About Us

Making recruitment more human since 2012

JBM was born from a deep desire to change the transactional, impersonal recruitment model. 

Our specialist focus on startups, scaleups and VC-backed businesses evolved from a natural affinity for disruptive brands and mission-driven founders.

We have our own startup story to tell

2012
2012
2013 - 2017
2018
2019
2020
2022 onwards
The early days

James started his career at an international recruitment agency, but quickly found the focus on KPIs and cold-calling clashed with his relationship driven approach. James decided to leave the recruitment industry for good 😉, and moved into a Startup, where he caught the entrepreneurial bug…

How we became JBM

Realising there was an opportunity to disrupt the transactional recruitment industry, James decided to build a new type of firm, focused on relationships, creativity and strong values.

So in late 2012, aged 25 and armed with nothing more than a laptop and phone, JBM was born in his kitchen in Clapham.

Starting & Scaling

JBM grew quickly through word-of-mouth, placing talent into Consultancies, Banks and Startups. The team grew too, hiring best friends Sowande and Tim to help JBM scale, and the team quickly became 8.

JBM started to land Executive searches and work with big brands like BCG, Barclays & Deliveroo, but frustrations grew from working with corporates and the business had some tough times.

The pivot

After a lot of soul searching, James decided to pivot the business away from Corporates, to focus fully on the Tech Startup world, especially purpose driven brands.

This sadly meant JBM restructured from a team of 8 to 3, with Alice and Peri staying on to lead JBM 2.0... and we have never looked back since!

The launch of 40 Minute Mentor

Great mentors have been so crucial to JBM’s origin story and our successful pivot, so we decided to launch our very own podcast focused on mentorship.

40 Minute Mentor started as a side of desk project, but the audience grew rapidly and fast forward to 2024, we have recorded over 200 episodes and had over 1 million downloads.

Most importantly, we’ve been able to share the inspiring story of Entrepreneurs and promote the power of mentorship within our community.

Navigating Covid & launching JBM SOS

Covid impacted JBM significantly, but we also spotted a unique opportunity to provide a flexible alternative to traditional search.

JBM SOS was born and Marina joined us to lead this new proposition placing fractional,  interim & advisory talent.

Record-breaking years

The JBM team grew back to 8 people and we broadened the scope of roles we cover from not just Operations, General Management, & Strategy but now Commercial & Marketing searches too. 

With SOS flying and lots of successful GTM searches, JBM had back to back record revenue years and picked up some awards in the process (1st place for Recruitment & HRTech firms in Flexa’s awards in 2023!)

Meet our people

James Mitra

MD & FOUNDER

I set up JBM in 2012 after spending 2.5 years at an international recruitment firm and a year working for a Startup.

I’m an eternally optimistic headhunter, with a deep passion for connecting top talent to purpose-driven Founders and partnering with VCs. I also love spending quality time with my JBM colleagues and bringing our community together at JBM events – which are always great fun!

When I’m not networking or running searches you can find me interviewing Founders on our 40 Minute Mentor podcast, where we promote the power of mentorship, and other important topics that we’re passionate about including mental health, social mobility and DE&I.

I am still enjoying Founder life 11 years in and am proud of how far we’ve come, the quality team we have and the strong culture we’ve created. The most exciting thing for me is that we have only scratched the surface of what we can achieve…!

Outside of work I’m a doting husband to my wife Lucinda, and Dad to a 7 year-old daughter, who is our proudest achievement! I also love discovering new cuisines, am a sports fanatic (a long suffering Aston Villa football and England rugby fan) 🎤 and I used to be a wedding singer in a former life…

Sophie Graci

Associate, Executive Search

I joined JBM in 2023 as an Associate in the Executive Search team, after having begun my talent career working on CXO succession and leadership advisory projects with some of the world’s biggest consumer and financial organisations.

I came to the world of search initially via an academic interest in talent assessment (discovered through a master’s degree in psychology), combined with a passion for matching the perfect candidate with the perfect role – I love finding opportunities to make connections between outstanding talent and visionary Founders.

Prior to joining the industry I had a varied career across the arts that began in my teens, including as a corporate events manager for awards hosts and after-dinner speakers, a theatre producer, a casting assistant, and (very briefly) a stand-up comedian…Outside of work, you can usually find me planning my next adventure abroad, running through the leafier parts of London, or hunting down the city’s best sushi. 

Marina Maxwell

Principal, Executive Search & JBM SOS

I’m a multilingual enthusiast in the world of scaleups, passionate about continuous learning, disruptive technologies and making meaningful connections. Originally a business and accounting graduate, I ventured through four different countries before settling in London to pursue my MSc at LSE. Over the past five years, I’ve taken pride in building a track record of identifying and placing top talent within VC/PE-backed organisations.

In 2020, I joined JBM as a GM, with the mission to shape our Go-to-Market strategy and launch our interim proposition, SOS . The launch of SOS proved to be a great success, delivering a flexible talent solution for our clients during the challenging times of a global pandemic (never a dull moment!) – first in Strategy/ Ops and later expanding into Marketing, Growth and Sales. We exceeded every expectation and later doubled our revenue YoY, also adding a Fractional and Advisory option.

I moved to a Principal role in 2022, and now lead on our Commercial and GTM hiring, overseeing both exec and interim mandates.

Beyond my professional pursuits, I’m an unapologetically proud Argentinian who appreciates a good steak (cliché, I know), welcomes thought-provoking conversations, sipping fine wines and cherishes moments with friends and family. You’ll often find me practising hot yoga, travelling for inspiration, and, if I’m lucky, skiing some powder!

Peri Morris

Engagement Manager, Experienced Hire

I’m JBM’s resident Zimbabwean and self-appointed food guide.

After studying Politics in the States I moved back home and sort of fell into recruitment. I joined JBM shortly after moving to London and have been here for nearly 5 years, currently working on the Experienced Hire team and specialising in Strategy & Ops roles.

I love getting to meet and speak to so many talented people doing such amazing things, both on the candidate and client side and I’m so proud to be part of a business that’s genuinely doing something different.

Outside of JBM, I’m a health and wellness coach and psychotherapist in training.

Chris Long

Director, Experienced Hire

I’m a somewhat seasoned recruiter with nearly 20 years experience having fallen into the industry after graduating with a degree in History.

I head up the Experienced Hire team as well as running the Operational side of the business.

I help our clients to hire for high-flying Strategy & Ops profiles as well as being our resident go-to for Chief of Staff hiring, which has kept us extremely busy over the past few months!

I love the variety that comes with working at JBM and getting the opportunity to partner with so many inspiring and innovative businesses.

Prior to JBM I spent 15 years (yes 15!) at a couple of boutique recruitment firms building out my network within the Strategy Consulting and Operations space.

Outside of work I am a proud dad to 2 wonderful children, an owner of 2 miniature sausage dogs who are by far the laziest animals known to mankind, and can regularly be found celebrating Aston Villa wins (not something I could have said a few years ago…).

Louise Buckland

Principal, Executive Search

A few things to know about me. I’m an introverted extrovert. I love my own company but equally get most of my energy from people and have always been the “chatty one” out of my friend group. Both my parents are entrepreneurs so it seemed like a natural fit when I stumbled across recruitment and executive search for early stage Founders. I am now 6 years into my executive search career. I love the energy and vision we get from working with Founders. Their passion is truly contagious.

Seems obvious to say but I do absolutely adore tech and business as a whole, and love learning more about disruptive technologies changing the world we live in – particularly ‘Tech for good’ whether that means bringing people back to our local high streets and communities, supporting gig economy working and enabling their financial wellbeing or tackling climate change, one electric bike a time. Tech can enable us to be better and do better and working with the brilliant minds behind these innovative ideas is truly such a privilege.

I am a big foodie (any rogue recommendations please hit me up!) I love cooking, hosting, art, HP (send me Dumbledore memes all day everyday), countryside walks, I’m an adopted West Ham fan (for my sins) and I’m half-French – Bonjour!

Ben Sanders

Growth & Strategy

I own new growth initiatives within JBM, helping drive expansion in new functions and geographies, and overall revenue growth. I started my career in management consulting with Bain & Company across Madrid and London, then moved to Worldpay ahead of their IPO to run go-to-market initiatives, followed by startup leadership roles (COO and MD) in FinTechs and marketplaces.

For the last three years, I have been running Arenas Advisory Services, focusing on driving growth in startups. I first came across JBM as a client and was so impressed that I eventually joined!

I have an addiction to Japanese green tea.

Hannah Urbanek

Head of Marketing & Partnerships

Having worked in B2B marketing on both client and agency side, I love disrupting traditional and often seen as “dry” industries, such as recruitment.

Mentorship is the key to success, no matter what field you’re in, and I’m proud to have made business mentorship more accessible through our 40 Minute Mentor podcast.

Besides my love for marketing and podcasting, I also used to be a competitive Irish dancer, travelling all over the world competing at World Championship level….these days, dancing the Jig mostly happens on St Patrick’s Day.

Nejmi Alexander

Fractional Head of People & Culture

I own the People Experience here at JBM creating value by driving people; leadership and culture development. I am the in-house coach and strategic People advisor.

I ‘grew up’ in Strategy Consulting at Accenture for 9 years, before shifting my focus from transforming organisations to transforming individuals through coaching. This career change led to joining Ed-Tech scaleup, Multiverse where I started and scaled a team of 30+ coaches.

Here I discovered my passion for creating the conditions where talent can thrive. I began my advisory firm, Careeryse, helping people and organisations to enable their talent to flourish.

I’m passionate about people development and devoting my time and energy towards helping the team to thrive in their work.

I love travel and adventure, and aim to spend chunks of the year abroad in sunnier climes (most recently spending the Spring in Ibiza with my young family). I love quizzing when I take an opportunity to and was once on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (spoiler alert: I’m not a millionaire…owing to being but a second fastest finger only!)

Our advisory board

Kresse Wesling MBE

Co-founder, Elvis & Kresse

Fred Jones

COO, Upstix (ex Uber & TIER)

Stuart Packham

CEO, Alchemist

Charlene Chen

Co-Founder AZA Finance & Operations Nation

Ben Sanders

ex COO, Pockit

Cleo Sham

VC & Scaleup Operator (ex Stride.VC & Uber)

Our partners

Our popular podcast 40 Minute Mentor inspires the next generation of category-defining Founders.

In our powerful career stories from purpose-led Founders to Olympic champions; you’ll learn first-hand from today’s successful leaders on what it takes to be brilliant, all in just 40 minutes.

40 Minute Mentor - Gurinder Dhillon
15 May, 2024

Gurinder Dhillon: From 1 black cab to bootstrapping one of the fastest growing Startups in Europe with Otto Car

40 Minute Mentor: Greg Marsh
08 May, 2024

Greg Marsh: A $200m+ exit with onefinestay to helping you save on household bills with Nous

01 May, 2024

Deirdre O’Neill: Breaking taboos and transforming women’s health with Hertility

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