013 together with former ARM executives he founded investment company Bloc Ventures with the objective to address the funding gap in early-stage deep technology in the UK and Europe. As CTO he leads Bloc’s primary investment focus on Telecoms and Compute.  Prior to this he spent almost 15 years with Vodafone where he held senior positions at Group level in Corporate R&D as Head of Technology Economics & Strategy and as Chief Engineer for Technology Evaluation responsible for trialling and evaluating the business cases of future technologies underpinning many of Vodafone’s multi-billion investments in 3G and 4G infrastructure and spectrum.  At Vodafone he went on to lead the corporate venture team as head of its European activity, making numerous investments that have changed the structure of the telecoms industry in areas such as network virtualisation and small cell technology. At that time the fund ranked in the top five CVCs globally.  

He began his career as a research and design engineer in the defence industry, specialising in radar and airborne electronic countermeasures, first at Raytheon Cossor and then at Racal Defence. Later he moved into the TV and film industry, working for multiple companies who pioneered and brought to market some of the world’s most advanced video compression, transmission, and digital post-production technology. 

In his career David has been ranked in Wired Magazine’s top 100 innovators’ list. He has a BSc(Hons) Electrical & Electronic Engineering specialising in Radio Engineering and Telecoms from Aston University Birmingham and is a registered Chartered Engineer and member of the IET.