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Meet the team

We are a group of ocean-lovers dedicated to rebuilding our oceans. We want to inspire people to see the opportunities that the ocean has to offer and encourage them to explore how emerging technologies could help to solve one of our time’s most critical issue. 


We are working with a fast “design-build-test” approach, encouraging participants to develop prototype solutions. Based on our diverse backgrounds, unique knowledge and exceptional partner network, we support our participants in all aspects of their innovation process. 


A Ocean Community Challenge e uma associação registrada em Portugal.  Estamos juntos através de nosso amor pelo mar e somos dedicados a contribuir para a reconstrução do ambiente marinho. Queremos inspirar o mundo a ver as oportunidades que o mar tem a oferecer, e incentivá-las a explorar como as tecnologias emergentes podem ajudar a resolver um dos problemas mais críticos do nosso tempo.


Trabalhamos com uma abordagem rápida de "design-build-test", incentivando participantes a desenvolver soluções e criar protótipos. Nossa força vem através de nossas origens diversas, do conhecimento único, e da excepcional rede de profissionais. Apoiamos nossos participantes em todos os aspectos no seu processo de inovação.


Robin Teigland


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Robin is Professor of Strategy and Management of Digitalization at Chalmers University of Technology. Apart from moving research forward, she has a long track record leading international projects, working with startups, digital transformation and implementation of digital technologies. Teigland is the Director of Ocean Data Factory in Sweden and as co-founder of the Ocean Tech Hub and @penicheoceanwatch, she is actively working to develop the blue circular economy in Peniche. 2017 and 2018 she was listed as one of the most influential women in tech in Sweden. In her free time, Robin enjoys surfing longboards waves and co-running her Ocean Tech Hub coworking/coliving space and Go4Surf school in Peniche, Portugal.



Founder & CEO

Susanne has a long career leading teams across industries in Business Development, Operations and IT across industry verticals. She has also spent multiple years working for leading Management & IT Consulting firms and server as trusted advisor to CxOs in Digital Strategy. She is passionate about leveraging IT to drive sustainable business growth. Her focus is now on purposeful impact investments and advisory in the circular economy. She is a plant-based future friend, and true animal- and ocean lover who recently pulled up her Swedish roots replanting them on the Silver Coast of Portugal. She has recently taken her first surfboard  and kite surf lessons enjoying the challenging wind and waves of the ocean.

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Christina Friberg

Co-Founder & COO

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Christina has a long and solid experience from management positions and leading functions in the Finance Industry and leading global Consulting Firms covering Business and Product Development, Innovation, Corporate Strategy and Organizational Change. Christina is a thought leader and expert in the Payments industry and has held various CxO positions. She Is passionate about driving and leveraging Business growth and change. Been living close to the sea she is passionate about the ocean and all kind of ocean sports, mainly sailing. Her main drivers now being solving the environmental and food challenges we are facing by creating a sustainable and circular economic model based on new innovative solutions. Christina is committed to take on the challenge that UN are addressing in the Sustainable Development Goals by building a business case attracting necessary investment and scout for suitable start-up ideas to support the UN goals.

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Petra Sundell

Co-founder & CINO

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Petra is an experienced startup evangelist, connector, community- and venture builder. She has a background in business and market strategy and experience from running and expanding a wide variety of startup projects within business, tech, marketing and design  - across different industries. She’s a creative visionary and ideator who also possesses executional abilities to turn ideas and concepts into concrete solutions. In her previous roles, amongst others as Venture Lead for an early stage venture builder studio, and as Community Manager for one of Scandinavia's leading startup hubs, Petra has helped over 100 startups grow by connecting them with the right people, creating strategies for growth, attracting investors, and more. She is also used to manage local and global investors relations, facilitate deal flows and matchmaking, and develop and nurture partnerships and collaborations that support the startup ecosystem as a whole. Her background in combination with her deep passion for Future of Work and Education, Mental Wellbeing and Impact driven innovation, led Petra to start Upbeater where she is helping students and startups succeed while making an impact. Now based in Lisbon, her third home close to water, Petra has developed a love for the ocean that has spiked her desire to support more BlueTech innovation for a healthier and more sustainable environment.


Sanne Persson

Chief Social Media- and Community Officer

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Born and raised in a small seaport in the south of Sweden, the ocean has been constant in Sanne's life; both as a place for recreation as well as a creator of livelihood for the community. Sanne holds a B.A in Media and Communication Studies and is currently pursuing a B.S.c in Business and Economics with a major in Business Administration. She has also conducted an internship in Lisbon at the Swedish-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce.

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Kaja Bukovec

Chief Web Officer

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Hands-on experience creating wow projects as a graphic/web/visual designer for the past 4 years, with a passion for web design, branding, photography, project management, UI/UX and storytelling. Found her happy place in Peniche, Portugal, where she lived endless summer for the past 2 years, looking for inspiration, enjoying life by the ocean, designing and studying. Recently she returned back to her roots, to Slovenia, where her beloved people and places are. A life lover, keen on warm people, old towns, color harmonies, thoughtful design, sunshine, details and nature. Explorer with a camera in her hands, in love with Portuguese architecture and Italian food, impressed by stories of casual people. Organizer by heart, full of ideas and a simple woman, always looking on the bright side of life. Full-time working in agency as UX/UI designer and leading design teams in her free time.


Vanessa Domingos

Chief Knowledge Officer

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Vanessa was born and raised in Lisbon, Portugal, and from early years enjoyed camping during summer holidays near the beach. 

She still captures energy from the ocean engaging in water sports such as swimming and surfing, and she also has a coastal boat license.

Vanessa holds an MSc in Chemical Engineering - Quality & Environment and a Postgraduate Degree in Integrated Quality, Environment Management Systems. She has been working for the Pharmaceutical Industry for the past 14 years where her main tasks include project management and laboratory team supervision.

Vanessa is passionate about the environment, sustainability and Blue Circular Economy projects and all its contribution to the bigger cause; Protecting the planet!


Celine Clausen

Co-Founder & Deputy Program Director

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Growing up on the West coast of Norway, the ocean has always been - and still is - Celine’s playground. Despite her young age, Celine has worked for a tech startup in Silicon Valley, conducted a traineeship at the Norwegian Embassy in Lisbon, worked as a project manager at Peniche Ocean Watch, and studied innovation at UC Berkeley. Celine is currently pursuing a master’s degree in business administration with a specialization in finance alongside her role as Deputy Program Director for OCC 2021. Celine is a Co-Founder of OCC and held the role as the 2020 Program Director. 


Mafalda de Freitas

Chief Marine Scientist

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Mafalda is a Marine Biologist with degrees in Marine Biology from University of St Andrews in Scotland and a Master in Marine Acoustics from Aarhus University in Denmark. She has worked in a number of research projects that used innovative technologies to study marine mammals. Mafalda is currently the Project Manager for Peniche Ocean Watch.

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