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YOU University Graduates Colleagues
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Former Clients Class Participants
Mars Venus Facilitators Once Upon a Time There Was You:
Three Magic Secrets to Find Your Real Self

YOU University Graduates
Emotional Baggage Removal is the equivalent of
YOU University 2.0

Teri Henderson 
My life has changed so much since beginning You University and in so many wonderful ways!! Allow me to share some of these ways with you:

  • I have a newly found love for myself and increased self-confidence.
  • I received clarification & total confirmation regarding my chosen life path.
  • I can literally feel both physically & mentally the growth and transformation as it occurs.
  • I am more happy & alive with excitement!
  • I am discovering so much more about myself.
  • An example of my self discovery, is that I found that I am very intuitive but, tended to shrug it off as mind chatter. I am now nurturing & developing this gift.
  • My creative side is coming out & bursting at the seams with excitement at the steady stream of ideas that continually pop up.
  • I now have a sense of calm & inner peace that has long since eluded me. As well as a true sense of "knowing," that I am right where I am meant to be & on the right path also.
  • I have learned & utilized the tools that we are taught in You U, experiencing so many profoundly positive changes in my life and my relationships.
  • The healing of past hurts and the shift in my thinking that I've already experienced has me beyond eager to discover what's in store ahead, as I delve deeper into You.
  • I have a strong desire to share my knowledge and help others even more so than before enrolling in this program.
  • While I have always enjoyed learning, I actually crave it now!
  • I am more aware of energy, vibrations and how it relates to me in my life.
  • I am much more aware of my feelings & better able to focus my thoughts, process my emotions and not allow others to bother me or transfer their emotional baggage onto me.
  • I have gotten back into journaling and am loving it, something I quit doing a long, long time ago.
  • I have met and connected with some truly awesome people who get me, who share similar interests, people from all around the world who have been supportive when I needed it, who have inspired me, with whom I am proud to call my friends!
  • I realized that we are all here to live amazing lives, that we deserve to, that its okay to want material things and that I am no longer afraid of becoming successful or living outside of my comfort zone!
  • I have pretty much been clear about what I don't want in my life but, now I am becoming more and more clear about what I DO want in my life. I no longer feel stuck!!

I could just go on & on, about the multitude of things I feel, have experienced, am experiencing on a daily basis, and how excited I get when I think about or talk about this lifelong journey I have embarked upon through You University and the You Journaling Community. I am grateful for you Maia and for all of you in both You U &  Journaling!!

Gina Bendel 
My life has changed for the better in the following ways:

  • I am more aware of the physical manifestation of feelings that are not being expressed in a loving and healthy way.
  • I realize when I need to use tools given to me through You U... The love letters, Finding the Gift, Monster letters, friend-in-deed
  • I am beginning to really notice my thoughts - when I begin to see old "negative" thought patterns, I immediately begin to think "what tool would be best for me right now?" This helps me to shift more towards loving, positive thoughts more quickly.
  • I am beginning to really look for ways to be more loving to myself - purposely choosing to take care of ME.
  • I am definitely seeing and following my intuitive side much more than I was.
  • I am much more aware of those around me who could really use the journaling community and coaching through You U. This inspires me to want to complete the training and have the ability to share with others - to make a difference that is meaningful - to contribute to the shift that this planet needs.
  • Those closest to me are seeing the difference. I have had more people approach me to find out what it is that I am doing. I believe that it is obvious to others that I am feeling better about myself - even if they cannot really pinpoint what it is they are seeing. I know that I am sending out more positive thoughts and it shows.
  • I am beginning to take steps necessary for better health.. I have started meditating, am drinking more water and have made the decision to quit smoking. I have researched and gathered information to help me in getting healthier.
  • I am no longer afraid to fail - I realize now that life truly is a school and that I create what is manifested in my life. I will learn something valuable if I don't succeed at something right away.
  • I now realize that I need to recognize my willingness or lack thereof and to recommit to my decisions on a daily basis.
  • I am excited about my future again!
  • I have learned that I am worthy... HUGE

This is an empowering thing Maia. I knew that I was changing and growing... I didn't really think to take stock in it and now realize that the changes and the shifting is much greater than I could have imagined it would be! I truly believe this list could go on...

 Maggie C.
My life has changed for the better:

  • I am more aware of the parental influences involved in the past that pushed me to be someone I was not.
  • The use of love letters has been powerful in acknowledging the anger I have been harbouring for many years towards my ex-husband, my parents, my eldest son, my youngest son and my daughter and of course myself.
  • My resistance has been noted and dealt with so far and I am now more able to identify it when it appears again
  • I have a team of lovely ladies who inspire me, teach me, learn from me and support me in my journey through You U and even though I haven't met any of you I love you all.
  • I have begun to eat for my body and not for me and to exercise for my body and for me.
  • It has confirmed my belief that my intuition is best for me and to follow that intuition when coaching others
  • I have learned so much more in the short three months that I have been going through You than I ever did in the 5 courses I have done before.
  • I am using the journaling community which is something I had considered but put on the back burner because of resistance
  • I am more able and in a shorter space of time to help others to learn more about themselves
  • It is re-established my confidence in myself

 This programme as I have said before is the most in depth one I have ever gone through and it has changed my life dramatically in that I am now more confident in my abilities as a coach, as a person and I can really see things for what they are in life where it was all a bit fuzzy before. I just love it!

Heather Williams
My life has changed in so many ways I could never list them all. Here's but a few.

  • I have a new self confidence that shines from within
  • I believe in myself and that shows on the outside as well as on the inside
  • I am not afraid to try new things
  • I am not afraid to fail or to be a success
  • I welcome life each day
  • I'm thankful for each day that I am alive
  • I learn something new each day
  • Other people don't get me down any more
  • I don't spend time worrying about what others think of me
  • I am only concerned with what I think of myself
  • I don't measure myself against other people
  • I feel my own uniqueness and I enjoy it
  • I can feel more compassion for others now
  • I am confident when I help people and that is calming to them
  • I am sure of my own abilities
  • I am grateful for all the help I get and I'm not afraid to thank "whoever" for it.
  • I treat myself with greater respect
  • I radiate with happiness, peace, love and light
  • I am not afraid to admit to what I don't know
  • I am not afraid to jump right in and learn new things
  • I am always looking for new experiences in life
  • I am not afraid to feel everything - the good and the bad
  • I can enjoy all my feelings now - even anger
  • I know how to handle my feelings and not get stuck in any particular way of thinking
  • I choose to be happy and I know how to achieve that
  • I know who I am
  • I am connected with the universe
  • My energy is strong and I love it
  • I love me

 Oh, I could go on and on....!

Just writing that list has made me feel really good and energized now.


Here’s what some of her colleagues have to say: | back to the top

"Maia Berens is one of the most authentic caring and competent people I know. I would recommend that anyone needing coaching through this extremely stressful life contact her. Her fees for consultation are very cost effective and her counsel is worth far more than it costs. I would go to her because of her excellence and compassion."
James E. de Jarnette, Ph.D., M.A., Ph.D.; Existential Psychoanalyst

"The lessons learned from your work helps with me in my romantic relationship and relationships with others. I’m a therapist and consider you a mentor of mine!!"
Suzanne Knapp, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

“Maia Berens is a gifted writer and speaker who has encouraged the depth and breadth of my soul’s journey. You can count on her authentic expression and huge heart. “

Patricia Flasch, Personal and Professional Coach, Santa Fe, NM

Learn these valuable strategies for remembering why you're together!

What a lovely presentation! Maia Berens offers insights, strategies and, above all, very compelling reasons for opening yourself to your partner emotionally. We all want to be truly seen, heard, acknowledged, recognized, accepted and loved. Maia's simple, practical ways to build emotional intimacy will definitely help you have the love and life you want together. This program is well worth the investment!

Rhoberta Shaler, PhD, The Relationship Help Doctor

I first met Maia Berens through her Twitter page and other social networking sites, much like I have other professionals and coaches. Maia has taken time to thoughtfully email me personally, to send gifts, and to offer her eloquent graciousness to all who call on her. Maia represents the essence of the creation OOCA : caring, compassion, and giving. Thus, this article is dedicated to Ms. Maia and the wonderful Coaching work that she offers.

Maia Berens, the Caring Compassionate Coach

I first met Maia, like I said previously, through Twitter where she was still working on the creation of her new website. I was allowed a “sneak peek” of her new site and it was stunning! Thus, I told her so. The next thing I knew, Maia went out of her way to email me personally, and our new relationship began. The more I was able to learn about Maia and what she offers to individuals, the more I found that Maia is the authentic personification of a Life Coach: compassionate, caring, empathetic, genuine, honest, and real.

Maia has published a new eBook titled “Once Upon a Time There Was You: Three Magic Secrets to Finding Your Real Self” , it is available in both hard cover and as an eBook. I have watched the wonderful slide show of the book. It is a beautiful and remarkable insight into finding one’s “light” amongst the “darkness” in one’s life. Maia takes one through a journey of the self by utilizing a three-step process of self-illumination to uncover the “hidden you.” I recommend this book to everyone, as we have all experienced a diminished light in our lives at some point in time.

Maia is an experienced Life Coach who helps others discover their true authentic selves in whatever avenue of life they might be trudging through at the time.

Maia has numerous years of experience helping professionals and individuals improve themselves so that they can then “pay it forward” to their clients or family members. Truly a gift to those she works with, Maia lives what she teaches. This in itself is what makes Maia Berens a truly unique individual and professional. I believe strongly that we all have something to teach and learn from others. This belief is the foundation of the OOCA and the “Coaching Connection.” And, that is what Maia personifies. The OOCA offers Maia Berens an honorary membership, to join with us as an exemplary model of what being a Coaching Associate is all about. While we await the launching of the OOCA, I implore all of you to read about Maia Berens. Make certain to read through Maia’s website: “All About Life Coaching,”to read her numerous articles about what it means to be a Life Coach, and to explore her many facets of living an authentic life.

Thank you Maia for all that you do!

~Angela Dee, the Online Coach/Therapist~


Presentations | back to the top

The For You Network, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping women grow personally and professionally, and the University of California Riverside Gender Education and Resources Service (GEARS), UCR Women’s Studies, and UCR Office of Governmental and Community Relations, would like to thank you for your outstanding presentation, “Real Prosperity, Real Communication and the Real Self.”

Please know that the returned conference evaluation forms rated you 5.5 (out of 5!!!) in Content, Style, Use and Appreciation. That means your presentation was A+++. Thank you for your professionalism and ability to involve the audience. Thank you for answering our call for speaker and participating in our annual women’s conference to celebrate “Women’s History Week”. We hope you will be available to speak at future conferences and any of the 17 local Connection meetings.

Thank you,

Gisella Thomas, Conference Chair

Thank you again for the wonderful workshop you held with our advanced leadership graduates. I really appreciate the time you took from your busy schedule to travel to Las Vegas and share your great insights with the team.

 We thoroughly enjoyed your magic tools that you presented from Once Upon a Time There Was YOU. With your help, we were able to identify our "current picture". Through your workshop, by examining our "current picture" we were able to draw out what we thought were the negatives of the situation. Then by shifting from what we perceived to be negative we were able to discover the gifts in our "current picture". With this valuable tool, we were able to create a "new picture for ourselves. This will forever be a valuable practice as we can use it time and time again.

 You made a great impact with your wisdom and truly taught us that "Life Is a School".

Warm Regards,

 Teresa Corbitt, Regional Director,PSI Seminars


eBook | back to the top

‘10 Secrets’ is a delight to read, filled with helpful reminders, heart-opening shifts in perspective all woven together with intimate anecdotes from Maia’s own 23 year marriage. Read ‘Secrets’ to keep your love strong and (in Maia’s word) – JUICY!

Karen M. Black, author of Moondance, MBA, karmic astrologer


From Former Clients | back to the top

Thank you, Maia, for the coaching, the support, the friendship. With me, you are always being any, some, or all of these: empowering, loving, compassionate, patient, persistent, thoughtful, aware, innovative, straightforward, collaborative, fair, intuitive, considerate, observant, self-actualizing, curious, imaginative, talented, light hearted, funny, alert, visionary, spiritual, dependable, communicative, accepting, open-minded – more later, that’s all I can think of for now!

Anita Bruce-Marbois, Tampa FL

I found Maia’s website one Saturday night while internet searching for info on coaching. After reading her life story, her knowledge and experience on coaching, I felt as if I knew this lady already.

I wrote her an email that same night and requested her insight on what coaching was about, she responded the next day and we set a time to talk by phone. After our first 45 minute chat, I then and there knew this was the coach I had been looking for to help me.

Throughout these past 9 months of coaching, Maia has been a tremendous support. She’s helped me find my own answers within. During our sessions, we talk about family, career, even nutrition. I admire Maia very much and have grown to love her, even if our relationship is a long distance one.

I see her not only as my coach, but also as my friend. Because she shares with me much of her own life experience, whether it be professional, or her family relationships, I feel I’ve known her for a long time. We share and exchange mutual joys of our lives and our sessions are comfortable, open and free of any judgments.

Maia is a wise woman, and her guidance to me is priceless. After our weekly sessions, I always feel encouraged and positive. That is the effect Maia has on me. As a woman and professional, Maia also inspires me greatly. Her own life experiences and the obstacles she has overcome on her own path, have been incredibly helpful to me and through her life she makes the statement that “You can do it too!!”. She is gentle yet firm, full of knowledge yet always eager to learn. She is great!
Savina Cavallo, Miami FL

 “My life coaching experience with Maia made such a positive impact on my life that trying to describe it in words lessens it! I am writing about it because I believe everyone should know how much of a difference her work can make in your life.

For the first time I can see myself as someone who can make an impact on this world. Her gentle guidance and strong support of my every choice, my every decision has lead me down a path pointing me to the exact place I needed to be; finding myself. Working with her has allowed me to surpass years of traditional stuff, like self-help, self-discovery workshops and trainings. I have saved hundreds of dollars that would have been wasted on traditional therapies. She had faith in me when I had none in myself! She showed my how to have faith in myself.

Thank you Maia your presence in my life has been a saving grace and has kept me going when I thought I couldn’t take another step. You are my magic fairy god-mother! You have all the love and blessings I can send,”
Maria Sobrado, Kingston, NY

“I’ve gotten focus and consciousness about money and the confidence to speak about this difficult subject. It’s because Maia is so gentle in her guidance. There are no hard edges with her. She brings out the positive in everybody and helps them share their very personal situation comfortably. ”
Kerstin Morgan, Financial Services, Los Angeles CA

 “I have been very impressed by the level of honesty and openness to share about our money issues. By our willingness to change and at the same time the collective awareness that we are stepping into our dreams and authentic self by taking authentic actions and facing our own “troubles at the border.” By the safe tone and space you have provided for us to walk this journey. By your gentle guidance and acceptance of where we are in that journey. By your encouragement and non-judgmental posture. By your sincerity and for making it light and playful.”
Miryam Sarnat, Santa Monica CA

“Maia has a way of zeroing in on me and what is going on. Then we can look at what the deepest part of me is saying, feeling, thinking, wanting. Finally she supports me in looking at how I can achieve the solution or result I want. Weeks later we are still referring and realizing from that initial experience/issue/aha! ”
Jamie Wishart, President Great Graphics, Petaluma CA

“The last 3 months working with Maia has been the most effective personal development work I’ve ever done. And I’ve been doing this kind of work for 10 years!.”
Keith Frank, Las Vegas NV

I have learned the power of making a deep commitment to the power of my relationship. It involves the attitude that it is not always about me, it is not always about him. The reality of "us" together and the power we have as a combined couple creates an alternate energy. Egos are put aside and a spirit of willingness emerges. There is no swallowing up of "me" and "you", it is a true marriage of spirits, a union of like minds. It is a space of clarity where we see and honor our true selves and each other, as a couple and as individuals, and we choose to move forward together. In this space - magic happens.
Heather Williams 


Class Participants | back to the top

Relationships - this course is a foot up to success.

 Relationships have long been the bane of my existence. Being, unfortunately, a serial-relationship woman this course gives me some much needed and necessary tools and steps to have a successful relationship, one that can stand the test of time and put me out of the serial-relationship pool. I have only wanted to live and be happy with a single person in my life. One man to take me to my heart's paradise and live until we are older and greyer and until our time on this earth is through. I now feel better prepared to find that man and honor and cherish our life together.

Leeanne Crawford, Oregon

Fernanda Souza


I really enjoyed taking this course. Maia is so gentle! she gave great tips and shared her experience with humor and respecting other points of view.


Good information and helpful tips

I really appreciate all the work done on this course. Although basic level, it had very good information- One thing I particularly liked was the feeling the instructor was genuine and honest (she was just herself). I did not feel like she was pulling all the tricks of marketing, and the usual, as many others do - that was refreshing! Thank you for all the effort put in this free course and the tips, I learned new things about coaching and felt inspired.

"I have already changed my thoughts about money in the following ways:
I have no fear about money.
I think I am changing everything about the way I relate to money.
I am not obsessed about the lack of right now.
I have learned that I have been working on tasks and expecting to be rewarded for it. Now, I am going to be working on the achievement of goals and expect to be rewarded for that.
The class has been the driving force behind my focus on the book and the exercises. Without the class, the book is useless to me. Maia, you are the perfect leader for this particular class. You bring a consciousness and realty combined with gentle understanding that is both precious and essential for the processes to work to its fullest."
Harvey Goldstein, Business Consultant, Beverly Hills CA


Once Upon a Time There Was You: Three Magic Secrets to Find Your Real Self | back to the top

Simple story.  Simple wisdom.  Simply put.  This gem of a book will keep the magic alive.  
John Gray, Ph.D. Author of Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus

This is truly an inspirational book that needs to be a part of anyone's library.  It is definitely a book that anyone will continually use and re-read to add inspiration and meaning to their daily life.  I truly enjoyed it!    
Colette Chandler, The Marketing Insider

The other day I was in a very sad funk of a mood. I scanned my bookshelf looking for some sort of inspiration. Your book, though tiny amongst all the other self-help, spiritual and personal growth books, caught my eye.

 I tried to by-pass it because I knew I had already read it. It kept calling me to pick it up, so I did. It seemed like new information. I did all the exercises you suggested and at the end of the process I felt more grounded, more grateful, and better overall. I got a handle on why all this 'hard stuff' is happening.

 I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a deep, yet quick, mood transformation each and every time. I see that what you say is true - if I make this way of thinking a way of life, I'll feel better and learn something about myself every time. Thank you!!!!!
Anna Lee, Sacramento CA

FORWARD for "Once Upon a Time There Was You"

Not since Antoine de Saint-Exupery wrote "The Little Prince" so many years ago, have I felt so deeply touched by a simple story within a small book. The message within these pages warms the heart, kindles the spirit and has the capacity to awaken a part of ourselves as adults that may have been sleeping for lifetimes.

The sweet story within these pages is "our story" – the story that reminds us of a time in our lives when we had that sense of experiencing ourselves as a treasure, when we knew our own innocence, however briefly. We have a chance to hear what happens to that innocence and what it takes to reawaken the sweet child within.

While there are untold numbers of powerful and impactful personal growth books available on the market today – this particular book is written with such raw courage and deep truth that it could save years of searching for the astute reader. Its utter simplicity is almost shocking. This is the kind of book that invites us to make a pot of tea, find a beautiful spot in the garden and gently read the author’s amazing tale of awakening. The three secrets that Maia passes on to her reader are essential totems for living a more soulful life.

In my own life’s work – in decades of working with people to support them in "finding their way home" – I see that "Once Upon A Time There Was You", could be used as a kind of primer at the beginning of a personal growth course, or as a kind of companion guide to the therapeutic or coaching process. I see also that Maia is a woman who lives the message that she offers us in her book. She continually demonstrates a kind of devotion to truth that inspires all those she touches much like bringing a candle into a dark room.

By Patricia Flasch, MS, Soul and Business Coach, Santa Fe, NM

I’ve been reading, as usual, and learning, as always. And... couldn’t resist the opportunity to share what I’ve discovered – about me! Not that you asked for it, but here it is anyway. My latest revelation came in the form of an ebook written by a very inspiring woman, Maia Berens.

Maia’s program, “Once Upon A Time There Was You”, is a wonderful journey into yourself. It starts out by telling you a story about a little girl. This story is told as you would read it to a child. The real kicker is, YOU ARE READING IT TO YOURSELF AS A CHILD.

I couldn’t help but connect to this story. My inner self related to this child-like tale on so many levels that I even ended up crying. Yes, I know... I’m soppy enough at the best of times. But this got me right where I live – right in the soul. Maia made me look at my life from the time I was born as a brand new person, full of hope, love, light and possibilities. Her story took me through my dark teenage years and into adulthood. It made me really see me as I am, and, most importantly, me as I could be. This is more than just another self-help book to discover new ways to find yourself. This is a journey to the centre of yourself and back out again. Not only does this ebook give you the key to YOU, but it also helps you to fit it into the lock and turn it. As many of you know, I call myself a “soul healer”, for want of a better term. I deal with people’s emotions, past lives, fears and soul-deep damage. I try to help others reconnect with themselves and the universe, to accept themselves and to love all that they are. This is not something I’ve learned to do in just one life time. This has been a very long haul of lives and experiences. One thing I can assure you is that what I do for other people, I am also constantly doing for myself. However, healing yourself when you don’t have any help or instructions can be an extremely long, hard road to trudge along. Believe me when I say I’m still walking that path, even though I started putting one foot in front of the other several lives ago! Maybe I’m a slow learner. I wish someone had read Maia’s book to me as a child. It would have led me to a greater understanding much sooner, and possibly without half the scars. I would have believed in myself and my own inner light much sooner. These tools would have helped me through many dark times. I also wish I had this book to read to my two sons when they were little. What wonderful possibilities there would be for a child who grows up with this philosophy, and with the tools Maia has blessed us with.

Within the book are, as I’ve just mentioned, tools. Tools for life – keys to open the door to yourself. There are exercises for us to do as well. Being me, I couldn’t resist the exercises. The following are some of the lessons, or realizations, that I learned. Most were no surprise for me, as soul-searching and analyzing moments of my life is something I do quite often. Some realizations were quite surprising – even for someone like me who considers themselves adept at digging the positive out of the negative.

For what it’s worth, here are some things I’ve learned from the darkness:

I thought about all the many minor things that bug me about my life at the moment and what lessons I’ve learned from those. I have learned that I’ve been given the time to reconnect with myself, and to connect with the universe again on a deeper level. I’ve learned patience and endurance. How to live in the here and now and cope with the practical day-to-day physical plane of existence. Most importantly:- I’ve learned how to be me and how to stay true to myself when others can’t/won’t/don’t want to see me or accept me for who I really am.

I thought about the slightly more serious negative things about my life.

I’ve learned resilience, lateral thinking and problem solving. I’ve discovered how different situations and emotions impact upon me, my life and emotions, physically, mentally and spiritually. I’ve learned how to

deal with them, how to embrace them and own them as a part of me and my journey. I’ve learned how to live through them and with them.

Now for the major problems and really negative parts of my life. I’ve  learned  that  my  inner  self  is  strong.  I’ve  learned  that  my  spirit  and  soul  cannot  be  destroyed  by despair and  cruelty. I  have  learned that hate cannot  destroy love. I  know that the  harsher and  darker the world/people are, the brighter the light that shines from within me. I have gotten to know myself. I know I’m a work in progress, but I also know that I am worth working on

And the journey continues.

Heather Williams, Australia


Mars Venus Institute Facilitators | back to the top

“Maia's commitment to her work, coupled with her skills, make her a very special woman. I was one of the first people John trained to facilitate the Mars Venus Workshops. I went on to become John's star facilitator. Maia was an incredible role model. Her guidance, her level of integrity and commitment to her work was amazing. I am blessed to have worked with Maia and now call her my friend.”
May 17, 2006  
Janice Hoffman, Speaker & Author, Relationship Solutions

“I met Maia while attending a Mars Venus Workshop Facilitators training program. I was immediately struck by her presence as a leader yet she was very approachable with a welcoming attitude. Maia's capabilities as a relationship guide offered me a non judgmental and supportive way to evolve as a woman while working through life challenges. Maia is MY leader! With her devoted help and amazing heart, my life is being transformed as we speak. I trust her with my soul and am happy to say that she has been an inspirational leader on my journey to find my authentic self. My heart holds deep gratitude for all that she is. ” November 30, 2005 
Suzanne Dortch

 “Maia was the first person for me to talk to during my time as the German representative for John Gray's Mars Venus Institute. I always had an open ear from her for all my questions and needs. She is very supportive and has a great heart. During the period of collaboration our business relationship turned into friendship despite of our national and cultural diversity. ” November 23, 2005
Achim Von Malsen, funds manager, SHB Innovative Fondskonzepte AG