Sarah now drives new innovative value for Sime Darby, a USD13 Bn conglomerate, via international strategic partnerships, investments and acquisitions (M&A) under its Corporate Ventures unit, Sime Darby Renewables. Focused on developing the company’s bio-based agenda, she works with pre-commercial companies able to unlock higher value from the existing palm oil value chain. She manages the deal cycle from origination to execution, working closely on negotiations and deal structuring with target companies. She also acts as investment manager for select companies post-acquisition, involved in fundraising and other portfolio development work. Notably, she worked on the $30Million acquisition of US biotech company, Verdezyne for which signing was witnessed by President Obama.
Outside work, Sarah remains active in the field of Women & Business as recognized when she was awarded a Fellowship with the Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce of England. Sarah is also Co-Founder and Director of Asia Women Circle that drives “Lean In Malaysia” a women’s led non-profit which harnesses the power of community and leadership to embolden women to achieve their full potential. In Jan 2016 with Abir (her co-founder), Sarah was appointed by Sheryl Sandberg (COO, Facebook) as Regional Leader, championing Lean In Asia.
Having grown up in the media industry as a national TV host from 9 years old, and later part of the Young Achievers Group, she’s worked with industry leaders and politicians on society-building causes since. Her passion for presenting remains and she continues to be called upon internationally to challenge discussions in conferences/ TV shows, having engaged with the likes of Mark Prisk, former UK Business Minister; chairing panels with Senator Dato’ Sri Idris Jala, Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz; having appeared on Fox International Channels, Singapore’s Channel 5 and Malaysia’s NTV7 and RTM.
Sarah’s other previous experiences include corporate legal work with Baker & Mckenzie LLP, Chicago and Norton Rose LLP, London. She was also former Director of franchise Human Capital business, MRINetwork.
Sarah holds a Bachelor of Laws, LL.B (Hons.) from King’s College London, where she was under a full Sime Darby scholarship and is now pursuing the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) qualification.
Her personal portfolio, can be found on www.scsarahchen.com.