Brett Topche is a Co-Founder and serves as Partner at Red & Blue Ventures. Brett Topche serves as Managing Director at MentorTech Ventures. He also serves as Advisor at entreprenYOURS. He joined MentorTech Ventures in 2007 and has more than a decade of venture capital and private equity experience. He has spent much of his career primarily focusing on investments in ecommerce, digital media, mobile applications, marketing technologies and B2B software. He represents MentorTech on the Boards of Directors of Cloudmine and PayPerks and served on the Board of Wanderfly prior to its acquisition. He also serves as a Board Observer at Curalate, Quad Learning, Burrow, Soft Tissue Regeneration and TicketLeap and was a Board Observer at SeniorHomes.com prior to its acquisition by Bankrate. He also served as a member of the Investor Advisory Board of SnipSnap prior to its acquisition by Slyce. Prior to joining MentorTech, he was a member of the Fund Investments Team at Hamilton Lane Advisors, a fund-of-funds manager and private equity investment consultant. In this capacity, he evaluated private equity funds across a broad spectrum of stages and strategies on behalf of both discretionary and non-discretionary clients. During his time at Hamilton Lane, Topche reviewed more than 100 funds, including venture capital, mezzanine, buyout and real estate funds. Based in part on reports he drafted, more than $1 billion was invested into these funds. Prior to working for Hamilton Lane, Topche spent more than four years as an Associate with NJTC Venture Fund, where he focused on investments in early-stage companies in the software, Internet and communications sectors. His responsibilities included deal flow generation, initial company reviews, performing due diligence on potential investments, participating in deal structuring, reviewing legal documentation and working with companies post-investment, occasionally as an Observer on Boards of Directors. Topche is a magna cum laude graduate of the Wharton School, with a B.S. in Economics, with concentrations in Finance and Legal Studies and a Political Science minor from the College and Arts and Sciences.
Volta Ventures is a venture capital firm that invests in the internet, media, mobile, ecommerce and software sectors. The firm was founded in 2004 and is headquartered in Belgium, Belgium.
Norwest Venture Partners
Sergio brings to NVP extensive operational and venture capital experience from a wide range of business and consumer technology companies. Sergio is focused on early and growth investments in ecommerce, consumerized SaaS, consumer finance, and educational technologies. His current investments and board seats include Adaptive Planning, Bionic Panda Games, Branchout, Gemvara, Motif Investing, and Rafter. Sergio was previously on the board of The DealMap (acquired by Google), myYearbook (acquired by Quepasa), and StarCite (acquired by The Active Network). He is a board observer at InsightsOne and Lending Club. Sergio started his career at Morgan Stanley, where he advised several companies on mergers and acquisitions. Sergio was also a marketing and business development manager at Portal Software (now part of Oracle) which had a successful Initial Public Offering in 1999, during his tenure. Sergio was also the co-founder and first business development executive at Cymerc, which was a hosted SaaS solution for consumers and small-sized businesses. Sergio successfully raised two rounds of venture financing and grew Cymerc from inception to more than $15 million in sales. From 2001 to 2005, Sergio was Director of the Mobile Electronics Categories at eBay, which he grew from $150 million to more than $500 in gross merchandise sales. Prior to NVP, Sergio was Vice President of Marketing at Photobucket, which was successfully sold to News Corp. for $300 million in 2007. Sergio was born and raised in Latin America and has worked in Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico. Sergio holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a bachelor of science degree in management sciences and engineering (industrial engineering) from Stanford University.
Tim Guleri serves as Managing Director at Sierra Ventures. He serves as the Board Member at Appcues. He is also an angel investor. He serves as the Board Member at Applitools. He also serves as a Board Member at DotNetNuke, Appcelerator and MakeMyTrip. He joined the firm in 2001 and focuses on investments in the consumer (mobile Internet), enterprise software (SaaS), infrastructure software (security, deployment, management), and open source. Guleri has several years of hands on operating and investing experience, but also on a solid technical education. Prior to joining the firm, he built two software infrastructure companies. Guleri served as the Vice Chairman and the Executive Vice President of Business Development at Epiphany. He co-founded Octane Software and served as the Chief Executive Officer and the Chairman from 1997 to 2000. Guleri served as a Vice President of Technical Field Operations and Product Marketing at Scopus Technology from 1992 to 1997, heading the Sales and Marketing functions, and was a leader in the CRM space. He began his career as an Executive in Information Technology at LSI Logic between 1989 and 1992. Guleri has presented at numerous industry conferences such as ABA, ETRA, DCI, and eCommerce World. He also serves on Board of PhenomPeople. He holds a BS degree in Electrical Engineering from Punjab Engineering College and MS degree in Industrial Engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech).
Gary Vaynerchuk is a Co-Founder and serves as the Chief Executive Officer at VaynerMedia. He is also a Co-Founder and serves as Partner at Vayner/RSE. He is also a Co-Founder of Brave Ventures. Gary is a member of the board at Faithbox, and serves as an Advisor at HubSpot. Gary rose to prominence in the late 90's after establishing one of the first ecommerce wine sites, WineLibrary helping his father grow the family business from 4 to 60MM in sales. Gary is also one of the most sought after public speakers alive today. He is a venture capitalist, 4-time New York Times bestselling author, and an early investor in companies such as Twitter, Tumblr, Venmo and Uber. Gary has been named to both Crain's and Fortune's 40 Under 40 lists. Gary is currently the subject of DailyVee, an online documentary series highlighting what it's like to be a CEO and public figure in today's digital world. He is also the host of #AskGaryVee, a business and advice Q&A show online. He has a degree from Mount Ida College. He is an Angel Investor.
John left HomeAway in the spring of 2012 to help co-found TurnKey Vacation Rentals. He began his career after graduating with a BBA in Finance from Wisconsin in traditional travel at Northwest Airlines. He started in revenue management and was later tapped to work for the Amsterdam-based KLM/NWA alliance. After graduating with an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Banczak joined Accenture’s Strategic Services group in San Francisco, specializing in eCommerce and business strategy for clients such as Microsoft and FedEx. After working at the Bay Area based lodging start up Worldres.com, Banczak was recruited to Hotwire, where he ran the company’s Airline, GDS and Car Rental operations groups. Shortly after Hotwire was acquired by Expedia, Banczak moved to BedandBreakfast.com, eventually becoming President. Banczak helped dramatically grow the company’s revenues and managed the acquisition of the company by HomeAway in 2010. Subsequently, Banczak ran the HomeAway Software for Professionals groups, leading the post-merger acquisitions of Instant Software and Escapia.
Jao is a Co-Founder and serves as Chief Executive Officer at Retention Science. He is a also an Angel Investor. He serves as an advisor at KohFounders. Earlier, Jerry was an analyst with Morgan Stanley, an engagement manager with BearingPoint Management Consulting (KPMG Advisory), and most recently an advisor to the CFO of Clear Channel, working on digital initiatives such as iHeartRadio. Jerry has been named an Innovation Agent by Fast Company and a Hot Shot Entrepreneur by Biz Journals. He has appeared on Fox News, CNBC Big Data Download and Clear Channel Tech Talk. He has spoken at various conferences and is a regular writer for Forbes, Entrepreneur Magazine and Practical Ecommerce. Jerry is a graduate of UC Berkeley, where he received a B.S. in Business Administration and a full-tuition scholarship as an Alumni Scholar and Yale School of Management.
Kyle York is an Angel Investor. He serves as Chief Strategy Officer at Dynamic Network Services. He also serves as Advisor at Bliss. He serves as the Chief Revenue Officer and Chief Marketing Officer for Internet Infrastructure Company, Dynamic Network Services, where he leads the overall sales, business development, customer service and marketing efforts for the company. He is responsible for the corporate strategy and positioning behind Dyn's rapid and aggressive expansion into the enterprise marketplace and eCommerce revenue growth. He is a co-founder of startup 1brand, sits on the Board of Directors for Growth Engine Company, Incutio, is Board Chair and President of tech incubator, abi Innovation Hub, and is a Board Advisor for web performance monitoring company, Catchpoint. He has been a speaker at Bentley University, St. Anselm's College, Southern New Hampshire University, Interop, Next Web Conference, eCommerce Expo and CloudCamp and is a a contributor for sales leadership blogs Selling Power and SalesSchool. He holds a BS in Marketing from Bentley University. He is a Board Member of Datanyze.
Founded in 1996, Northzone Ventures is a venture capital firm based in London, England with additional offices in Stockholm, Sweden; New York, New York and Oslo, Norway. The firm focuses on investing in companies operating in the mobile, nanotechnology, manufacturing, energy, information technology, SaaS, media and eCommerce sectors located in Europe and United States.
Zach Ware is a Co-Founder & serves as Managing Partner at VTF Capital. As Managing Partner Zach, in addition to helping find and support awesome companies, gets to do the boring internal stuff. He's founded several companies including SHIFT, a massive transportation operation and technology company which nearly killed him. Before that he was Head of Product at Zappos.com and built its current campus. Previously he led distribution and later ecommerce for The Republic of Tea. His background includes leadership in real estate development and government relations.
Tom Chiu serves as Venture Partner at Enspire Capital. Tom Chiu serves as a Board of Director at Sand Hill Angels. He has spent over 20 years in various high tech industries including mobile software, consumer electronics, wireless, patent sales/license, semiconductors, and embedded systems. Tom is currently the founder of IPforAsia, an intellectual property marketplace to bridge between Greater China and large U.S. corporations. Tom has worked in Shanghai from 2003-2007 as a founding member of Philips/NXP Software. Prior to the expatriate assignment, Tom was the lead of Philips Connected Home initiative which later became the blueprint of Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA). Tom also represented Philips in WiFi Alliance as secondary board member and Chair of DLNA China Task Force. He has held various director positions at Sina.com, Philips and NXP. Tom has a BS degree in Computer Science and a MBA in Product Marketing. He also received NYSE Series 7 Stock and Dealer license in 1988. Tom has been an active investor for over 12 years. He serves on several advisory boards and has a passion to work with startups in mobile, internet, location and eCommerce space.
Brian Sugar is a Co-Founder and serves as Chief Executive Officer and Board Member of PopSugar. With nearly two decades of experience as a digital media executive and entrepreneur, Brian Sugar is cofounder and CEO of POPSUGAR, the web venture he began with his wife, Lisa, in 2006. As CEO, he is responsible for the overall business strategy and growth of the company, which has steadily evolved into a leading global lifestyle brand with more than 40 million users worldwide, connecting a primarily female audience with fresh entertainment, products, and experiences they're most passionate about. Prior to taking over the world at POPSUGAR, Brian spent nearly three years as Vice President and General Manager of media at 2Wire, Inc., a home broadband provider, and held several management positions in the retail and commerce industries. From 1999-2001 he was Chief Web Officer at Kmart's BlueLight.com and previously served as Vice President of ecommerce at J.Crew and as a founder of Neptune Interactive, a leading Internet service provider.
Ellie Wheeler serves as Partner at Greycroft Partners. She served as a Board Observer at Savoteur and serves as an Advisor at Fisoc. Her responsibilities include evaluating investment opportunities, sourcing new deals, and working with existing portfolio companies. Prior to joining Greycroft, she worked in a similar role during business school evaluating investment opportunities at Lowercase Capital with investor Chris Sacca. Before working with Lowercase, Wheeler worked at Cisco in Corporate Development doing acquisitions, investments, and strategy within the communications, collaboration, and video verticals. Ellie's past experience also includes working briefly at the London-based venture capital firm DN Capital, focused on early stage ecommerce companies. She began her career in growth capital private equity at Summit Partners in Boston. Wheeler graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University with a BA in Psychology and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.
A Managing Partner at GGV Capital, Jeff joined the firm in 2008 after spending 13 years as an entrepreneur and operating executive in the US and Asia. Prior to joining GGV, Jeff founded two venture-backed companies, one a success and one a “huge failure” in his own words – “I learned a lot.” His background as an entrepreneur gives him a unique perspective on the challenges of starting and running a venture-backed company, and he works closely with the GGV Talent team on Founders + Leaders. Jeff focuses on the Software and Internet sectors, and currently sits on the boards of or is a board observer at BigCommerce, one of the top ecommerce software platforms, Boxed, a rising star in the ecommerce space, Brightwheel, the leading SaaS provider for the early education vertical, Gladly, a next generation SaaS platform for customer care, Percolate, a leading marketing SaaS platform for global brands,PlushCare, a mobile platform for consumer healthcare, Reebonz, Southeast Asia’s leader in luxury ecommerce, Slice, a market network for the pizza industry, and Tile, the platform for location. Jeff also led GGV’s investments in Appirio (acquired in 2016 by Wipro), BlueKai (acquired in 2014 by Oracle), Buddy Media (acquired in 2012 by Salesforce), Citrus Lane (acquired in 2014 by Care.com), Evolv (acquired in 2014 by Cornerstone OnDemand), Flipboard, HotelTonight, ShiftGig, Voicera and Zylo, and has been actively involved in GGV’s investments in Domo, OpenDoor, Square and Wish. Prior to joining GGV, Jeff founded two software companies: R4, a supply chain SaaS business acquired by VeriSign (NASDAQ: VRSN), and QuantumShift, a telecom software business backed by Texas Pacific Group (TPG). Earlier in his career, Jeff worked in Asia and Latin America with PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Jeff graduated from Dartmouth College, where he was a four-year letterman on the basketball team and is on the Advisory Board for the Dartmouth Entrepreneur Network (DEN). Jeff is a frequent guest on CNBC and often writes on topics like startup management and leadership, venture-backed IPOs and shifts in tech trends across the US and China. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jrichlive or check out his LinkedIn profile for more information.
SaaS Capital is a provider of debt capital to companies with a revenue of $2.5 to $20 million and headquartered in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom. The firm seeks to provide line-of-credit in the technology enabled service, fin tech, eCommerce, big data, application software, healthcare and business software sectors.