Meet the team

Nicolás Castillo CEO

Born and raised in the city of Coyhaique in Chile’s Patagonia. He holds a Mechanical Engineering degree from Federico Santa Maria University of Chile. Prior to joining Ecosea and over a period of 13 years Nicolás worked for major companies in the aeronautical, energy generation and logistics industries; leading and participating in multicultural teams improving and developing business across the globe.

Ricardo Benavides COO

Ricardo holds a degree in Fisheries Engineering from the Austral University of Chile. His training and work experience have made him a subject matter expert in aquaculture production. He spent 11 years in fish farming production with Marine Harvest. During his time as head of production he oversaw the production of over 9,000 ton/year of Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout.

Dr. Felipe Hurtado CTO

Felipe has been a staff member of the Fisheries Technology Laboratory of the School of Marine Sciences since 1996 and specializes in the areas of research and technical assistance in the marine sciences. Both his career and studies have primarily focused on the fisheries and aquaculture industries. Felipe holds a degree in Fisheries Engineering from the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaíso and a doctorate in Aquaculture from the Catholic University of Valparaíso, the University of Chile, and Catholic University of the North in Chile.

Marcos Elgueta R&D Manager

Marcos is responsible for research, planning, and developing new technology for Ecosea. Prior to joint Ecosea, he collaborated over 9 years in different industries and scientific organizations. Driven by curiosity, he has a strong passion for innovation and unique technology solutions applied to solve complex problems. Marcos holds an Aerospace Engineering degree from University of Concepción of Chile, and Systems Engineering professional certificate from MIT.

Lorena González CFO

Lorena is the acting CFO and representative of the controller of the company, Aurus Capital. She joined Aurus Ventures on 2015 as an investment analyst of Aurus Ventures III. Her work is focused on the technical follow-up of the portfolio companies, and the evaluation and due diligence of potential investments. She holds a Bachelor in Business Administration from Adolfo Ibáñez University and has a Master’s Degree in Finances.

Galo Vergara Assembly Operations

Galo specializes in the assembly of copper alloy mesh, circular and square cages and welding HDPE tubing. He joined EcoSea Farming in 2010 and is responsible for supervising the construction, assembly, and maintenance of aquaculture pens. Prior to joining EcoSea Farming, he oversaw the construction and maintenance of flotation systems, copper mesh, pen relocation, mooring systems, and thermofusion. He actively participates in all EcoSea’s international projects and continually brings methodology improvements to the assembly process.

Pedro Hernández Underwater Operations

Pedro is an aquaculture diver and supervisor of underwater procedures. He has more than 25 years of experience in the Chilean Salmon and Mythiculture industry, working mainly in installation and maintenance of underwater fish containment systems. He joined EcoSea to supervise and coordinate underwater operations for installment, maintenance and disassembly of copper alloy fish raft cages.

Miguel Riquelme Operations Assistant

Miguel is electric technician and joined EcoSea as Operations Assistant. He has more than 15 years of experience in the Chilean Salmon industry, supporting fish management in all different productive procedures, such as size graduation, vaccinations, anti-parasitic management and harvesting. In Ecosea his main functions will be providing technical advice to clients and implementation of technologies for operation improvements.

Jesús López Engineering Assistant

Aquacultural Engineer of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso (PUCV) and Master in Management of Aquatic Resources of the PUCV. His professional development has been linked to research, development and engineering consultancy, in crop and anchoring systems for aquaculture. He is member of the Fisheries Technology Laboratory (TecPes) of the School of Marine Sciences of the PUCV and EcoSea Farming since 2012, where the main milestones in the company have been technical assistance in the process of certification of 3 rafts cages under the Standard Norwegian NS9415 (2013 and 2015), technical assistance in the process of entering the Canadian market presenting the technical reports required by the “Aquaculture Management Division Pacific Region, Fisheries and Ocean Canada” and active participation in the development of the submersible cages.

Kyoko Nagai Business Development

Kyoko is an experienced executive assistant with a strong background in international trading. Well versed in import and export procedures she worked for Swiss and Japanese companies in procurement and exporting as well as quality inspection. Kyoko has a degree in English from Kyoto University of Foreign Studies.

Katsuhiko Masuda Executive Advisor

Graduate BSC from Sophia University in Tokyo and Advanced Management Program at Green Templeton College of Oxford University. His tenure at Mitsubishi Materials included General Manager, London Office and Copper Sales, Executive Officer, Corporate Sales & Marketing. He was Executive Advisor to the President at Mitsubishi Shindoh and is Advisor to Mitsubishi Materials’ Advanced Products Company. He joined EcoSea as Executive Advisor in 2020 to assist in marketing.

Jeremy Young Commercial Rep Australia &
New Zealand

Jeremy is from New Zealand and holds a degree in Commerce from the University of Canterbury. Based in Asia for more than 20 years, he has worked in leadership roles in sales and marketing, finance, strategy and operations for both large multinational and startup companies in the pulp and paper, packaging and building materials industries before joining the world of aquaculture in 2015. Entrepreneurial in nature, his company, Aquaculture Systems Ltd represents EcoSea in the Australian and New Zealand markets.

Meet The Board

Jürgen Leibbrandt Chairman

Jürgen has 50 years experience in the global Copper Industry, where he was instrumental in forming the International Copper Association (ICA) in New York and the International Molybdenum Association in London. Both associations took relevant actions to make those industries more sustainable. In ICA he co-created and chaired the Technology initiative for new copper applications in energy efficiency, health care using copper’s antimicrobial properties and sustainable aquaculture. In 2012, he was named Copper Man of the Year for his lifetime achievement in favor of the industry. In Codelco, he formed InCuba to develop new ventures based on new copper applications. One of those ventures was EcoSea, which won the Avonni Price of best industrial innovation in 2011. He brought small scale copper alloy mesh technology for fish cages from Japan to Chile, where EcoSea transformed and developed it as world class, ready for export to serve the world’s fish farming industry in a sustainable way. He also has board member experience in several medium size companies.

Víctor Aguilera Board Member

Víctor is an investment professional with 20+ years experience in global technology commercialization, corporate venturing and venture capital investments across different industries. He designed and is the main responsible of Aurus’s third VC-Fund focused on industrial technologies, which is currently the largest VC-Fund in Chile, having institutional LPs such as Codelco (Chile’s largest corporation), Mitsui & Co. (one of Japan’s largest business conglomerates) and multilateral banks such MIF-IDB and CAF, besides some of the most important family offices in Chile.

Gabriela Timerman Board Member

Gabriela has 10+ years of experience in the offshore, energy and infrastructure sectors, having worked at Petrobras, Golar Power and Excelerate Energy developing and implementing integrated energy ventures. She has a background in Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering, with emphasis in hydrodynamics; she has also established over the past years extensive contact with key global players in the maritime, gas and energy sector as well as the academia and research institutes. She is also involved in a range of initiatives around sustainability and ecology of the oceans.