Serdar Turac, is the Founder and CEO of Silicon Valley Ignite (SVI) Academy and Business Development (BD) Partners. A passionate leader with first class networking and organizational skills, he now focuses on helping international entrepreneurs to succeed at the global stage. Combining his doctoral level expertise in Finance and Business Administration with 10+ years of field experience in Wall Street, NY and most recently Silicon Valley, CA. Serdar has a track
Behzad Nasre, Global business leader with 30 years of executive experience and deep expertise with proven track record in business and strategy development, strategic planning, general management of large scale, cross cultural and global organizations at one of the largest technology companies, Intel corporation, as well as a fast growing startup company, Endura Technologies. Managing Director Business Development for Intel for more than 10 years. Multiple achievement awards for leading deals w
Gerry Baranano brings over 25 years’ experience in new product introductions and traditional sales and marketing with deep expertise in launching new innovative products and services into established industries, both domestically and internationally. Gerry played a key role in selling an early stage technology company for $3.2 billion. Gerry brings a comprehensive understanding of all the elements necessary to start a successful technology company from his experience as founder and CEO of severa
Lynn Nichols, is the CEO of X Intellectual Property. Formerly a professor of linguistics at Harvard University and UC Berkeley for 14 years, Lynn has deep expertise in how we use names, the form and meaning of words, and the intuitions behind language. She serves as an advisor on name strategy and brand development at Stanford’s Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, Alchemist Accelerator, and incubators, seed networks & VC mentors for startup. Her work with startups and established businesses inc
Jens Weitzel, is a seasoned Technology Executive, Advisor and Mentor with over 20 years of software and technology experience – gained from B2B and B2C businesses in enterprises and startups. Jens mentors and consults with early-stage technology startups in Silicon Valley and Mentoring start-up founders participating in the Stanford University accelerator program (STARTX) and serving on their advisory board. In his engagements with technology startups, he focuses on strategy development, busine
Mark Klopp is an independent consultant who serves as a board member and business advisor for several private ventures. Mark is a former Board Member of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) and served as Chairman and founding member of the Corporate Venture Group. Formerly Managing Director of Eastman Ventures, Eastman Chemical Company's corporate venture capital arm, Mark started up and led the company's efforts to invest in and partner with private companies. He and his team forged
Paul Kallmes, Independent technology professional with a focus on foreign start-ups coming to the US, with a specialty in the strategic management of intellectual property. Mr. Kallmes has extensive experience in the field of strategic IP management in numerous fields. He managed the extensive IP portfolio for Color Kinetics, where he helped to create the industry's primary licensing platform. He served as a General Manager of the Custom Solutions Business Unit at Lighting Science Group Corpora
Roy Terry, Founder of The Primal Pitch. Roy Terry is a professional pitch coach who has served numerous startups here in Silicon Valley. Mr. Terry has been training and coaching communication in the Silicon Valley since 1995 and his past clients include Hewlett Packard, Oracle Corporation, Talentoday, Pageyourself, Price Match and many more. Mr. Terry is trained as a public speaker, NLP practitioner and also incorporates knowledge and practice from stage acting and hypnosis.
Vera Shokina, is a Managing Director with Silicon Valley Bank's Global Gateway group. In this role she assists international venture capital funds and global innovation companies with their US and international market expansion. Prior to joining SVB, Vera was a Partner, CFO and COO of Runa Capital, a $200MM venture capital fund, where she was responsible for all finance, legal, operations and investor relations functions. Prior to joining Runa in 2010, Vera spent five years as a VP with Silicon
Pavel Cherkashin, is a managing partner of GVA Capital. He is a Russian entrepreneur and venture capitalist and was named “Russian Entrepreneur to Watch For” by Mashable. Previously, he was with Microsoft, where he led the consumer and online department in Russia. He also established and managed offices for Adobe in Russia and CIS. Earlier in his career, he founded several IT companies, including Sputnik Labs (now part of TechnoServ Group), AdWatch (now part of AEGIS/Isobar), and Actis Systems
Riaz Karamali, Corporate Partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP a top ranked international law firm. He is known for his expertise in corporate law, venture finance, private equity, strategic mergers and acquisitions and technology transactions. He has worked with hundreds of start-up and emerging companies and their investors, guiding them from their pre-founding stages through their angel and venture capital financing rounds, significant commercial contracts and strategic alliances to
Sam McAfee, helps companies build and scale new digital products, find and master product-market fit, and improve software development process and teamwork. Sam has helped numerous technology product teams to be successful and deliver meaningfully for their business. He has participated directly in six startups, and has coached and advised countless others. He recently published the book, Startup Patterns. He uses a structured framework that combines the best practices of Design Thinking, Lean
Jeff Faust CVA (Certified Valuation Analyst) is the director of valuation services at Abbott, Stringham and Lynch. Jeff has extensive experience in the valuation of startups / private companies for various purposes: fundraising, mergers/acquisitions, stock options grants (IRC § 409A) and more. He has provided valuation expertise to startups of all sizes and stages of development and in a wide variety of industries including hi-tech (software, SaaS, mobile, telecom, social media, cloud, data, etc
Michelle Tsing earned her JD from the University of Santa Clara School of Law and her B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley. During her time at law school, she structured and negotiated IP, marketing and e-commerce transactions at Cisco, eBay, Samsung and Apple legal departments. At Sunrise Telecom, she handled all legal matter with the General Counsel including SEC compliance, stock distribution and setting up businesses worldwide.
Michelle worked at PayPal for more than six years a
Sophie Alcorn founded Alcorn Immigration Law in Mountain View, California, to focus on the U.S. immigration law needs of Silicon Valley. She obtains visas, green cards and citizenship for startup founders, investors, tech talent and their families. Sophie has represented individuals and corporations on hundreds of cases, including H-1B, O-1, PERM, I-140, and Adjustment of Status.
Sophie is a California native and first came to the Silicon Valley when she attended Stanford University and studied
Rana Gujral is an Entrepreneur (founder, InsureHound), Turnaround CEO and an Investor. Rana founded a leading enterprise SaaS startup TiZE. Rana serves as a contributing writer at TechCrunch and Forbes and advises several startups. Rana was recently listed among Top 10 Entrepreneurs to follow in 2017 by Huffington Post.
In his role as Founder and CEO of TiZE, Rana raised the initial round and led the company through its formative traction. Prior to TiZE, Rana was recruited to be a part of the
Jie Zhu, has been with Petrinovich Pugh & Company since 1999 and was admitted as a Partner in June of 2013. Jie received her Bachelor of Arts in International Business from Xiamen University in China, and her Bachelor of Science in Accounting from San Jose State University. Her specialties include assisting international start-up companies with accounting and tax needs, helping international investors with tax planning and compliance, estate and gift tax planning, and trust and probate accounti
Christine Redfield focuses her practice on strategic international brand counseling and protection, including the development and management of international trademark portfolios, creative brand enforcement strategies and trademark rights online. She advises clients on the availability, use, registration, and enforcement of trademarks in the United States and worldwide markets.
Chris also counsels clients on a variety of trademark related issues including trade dress infringement, trademark di
Christina Tsakona is an international startup lawyer with significant professional legal experience in both the U.S. and Europe. Her corporate legal counsel focuses in entity formation, venture capital financing, cross-border transactions, and commercial agreements for startup companies in the US and globally. Christina has assisted and consulted over 40 U.S. and international startups and more developed companies through all sensitive points of related financing and transaction processes.
Bill Reichert - Managing Director, Garage Technology Ventures. Bill spent most of his early career as an entrepreneur and operating executive. Since joining Garage in 1998, Bill has focused on early-stage information technology and materials science companies. Bill and Garage have helped many great companies get their start, including Pandora Media, LeftHand Networks, Kaboodle, and Tripwire.
Bill has been a board director or board observer at CaseStack, WhiteHat Security, ClearFuels Technology
Daniela Busse (Ph.D.), Director at Citi Ventures’ Global Innovation Network, focuses on breakthrough innovation in labs across the US, Asia, Israel, and Europe, with deep expertise in Design and User Experience Research. Throughout her career, she has been continuously analyzing, envisioning, and redefining the role of technology in people’s everyday lives. Prior to joining Citi she held roles as director-level Design Futurist and innovation team lead at Samsung Research America (SRA), as UX Dir
John Racioppi, 20+ years of experience in Enterprise Software, focused on development tools, middleware, and infrastructure, and more recently, social media. Experience building sales organizations from the ground up or managing large existing sales groups. P&L responsibility for $100M + business. General Management skills in budgeting, HR, finance, and software development management. Experience creating strategies for a variety of startup businesses. Specialties: Enterprise software sales ma
Ben Toker, is the Founder & CEO of Checkup, data-driven health management company that provides smart phone based testing, monitoring and interpretation. Prior to that he worked with organizations like U.S, Department of Health & Human Services, Google, Cisco. He has been in Apple ecosystem for over 15 years and launched one of the first apps in AppStore which reached 110M+ users. He serves on the board of AGBU-Silicon Valley, AVC and HyeTech as well as advises and mentors successful startups.
Alex Ermolaev has 20 years of experience in the software industry, including AI-related experience at Bell Labs, Microsoft, several startups and most recently, Nvidia. Alex is currently leading AI software alliances and developer relations and working with incredible software companies implementing groundbreaking AI solutions across many different domains.
P.K. Agarwal serves as the Dean and CEO of Northeastern University–Silicon Valley. He also serves as the Chairman of Future 500, a Bay Area-based pioneer in the area of global sustainability. Formerly, he was the CEO of TiE Global, an organization dedicated to fostering entrepreneurship across 61 cities in 18 countries. Prior to TiE, P.K served as Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Chief Technology Officer for the State of California. He has also been in executive and management roles with ACS (n
Amanda Bradford, is the founder of The League, an exclusive dating app that matches smart, busy, and ambitious people together. The goal was to create power couples by matching up highly motivated single professionals. She raised $2.1 million in seed funding in January 2015. Amanda studied at Carnegie Mellon and Stanford, and worked for Sequoia Capital, Salesforce, and Google before launching The League.
After graduating from Carnegie Mellon with a degree in Information Systems, Amanda joined
Naeem Zafar, is a serial entrepreneur and currently serves as the co-founder and CEO of TeleSense, an IoT (Internet of Things) company creating solutions for the food safety and regulatory compliance in critical industries. He co-founded and served as the CEO of Bitzer Mobile, an enterprise security and mobility company that was acquired by Oracle in November 2013. Naeem has been teaching at the University of California Berkeley, Center of Entrepreneurship and Technology in 2005. He is also th
Michelle Killebrew, Chief Marketing Officer at Nomiku. Michelle is passionate about marketing, especially innovative digital marketing strategies that deliver a superior brand experience—from initial acquisition through to loyal customer—and increase growth and profitability. Fluent in both B2B and B2C marketing strategies, she uses an intense focus on customer needs and expectations to drive growth and results. She believes in measurement and iteration. Michelle has over 16 years of high-tech
Eric Save is a corporate/M&A partner in the K&L Gates Law Firm’s San Francisco office and a member of the firm’s Latin America practice. He has represented clients with respect to a broad range of matters in Mexico, Brazil and other parts of Latin America, including cross-border M&A transactions, joint ventures, venture capital investments, start-up company matters, investments in energy and mining projects, secured lending transactions, and the establishment or sourcing of operations in the reg
Ron Wood, has focused for the last 25+ years, on bringing disruptive new hardware and software technologies to the market, word processors, personal computers, digital photography, digital video, AR/VR. Wood is Director of Business Development at Altuit Design. Altuit focuses on Product Visualization and designing new products to bring to market. As VP International at Truevision, he sold Digital video equipment to Sony Broadcast in Atsugi Japan. Designed a new OEM digital video capture board
Mike Rogers After years successfully crafting a corporate strategy and executing on M&A deals for his employers, Mike found that he could help more than one client at a time - so he went into business for himself, successfully helping multiple companies grow, develop partnerships, and eventually exit simultaneously. In founding The Revenue Group, Mike has made countless connections and lifelong friendships helping cyber security entrepreneurs discover strategic methods for increasing their valu
Ken Rutsky helps B2B growth company executives in sales, marketing, and the C-Suite to breakthrough, achieve, and grow market leadership in new and existing markets. His clients not only lead, they improve key sales and marketing metrics like leads to revenue and opportunities to close. Ken has spent 20+ years in B2B marketing roles, launching the Intel Inside broadcast co-op program in 1991 and the Internet’s first affiliate marketing program, Netscape Now, at Netscape from 1995-99; has been CM
Frank Willemsen is a Board member of Sand Hill Angels, one of the most active Angel Investment organizations in the US with more than 100 Silicon Valley executives that mentor, advise and invest into early stage companies. He is a results-driven leader with sales, channel, marketing, cloud, and Business development and S/W experience within the information technology and telecommunications sector, including leadership roles with Cisco Systems, KPN, Sprint, EDS (acquired by HP). Having worked an
Sal Lucido is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and Associate Professor at CSU Monterey Bay with over 20 years of experience with founding, building and managing software companies. As founder and executive VP at AssurX, Sal has grown the business with no required investment capital into a profitable, multimillion dollar, international enterprise software company. Sal has also written and marketed several successful mobile apps and advises other entrepreneurs starting up businesses of their own. S
Britt L. Anderson
Britt L. Anderson has been Partner of Intellectual Property Litigation Practice at K&L Gates LLP since February 2011. Mr. Anderson served as the Head of US Securities Practice for Asia at Norton Rose Fulbright LLP. Prior to joining K&L Gates, he served as a Senior Attorney in the intellectual property groups of two leading national law firms. Before attending law school, he held several executive positions with international companies. From 1992 to 1997, he directed the startup of an internatio
Chien Wei Chou
Chien Wei Chou is a partner in the K&L Gates Law Firm San Francisco office and focuses on intellectual property litigation. He is the former legal director of intellectual property for Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company overseeing all intellectual property matters including inter alia, patents and trade secrets. Prior to joining the K&L Gates, Mr. Chou practiced with several law firms in California in the areas of intellectual property and patent litigation. In addition to his legal pra
Brian Graham is a partner in the firm’s Austin office where he concentrates his practice in corporate and investment-based immigration law and is a member of the labor, employment and workplace safety practice group. He is internationally recognized for his expertise in obtaining visas, permanent residency, and citizenship for athletes, entertainers, executives, healthcare professionals, investors, religious workers, information technology workers, professors, and researchers. Mr. Graham regula
Gary Jinks has spent his entire career in Silicon Valley producing innovative products and getting them into the hands of customers. Gary is the President of GLJ Group, a consulting firm which focuses on strategic planning and new market entry. Their efforts have resulted in over $300M in new business for clients.
Gary is also the founder, managing director and chairman of the board of South Valley Angels, an angel investor group which he launched in 2011. Gary is highly respected and very a
Jeri Cafesin is a veteran creative director, a Stanford marketing educator, and the founder of IPP Global—educating entrepreneurs in the practice of marketing a business to thrive. A Silicon Valley MarCom specialist since the dawn of the dot-com boom, from Fortune 100s, to seed-funded fledglings, her marketing strategies have aided innovators in turning their ideas, or developed products, into marketable offerings of value. Her campaigns for Stac, MD2, 1928, Bay Networks, Xerox FCU, The Learning
Nitin Vaish is an advisor in the energy and transportation sector. Over the past two decades, he led products and strategy at SunPower, launch of EV energy storage business at Celanese, and a new start-up within GE. He is an advisory board member and consultant to early stage companies and venture funds in autonomous, connected, electric, and shared (ACES) space. He is also on the leadership team of IITStartups, an accelerator helping early-stage companies founded by IIT alumni.
Nitin earned h
Roger Royse is the founder of Royse Law Firm, PC, a business and tax law firm with offices in Northern and Southern California. Roger practices in the areas of corporate and securities law, domestic and international tax, mergers and acquisitions, and fund formation. His clients include international emerging and middle-market companies and high net worth individuals. Roger has represented companies in a variety of industries, including clean tech, Internet, life sciences, entertainment and new
Bill Ahmann is founder and managing partner of Ahmann Law Firm.
Bill focuses on intellectual property law in the fields of wireless networks, telecommunications, computers, software, semiconductors, electronics, security, business methods, and the Internet.
Other areas of his practice include patent prosecution, licensing, litigation, copyright, trademark procurement, and designs protection. Bill has worked with a number of clients, rendering patent opinions, including invalidity and noninf
André Gueziec is an entrepreneur and executive with a unique combination of product vision, technical depth, and start-up expertise. André founded Beat the Traffic and sold it to the Pelmorex Canadian media group (“The Weather Network”).
André is an angel investor and advisor to selected technology companies. His sweet spot is to be a catalyst in early stage opportunities where it also makes sense for him to actively participate in an advisory role. He has published forty peer-reviewed paper
Edwin M. Oh
Managing Director, Infrastructure Group
Edwin Oh is Co-Founder of Infrastructure Group, LLC which has been providing marketing and operational services to early stage startups in Silicon Valley for the past 10 years. He has over 25 years of experience in technology commercialization including as CEO of small public and private high technology companies. He also teaches marketing and entrepreneurship with Stanford University’s Continuing Studies Program, including BUS213: Principles of Product/M
Chuck DeVita founded and leads Growth Process Group (GPG), a strategic sales & marketing consulting firm that helps enterprise solution providers enter markets and improve sales productivity, revenue growth and profitability. GPG is focused on helping B2B Software as a Service (SaaS) solution providers.
He has over thirty years’ experience in Sales and Marketing management of technology companies and has been working with SaaS Solutions since 1999. He has developed regional and worldwide sales
James Young has been described as an “engaging, innovative design leader.” He’s worked in user experience design for more than two decades, and has demonstrated the ability to build a sustainable culture of creativity and teamwork. Along the way, James has partnered with a variety of forward-thinking, industry-leading organizations (such as Apple, Adobe, AOL, Intuit, eBay and Yahoo!) to optimize their user experiences and increase their market share, revenue, and customer loyalty. James teaches
Neil Shroff has over twenty years of middle-market mergers and acquisitions experience and has led a significant number of transactions on the buy-side and sell-side as a private equity–backed CEO, three exits as an entrepreneur, angel investor, mergers and acquisitions specialist, and management consultant.
Ron Schilling, PhD & Director of Strategic Planning for GE has become #1 in the world to set in place the establishment of the 8800 CT. He joined Motorola in their MOS division & later entered the Medical Imaging at GE CT. He also worked as Senior Vice President of Toshiba Medical USA. For the past 7 years, while also bringing Interactive Virtual Reality to the market at EchoPixel, the concept of “Bridging the Radiology-Surgery Gap” was established. Dr. Schilling has achieved over 100 presentati
Eugene Shteyn teaches Principles of Invention, Scalable Innovation, and Innovation Timing at Stanford University Continuing Studies Program. He is a Partner, Head of IP, at Zoic Capital LLC, a venture capital fund that invests in early stage medical technology companies. He is a named inventor on thirty-five patents in the technology industry: internet services, media streaming, medical systems, and superconducting devices. He is the co-author of Scalable Innovation: A Guide for Inventors, Entre
David Walling advises startup founders and leaders on persuasion and selling. During his nearly thirty years at IBM, he sold new and established products into emerging and mature segments. As a consultant and coach, he has adapted tested IBM influence skills for new companies. He was vice president of sales at two startups prior to founding his company.
Laura M. Powers
Laura M. Powers is an international speaker, trainer and coach with over twenty-five years of professional experience at Procter & Gamble, HP, Sales.com, and eBay, well as several ill-fated start-ups you never heard of. Known for her people-first approach, Laura is committed to growing work environments where teams love what they do and produce extraordinary business outcomes. She is the founder of the consultancy “Powered By Teams,” and holds enough Agile certifications to make a large bowl of
Bret Waters has spent his whole career in Silicon Valley as an entrepreneur, investor, and academic. Today he teaches at Stanford University, coaches CEO’s at Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship and does occasional angel investing. He has founded and run three Silicon Valley software companies, raising venture capital and managing exits. He has also run two non-profit organizations and spent six years on the board of the Stanford University Graduate School of Education. He received his MBA
Stuart is the Founder and CEO of Out of the Fog Research LLC (OFR) based in Mountain View, CA. He has successfully won, managed, and transitioned over $30 million in SBIR projects.
For the past 12 years, Stuart has led programs at OFR to develop and transition RF Front-end technology for SIGINT systems. Stuart has taken technology from TRL 3 to TRL 9 multiple times. For example, he managed the production of over 60 production cryogenic RF distribution units to the Cryptological Carry-On program
Henry Wong has been a prolific and successful venture investor, serial entrepreneur, and Stanford University Mentor in Silicon Valley during the last 35 years.After working for various Fortune 500 companies, Henry channeled his entrepreneurial spirit to go and “change the world.”After working for various Fortune 500 companies, Henry channeled his entrepreneurial spirit to go and “change the world.”
Frustrated with existing sloppy edge technologies, Henry founded, seed-funded, and exited five s
Kolja Reiss is a passionate entrepreneur, consultant, and business development expert with 15+ years of active enterprise sales experience in the hi-tech sector. Kolja has lived and worked in Munich, London, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, and has served as Head of Business Development for a number of tech companies. As chief consultant of Aveliu, he headsStrategic Partnerships, Silicon Valley for Bango, a Cambridge/UK-based FinTech company, and advises rewardfx, a Blockchain loyalty
Jason Putnam Gordon
Jason Putnam Gordon is a results-oriented corporate attorney practicing in the Venture Capital and Emerging Growth Companies group in Polsinelli’s San Francisco office. Jason has a passion for working with experienced entrepreneurs and executives to make their vision a reality.
In his practice, he regularly represents companies throughout their life cycle in matters related to venture capital financing, strategic corporate relationships, corporate formation, complex mergers and acquisitions,