Richard Yoo is a Co-Founder and serves as the Chief Executive Officer at Rackspace US. Through his vision and influence, Rackspace has become a powerhouse in the web hosting industry, leveraging its bullet-proof infrastructure and Fanatical Support offering. With a recent IPO and revenues exceeding $300 million annually, its customer list now includes names like Sony Music, GE, Hilton Hotels, Delta Airlines, Virgin and Miller Brewing. Yoo also set out and founded the perfect Self-Managed Server company. Built from the customer up, ServerBeach used custom proprietary technology to tailor the hosting product for a more technical and scrappy user. The Beach (as its often called) has become popular with influential internet hipsters such as Nick Denton of Gawker and Evan Williams of Twitter. Today, Yoo can be found functioning as an advisor to several companies including Inventables and Natuba. While he enjoys spending time advising others with their entrepreneurial endeavors, he spends most of his days at his own start-up incubator - Hush Labs. As an avid technology evangelist, Yoo can be heard via radio as a regular guest of the The David Lawrence Show. He is an active member of the Trinity University Computer Science Advisory Board, and has been recognized as one of San Antonios rising stars with the San Antonio Business Journals Annual 40 Under 40 Award for 2003. Additionally, he is a Houston Technology Centers Emerging Technology Council member, served as the Chair of the Accessibility Internet Rally for Houston and as a judge in the Rice Business Plan Competition (RBPC).
BioGenerator is an evergreen investor that creates, grows and invests in promising companies and entrepreneurs. The firm is the investment arm of BioSTL and it's work spans the early-stage startup lifecycle of companies within the health and plant sciences. The firm identifies and de-risks commercially promising innovations and services, advises innovators and entrepreneurs, recruits and supports entrepreneurial talent, makes staged investments grounded in rigorous due diligence and offers access to lab space and capital equipment..
Paul Silber serves as Co-Founding Principal at Blu Venture Investors. Silber also serves as Advisor at Evergreen Advisors and Insightin Health. Silber serves as Advisor at Evergreen Advisors and also serves as Board Member at Encore Path. He a native of Baltimore was the founder and President/CEO of In Vitro Technologies, (IVT), a bioscience company that provides products and services to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. After relocating to Baltimore in 1991, In Vitro grew from two employees to a staff of 70, including several employees in Europe. The company also expanded its international business to Japan, the U.K., and Germany, while bringing the products of international companies to their North American customers through strategic alliances and distribution relationships.
Cipio Partners is known as a leading international investment management firm in the secondary direct market. The firm was founded in June 2003 and currently manages several funds of early and later-stage venture capital and mid-market investments in various geographies worldwide. Cipio maintains offices in Munich and San Jose. Cipio currently has over 50 companies worldwide under management, representing invested capital of several hundred million dollars. Cipio Partners pursues the acquisition of portfolios of direct private equity investments in the secondary market. The firm considers portfolios across all stages of the investing life-cycle, from early-stage venture capital through mid-market expansion to smaller buy-outs and control investments. Investments may involve equity, mezzanine and debt securities.
Sofia Hmich is a Co-Founder and serves as General Partner at Future Positive Capital. Sofia's career spans technology innovation, investment and social impact. Prior to founding Future Positive Capital, she managed early stage investments at Index Ventures, Europe's top venture capital firm, working directly with leading European angel investor Robin Klein. There she led Index's investments in dozens of companies, such as CityMapper, The Food Assembly, Farfetch, Transferwise, ROLI, PactCoffee, Kano, and Seedcamp III. Before joining Index, Sofia worked for technology companies like Google and Deezer, and founded three education nonprofits. Sofia was chosen as Forbes 30 Under 30 in Finance, is a WEF Global Shaper, a Founder of the Future at Founders Forum, and is an expert advisor to the French government to define the "France 2020" vision. With her international experience, intellectual and philosophical curiosity and a love of rapid-fire conversation (in no less than four languages), Sofia is also an engaging and sought-after speaker and mentor.
Shashank brings entrepreneurial and investment understanding with 15+ years of cross functional expertise. He has acquired a depth and breadth of experience from having worked in large companies, a startup (acquired by a Fortune 500 Company) and an early stage fund investing in technology-enabled startups. He is Founder VC at 100X.VC - India's first venture fund to invest in early-stage startups using iSAFE - India SAFE Notes. Additionally, he is a Member of the Executive Committee at People of Indian Origin Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PIOCCI) - an organization that works with reputed Indian diaspora entrepreneurs, investors, PIOs and associations across the globe. He is also an Angel Investor and Advisor with a keen interest in B2B emerging technology startups. Previously, Shashank was the founding member and Vice President of VCCEdge, the data platform by VCCircle. He led revenue, product development and growth initiatives for close to seven years at VCCEdge. VCCircle was acquired by News Corporation in 2015 where he served as business head for the division until 2016. He has also worked with NIIT Ltd. and Zensar Technologies Ltd. Shashank holds an undergraduate degree in Bachelor of Engineering from Nagpur University and an MBA from International Management Institute (IMI), New Delhi. Specialities: Scaling up Startups, Accelerators, Angel & Seed Investment, Venture Capital, Global Open Innovation, M&A, Cross-Border Transactions & Entrepreneurship
Jason McCabe Calacanis hosts ''This Week In Startups'', part of LAUNCH Media and is the founder and CEO of Inside.com. Previously, he was an ''Entrepreneur in Action'' at Sequoia Capital, Silicon Valley’s leading venture capital firm, a position he held since December 2006. Calacanis co-founded and was the CEO of Weblogs, Inc., a network of popular weblogs that was sold to AOL in November 2005. Upon joining AOL, he was appointed senior vice president. In addition, he was named general manager of AOL's Netscape and was responsible for the July 2006 relaunch of the iconic browser as a social bookmarking news site. Prior to forming Weblogs Inc., Calacanis was the founder of Rising Tide Studios, a media company that published the magazines Silicon Alley Reporter and Digital Coast Reporter. The flagship publication later became Venture Reporter, a venture capital database, and was sold to Dow Jones. Calacanis is from Brooklyn, NY and currently resides in Los Angeles and New York with his wife and bulldog. He received a B.A. in psychology from Fordham University. Calacanis is known for his transparency and insights into the internet and media industries. (Source: [This Week In](http://thisweekinstartups.com/about/))
Noubar is an associate at BCV where he focuses on the fund’s growth and late stage investments across verticals. Prior to joining Blue Cloud Ventures, Noubar was a quantitative risk analyst at a data driven venture capital fund in Silicon Valley where he managed the company’s public portfolio, hedging securities in lock-up periods against market risk. Noubar also helped build multiple algorithmic tools for the fund to predict future market peaks and down cycles, a metric used to reflect the health of primary and secondary venture capital transactions market. Previously, Noubar was a quant researcher at Continuum Investment Advisors, a New York based hedge fund, where he led a team of financial engineers in building trade automation engines that were tested to yield striking Sharpe ratios. Before that, Noubar managed and grew an import/export business that he started in the Middle East, with a large client base in the region as well as North-East and Central Africa. After the successful exit of his business, he moved to New York City to pursue his passion in entrepreneurship and technology investments. Noubar holds a master’s degree in Operations Research from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the American University of Beirut. Noubar’s time is fully dedicated to the fund’s investments, but whenever he finds free time, he enjoys playing basketball, skiing, reading novels, watching TV documentaries, attending tech conferences and watching to TEDx talks. Noubar speaks six languages, including Arabic, Armenian, English , French, Spanish and Turkish.
BlackRock is an asset manager and private equity firm which provides a wide range of services such as investment banking, risk management, advisory, equity, fixed income, balanced portfolios and asset management. The firm invests in the real estate, education, retail, energy, healthcare, materials, financial services, software and information technology sectors. The firm was founded in 1988 and is headquartered in New York, New York.
Vikas Taneja serves as Senior Partner and Managing Director at The Boston Consulting Group. Vikas Taneja joined The Boston Consulting Group in 1998. He is a global topic leader in sales, sales force effectiveness, account planning, and several other topics within the firm's Marketing, Sales & Pricing practice. He is also BCG's technology, media, and telecommunications node in Boston. Vikas has focused on achieving profitable growth at major corporations. He has led major programs to improve business performance through sales productivity, better product portfolios, process reengineering, and organization restructuring. Before joining BCG, Vikas worked at Arch Technology Partners, where he evaluated and helped commercialize new technologies emerging from the University of Chicago's academic labs and medical school. Vikas also worked in the information and technology group at McKinsey. Vikas is a member of BCG's executive committee and the Boston lead of Pratham, an India-based organization that has helped more than 4 million children achieve literacy and basic mathematics skills. He is also an Angel Investor.
I am passionate about starting and running businesses that use technology to create value. Some hats that I wear include. ANGEL INVESTOR: I invest in startups in multiple verticals. My portfolio companies include • SAAS based startups in Marketing technology space in North America • E-commerce, infotainment, edutech companies in Asia • Gaming studios. Mind and body wellness startups I am running an incubator and angel network that aims to help entrepreneurs in Asia to get off the ground and create their next big venture. Ping me, If you have a great idea, prototype or running product or if you are excited about learning investment opportunities in the red-hot startup space in South Asia and Middle east. FOUNDER & CEO: I have run several companies as founder and CEO, a quick glance include TKXEL: A software services company that provide solutions involving analytics, mobile, web and other components to companies across the globe. We have worked with several fortune 500 enterprises, respectable SMBs and promising startups. If you are searching for a great team or have a business proposition, we are keen to listen. I am as a CEO of tkxel, manage it on daily basis and responsible for its growth and strategic direction NUTTY APPS: Founded a kids gaming brand and grew it to 500M+ installs with over 1M installs/day in a couple of years before handing it over to an executive team to run it. STRATEGIC ALLIANCEZ (SA): Founded a digital media agency in 2010 that moved on to become the No1 digital agency in Pakistan with several awards to its credit. EDUCATOR, SPEAKER: I am an educator at heart. I love to mentor, teach, train and share knowledge. I speak at various conferences and give lectures on CS and Entrepreneurship in universities. Some of my taught courses are televised by universities on TV and web as well.