TSL Hosts Italian Business Angel Investors Roundtable
Italian Business Angels Investors Roundtable "
230 W 56th St
New York City, New York
Chairman of LDJ Capital and The Soho Loft
David Drake is a leading equity expert based in New York City, USA. He is the founder and chairman of LDJ Capital, a Private Equity advisory firm, and of The Soho Loft, an event-driven global financial media company.
Born in Sweden and fluent in six languages, Mr. Drake is a strong advocate of innovative investing… Show more in early-stage equity and the Us Jobs Act, for which he lobbied both Congress and the Eu Commission. Because of his leading work in this space, he was a Us Commerce Department delegate to the Eu Commission in Brussels and Rome, and was invited in May 2013 to the White House Champions of Change ceremony in Washington, D.C.
His investment, The Soho Loft, produces and sponsors 150+ global events a year. One such was produced April 2013 for the institutional media leader Thomson Reuters, with speakers from Nasdaq, Nyse, KKR and Carlyle Group. He continues to advance innovative investing through his work as an international speaker and regular writer for major publications like Forbes and Thomson Reuters.
His focus today is to take on board advisory positions at companies, angel networks and venture funds, and to guide them on such topics as international regulations, corporate strategy and fund structures, with emphasis on the growing trend of online investment automation for retail and angel investors.
Privately, Mr. Drake has hosted the Harvard Business Club of NY at his home, produced Carnegie Hall concerts and raised funds for the charities Trail Blazers and Best Buddies Carnegie Hall for many years. Today he is a board director of the Ubs charity of the year, London-based Archive Global, and is co-chair of the Tree Kangaroo Foundation in New York.
Mr. Drake has an MBA in Finance and an Ma in International Law and Economics from George Washington University where he was awarded the Wallenberg Scholarship for academic merit.
Director, Eastern Europe
Minister Tashkovich recently completed a two year mandate as the Minister for Foreign Investment in the Republic of Macedonia. The Government of which he was a part was elected on a strong anti-corruption and pro-business background in July 2006. Minister Tashkovich traveled to forty countries around the world convincing international firms to consider basing their European manufacturing, assembly and back office operations in the Republic of Macedonia. He succeeded in attracting nearly one billion Euros of new foreign direct investment as a result of his efforts.
Currently at LDJ Capital, Minister Tashkovich has managed to get retained by Platinum Partners to manage non- USA capital introductions for them. He serves as a founding Trustee of the American Research Center in Sofia, Bulgaria; an Advisory Board member of investment bank MC Capital in Sydney, Australia; a member of the Bretton Woods Committee and of its International Council; a founding member of the U.S.-Macedonian Business Council; Secretary/Treasurer of the New York Business Schools Club (a club of alumni business school clubs) and a member of the Advisory Council of the United Macedonian Diaspora. Before those appointments, he completed a term on the University Council of the American University in Bulgaria and as a volunteer adjunct program manager of The Sunshine Lady Foundation run by the older sister of Warren Buffett.
Previously, Mr. Tashkovich was the Executive Vice President for Government & Media Relations for Ambo LLC (the Albanian-Macedonian-Bulgarian Oil Corporation) on the $1.5 billion Trans-Balkan Oil Pipeline project, which will connect the Black Sea with the Adriatic Sea and cross the Republics of Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Albania. In this capacity, he met regularly with Presidents, Prime Ministers, and their Ministers, Ambassadors, and Advisers, has negotiated agreements between and among the three countries, marketed the project concept to oil companies, financiers, governments, international financial institutions, and the media; and maintained an oil & gas-related time-sensitive news distribution service covering ten countries in the former Soviet Union, Turkey, and the Balkans. He began working for Ambo LLC in mid-1994.
Additionally, between 2001 and 2006, Mr. Tashkovich served as a research consultant to First Data Corporation in the area of money laundering and terrorism finance; to the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences in the area of improving Ph.D. admissions recruitment plans for underrepresented minority and international students; to Coyle Hospitality Group as a quality assurance inspector of hotels, bars, and restaurants; and to Z-Card North America and Ed.seiler Pianofortefabrik GmbH & Co., KG of Kitzingen, Germany on business development activities.
In 2004, Mr. Tashkovich was named a delegate to the U.S.-Japan Foundationâ€™s Leadership Program. Mr. Tashkovich is an official international elections observer for the Osce/Odihr on secondment from the U.S. State Department. He has completed five missions so far: Armenia Presidential Elections (both rounds, February 2003); Kazakhstan Parliamentary Elections (September 2004); Azerbaijan Presidential Elections (October 2008); and the General Elections of Bosnia-Hercegovina (October 2010).
Beginning in March 1992, following upon the leadership first provided by his grandfather and namesake (who was both a Senator and the leader of the Democratic Agrarian party in the Republic of Macedonia between 1937 and 1946), Mr. Tashkovich assisted the administration of President Kiro Gligorov (and from late 1999, the subsequent administration of President Boris Trajkovski) in the area of economic development by forging relationships with other countries, multinational institutions, and corporations. In this role, he has served as either a member or a guest of the delegations from Macedonia to the Peace Conference on Yugoslavia (London, August 1992); to the Annual Meeting of the World Bank/IMF (Washington, D.C. September 1992); to the Annual Meetings of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (London, April 1993; St. Petersburg, April 1994; and London, April 1995); and to the White House Conference on Trade and Investment in Central and Eastern Europe (Cleveland, January 1995). He served as Chief of the Advance Team for President Trajkovskiâ€™s 23-member delegation to the United Nations Financing for Development Conference (Monterrey, Mexico, March 2002).
As part of Macedoniaâ€™s drive to gain acceptance in the international community, Mr. Tashkovich successfully forged diplomatic relations in the Summer of 1993 between Macedonia and Malta; in November of 1993, between Macedonia and Angola; in April of 1994 between Macedonia and Uzbekistan; and again in 2001 between Macedonia and Georgia. Mr. Tashkovich has periodically worked with nine of the largest companies in Macedonia (from the aerospace, confectionary, construction, metal, hotel, pharmaceutical, retail, insurance, and telecommunications sectors) to assist their transition to a market economy by attracting potential investors and business partners. In July 1992, he introduced At&t to the country and, after a year of negotiations, a contract was signed with the state-owned PTT (Post Office, Telephone, and Telegraph).
In September 1993, he opened the Macedonian market for Plexus Medical, Inc. of San Francisco. From December 1993 through May 1995, Mr. Tashkovich served as the exclusive importer of the international edition of Time magazine to Macedonia. Mr. Tashkovich also supplied over 140 different magazines requested by the United States Battalion of Unprofor (the United Nations Protection Force) stationed in Macedonia.
In July 1998, Mr. Tashkovich opened Western Unionâ€™s money transfer service in Macedonia and growing to Usd $60 million by 2001. The service was extraordinarily beneficial for Kosovars fleeing the NATO bombing in Spring 1999 as well as for the United Nations peacekeeping forces who needed to send their salaries home. To meet the need of direct air links to the West, Mr. Tashkovich began lobbying British Airways in 1994 to serve Macedonia. He provided critical support which permitted the airline to begin, on schedule, the first nonstop service between Skopje and London Gatwick in October 1999. Within just six months, this route quickly became British Airwaysâ€™ most profitable inter-European route.
In 1992 and 1993, Mr. Tashkovich worked for the Mediterranean Group of Companies, a Middle Eastern company that specializes in large-scale telecommunications projects. While there, he was assigned to the East West Resources Corporation as Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Development, where he was engaged in the multi-billion dollar strategic overhaul of MGTS, the Moscow Local Telephone Company. He also provided input to the real estate development of the Moscow International Business Center project and the creation of a new Moscow-based airline. In Spring 1994, Mr. Tashkovich completed a consulting assignment for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (Ebrd) in Tashkent, Uzbekistan where he conducted demand assessment interviews for the feasibility of a digital overlay telecommunications network.
Mr. Tashkovich earned his B.A. in 1987 from Cornell Universityâ€™s College of Arts & Sciences and his M.B.A. in 1991 from Cornellâ€™s Johnson Graduate School of Management. Until he was elected Minister, for a period of over two decades, he was heavily involved with Cornell University affairs. He was the youngest member ever of the Administrative Board of the Cornell University Council in 1999-2001. In addition to a native command of English, Mr. Tashkovich has proficiency in French, and has studied Latin, Spanish, Macedonian, Bulgarian, and Business Japanese at the university level. In 2004, he completed a five year term membership on the Council on Foreign Relations. He is a 30 year member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (Aaas) a charter member of the Internet Society, and a citizen of the United States of America.
President and CEO, MSF Capital Advisors
Michael Felman is President and CEO of MSF Capital Advisors, a global multi-family office/merchant bank. His firm represents institutional investors such as family offices, venture capital funds, private equity funds, fund of funds, hedge funds and a select group of high net worth individuals. With over 60 years of legal and financial experience, the principals of MSF Capital Advisors have the knowledge and expertise to properly source, evaluate and structure investment opportunities for it’s clients. For over 20 years, Michael Felman was a practicing Attorney helping individuals and small businesses with their legal needs. Today, Michael Felman has been a trusted financial advisor to investors helping them navigate the sometimes difficult world of the capital markets. Mr. Felman has been a frequent speaker at investment conferences.
Chairman and CEO, McGovern Capital, LLC
Kevin M. McGovern is the Chairman and CEO of McGovern Capital,LLC, which provides investments and business strategy to emerging companies, particularly those engaged in consumer technologies and holders of Intellectual Property Rights. He has founded over a dozen companies, seven (7) of which have become world and/or category leaders, including SoBe Beverages, Tristrata (Aha skincare technology), and KX Industries (home-based water purification).McGovern founded and serves as Chairman and CEO of The Water Initiative (“Twi”) (www.TheWaterInitiative.com), which develops and markets home-based water purification systems, particularly in developing countries.
TWI has worked with the Mexican government and the people of Mexico as its first pilot. In less than 2 ½ years, Twi has formulated technology solutions to Mexico’s most severe unclean water conditions and has launched product distribution through the government and through those people most impacted.He also serves as Co-Chair of the Advisory Board and Board Member of the USA Pavilion and is Senior Advisor (only foreigner) to the Development Committee of the 2010 Shanghai World’s Expo.McGovern was a founder of SoBe Beverages, which was the US’s fastest growing beverage company growing to $250mm in sales in less than 4 years, and established the “new age”/nutraceutical beverage category. SoBe was sold to PepsiCo.
He also was a founder of KX Industries, which was the world’s leader in developing and marketing water and air carbon filters. KX developed and supplied the first home-based end of tap (“Pur”) filter for P&G and Brita and the first refrigerator water filter for Electrolux.McGovern co-published the pioneering Forbes/Wolfe Nanotech Report, which is currently the Forbes/Wolfe Emerging Tech Report.He created and directs the worldwide licensing program for Tristrata Inc., which owns the rights (over 100 patents) to Alpha Hydroxy Acids (“AHAs”), the most successful skin restoration and wrinkle reduction technology in skin care history. Tristrata licenses over 70 companies and is the leading seller of skincare products to dermatologists and plastic surgeons in over 80 countries.McGovern is a principal and strategist for Clean Coal Technologies, Inc. which has created proprietary technologies to clean coal; for EnviroFuels Manufacturing, Inc.,which markets and distributes proprietary smokeless stoves; and for Aquea Scientific,which developed and markets proprietary nanotechnology to “wash-on” additives to the skin, such as sunscreens; as well as an innovator to the fragrance industry.
McGovern has served on various public and private Boards, including The Sports Authority (Executive Committee) and Nobel Education, and is the Co-Chairman of the Silver Shield Foundation, which provides education and counseling assistance to families of police and fire fighters killed in action in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey.A graduate of Cornell University (Ba) and St. John’s University School of Law (JD), he is a Presidential Councilor (highest honor to alumni) and Trustee Emeritus of Cornell University, having chaired its Ip and Tech Transfer Committees. He also serves on Cornell’s Joint Venture (Cni) in Singapore, Chairs Entrepreneurship@ Cornell, and was named Cornell’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2007. He teaches each spring at the Johnson Graduate Business School (Global Innovation and Commercialization) and recently donated and founded the McGovern Family Venture Development Center,Cornell’s first on campus science/business incubator.
Founder & Executive Director, Archive Global
Peter Williams is Founder and Executive Director of Archive Global - an international non-profit using housing/environmental design to improve health among the world’s poor. He is an architect, academic and leading social entrepreneur who for nearly 15 years has worked on building projects on 5 continents and has taught at universities around the world. Peter holds two Masters degrees - in African Studies and Architecture, respectively from the University of Oxford and Columbia University while graduating summa cum laude from the City College of New York. He has received numerous awards for research including the Kinne Fellowship from Columbia University that led him to form Archive Global. He has also been a visiting researcher at the Unaids Secretariat in South Africa and has worked for the World Bank. Peter was a visiting scholar at the Healthy Infrastructure Research Center at University College London from 2009-10. In 2010, the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control invited him to their Swedish headquarters to assist in drafting a policy around European urban health.
In 2009, Peter was named among the 22 best emerging social entrepreneurs in the world by Echoing Green and in 2011 was recognized as one of Britain’s ‘40 under 40 International Development Leaders’ by Devex. Utne Reader named him among the ‘25 visionaries who are changing the world’ – a list that includes WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange and Nobel Laureate Elinor Ostrom. Peter’s work has been featured on major media networks including ABC, BBC, CBS, NPR, The Guardian and The Wall Street Journal, along with many leading design and health journals. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health, a member of the American Public Health Association and lectures widely on urban design, global health and international development.
Angel Investors from Italy:
Director, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
Engineering graduate, University of Padova
Entrepreneur, thermoformed plastic packaging
Business Angel, I.A.G. board member
Various roles, Italian producers association “Confindustria”
Involved in the Eu 7th Framework Programme for innovation
Dircetor, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
Paola Bonomo is a Board member, senior executive, and advisor with over 20 years’ experience in Technology, Telecommunications and Media, both as a corporate leader and as a management consultant. She is a relentless Web evangelist focused on simplifying people's lives through the Internet, an occasional blogger and a keen social media practitioner. She holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Bocconi University in Milan.
Founder & CEO, LVenture Group
Entrepreneur and Business Angel. He is the founder and CEO of LVenture Group – a Venture Capital listed on Milan Stock Exchange – and co-founder of the accelerator “Luiss Enlabs – The Startup Factory” – established in 2013 through the joint-venture between EnLabs and Luiss University. In 2007, he co-founded Italian Angels for Growth (Iag), the first organized group of Italian Business Angels. He managed important private equity funds and founded several successful startups. He is Professor of “Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital” at Luiss University where he graduated in Economics and Business. He attended the Epcg - Executive Program for Growing Companies – at Stanford University.
Director, Linde Ag
Born in 1958, University physics degree, married, three sons. Serial entrepreneur, member of the board in several start-up, Business Angel, Italian Angels for Growth Director, Vice President Amref Italia. Past experience as Managing Director of Linde Ag, in France and Italy.
Domains of competence, CleanTech and IT.
Co-founder, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
Enrico (1953), after graduating in Electronic Engineering and spending three years as a researcher in telecommunications, developed his career in the Consulting Division of Arthur Andersen (then Andersen Consulting and Accenture). He was nominated Partner in 1989 and retired in 2004. After retirement he invested in many initiatives, profit and non profit, mainly in his local community (the most relevant being the transformation of an old noble mansion in a charming hotel: http://www.palazzorighini.it/) In 2007 he was one of the 9 founders of Italian Angels for Growth. Since then, he has invested in 15 start-up.
Co-founder and Managing Director, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
Lorenzo Franchini is co-founder and managing director of the angel group Italian Angels for Growth. Angel investor since 2006, Lorenzo has done angel investments in more than 15 companies in the It/Ict, Internet & New Media, Cleantech, Medtech and Biotech sectors in Italy, France, Spain, Uk, Israel and Us. As a manager he started his career in the Iveco Group (international operations and marketing manager in Uk) and then became marketing director of two corporate start-ups in the Italian Yellow Pages and Stage Entertainment Groups. Lorenzo graduated with honour in Economics and Commerce at the University of Florence and had international executive education. He is also part of several national and international start-up selection committees and he is frequently lecturer on angel investing in many Italian Universities.
Francesco Marini Clarelli
Co-founder and President, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
He obtained a Ba with honors in 1980 majoring in Economics at the University of California in Santa Barbara, and developed his career in the private equity and asset management fields.
More recently he founded, with other partners, one of the first funds of hedge funds management companies in Italy, and presently runs Astor Investment Advisors Sim, a thematic asset allocation advisory concern dedicated to hedge funds and institutional clients.
All along his career actively invested in startups as an Angel Investor, making his first such investment at age 25. He is currently President of Italian Angels for Growth, the largest angel group in the country he co-founded in 2007.
In 2011 he won the “European Business Angel of the Year” award.
He sits on the board of a number of industrial and financial concerns.
Former Accenture Partner leading the Consumer and retail Industry In Italy, eastern Europe and Middle East. Paolo spent 25 years at Accenture (from 1985 to Jan 2010).
Partner from 1999 to 2010
In 2010 Paolo established a new company – 4Innovation – aiming to invest in innovative Start Ups. 4Innovation is member of Iag (Italian Angels for Growth), the major Business Angels group in Italy
President and co-founder, Valore Italia & Partners
Corrado’s professional career is truly global and a unique mix of innovation, branding, leadership, management, and commitment to deliver strong and measured business results. Corrado worked in senior leadership positions in Companies like The Walt Disney Company, Warner Bros., Ac Milan, Monster.com, and Careerbuilder, a Microsoft owned Company. He is also an entrepreneur having funded its own Company which he sold successfully in 2008.
Today Corrado is President and co-founder of Valore Italia & Partners, a private firm working with some of the top and most innovative Italian digital Companies helping in speeding up the sales cycle, as well as promoting innovation and the creation of Italian eco-system. He also recently co-founded a new venture called “Take-Off” which represents and license a portfolio of brands in automotive, media, fashion, vintage, wineries among all.
Dircetor, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
Born in Bologna on August 24th, 1960. Graduated from Law School at University of Bologna summa cum laude in 1983, MBA summa cum laude at Rome University in 1986. Certified lawyer, accountant and military judge. Previously with PwC, from 1989 has been woring as Notary Public in Bologna. Angel Investor from 2009.
Co-founder and Managing Director, Angel Group - Italian Angels for Growth
Marco Villa is a Business Angel and Vice President & Managing Director of Italian Angels for Growth – Iag. Marco is also owner and Managing Director of Mirade Ventures Srl, a boutique venture firm specializing in equity investments in high-potential start-up businesses. Marco has invested in more than 15 companies in Italy and abroad across industries.
Marco is a frequent keynote speaker and has contributed to several events as well as to University courses at, among others, Stanford University, Bocconi University (Milan), Luiss University (Rome) and Fudan University (Shanghai).
Marco holds a Master degree in Economics and Business Administration and has received executive education in Private Equity and Venture Capital.
Image Credits: sun-surfer.com & younggov.org
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