Will Richards


Will Richards founded the Research Alliance in 2006 (formally ‘Financial Research Solutions’) to help boutique research firms meet their business development goals. In addition to over two decades of experience in sales and marketing, Will has extensive experience in selling independent financial research to institutional buy-side clients in the US, Europe, and Asia. From 2000 to 2004, Will was a key member of the team at BCA Research that developed a systematic sales process for opening new accounts and managing relationships with institutional buy-side clients. Will holds a Bachelor of Arts from McGill University.


Sarah Zeidel

Senior Business Development Manager

Since joining the firm in 2008, Sarah Zeidel has closed research deals including subscriptions and voting accounts totaling well over seven figures in revenues. Sarah’s experience gives her an acute understanding of how to position research to make it attractive to money managers. With a team of sales and client service reps reporting directly to her, Sarah is responsible for new sales, renewals, marketing, website development and branding. Sarah received a Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing from Concordia University.

Carlos Flores

Business Development Manager

Carlos Flores joined the Research Alliance in 2015. During his time at RA, Carlos has fostered relationships with portfolio managers and analysts in the world’s largest financial institutions, including private banks, mutual fund companies, pension funds, and hedge funds. A natural prospector and relationship builder, he has used face-to- face meetings, presentations, and teleconferences to close dozens of client accounts across North America. Carlos holds a Bachelor of Commerce in Finance and a minor in Economics from Concordia University.

Sean Griffin

Sales Associate

Sean Griffin joined the Research Alliance as part of the Relationship Management team. While servicing clients, up-selling renewals and providing lead generation support to the Marketing team, Sean’s sales abilities rose to the forefront as he made the jump to research sales. He has since booked and attended meetings with hedge funds and mutual funds, closing deals across North America. Sean holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from Babson College in Massachusetts.

Mathieu Ponte

Sales Associate

Having worked in sales and business development in the financial services sector for over three years, a move to selling investment research was a natural transition for Matt. Before joining the Research Alliance, Matt’s entrepreneurial experiences include initiating all sales and marketing initiatives for a small business in audio technology. Matt has a Bachelor in Economics from the Colegio Francia in Caracas.


Brenda Navarro-Avilés

Marketing Coordinator

Brenda Navarro-Avilés­­­ has worked in B2B marketing throughout her career. A lead generation specialist, she has had success in driving successful digital marketing campaigns including developing websites, blogs and social channels including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. A creative and innovative professional, Brenda brings fresh ideas and original content for all marketing and lead generation campaigns on behalf of the Research Alliance’s research partners. A graduate of McGill University, Brenda has a Bachelor of Commerce with a major in Marketing.

Liam Griffin

Database Administrator

Liam Griffin joined the Research Alliance in 2016 as a Data Entry specialist on the Marketing team. Liam is responsible for cleaning and entering key data on buy-side firms into RA’s CRM. He also builds list for marketing purposes and researches industry websites looking for likely targets for the research services of our IRPs. Liam is currently completing a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Economics.


malena dimitrova

Sales & Senior Client Service Manager

Malena Dimitrova joined the Research Alliance team in 2012. A specialist in client services and marketing, Malena is responsible for a book of business valued at over seven figures. Her systematic approach to ensuring that the needs of buy-side clients are met has proven to boost the renewal and retention rates of research firms. Malena is also responsible for developing key voting accounts and has increased the size of accounts with some of the world’s largest mutual fund companies. Malena has a Bachelor of Science in Cell and Molecular Biology from the Université de Montréal.

Brandon Donnelly

Relationship Manager

Brandon Donnelly joined the Research Alliance in 2018. Brandon is primarily responsible for client services and relationship management for over a hundred existing buy-side accounts. He also assists with FRS’s email marketing platform, and our online CRM used to manage the relationships between the institutional buy-side clients and the research firms. Brandon holds a Bachelor of Commerce in Finance (Minor International Relations) from the John Molson School of Business with the University of Concordia as well as a Bachelor of Arts double-major in Geography and Urban Planning.

Elina Simel

Client Service Associate

Elina Simel strives to provide exceptional service to clients, meeting their demands while promoting the services of the Research Alliance’s research partners. Elina has worked in Client Service throughout her career, across several industries in both inbound and outbound roles.

Nicolas Salem

Client Service Associate

With well over six years’ experience in Client Service, Nicolas’s most recent work in the financial sector was as in Relationship Management with RBC Royal Bank. He provided tailored financial solutions for all clientele, including high net worth and ultra-high net worth clients, earning himself the “Highest Customer Service Rating” in 2016 while contributing substantially to team sales goals. Nicolas holds a B.Sc in Global Business and Management from IAE School of Management with the Université Jean Moulin in Lyon, France.