Caspar Berry

Former professional poker player, businessman and risk expert

Caspar Berry | NMP Live
About

Caspar Berry speaks in his capacity as a former professional poker player who lived and worked in Las Vegas for three years and went on to become the UK’s premier poker TV commentator and the poker advisor on Casino Royale.

He uses the metaphor of poker as a vehicle to communicate universally resonant messages around the need for individuals and companies to take risk and seize opportunities. Audiences leave informed, inspired and empowered to take better decisions to achieve their objectives and goals.

Caspar delivered his first paid speech to BP in the summer of 2004 since when he has delivered more than 2,000 speeches and training sessions in over 30 countries to nearly 500 clients including Google, Visa, IBM, Paypal, AUDI, Volvo, Shell, Esso, Microsoft, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, ASDA, Emap, Siemens, Knect 365, PWC, Deloittes, E&Y, KPMG, McDonalds and Redbull.

As a professional poker player, managing risk formed a constant part of Caspar Berry's life for many years. He pitted his wits against some of the best players in Las Vegas before becoming one of the faces of poker on television on Poker Night Live and Sky Poker in the UK.

He started his career as a lead actor in the first two series of BBC drama Byker Grove, along with Ant and Dec. After two years of this – whilst sitting his A levels – Caspar was fortunate to get a place at Cambridge University reading Economics where he spent most of his time directing theatre such as the Cambridge footlights and working with such talented performers as Olivia Colman, David Mitchell and Robert Webb.

Setting his sights on becoming a professional film writer, Caspar had his first screenplay produced by Film Four whilst still in his final year of university. By the time he was 23 he was writing for Miramax and Columbia Tri Star. And his future looked pretty certain. Then at 25, he took the unorthodox decision that would dramatically change his life forever: He moved to Las Vegas and became a professional poker player!

In many of his seminars Caspar Berry speaks about both the motivations and consequences of this decision and asks participants to think in similar terms about the significant decisions that have defined their life to date.

He played poker professionally for most of the next 3 years of his life, during which time he made a good living pitting his wits against the game's best known players. It was a great period of Caspar's life during which time he learned many of the key messages which he now imparts to businesses today.

At the same time, there was something unfulfilling about it. Poker is a lonely pursuit which doesn't contribute anything to society and he still had the urge to create things and work as part of a fulfilling team.

So, in 2002, Caspar Berry returned to the UK and co-founded Twenty First Century Media - building it into the fastest growing audio visual media company in the North East of England before selling it in 2008 to Bob Geldof's media giant, Ten Alps. It was while still at the helm of Twenty First Century Media that Caspar began his career as a speaker and catalyst for new thinking within business about risk-taking and decision-making.

Initially, he combined this role with his work as a speaker and broadcaster on the subject of poker. This was at the beginning of the poker boom and it was during this time that Caspar Berry had the privilege of being one of the two poker advisors on the James Bond movie, Casino Royale.

Then, in 2005 he become a trainer for The Mind Gym who schooled him in the fundamental skills of delivery and facilitation which laid the foundations for his work as a serious speaker and trainer for business using poker as merely a metaphor for the risks and decisions that we all take every day. Caspar worked for them for two years before going alone in 2007.

Speech Topics

Keynote Motivational Speaking
Understanding how we make decisions and deal with risk can make us all better at what we do. The fundamentals of risk and decision making cut to the heart of the ways in which we allocate resources, plan our time, do more with less and maximise the returns from all of our investments in life.

While Caspar is happy to be billed as a “motivational speaker”, he strives to occupy a relatively unique place in the speaking world with the delivery of intellectually challenging messages from the academic literature on risk and decision-making in a funny, high energy, inspirational manner. Story, maths, metaphor and logic are brought together to create a speech that is funny, challenging, thought-provoking and, at its best, transformative.

He has earned a worldwide reputation as a highly professional and impacting speaker who catalyses change in any audience. Caspar Berry’s key messages – which address the need to take calculated risk in order to achieve success – are timeless and non-sector-specific. This makes them perfect for any training day or conference where new ideas, innovation, leadership, decision-making or change are being discussed or debated.

The science of decision-making is ultimately about why we do what we do and what we become as a result. It has relevance for people’s personal and professional lives and is genuinely applicable to any team in any company in any sector in business today.

It is about inspiring leadership, managing change, increasing efficiency and motivating others. It opens people up to the value of opportunity and shows them how to overcome their natural fear of failure. Ultimately everything we do comes down to a decision. There’s a science of how to make decisions well. I make that science accessible and fun.

As a trained facilitator, Caspar is as happy delivering longer-form seminars to smaller executive groups as he is delivering a keynote speech to 5,000 and regularly delivers speeches of 20, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120 and 180 minutes, even whole-day sessions for the right group.

After Dinner Speaking
About 30% of Caspar’s work is to groups at a dinner who want a business-relevant message delivered alongside a lot of gags in 25-30 mins utilising both verbal and visual (ppt picture-based) humour which is suitable for an international audience.

While the underlying mechanism of Caspar’s material is always centred around the ways in which we make decisions and embrace risk, these are very flexible tools which can be used to address a range of themes such as change, innovation, courage, leadership, differentiation, entrepreneurship and, fundamentally, making great decisions in this new age of uncertainty.

Crucially, Caspar is always focused on the corporate/business significance of everything he speaks about. Poker is just a metaphor throughout and – importantly – gambling is never approved or endorsed. Indeed, while poker can and often is played with clients who want it, the whole point of the sessions is to take the gamble OUT of everything we do and make better decisions for the long term.

Testimonials

Brilliant, intelligent messages delivered with passion and knowledge. The best talk from an outside speaker I have ever seen.

Jonathan Walsh, Corporate Marketing and Communication Director, Nestle.

Risk is really important issue for the Home Office and it was refreshing and I think very effective to have a discussion of how we increase our appetite for, and effectiveness in managing risk with such good humour. Your mixture of personal anecdotes, real life examples created an excellent learning opportunity. The feedback we received has been uniformly excellent. Learning can be fun!

Kevin White, HR Director General, Home Office.

Caspar Berry's presentation stimulated a great deal of very productive discussion about all our attitudes to risk taking and really helped crystallise some of the critical decisions we need to make across the business. It helped us understand each other as individuals and will be talked about and referenced for a long time to come. We would highly recommend it to any executive team in business.

Darren Blackhurst, Chief Merchandising Officer, Asda.

Caspar Berry is an inspirational speaker but does it with content and delivery that captures the imagination and challenges the audience to really think in a different way. His delivery is interactive, entertaining and very thought provoking and is fantastic for delivering a great session with a difference.

Sian Doyle, Director of Retail, Orange.

A really fun and relevant afternoon which looks at business in a very different way. Caspar, your session was fantastic and the highlight of the day. Well done. The PayPal team is still talking about it.

Geoff Iddison - CEO, PayPal.

Caspar's session was engaging and intelligent. He uses his experience from playing poker in Vegas with a Cambridge education in Economics to present a unique and captivating presentation. I came away feeling energised and entertained and the main learning points were that sometimes, calculated risks are very much worth taking. Without them, it's difficult to get the big winnings! It really gets you to think about your own mindset in a very different way. The feedback has been very positive.

Patrick McCann, Head of Training, Berwin Leighton Paisner.

Please accept my thanks for your contribution at last week's conference. The feedback from delegates has been absolutely superb. I think you have really 'raised the bar' in terms of quality and relevance. Once again – many thanks – you helped make it a very special day for us.

Peter Perry, Operations Director, Welsh Water.

Our audience of Company Directors and decision makers are used to hearing some of the best speakers on the circuit but the comments after Caspar Berry's talk were of universal praise with many members telling me that Caspar was, 'most definitely the best speaker this year'. A superb job and I can't thank you enough, my problem now is how to find future speakers to match it!

Stephen Harvard Davis, Events Committee, Institute of Directors.

How to book Caspar Berry for your event

To book Caspar Berry, please submit an online enquiry, email bookings@nmp.co.uk or speak with one of our booking agents on +44 (0)1372 361 004.

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you made the whole process of finding and engaging our speaker very easy.
Julie Smith, Head of HR - Hastoe Group
MORE TESTIMONIALS
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