VatorSplash LA
May 26, 2011 – 4pm to 11pm – The Highlands Hollywood, Los Angeles

Speakers


Shawn Colo co-founded Demand Media with Richard Rosenblatt in April, 2006.  Since the Company’s inception, Shawn has led over 30 acquisitions of websites and technology companies.  In addition, Shawn negotiated and structured over $450 million worth of equity and debt financings for Demand.  He is presently the Head of M&A, focused on mergers and acquisitions as well as strategic corporate partnerships.

Prior to founding Demand Media, Shawn was a principal with Spectrum Equity Investors, a $4 billion media and communications focused private equity firm.  While at Spectrum, Shawn spent several years leading the firm’s investment office in London, and served on a number of corporate boards in the US as well as Europe.

Shawn holds a BSE in Civil Engineering and Operations Research from Princeton University.


Zorik Gordon is a co-founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of ReachLocal. Previously he was Chief Executive Officer and Vice President Corporate Development for WorldWinner, Inc., the leading provider of prize-based tournaments in online games of skill. At WorldWinner, Zorik signed major partnerships with Yahoo!, Pogo, Lycos, and Shockwave that positioned WorldWinner as the number one provider of cash tournaments on the Internet, with over 5 million gamers registered as part of the service.

Prior to WorldWinner, Zorik founded Jackpot.com, an Idealab business that has grown to become Connexus Corp., one of the leading online marketing companies.

 

VC/Judges


Ron Bloom is the visionary Co-Founder behind MEVIO and has, along with Co-Founder, Adam Curry, guided the company since its inception as PodShow in 2004. Ron is responsible for MEVIO's programming and revenue strategy and is Chief Strategist in securing the company's elite private investors, including venture firms Kleiner Perkins, Sequoia Capital, Sherpalo Ventures, DAG Ventures and Crosslink Ventures. Ron spearheaded MEVIO's growth as one of the fastest growing sites and a Top 20 Internet Site for Music and New Media (source: comScore).

A serial entrepreneur and experienced manager in both the private and public sector, Ron has founded and operated a range of companies, including On Ramp and Think New Ideas. Recognition includes Ron being selected by Silicon Alley Reporter as one of "New York's Top 100 Internet Industry Executives" for 1998 and 1999, his firm being named "Interactive Agency of The Year" and accolades for the development of some of the most innovative websites and e-commerce solutions in the world. Ron was named "one-to-watch" by AdWeek in January 2006. He is a respected contributor, speaker and author.

In his first career, Ron was a celebrated song writer, producer, arranger and recording artist, having worked on hundreds of songs, including several Top 10 hits.

   
 

David Carlick has been in high technology media for over 30 years, and has been a venture investor in digital media companies since 1999. In ten years with VantagePoint Venture Partners, a leading U.S. venture firm, David led or co-led 13 investments, most notable among them Intermix Media (parent of MySpace, sold to NewsCorp in 2005 for $580mm) where he was Chairman; first institutional investor in ReachLocal (NASDAQ RLOC); and ReachLocal Australia (acquired by ReachLocal).

He is currently Venture Partner at Rho Capital Partners, a leading U.S. venture firm. David is holds board seats at Brandscreen (Australian DSP startup), Effective Measure (Australian Digital Audience Measurement company) ReachLocal, (leading digital agency for SMB with operations globally); Thoughtful Media (Startup in online video and social media), TouchTunes (leading digital jukebox and DOH ad network with over 40,000 locations) and Xgraph (early stage audience data company). Prior, Mr. Carlick founded Carlick Advertising, a Silicon Valley agency that was actively involved in a number of companies that went public, including Cirrus Logic, Cypress Semiconductor, Daisy Systems, Netscape, Network Equipment Technologies, Network General, and Silicon Graphics, and also with notable portable computing companies Osborne Computer and Toshiba America.
 

David Cremin is a founder and Managing Director of DFJ Frontier, a Draper Fisher Jurvetson venture capital fund focused on seed and early stage technology companies on the west coast. At Frontier, he leads fund management, fundraising and portfolio management efforts. Prior to Frontier, he was a founding partner of Zone Ventures in Los Angeles. As an entrepreneur, he served as founder and CEO of Vis-à-Vis Entertainment, a music publishing and digital media company. He also spent several years touring as a professional musician and recording for RCA Records, Atlantic Records, Elektra Records and EastWest Records. He holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University.

 

Brian Garrett is a Co-Founder and Managing Director of Crosscut Ventures. For his entire career, Brian has been involved in building and funding early-stage technology and media companies.
Brian is very active in the Southern California start-up community and currently works with the Boards of GumGum, Verve Wireless, Pulpo Media, Shoedazzle, AffordIt and Circle Street. He is also an advisory board member for the following digital media companies: Jacked, Zannel and Quepasa.com

Prior to co-founding Crosscut, Brian was a Partner at one of the largest Southern California-based venture funds. He joined there in 2001 and played an active role in managing and investing three funds over six years totaling more than $500 million. He was the sponsor and/or an active board member of nine Palomar portfolio companies, including successes such as DataAllegro, Entone, Gamma Enterprise Technologies and Lombardi Software.

Brian received his MBA from Stanford's Graduate School of Business and he graduated from Stanford University with a B.S. in Industrial Engineering.

 

Neal Hansch brings over fifteen years of experience in venture capital, technology operations and investment banking. Before joining Rustic Canyon in 2005, Neal worked in the Corporate Development group at Macromedia, where he was responsible for executing worldwide M&A transactions and strategic equity investments.

Prior to Macromedia, Neal was at Technology Crossover Ventures, where he focused on investments in the software, networking infrastructure and e-commerce industries. He has also worked in Product Marketing at webMethods (Nasdaq: WEBM), a leading enterprise application integration company, and co-founded WebAssist.com, a start-up that provides popular software extensions for Web development tools. Neal began his career as a financial analyst in the Software Group at Robertson Stephens, where he worked with clients such as BEA, BroadVision, HNC, Hyperion, Informatica and Intuit. Neal received his M.B.A. with distinction from the UCLA Anderson School of Management, where he was a Deutschman Venture Fellow. He also received bachelor degrees in Economics and Psychology from Duke University.


 

 

John Hawkins is Managing Partner and co-founder of Generation Partners. Mr. Hawkins operates out of the Firm's San Francisco, CA office.
Prior to founding Generation, Mr. Hawkins was a General Partner of Burr, Egan, Deleage & Co., a venture capital firm which he joined in 1987. At Burr, Egan, Deleage, Mr. Hawkins invested mainly in telecommunications, data communications, software, and business services companies. Prior to this, he worked in the Corporate Finance Department of Alex. Brown & Sons, Inc. in San Francisco, where he advised information technology companies in the areas of financial strategy, public offerings and mergers & acquisitions. Earlier, he was a publishing research analyst covering information technology companies for Woodman, Kirkpatrick & Gilbreath an investment bank which was subsequently purchased by Hambrecht & Quist.
Mr. Hawkins graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English with honors from Harvard College in 1982, where he was a John Harvard Scholar. He received his MBA from the Harvard Graduate School of Business in 1986. Mr. Hawkins is a member of the Young Presidents' Organization, Golden Gate Chapter.
 
 

Jed Katz  is the Managing Director of Javelin Venture Partners an early-stage venture capital firm in San Francisco.  One of the pioneers of Internet commerce, Jed has spent his 19-year career developing, advising and investing in early stage technology ventures. Jed also served on the Technology, Telecom & Media advisory group for President Barack Obama's campaign. Prior to joining Javelin Venture Partners, Jed was a Managing Director of DFJ Gotham Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm based in New York.

Prior to DFJ Gotham, Jed was the COO of Yamcon, the developer of the highly acclaimed "SkyScout", one of the best selling astronomy products of all time.  Prior to Yamcon, Jed was the COO and Founder of Rent Net, the Internet's first rental and relocation guide. Rent Net achieved 95% market penetration and became one of the first profitable Internet companies. It was acquired by Cendant, and three years later, Jed used its infrastructure as the starting point for the formation of Move.com, one of the Internet's largest real estate sites. Move.com grew to 360 employees and was acquired by Homestore (NASDAQ: MOVE) for over $900 million. Jed holds a B.A. in Business Economics from UCLA and an M.B.A. from The Haas School of Business at the University of California – Berkeley, where he was awarded the Price Fellowship from the Lester Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, of which he is currently on the advisory board.

 

Jeffrey Lee joined Mission Ventures as an Associate in 2007 and represents the firm in their Los Angeles office. He has more than five years of product development and operational experience at high tech companies.

Most recently Jeff was at Cisco Systems, where he held technical responsibility for the company’s $1B+ Catalyst 2900 series of Ethernet switches. He also was part of the founding design team for Cisco’s successful Commercial Switching and VDSL product lines.

Jeff received his MBA with high honors from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA where he was a SIF Fellow and a Dean’s Scholar. He also holds a Bachelors degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University.
 

Larry Marcus, his focus is digital media and consumer services Larry has been a Director at Pandora since early 2004 when Walden led the "rebirth round" to focus the company on launching a consumer-facing service. Larry is a Director at SoundHound (sound and voice search), Rootmusic (BandPage on Facebook), Telekenex (IP voice and data services ), a Board Observer at PowerCloud Systems and led Walden's investment in Terayon (acquired by Motorola). Prior to joining Walden in 2000, Larry was a digital media sell-side Equity Research Analyst at Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown where he lead the IPOs of Maxis, Terayon, CBS MarketWatch, Edmark, and Netflix (initial S-1 IPO filing) among other equity and debt financings (Sierra On-line, Excite@Home, Spectrum Holobyte, CBS Sportsline).

Prior experience includes Robertson Stephens & Company, Digidesign and General Management in computer services retail. Larry serves on the non-profit Board of the JazzSchool in Berkeley, CA. Education: Larry received a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley.

 

 Kara Nortman is the Senior Vice President of Publishing for CityGrid Media, an IAC owned online media company that connects web and mobile publishers with local advertising organizations by linking them through CityGrid®, its local content and advertising network. In this role, Ms. Nortman is responsible for overseeing the publisher side of the CityGrid Media’s owned properties, which include consumer sites, Citysearch, Insider Pages and Urbanspoon. In addition, Ms. Nortman is responsible for charting the growth of new content for the CityGrid® network, which includes partner sites such as Bing, YP.com and more.

Previously, Ms. Nortman served as Vice President of Mergers and Acquisitions for IAC where she oversaw a number of IAC’s recent moves in the local space including the acquisitions of InsiderPages and Urbanspoon. Prior to IAC, Ms. Nortman worked for Battery Ventures were she focused on investments in the Internet, communications and new media sectors. At Battery Ventures, Ms. Nortman was involved in the development of Synaptic Digital, The Loan Page (acquired by HouseValues), EnvoyWorldWide (acquired by PAR3 Communications), Kashya (acquired by EMC), and Cbeyond Communications (Nasdaq: CBEY).

Ms. Nortman has also held positions at Microsoft and Morgan Stanley. Ms. Nortman holds a BA in political science from Princeton University and an MBA from Stanford University.

Dana Settle is a Partner with Greycroft LLC, and she heads the firm's west coast office.
Prior to joining Greycroft, Dana spent several years as a venture capitalist and advisor to startup companies in the Bay Area, including six years at Mayfield, where she focused on early stage companies in the mobile communications and consumer Internet markets.

Dana currently serves or observes on the boards of Greycroft’s investments in K2 Networks, MoVoxx, Sometrics, Sportgenic, United Sample, Vuze and WideOrbit. She also managed the firm’s investments in Digisynd (sold to Disney) and ContentNext (sold to Guardian Media). Dana previously invested in and advised several companies, including Inphi, MobileStar (sold to TMobile), Revenue Science, Trigo (sold to IBM) and Truveo (sold to AOL).
Dana's additional experience includes investment banking at Lehman Brothers in the media and communications group and international business development at McCaw Cellular Communications.

Dana holds a BA in Finance and International Studies from the University of Washington and an MBA from Harvard Business School.


Bruce Taragin has 17 years experience as a venture capital investor, entrepreneur, technology investment banker and corporate attorney.  Prior to joining Blumberg Capital in 1998, Bruce co-founded and held several senior management positions within technology companies including Charles River Computers. Bruce also structured and managed early-stage technology transactions at Hambrecht & Quist, Mayer Brown & Platt and Bankers Trust Company. A native of New York, Bruce earned his BA in Finance and Communications, cum laude, from Yeshiva University, and his MBA and JD from Fordham University.
Bruce serves as a member or observer on the Board of Directors of DoubleVerify, CaseStack, Insightix, LiteScape, Correlix, Nolio, Revionics, Yap.tv, BringIt, NearbyAd, Mertado, Any.do and Offertarget. He also serves on the board and the investment monitoring committee of the Jewish Community Foundation of Northern California. 

 

David Travers grew up working every odd job in his family’s business. His admiration for business creators started with his Dad and has grown into a passion for providing entrepreneurs with the capital and support to help them succeed, and his technology and media experience are instrumental to his investment and advisory work at Rustic Canyon. Prior to joining Rustic Canyon in 2005, David worked at eBay, where he focused on the growth of their sports, toys, collectibles and media marketplaces. Previously, David worked on corporate strategy at The Walt Disney Company, where he helped launch Disney’s credit card business. David also worked at the White House as the Executive Assistant to the National Security Advisor, where he was awarded the Secretary of Defense's Award for Outstanding Public Service. David loves sports and his favorite activities include going to yoga class with his wife, playing at the park with his daughter, and working to support his favorite after school program: LA’s BEST. Education: David earned his MBA from Harvard Business School and his BA from Stanford University.
 

Samit Varma started as an Associate at Anthem in 2003. He worked with several portfolio companies including Audyssey Labs and Advanced Cell Technology. He currently serves on the board of JanRain, Audyssey and BeachMint and is a board observer at Cynvenio and Wavestream. Samit also works closely with Zag and and TrueCar.

Before Anthem Samit started at Audyssey Labs in conjunction with the first round of funding and worked there for over three years as VP of Operations. He also managed finance and coordinated three rounds of venture and debt financing. Samit was instrumental in making Audyssey a leading supplier of audio technologies to consumer electronic, automotive, and professional sound companies.

Samit earned his MBA from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. He concentrated on Finance, Entrepreneurship and Technology Commercialization while at USC. Samit also received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. After graduation, he moved to Charleston, SC where he completed the one year Naval Nuclear Power Training Program.


 Sizhao Zao is currently the COO/co-founder at BetterWorks, Inc., a perks platform for small medium businesses. Previously, he co-created Farmville, and was the CEO/co-founder of MyMiniLife, Inc. (sold to Zynga Game Networks, Inc.). MyMiniLife is the common technology platform at Zynga and powers 150M monthly users with Cityville, Farmville, and Frontierville. He also designed the Farmville iPhone application (top iPhone app), and worked on corporate development deals including Microsoft, Yahoo, Zynga Japan, and Zynga corporate strategy. He is also an active investor with stakes in companies like Hipmunk, GroupMe, Facebook, Zynga (acquisition stock), and SV Angels.

Emcee


Ezra Roizen is a digital media investment banker with Ackrell Capital, a boutique investment bank. He is also an advisor and commenter on emerging ventures. He focuses on digital media, e-commerce and mobile companies. Prior to banking, Ezra co-founded and was CEO of Montclare Technologies Inc. He also co-founded and was director of business development for Convoy, which is now part of Sybase. Ezra is the Chair of the UC Berkeley, Haas School of Business Alumni Council.

Host and Judge


Bambi Francisco is founder and CEO of Vator, one of the largest business networks dedicated to high-tech entrepreneurs, and VatorNews, which provides news and information on innovation and entrepreneurship. Prior to Vator, Bambi was an award-winning journalist at Dow Jones MarketWatch where she was the lead columnist/correspondent focusing on Internet trends and investments, appearing online and on TV.

She was a morning business anchor for KPIX, the CBS affiliate in San Francisco and made frequent appearances as an expert on technology on CNBC, Fox Business News, and CBS.

Musicians


David Cremin is a founder and Managing Director of DFJ Frontier, a Draper Fisher Jurvetson venture capital fund focused on seed and early stage technology companies on the west coast. At Frontier, he leads fund management, fundraising and portfolio management efforts. Prior to Frontier, he was a founding partner of Zone Ventures in Los Angeles. As an entrepreneur, he served as founder and CEO of Vis-à-Vis Entertainment, a music publishing and digital media company. He also spent several years touring as a professional musician and recording for RCA Records, Atlantic Records, Elektra Records and EastWest Records. He holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University.
 

Larry Marcus, his focus is digital media and consumer services Larry has been a Director at Pandora since early 2004 when Walden led the "rebirth round" to focus the company on launching a consumer-facing service. Larry is a Director at SoundHound (sound and voice search), Rootmusic (BandPage on Facebook), Telekenex (IP voice and data services ), a Board Observer at PowerCloud Systems and led Walden's investment in Terayon (acquired by Motorola). Prior to joining Walden in 2000, Larry was a digital media sell-side Equity Research Analyst at Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown where he lead the IPOs of Maxis, Terayon, CBS MarketWatch, Edmark, and Netflix (initial S-1 IPO filing) among other equity and debt financings (Sierra On-line, Excite@Home, Spectrum Holobyte, CBS Sportsline).

Prior experience includes Robertson Stephens & Company, Digidesign and General Management in computer services retail. Larry serves on the non-profit Board of the JazzSchool in Berkeley, CA. Education: Larry received a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley.

 

Christopher Pace is a senior managing director for Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors. He is responsible for institutional account management, working with corporate and public pension plans, fund-of-funds, insurance companies, foundations and endowments.Prior to joining Kayne Anderson in 2010, Mr. Pace had more than 23 years of experience in the investment management industry, including 15 years of private equity investing as a portfolio manager of Siguler Guff & Co., WestLB Mellon Asset Management and its predecessors, and Rogers Casey & Associates.

Mr. Pace was an executive director, general partner and member of WestLB Mellon Asset Management’s Investment Committee, which made over $2 billion in commitments to private equity partnerships and co-investments. He led or participated on over 60 deal teams, focusing on small and mid-sized managers and companies. Mr. Pace served as vice president in the Capital Markets Group of Alex. Brown & Sons. Previously, Mr. Pace was a portfolio manager for Rogers Casey Alternative Investments where he co-managed separate account portfolios with more than $1 billion in private equity fund investments and co-investments. Before joining Rogers Casey, Mr. Pace had over seven years of institutional securities sales and commercial lending experience with Bank of America and Irving Trust Company (now BNY Mellon).
Mr. Pace holds a B.A. in Mathematics-Economics from Wesleyan University and an M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business

 

Straight out of the swamps of Louisiana, singer Kelly MacLeod combines the soul of Lucinda Williams and Patty Griffin with the belt-it-out capacity of Janis Joplin and Annie Lennox.  Prior to Darwin 5, Kelly toured the world with her band Private Life, including an extended tour opening up for Van Halen in stadiums across major cities in the U.S. and Europe.  

 

Jeff SternCEO Alegra Entertainment. Mr. Stern is an experienced media and entertainment executive, film and television producer.  After graduating from Harvard College, Mr. Stern began his career at Newsweek Magazine.  After stints at Ziff Davis and Details Magazine, Mr. Stern launched a number of entrepreneurial companies that have worked with Walt Disney Co., Ticketmaster, Warner Bros., among many others.  
Mr. Stern is a pioneer in the digital media industry, most recently as COO for Content Next Media, the publisher of PaidContent.org and MocoNews.net, growing the company and selling it to UK-based Guardian News & Media.  Based in Los Angeles. Mr. Stern has recently executive produced the children's television series "The Wannabes," co-produced "Kill The Irishman" and "Little Murder" and is currently producing "No Man's Land," "Saturday Night Special," “Crypto” and several other features and television series.  Alegra Enterprises is actively involved building a state of the art post production and 3D conversion facility in South Korea.
 
 Evan Lowenstein, recently named to Digital Media Wire’s list of 25 Execs to Watch in Digital Entertainment for 2011, Evan Lowenstein launched StageIt with the goal of creating a web-based platform that would empower artists to deliver and monetize interactive
live experiences. While overseeing all aspects of this groundbreaking company as CEO, Lowenstein relies on his nearly 20 years of experience in the music industry as a recording artist, award-winning writer and executive.
Most recently, Lowenstein founded and served as President of HookUp Feed, a premier social networking and mobile marketing company whose clients include The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, American Airlines, Domino’s Pizza and Cold Stone Creamery. Lowenstein still
remains involved with the company as a senior advisor.
Previously, he hosted USA Network’s Character Road Trip, a weekly series providing
viewers with a peek into the greatest "characters" the country has to offer. Lowenstein
was also a recording and touring artist with pop/rock band Evan and Jaron who scored
three Top 40 hits, including the Top 10 song Crazy For This Girl.
 

 

 

 

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Past Splash events:

See Vator Splash Feb 2011, Vator Splash SeptVator Splash May and Vator Splash Feb event agenda.
See Feb 2011 Competition, Splash Sept Competition, May Competition and Feb Competition.

 

 

Ron Bloom is the visionary Co-Founder behind MEVIO and has, along with Co-Founder, Adam Curry, guided the company since its inception as PodShow in 2004. Ron is responsible for MEVIO's programming and revenue strategy and is Chief Strategist in securing the company's elite private investors, including venture firms Kleiner Perkins, Sequoia Capital, Sherpalo Ventures, DAG Ventures and Crosslink Ventures. Ron spearheaded MEVIO's growth as one of the fastest growing sites and a Top 20 Internet Site for Music and New Media (source: comScore).

A serial entrepreneur and experienced manager in both the private and public sector, Ron has founded and operated a range of companies, including On Ramp and Think New Ideas. Recognition includes Ron being selected by Silicon Alley Reporter as one of "New York's Top 100 Internet Industry Executives" for 1998 and 1999, his firm being named "Interactive Agency of The Year" and accolades for the development of some of the most innovative websites and e-commerce solutions in the world. Ron was named "one-to-watch" by AdWeek in January 2006. He is a respected contributor, speaker and author.

In his first career, Ron was a celebrated song writer, producer, arranger and recording artist, having worked on hundreds of songs, including several Top 10 hits.