Management Team

René Kerkmeester

rene_kerkmeesterRené Kerkmeester (1966) joined APX as Chief Executive Officer as of 1 August 2013.

Before joining APX, René was the TenneT shareholder representative charged with the sale and separation of the APX Gas and Futures activities.

He was also the Commercial Director at BritNed Development Ltd, a joint Venture between National Grid and TenneT, operating the subsea HVDC interconnector between the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.

Prior to this, he was a Sr. Manager of Customers and Markets with TenneT TSO in the Netherlands, where he was responsible for TenneT’s customer development both throughout the Netherlands and abroad. In 2010/2011 René was the chairman of the ENTSO-E Regional Group North West Europe, an association of TSOs aiming to deliver the European Market integration. He is the former Commercial Director at NUON where he was responsible for NUON’s grid throughout the Netherlands and Country Development Manager for Belgium.

René also served at the Board of Directors of Powernext, a regulated investment firm based in Paris which designs and operates electronic trading platforms for spot and derivatives markets in the European energy sector.

René holds a Master in Business Administration degree from the University of Groningen.

James Matthys-Donnadieu

james_matthys_donnadieuJames Matthys-Donnadieu is Chief Operations Officer of APX and CEO of Belpex.

Previously James Matthys-Donnadieu has worked at the Belgian system operator Elia and the Belgian power exchange Belpex. Starting as a Product Manager at Elia, he participated to the set up of Belpex in 2005 for which he later became in charge of Product and Market Development. He returned to Elia in 2010 to head the European Market Integration department. In this period, he was also the chairman of the steering committee of the Central Western Europe Regional Group, which is the forum where Transmission System Operators develop and coordinate the different market integration and security of supply tasks for that region.

James Matthys-Donnadieu holds a Master in Business Economics degree from the University of Antwerp and a Master in Business Administration degree from VlerickLeuvenGhent Management School.

Harmen Ettema

harmen_ettemaHarmen Ettema is Chief Financial Officer and is responsible for Risk Management & Financial Governance within APX.

Harmen has a broad and diverse background in the field of financial management. In addition to his previous roles as Chief Financial Officer and Financial Consultant, Harmen  was an active member of supervisory boards and audit committees at various companies. Harmen also held a partner position at accountancy firm PwC and was managing partner at marketing communications group Publicis.

Harmen holds a Master in Econometrics and Business Administration from the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen and is a Certified Public Auditor in Business.

Andrew Claxton

andrew_claxtonAndrew Claxton is Director of Business Development and is responsible for the development of APX’s products and business development strategy, including the development of cross-border market integration.

He led APX’s involvement on a number of projects, including the trilateral market coupling (“TLC”) between the Netherlands, France and Belgium, the Central Western Europe (“CWE”) market coupling (Benelux, France and Germany), the Interim Tight Volume Coupling (“ITVC”) over NorNed, and the BritNed market coupling. He is currently involved in the North West Europe initiatives for both day-ahead and intraday, and in PCR – a joint PX project to develop a Europe-wide market coupling solution.

In 1996 he helped found the international Association of Power Exchanges, APEx. He remains actively involved with the European association of power exchanges, Europex, where he chairs its power markets working group and he is a member of the ACER Electricity Stakeholder Advisory Group (AESAG) which advises on European market integration.

Prior to joining APX, he was Chief Executive of the Electricity Pool of England and Wales, a position he held for five years. During this time he led the implementation of the wholesale market changes required to support the liberalization of supply to the household level. He previously worked for McKinsey, the international firm of management consultants, in London.
Andrew has a BA and MEng in Chemical Engineering from CambridgeUniversity, and a MBA from StanfordUniversity in California.

Maureen Bal

maureen_balMaureen Bal is Director Corporate Affairs, General Counsel and Company Secretary with APX. Within Corporate Affairs the following functions reside: Legal, Public & Regulatory Affairs, Communications, Risk & Compliance and Company Secretary.

Maureen Bal has built a track record in the financial world; she has been counsel at the Amsterdam Stock Exchange and Mees Pierson/Fortis. Before joining APX Maureen was Head Legal Financial Markets at ING Bank. Maureen is board member of the Association for Securities Law.

Maureen holds a Master degree in Dutch Law from the University of Utrecht and a post-master’s degree in Dutch company law from the Grotius Academy.

Matthijs Nijpels

matthijs_nijpelsMatthijs Nijpels is Operations Director and is responsible for the Operations teams residing in London, Brussels and Amsterdam. Matthijs has been with APX since October 1999 and has acquired a wide and expert knowledge in dealing with energy commodities in general and electricity in particular since then.

Matthijs has had a hand in practically all major and minor gas and electricity projects involving APX throughout its history so far. He has lead the Product Management department of APX and has managed the Amsterdam-based Operations department already in the past.

Matthijs has a background in economics and has worked at a wholesale raw materials company and an investment bank prior to joining APX.
He holds a bachelor degree in Business Economics from Inholland University of Applied Sciences.

Derek Abernethy

derek_abernethyDerek Abernethy joined APX in January 2012 as Commercial Director.

Derek has over 20 years commodity, trading and risk management experience. He was Power Director for Centrica Energy where he was responsible for trading, operations and quants for the power business, procuring power for their customer portfolio and optimising and procuring fuel for their generation fleet whilst successfully running their proprietary trading books.

Derek joined  Centrica from the Royal Bank of Scotland where, in his role as Global Head of Commodity Risk, he oversaw the trading and risk management functions of RBS Sempra in the US, UK, Europe and Singapore.

Prior to joining RBS Derek spent a total of 10 years at Scottish Power as Head of Analysis, leading the quantitative analysis, forecasting and risk management teams and more recently as the Head of Trading managing the Gas, Power, Coal and CO2 desks. During this period, Derek also had the opportunity to study with WhartonUniversity in Pennsylvania as part of Scottish Power’s Leadership Program.

Derek has a first class honours degree in Mathematics from the University of Strathclyde. He trained as an actuary in the Life and Pensions sector for 5 years before joining the world of commodities.

Jos Overbeek

jos_overbeekJos Overbeek is ICT Director of APX.

Previously Jos Overbeek has worked for KPMG Management Consulting and Synergetics IT Consultants. The last 16 years he worked as a contractor in senior ICT management functions for a range of companies like Delta Lloyd, Reed Business Information, Achmea and ING.

Jos holds a Master’s degree in Computer Science from the Technical University Delft.

Thierry Morello

Thierry MorelloThierry Morello joined the APX Management Team as a result of merger with EPEX SPOT SE in May 2015.

Thierry is the Chief Operating Officer and member of the Management Team of EPEX SPOT since January 2009. Prior to this, Thierry served as the Chief Finance Officer (2001-2006) and Deputy Chief Operating Officer of Powernext. His previous experiences include business consultancy and project management.