Joanna Shields was appointed in October 2012 by the Prime Minister, David Cameron as Chief Executive Tech City UK and Business Ambassador for Digital Industries.
Joanna Shields was most recently Vice President and Managing Director of Europe, the Middle East and Africa at Facebook, the global social network with over a billion users. In her role she built EMEA into the company's largest region, focusing on making Facebook the world's most valuable marketing, communications and customer services platform and the Facebook platform an engine of growth for some of Europe’s hottest startups (including Deezer, Spotify, Rovio, Wonga andKing.com) as well as some of its most established businesses such as Unilever, L'Oreal, Burberry and The Guardian.
For over a decade, Shields has been a driving force in Europe’s Internet landscape. Since moving to the UK in 2000 to run RealNetworks International, the company that invented streaming audio and video, she has held key positions at leading companies such as Google, where she served as Managing Director and built the Syndication and
Partnerships network, and Bebo, where she served as President and then Chief Executive.
Shields built Bebo from a small startup into one of Europe’s leading social networks and then orchestrated the successful sale of the company to AOL/TimeWarner for $850M. After Bebo's acquisition, she served as President of AOL’s social and communications and products division, running product development and global operations that supported over 90 million users.
Her career started in 1987 in Silicon Valley and since then her focus has been on creating, managing and scaling international technology businesses, maximising shareholder value and leading start up companies to successful exits. During her career she also served as Chief Executive Officer of Veon (acquired by Philips Electronics), VP and managing director International for Decru, (acquired by Network Applicance) and VP of Production Systems for Electronics for Imaging (Nasdaq:EFII).
She sits on the Mayor's London Smart Board and EU Web Entrepreneurs Leaders' Club.
Shields was ranked #1 in the Wired 100, 2011: Britain's digital power list and number 6 on the Guardian Media Global Top 100 for 2012.