A designated VC is an independent venture capitalist or member of a VC firm who has an unofficial, referral-based relationship with VCNetwork. All the VCs in the network have made themselves available as potential funders for startups who meet their criteria, and all the work they do with startups is carried out entirely outside their relationship with VCNetwork.
Rob has always loved building things that go fast. He started his career as an aerospace engineer and auto engine tester, then became an investor in early stage technology companies. In the depths of a tech downturn, Rob took a risk to launch a new venture firm, Shasta Ventures. Over the years Rob has supported more than 100 founders in their quests to build lasting businesses that deliver breakout products and services.
Zach is the cofounder and CEO of Codecademy, the leading online education company closing the skills gap by teaching programming. Codecademy has reached millions of users in every country in the world. Codecademy’s investors include Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, Index Ventures, Richard Branson, Yuri Milner, and more. Zach has worked with GroupMe (acq. by Skype) and drop.io (acq. by Facebook). Zach was named to Inc. Magazine and Forbes Magazine’s 30 Under 30 lists, was selected as a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum, and was voted as one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2013.
“The start-up process is one of the highest highs and the lowest lows. Learning curves are so much steeper and experiences are so much more enriching …It’s exhilarating.”
At Comcast Ventures
An operating executive turned venture capitalist, Michael joined Comcast Ventures in 2009. He focuses on consumer Internet applications and services. “I’m particularly interested in start-ups and business models that disrupt how offline industries historically have functioned.”
Before Comcast Ventures
Previously, Michael was a Vice President/General Manager at Yahoo! in the Media Group as well as the Local Markets & Commerce Division. During his tenure at Yahoo!, he managed Yahoo! Autos, Yahoo! Real Estate and Yahoo! Health; co-led Yahoo! Shopping; and was part of the team that formed Yahoo!’s strategic alliance with the Newspaper Consortium. He’s also worked at Atlas Venture, Zaplet, and was a member of AOL’s Business Affairs team.
Michael graduated from Harvard University with an M.B.A. and the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Economics from The Wharton School.
Fun FactsIn case he is accused of joining any bandwagons, Michael likes to make it clear that he became a Yankees fan as a toddler growing up in New Jersey, a Cowboys fan during elementary school in Texas, and a Red Devils fan during his youth soccer days abroad. His favorite song is “Glory Glory Man United.”
A repeat entrepreneur, most recently Sid cofounded Zinch, an ed-tech company connecting students globally with opportunities in higher education, and led the company through concept, venture capital, international expansion, acquisition (Chegg, Inc.) and IPO (CHGG, NYSE). For more than a decade he has assembled winning teams, specializing in building the sales force, and has created tremendous customer and shareholder value, while persevering to success. Sid was a walk-on basketball player at the University of Utah, where he studied for a year, and later received his Bachelor of Science degree from Brigham Young University; he enjoys engaging with and giving back to students from the "U" and the "Y.
Jason joined Maveron in 2007 after a pioneering role in online education. At Career Education Corp., he co-founded and led admissions and marketing for IADT Online, a for-profit design school and wholly owned Career Ed subsidiary. Earlier, he was an associate at Spinnaker Ventures, an expansion-stage venture capital fund.
With both operational proficiency and a keen eye for talent, Jason has sourced and been actively involved in a range of Maveron investments—including Julep, General Assembly, Everlane and CourseHero. He currently serves on the boards of Common, Dolls Kill, Dolly, General Assembly and Julep, and previously was on the board of zulily. Jason is a mentor for TechStars and the ImagineK12 Accelerator, and he regularly speaks at conferences, including the Venture Capital in Education Summit, LeadsCon, the Industry Summit of the SIIA, and Silicon Valley Comes to the UK.
Jason got his bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Michigan (feel free to ask him about his beloved Wolverines football team) and his MBA from Wharton.
Bipul Sinha is a Partner at Lightspeed and focuses primarily on software, mobile, and Internet sectors with a particular interest in cloud services/infrastructure and social utilities/apps.
Bipul’s current investments include Nutanix, PernixData, Bromium, and Peel. His past investments include Pulse (LinkedIn) and LiveProfile (RIM).
Previously, Bipul worked at Blumberg Capital where he led investments in data center software infrastructure and Internet sectors. His selected investments include Nutanix, Hootsuite, and DoubleVerify. Prior to venture capital, Bipul was with Banc of America Technology Investment Banking Group where he worked on M&A and equity financing transactions. Prior to banking, Bipul was Director of database and middleware products with Oracle Corporation. Bipul also held sales and engineering positions at American Megatrends and IBM.
Bipul received his B.Tech. (Honors) in Electrical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur and holds an MBA from The Wharton School where he was a Palmer Scholar. Bipul also holds several patents in distributed computing.
Something most people do not know about Bipul:
I’m a passionate follower of socio-economic-political developments both domestically and internationally. I read almost as much CNN as I do TechCrunch.
Kara joined Upfront as a partner in November 2014. Before joining Kara was co-founder of Seedling where she currently serves as Chairman. Prior to starting Seedling, Kara spent close to seven years at IAC where she acted as the Senior Vice President and General Manager of Urbanspoon and Citysearch.
Prior to Urbanspoon/Citysearch, Kara co-headed the M&A group at IAC where she lead some of their most successful acquisitions, notably Urbanspoon, Dictionary.com and Aston Hotels. While at IAC, Kara also served as a board member to Hatch Labs, IAC’s mobile technology incubator, where she recruited and advised Tinder. Kara also spent time at Morgan Stanley, Microsoft, and Battery Ventures.
Kara received her AB in Politics from Princeton University in Politics and her MBA from Stanford University.
Ankita Vashistha is the Founder & CEO Saha Fund, an Indian Angel Network, and she is Managing Partner at Tholons Capital.
Ms. Vashistha is an investor across India, Philippines, Singapore, UK and USA.
Ankita comes from an advisory, investments, private equity and venture capital background. At Tholons, Ankita manages the advisory, research, education and investments groups. Ankita works very actively in the start-up ecosystem in India, Philippines, Singapore, UK, USA to source, evaluate and mentor start-up companies. Ankita works closely with portfolio companies to help them create value, scale and expand globally. Ankita is passionate about investing in the mobile, e-commerce, analytics and education space.
Prior to Tholons Capital, Ankita was at Aureos Capital, an emerging market focussed US$1.3B private equity firm. In this role she was part of the global fund management and Investor Relations team. In her time there, the investor relations team successfully closed fund raising for three funds totalling over USD600M. She has a Masters in Finance & Management from Cranfield School of Management, UK and an engineering degree from MSR Institute of Technology, India.
Sean is lead partner of Birchmere Labs, a seed and studio fund focused on community driven commerce startups. He heads our investments in NoWait, Crystal, Jazz, LegalSifter, Earshot, and The Zebra.
Sean has over 12 years experience founding, building, and selling businesses in the media and software industries. He was previously COO of ReadWriteWeb (acquired by SAY Media), one of the most influential sites about the future of technology and innovation. Sean was also co-founder and CEO of mSpoke (personalized recommendation engine; LinkedIn’s first acquisition) and director of business development at Peak Strategy (quantitative alpha modeling tool; acquired by Morgan Stanley).
Sean is an Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School. Based on his CMU coursework, he authored The Science of Growth, to be published by St. Martin’s Press in 2016. Sean was also a founding advisor to Innovation Works’ AlphaLab accelerator.
Sean holds a BS in Computer Information Systems from Grove City College. He was also a research fellow at Carnegie Mellon’s Sloan Software Industry Center.
Byron is a veteran cloud CEO and founder, having first worked with Bessemer when he raised venture capital for the Series A of Trigo Technologies in 2000. Working closely with BVP, Trigo went on to become one of the first global SaaS companies, reached profitability, and successfully sold to IBM in one of the largest outcomes of its vintage. Having seen the potential of cloud computing early, Byron returned to venture capital in 2005 to lead BVP’s global cloud practice and has been actively involved in a portfolio that now includes over 100 cloud investments worldwide and represents ~1/3 of the market cap of all public cloud companies.
Byron directly lead investments in numerous IPOs including Box (Box), Cornerstone OnDemand (CSOD), Criteo (CRTO), Eloqua (ELOQ), and Instructure (INST), as well as many existing private industry leaders such as: Twilio, GainSight, DocuSign, ProCore, Intercom, Adpative Insights, Intacct, Vidyard, and SendGrid. He continues to focus on all things cloud, mobile, and other exciting technologies you can credibly convince him may change the world so he doesn’t need to add to his anti-portfolio.
Consistently ranked as one of the top global investors across all industry sectors, Byron is frequently recognized by online analysts, Industry Groups, magazines, and newspapers. He is a frequent guest on national TV, a popular industry speaker, and an active blogger having co-authored the 10 Laws of Cloud Computing, the BVP Cloud Index, and the State of the Cloud Report. Byron graduated with honors from Berkeley and as a testament to his determination more than his athletic prowess, Byron is a four time Rugby Collegiate National Champion as well as an Ironman finisher.https://www.bvp.com/
Jon Bauch is a Partner at Anthem Venture Partners and evaluates new investments and is a Board member and advisor to portfolio companies.
Prior to joining Anthem, Jon was President of a video ad tech company and CFO/COO of two private equity backed portfolio companies prior to their sale. Previous to that, Jon was an Investment Associate at Spectrum Equity Investors, a $5 billion private equity firm, where he invested in tech and media companies.
He started his career as an Investment Banker at Goldman Sachs in NY and received his MBA from Harvard Business School.
I’m Pascal Gauthier and I’m pleased to be part of the Mosaic Ventures Team as a Venture Partner.
My day job is CEO of Challenger Deep, a bitcoin venture where we’re working on the next big digital revolution.
Before that I spent more than 15 years immersed in digital media and advertising technology. Early in my career, I led sales teams at price comparison service Kelkoo, both before and after its acquisition by Yahoo in 2004, ultimately becoming Commercial Director of Kelkoo sales for cars, travel and shopping.
I joined Criteo in 2008 where I spent 5 years, primarily as Chief Operating Officer and I was instrumental in the company’s rapid global expansion towards a $1 billion revenue business. Criteo is one of the most successful venture-backed companies in Europe and has a $2.5bn market cap on NASDAQ.
While serving as entrepreneur-in-residence at Index Ventures in 2014, I discovered the potential for bitcoin, and realised this transformational new technology could only prosper if all users had access to reliable security and useful information. That insight was the spark for Challenger Deep, which I founded with the goal to be bitcoin's ultimate data provider.
I also serve on the boards of two promising ad-tech companies Teads.tv and OpenX, and the secure bitcoin hardware wallet maker Ledger. I have also backed African remittance service BitPesa, as it combines bitcoin's potential as an asset, with the huge potential role for remittances in Africa.
Chelsea joined Battery in 2006 and focuses on investments in the software and healthcare-IT sectors. She is particularly interested in vertically focused SaaS companies. Chelsea currently serves on the boards of Avalara, Brightree, Intacct and WebPT. She was also involved with Battery’s investments in Glassdoor and Marketo (NASDAQ: MKTO). Her previous investments including Data Innovations (acquired by Roper Industries), Groupon (NASDAQ: GRPN), Guidewire (NYSE: GWRE) and RealPage (NASDAQ: RP). In 2013, Chelsea was named to the Forbes Midas “Hot Prospects” list of up-and-coming venture capitalists.
Prior to Battery, she was an associate at the private equity firm Key Principal Partners. Earlier in her career, Chelsea was a manager at Accenture, where she led technology and strategy projects. She also has held positions with Merrill Lynch in Hong Kong and with Classified Ventures. She received a BS with honors in chemical engineering from Northwestern University and an MBA from the University of Chicago.
Paul is a Partner at Canvas, where he focuses on partnering with innovators building marketplace networks and deep learning-enabled business services.
He has sponsored investments and worked with Adi Tatarko at Houzz, Fabio Rosati at Elance, Mike Bergelson at Everwise, Shan-Lyn Ma at Zola, and Drew McElroy at Transfix.
He was an entrepreneur himself, having founded Mazu Networks (acquired by Riverbed Networks). He is a graduate of MIT and Harvard Business School.
Daniel joined Balderton as a General Partner in 2013 and he currently sits on the boards of ROLI, Lovecrafts, TrademarkNow, Tictail Thread and Workable and also works with Revolut, Instabridge and Curious.AI.
Prior to Balderton, Daniel spent 5 years as a partner at Wellington Partners and invested in a number of fast-growing companies including EyeEm, Hailo, YPlan, Bookatable (also a Balderton portfolio company), SumAll, Readmill (sold to Dropbox) and Qype (sold to Yelp).
Before Wellington, Daniel was a sector partner at 3i where he worked on all of their venture and private equity investments in the internet sector in North America and Europe.
And before that, he was at Yahoo! for six years from 1999, covering strategic development and M&A across the European region. He has a PhD and MA in applied mathematics from Oxford University and a Chartered Diploma in Accounting and Finance.
Greg joined .406 in 2007 and is involved in all aspects of the investing and portfolio management process. He brings 22 years of venture investing and technology operating and management experience.
Prior to joining .406, Greg was a Vice President of Core Capital Partners, a venture capital firm focused on early-stage venture and small to mid-sized growth technology companies. At Core, Greg focused on cybersecurity, digital media, technology-enabled services and wireless applications.
Before becoming a venture investor, Greg spent over a decade as an operator within the high tech industry and held various operating and management roles in worldwide sales, business development, product distribution and digital signal processing applications.
Greg received his MBA, with majors in Entrepreneurial Management and Finance, from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and his BS in Electrical Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University.
DEBORAH JACKSON, Co-Founder
20+ years raising capital for entities including healthcare technology; past experience includes Goldman Sachs, Shattuck Hammond Partners
Early stage investor in copmanies in consumer internet, cloud software, mobile, and medical, including one IPO
Co-Founder/Advisor, WIM Accelerator to build mobile tech
Columbia University Committee Advisor to President on entrepreneurship
Hosted hackathon w/ 18 women developers who built an anti-sex trafficking game; covered by Fast Company
Awards & Recognition: TechCrunch 40 Over 40, Forbes “Women Changing the World” (VC/Enrepreneurs), Fast Company “League of Extraordinary Women,” Bpeace Economic Impact Award
Start-up Competition Judge: Harvard Busines School New Venture Competition, Technovation, Startup Weekend
Featured Speaker: CNBC, Family Office Association, HBS, The Atlantic Conference, Columbia University, UPenn
ANDREA TURNER MOFFITT, Co-Founder
10+ years experience on Wall Street structuring equity & debt financing for private and public companies; past experience includes Citibank and Robertson Stephens
Former hedge analyst and early stage investor
Author, Harness the Power of the Purse: Winning Women Investors (2015, Rare Bird Books)
Expert on women investors nationally & globally; strategic advisor to numerous wealth management firms
Founder and CEO, Wealthrive to advance women investors
Advisor, Columbia Business School Entrepreneur; Senior Advisor, Center for Talent Innovation; Term Member, Council on Foreign Relations
Featured Speaker: CNBC Power Pitch, Investment News, CFA Institute, Securities Industry Institute, IICF, High Water Women, Women in Insurance, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank, Charles Schwab, Fidelity, UBS
Technology has made the world more of a meritocracy than its ever been and traditional obstacles to success are quickly collapsing. Everywhere you look, there’s an opportunity to take something important and make it better. I want to work with people who think it’s their job to do that. I started my first company when I was 17, and my life’s work is to help amazing people change the world through entrepreneurship and invention.
I’m the co-founder and executive chairman of Evernote and was the CEO until joining General Catalyst. I’m really proud of Evernote. We changed the world; we made many millions of people more productive and reinvigorated an industry that hadn’t seen much innovation in thirty years. Starting with some sketches on a napkin, we built a globally great brand, an honest business model, and a beloved product. The journey at Evernote continues and I’m eager to take the lessons I learned there and help others apply them to their own startups. I still have the napkin.
Great products have a point of view. I’m interested in any startup ideas that create exceptional user experiences for accomplishing important things. For making the world simpler, easier, more convenient, faster, fairer, and more interesting. It doesn’t matter whether it’s for your work life or personal life or both. It’s actually better if it’s for both because I believe that the line between “enterprise” and “consumer” is artificial and disintegrating. Let’s help it disintegrate faster.
If I could write the inscription on my own tombstone, it would say, “Phil Libin. Enthusiast (1972 – unknown, last seen on Mars).” Personally, I’m a giant nerd. I love tech and gadgets and sci-fi and food. There are all sorts of random topics that I know more about than I should. I like to imagine what the world will look like in twenty years and work backwards from there. More than anything, I like working with founders. I love being there at the moment of inception when a new idea seems ridiculously cool and ridiculously hard. I’ve been lucky to have that moment a few times, and I’ve learned something about how to take it from there. I can’t wait to support a new generation of founders in their moment.
Brock Pierce is a venture capitalist and serial entrepreneur best known for pioneering the market for digital currency. He is a founder and Managing Partner of Blockchain Capital and Chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation. Blockchain Capital has invested in more than 30 blockchain enabling technology companies. Pierce is also a founder, advisor, or board member of GoCoin, Tether, ZenBox, Blade Financial, Expresscoin, Noble Markets, BitGo, ChangeTip, BlockStreet, Coin Congress, and Plug and Play. He is a sought-after commentator on the Bitcoin economy and was elected to the Bitcoin Foundation Board in 2014. Pierce is a BitAngels city leader and runs a top AngelList Syndicate. As an entrepreneur Pierce raised more than $200 million for the companies he founded and led more than 30 acquisitions throughout his career.
Pierce’s entrepreneurial activities have been focused in the areas of digital currencies like Bitcoin, virtual worlds, gaming, payments, and ad tech. He is the founder of IMI Exchange, the worlds leading digital currency marketplace for games with sales exceeding US$1 billion annually, which raised over $100 Million from blue chip investors such as Goldman Sachs and Oak Investment Partners; ZAM, one of the world’s largest media properties for gamers with more than 15 million monthly users which was sold in January 2012 to Tencent; IGE, the company credited with pioneering the market for digital currency in online games, which generated $100 million in revenue in 2006 and was sold in early 2007. He is also a founder of Xfire 2.0, Playsino, Five Delta (Sold to OTCBB: SCRI), Evertune, GamesTV, and Digital Entertainment Network.
Pierce is also an active supporter of non-profit and advocacy organizations and is a member of Clinton Global Initiative. He has also been a guest lecturer at the Milken Global Conference, Singularity University, Stanford, USC, and UCLA.
A lifetime techie, Stan is driven by helping exceptional technologists grow their ideas into widely used products and services.
Born in Gdansk, a shipbuilding city in the north of Poland, Stan grew up at a time of social unrest and martial law. Computers were a novelty only seen at Dad’s office, and rotary dial phone calls were arranged by reservation. When he and his family immigrated to the U.S. in 1982, Stan was amazed by the impact prevalent technology had on everyone’s life. He didn’t speak English but he could “talk” to the school’s Commodore Pet computer, and began coding at a young age.
Stan joined Matrix in 2000 after many years of engineering education, time spent developing chips at National Semiconductor, and learning how to talk to humans and think revenues and profits while with McKinsey’s technology practice.
At Matrix, Stan seeks out entrepreneurs looking to build companies founded upon disruptive technical innovation. His ambition is to utilize his combination of technical and market experience to help founders turn those innovations into thriving, profitable enterprises. Stan has partnered with tech entrepreneurs in a variety of areas, including communications (e.g., Acacia Communications), digital health (e.g., Quanttus, QPID), enterprise software (e.g., Mitro, Hyper9), components (e.g. Qualtre) and materials (Xtalic).
His current interests include enterprise Internet infrastructure (especially security, applications of data and reasoning, and IT effectiveness), robotics, and digital health. He’s also unashamedly excited by any novel idea in an area no one’s thought of yet – after all it’s the innovators, not the VCs, that tend to identify the exciting new directions of technical progress.
Outside of the office Stan can be found outdoors: hiking, cycling, skiing, or cheering his kids on in various sports.
BRIAN HIRSCH, Managing Partner
Brian is a co-founder and Managing Partner of Tribeca Venture Partners. Prior to starting Tribeca Venture Partners, Brian was a founder and Managing Director of GSA Venture Partners, formerly the venture arm of Greenhill & Co (NYSE: GHL). Prior to GSAVP, Brian was a Principal at Sterling Venture Partners and a Vice President at ABN AMRO Private Equity.
Brian has invested across a broad number of sectors during his career including fintech, edtech, mobile, healthcare, online marketing and media/publishing.
Brian has a BA in economics and American studies from Brandeis University.
“When I was ten years old while most kids were reading comic books I was reading all of my father’s business magazines. I mostly enjoyed reading the long profile stories of entrepreneurs that were building great companies against all odds. It was the 1980’s and entrepreneurs like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Scott McNealy and Scott Cook were changing the world through technology. What fascinated me was the process of taking an idea and transforming it into a reality. Fast forward thirty years and I feel lucky to spend my days helping this generation of entrepreneurs build tomorrow’s great tech companies.”
CHIP MEAKEM, Managing Partner
Chip has been operating and investing in NYC companies since 1996 and has been a founder, operating executive or lead investor of several leading NYC companies including 24/7 Media, N2K, Massive Inc. and AppNexus.
Prior to co-founding Tribeca Venture Partners, Chip was an active NYC VC at both Kodiak Venture Partners and DFJ Gotham. Chip serves on several Boards of Directors and manages investments including AppNexus, Live Gamer, Maxwell Health, LeadiD, BetterCloud, Backtrace I/O and Clypd.
Chip’s previous investments include ideeli (acquired by Groupon); Ingenio (acquired by AT&T); Massive Inc. (acquired by Microsoft); Pantero (acquired by Progress Software) Q-Link Technologies (acquired by Adobe Systems); and TRA Global (acquired by Tivo). Chip was also a personal seed investor in FreeMarkets Inc., which made its IPO in December 1999 and peaked at $12B market cap.
Before moving to the Venture side, Chip was a founding employee at Interactive Imaginations where he started the Commonwealth Network (launched in Q1, 1996), one of the Internet’s first advertising networks, building it from a concept to top 10 media property. Interactive Imaginations eventually became 24/7 Media and went public in 1998. Chip also worked at N2k and was responsible for strategic distribution partnerships for the leading music e-tailer.
Chip holds a B.A. from Cornell University, where he was a member of the varsity basketball team, and an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.
“When I was a kid I built a tree house. It started with a small deck about 20 feet up in a big willow tree. Then I expanded up and built three more platforms in that tree as high as 60 feet up. Then I rigged up a homemade trolley, connecting to another tree about 50 feet away and built in that tree. A few years later I had 15 platforms and decks in 5 trees interconnected with a network of trolleys. I stopped when I hit high school and ran out of time. I have always liked to build stuff.”
Jeff is a Design Partner at True Ventures, where he spends his time helping companies create better products. Jeff does this as an advisor, as well, for companies like about.me, Medium and WordPress. Previously, Jeff was VP of Design at Adobe after they acquired Typekit, the company he co-founded and ran as CEO. Jeff was also one of the founding partners of the user experience consulting group Adaptive Path. While there, he lead Measure Map, which was acquired by Google. During his time at Google, he redesigned Google Analytics and lead the UX team for Google’s apps. Much earlier, Jeff was part of the founding web team at Wired Magazine, where he helped build HotWired, Web Monkey, Wired News and many other sites. During that time, he authored two books, “HotWired Style” and “The Art and Science of Web Design.”https://trueventures.com/
Christian has extensive operating experience in technology companies, developing and scaling products and businesses internationally. Prior to co-founding White Star Capital, Christian worked at Facebook and led the international expansion of the company’s Business Development, Platform and Developer Network groups. He previously held leadership roles in the U.S. and Europe at Google and Microsoft and started his career in technology at MicroStrategy, a startup he joined prior to its 1999 IPO. Christian has worked closely with entrepreneurs and leading VCs and has been an active angel investor and advisor. He represents White Star on the Boards of KeyMe, Glow Media, Bloglovin’ and Hole 19. Christian also serves as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum.
Christian holds a degree in Economics from Duke University and an MBA from The Wharton School. Born in El Salvador and having grown up across Latin America, the U.S. and Europe, he now resides in London with his wife and three children.
Laura Brass, Ph.D., M.B.A. joined MPM in 2015. Her interests lie in early stage start-up creation and strategic deal structuring and negotiation in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. Prior to joining MPM, Laura was a member of the founding management team and SVP of Business Development for MPM portfolio company TriNetX, a healthcare IT company focusing on big data analytics for clinical research. Before TriNetX, Laura was Director of Business Development at Harvard University’s Office of Technology Development and at its Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. She led commercialization strategy, start-up creation, deal structuring, and negotiations for a portfolio of over 250 biotech, synthetic chemistry, engineering, software, device, and stem cell technologies developed at Harvard and Harvard-affiliated institutions. Laura has also held roles in business development and IP strategy at MPM portfolio company Elixir Pharmaceuticals, and was CEO of Aferon, Inc., an early-stage antiviral start-up company. Laura holds a B.A. in Philosophy and a B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago.
Dan Chen brings to Siemer & Associates over 16 years of investment banking, private equity and corporate development experience in the technology, media and telecom industries, and has been involved in transactions totaling over $5 billion in value throughout his career.
Dan currently leads and oversees execution of all M&A and capital raising mandates for clients in the software, digital media, advertising, and Internet services space. He is also currently a Strategic Board Member of Lotus Innovations Fund, LP, a private equity firm focused on software investments in the Southern California market, and is part of the mentor team at MuckerLab, advising media and software entrepreneurs in the startup ecosystem in Southern California. Dan’s career prior to Siemer spans various roles as investor, operator and advisor to companies. Dan was a key member of the investment team at TPG Capital, where he was involved on cross-border buyout and venture investments in the U.S. and Asia.
He participated in the investment activities of TPG’s Asian investment funds Newbridge Asia III, LP ($724 million) andNewbridge Asia II, LP ($392 million), and he monitored several portfolio companies in the telecom and Internet services space within those funds. Dan was also Vice President in the media and software groups at Los Angeles-based Montgomery & Co., where he was involved on key transactions with strategic acquirers such as The Walt Disney Co. (Club Penguin) and WPP plc (WildTangent) as well as tech-focused buyout / hedge funds (HBK Investments) and growth / venture capital investors (Scale Venture Partners,Elevation Partners). Most recently, Dan led corporate development activities at a family office-backed investment holding company in Los Angeles where he evaluated and executed on investment opportunities in the healthcare services and IT space.
Dan began his career as an M&A banker at Merrill Lynch & Co. in New York and San Francisco, where he was involved on technology transactions with strategic acquirers in the Internet and financial technology space such asInfospace (now known as Blucora) and Checkfree (acquired by Fiserv), as well as semiconductor companies such as Solectron (acquired by Flextronics) andXilinx.
Mr. Chen graduated from Yale University with a bachelor’s degree in economics. He is a registered General Securities Representative (Series 63 and 79 licenses) with FINRA/SIPC (formerly NASD).
Peter Lee manages all of Baroda Ventures new investments and current portfolio.
Previously, he was an investor at Clearstone Ventures and Prism Ventures. Prior to entering venture capital, he was the Vice President of Operations and Product Management at Goldpocket (acquired by Ericsson), a startup developing a platform for creating, distributing and managing interactive TV digital media systems.
Earlier, Peter was a manager with McKinsey, where he focused on the digital media, consumer electronics, and internet industries. He also worked as a product manager at Microsoft in their wireless device group as well as at Virtual Ink (acquired by Dymo Corp), a venture-backed startup in the consumer electronics and collaborative online meeting space.
Peter earned his B.S. and M.S. in engineering product development from MIT where he was elected into the Tau Beta Pi Honor Society and was awarded a full-tuition graduate fellowship. He also holds an M.B.A. with honors from Harvard Business School.
Jason Cohen is a well-recognized leader in the interactive marketing industry.
He began his career at DoubleClick and thrived as one of the company's top global sales representatives. An entrepreneur at heart, Jason left and founded WiseAds New Media (an early player in the niche ad network business).
Jason served as CEO and was responsible for expanding the company from zero to sixty plus employees in just eighteen months. WiseAds was subsequently acquired by About.com(An IAC Company) in August of 2000. Jason most recently served as President of MediaWhiz, a leading online direct marketing company which he founded in 2001.
Kate is a co-founder and partner of Scale Venture Partners, a Silicon Valley-based firm that invests in early-in-revenue technology companies that are looking to scale. Kate and the ScaleVP team have backed successful, high growth companies including ExactTarget (SalesForce), Vitrue (Oracle), Ring Central (NYSE: RNG), Hubspot (NYSE: HUBS), Box (NYSE: BOX) and Docusign. ScaleVP is currently investing its $300M Fund IV in companies in the SaaS, cloud, mobile and internet sectors. Kate is instrumental in building the firm’s team and strategic direction. She also focuses on investments in software and business services, including SaaS and Mobile.
Kate is past chairman of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) and remains active in policy matters that impact entrepreneurship, diversity, start-ups and innovation. She chaired the IPO Task Force, whose recommendations to reform the IPO market were included in the JOBS Act, and she currently chairs the NVCA’s new Inclusion & Diversity Task Force. Kate writes a blog for the Wall Street Journal on topics that impact entrepreneurs and startups. She is also a current board member of Silicon Valley Bankshares (SIVB) and is a member of the NASDAQ Private Market Advisory Board.
Ellie Wheeler is a Partner at Greycroft Partners and is based in the firm’s New York office.
Prior to joining Greycroft, Ellie worked in a similar role evaluating investment opportunities at Lowercase Capital. Ellie also worked at Cisco in Corporate Development doing acquisitions, investments, and strategy within the unified communications, enterprise software, mobile, and video sectors. While at Cisco, she was involved in multiple acquisitions and investments, including PostPath, Jabber, Xobni, and Tandberg. She began her career in growth capital private equity at Summit Partners in Boston.
Ellie graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University with a BA in Psychology and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Kirsten brings 20+ years of investment experience to her role as Founder and Managing Director of Forerunner Ventures. She has successfully evaluated and invested in countless consumer oriented businesses, from pre-revenue startups to multi-billion-dollar enterprises. Her ability to draw connections between large and small companies ensures a well-rounded perspective on successful business models, operational and market issues, and consumer trends. She combines an experience- and thesis-driven approach with a consumer centric view to identify compelling brand platforms and partner with visionary entrepreneurs.
As the Founder of Forerunner, Kirsten has raised in excess of $100M from leading institutional investors and invested in 30+ early stage companies. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of several Forerunner portfolio companies including: Bonobos, Glossier, Dollar Shave Club, and Serena & Lily.
Prior to Forerunner, Kirsten was an equity research analyst and investor at Banc of America Securities, formerly Montgomery Securities, covering publicly-traded retail and consumer stocks.
Kirsten graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in Business Economics, and earned a CPA license and a CFA certification. She has been named to Forbes’ Midas List: Hot Prospects.
Fred Wilson has been a venture capitalist since 1987. He currently is a managing partner at Union Square Ventures and also founded Flatiron Partners. Fred has a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from MIT and an MBA from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. Fred is married with three children and lives in New York City.
Monica Dodi is a Co-Founder and Managing Director of the Women’s Venture Capital Fund.
Monica is an international, multilingual new media entrepreneur with a proven track record in creating, launching and building highly successful global brands. A visionary on the cutting edge of the virtual and high-tech landscape, she has founded four highly successful companies, spearheaded rapid turnarounds and negotiated numerous licensing deals with Fortune 500 companies.
As co-founder of MTV Europe, Monica’s marketing expertise, operations and negotiating skills led to MTV becoming the fastest growing channel on the continent covering 16 countries and reaching breakeven in less than a year by launching the first ever Pan European advertising deals. She then joined Walt Disney/Europe where, as head of European Licensing, she was responsible for the successful turnaround of their Consumer Products business, creating new revenue streams for classic and newly released brands.
Greg joined Upfront as a Venture Partner in 2013. Greg was the Chief Marketing Officer for HauteLook, a leading online flash-sale retailer. Launched in December 2007, Los Angeles based HauteLook was acquired by Nordstrom, Inc., in March 2011 for $270mm. Prior to joining HauteLook, Greg was Executive Vice President of Business Development and Strategy at Live Nation, responsible for strategic direction and key business partnerships for Live Nation’s ticketing and digital businesses. Before Live Nation, Greg held a number of leadership positions at eBay, including Sr. Director of Business Development at StubHub, where he led business development, partnerships, sales and seller development, including spearheading StubHub’s landmark relationship with Major League Baseball. Prior to transitioning to StubHub from eBay, he led eBay.com’s Event Tickets and Media businesses (including half.com) and was the business leader who led eBay’s acquisition of StubHub in 2007.
Greg focuses on investment in businesses at the juncture of retail and technology. He is our resident expert on user adoption & acquisition with significant operating experience in marketing and BD at top online retail brands.
Greg received a BA in Political Science from the University of San Diego and an MBA from Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management.
Current: Combatant Gentlemen, Deliv, Draft, GOAT, Happy Returns,HopSkipDrive, Luxe Valet, Retention Science, Ring, Silversheet, thredUP,Walker and Company
Josh Abramson is a Venture Partner at FirstMark Capital. Josh is a serial entrepreneur who co-founded College Humor while still in college and quickly built it into one of the largest and fastest-growing comedy sites on the Internet. While at College Humor, Josh co-founded Vimeo and Busted Tees, which have quickly grown into industry-leading video and e-commerce businesses. Josh is a mentor and friend to entrepreneurs throughout the New York tech ecosystem.
Josh holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Richmond.
Peter Polydor is the Founder and Director of Ergo Capital and our startup accelerator Ergo Accel. Currently he sits on the Board of Directors of ecoPHYSI and SugarsGone as well as the advisory board of a number of startups. Outside of Ergo, Peter is the founder of the Eureka Building, a 3-acre tech hub meant to foster innovation and entrepreneurs in Orange County. As well, Peter is a Professor of Practice in Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Wales.
Prior to ERGO, Peter was Vice President of a cleantech venture capital firm where he reviewed new investment opportunities, accelerated business plans and formed strategic partnerships. Prior to venture, Peter conducted market research at Citigroup, policy research at the US House of Representatives and successfully founded and sold a web-services company.
Further to his work at Ergo, Peter advised the University of Oxford Seed Fund, is a Charter Member of the Canadian C100, recipient of the Greek 40 Under 40 award, the Power 30 Under 30 award, a member of Orange County Young Executives and sat on the Occidental College Board of Governors, American Hellenic Council Board of Directors, OCTANe Leadership Council, and formerly on the Investment Committee of the MaRS Investor Accelerator Fund. Peter was an Edmonson Fellow at the University of Southern California, received his BA in Political Science from Occidental College and his MBA from the University of Oxford, Said Business School.
Schwark has been a serial entrepreneur and senior exec at several consumer and b2b fintech companies. He is a sought after advisor to several start ups and has in the past advised well known companies such as Personal Capital and BillGuard. Schwark was most recently Executive Vice President at Lifelock, the leader in identity theft protection, where he oversaw product, technology, operations, business development and corporate development as well as its fraud analytics subsidiary ID Analytics. Prior to this, Schwark was responsible for all of the Mastercard rewards and offers initiatives around the world.
Prior to this, Schwark was a co-founder and one of the original visionaries behind Truaxis, a card linked loyalty platform that delivers targeted offers driven by consumer transaction behaviors. He served as the CEO of the Trinity portfolio company, till its acquisition by Mastercard.
Before that, Schwark was the co-founder of Yodlee, the platform that underlies most financial technology applications that rely on data or verification of financial institutions. At Yodlee he served in a variety of functions, including chief technology officer. Prior to that, Schwark was at Microsoft in the Microsoft Project group.
Schwark is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras and Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, and is an inventor on 15 US patents.http://www.trinityventures.com/
Husband, father, entrepreneur, technology evangelist, investor, mentor and lifelong hacker.
Jesse’s investment interests includes mobile, SaaS, big data, consumer and e-commerce. Prior to joining Flybridge in 2016, Jesse was an early executive at WeWork, one of the fastest growing and most valuable startups in history. He co-founded WeWork Labs in 2011, which became WeWork’s global startup incubator, and ran WeWork X, M&A, startup investments, business and digital product development as well as inside sales during his five-year tenure at the company.
Prior to WeWork, Jesse was the co-founder and CEO of Backstory, a venture backed startup. Jesse began his career traveling across the United States, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Israel and China as a network security engineer based in Philadelphia. He moved to New York City where he became the head of information technology at LivePerson in 2010.
Prior to Flybridge, Jesse was an active angel investor and serves as an advisor to many early stage technology startups including 3Claps, Authenticated Digital, Benny, Camelot Metrics, Eight, fitmob (acquired by ClassPass), inDinero, Jackpocket, Leo Health, Morsel, Rukkus, Squire, Symple, Thunderclap, Uptown House and YourTrove (acquired by LiveNation).
Jesse attended Drexel University.