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Venture Capital
** Click Here to Register for our next Early-Stage VC & Angel Investor events:
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  • Here are the Investor speakers from our Sold-Out New Haven VC and Angel Event, sponsored by GotChef, Fincham Downs. This event was in New Haven, CT on Thursday, December 2, 2010.

    Photo of Konstantine Drakonakis, Director, Launch Capital Konstantine Drakonakis
    Launch Capital
    Read the full profile for Konstantine here!
    Launch Capital
    Konstantine Drakonakis, P.E., Director of the New Haven Office of LaunchCapital LLC, brings over ten years of environmental and energy technology investment and engineering consulting experience to the LaunchCapital team. LaunchCapital actively engages university startups and entrepreneurs seeking seed and early stage funding in a broad array of industries, including Medical Device, Cleantech, and IT.

    Konstantine was the Manager of New Technology Investments and Infrastructure Development at Connecticut Innovations, Inc, which administers the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund, prior to opening LaunchCapital's New Haven Office. Konstantine oversaw venture stage equity investments, project finance for beta and alpha stage technology projects and clean energy infrastructure developments programs for the CCEF. His project and investment experience covers the full range of cleantech technologies, ranging from renewables, fuel cell and hydrogen generation, and smart-grid and energy storage technologies, as well as water supply & infrastructure, environmental remediation technologies, and natural resource management. While at CI, Konstantine structured, financed, and managed multiple emergent renewable energy company projects worth over $11M. He has been very active in the clean energy community, speaking and instructing events covering renewables and carbon markets, resource management, and investment workshops. Konstantine draws on his experience in environmental and civil engineering project management and consulting to evaluate technologies for their investment potential as well as the business model's integrity and feasibility.

    Konstantine received his Masters in Environmental Management from Yale University, with a focus in Industrial Environmental Management and Industrial Ecology. He earned his civil and environmental engineering degree from the University of Vermont, and is a member of the National Civil Engineering Honors Society. He is a co-founder of the Cleantech in Connecticut Network.

    Photo of John F Frankel, Founder, ff Asset Management John Frankel
    ff Venture Capital
    Read the full profile for John here!
    ff Venture Capital
    John Frankel has been an early-stage venture investor since 1999. Mr. Frankel was one of the earliest investors in Quigo Technologies, which was purchased by AOL in December 2007, and in Cornerstone OnDemand (CSOD on NASDAQ) which had a successful IPO in March 2011. He has also served and/or now serves on the boards of 500px, Apparel Media Group,, Centzy, ClearPath Immigration, Infochimps, Gobbler, Klout,,,, Quigo Technologies, StrongTech, The Goldman Sachs Trust Company,, and Voxy. He is also a Mentor with the Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator program.

    He worked at Goldman, Sachs & Co. for 21 years in a variety of roles that involved technology development, reengineering, and capital markets. In particular, he established Goldman’s Cayman offshore administration business, their London global custody business, and reengineered their global prime brokerage business. In capital markets, he worked closely with some of the world’s leading hedge funds, and developed a keen understanding of portfolio risk/return management. He started his business career with Arthur Anderson & Co. in the audit and insolvency divisions.

    Mr. Frankel earned a Master of Arts from New College, Oxford where he studied Mathematics, Philosophy and Logic, and is a Fellow Chartered Accountant of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

    Photo of Peter Longo, President and Exec Director, Connecticut Innovations Peter Longo
    President and Executive Director
    Connecticut Innovations
    Read the full profile for Peter here!
    Connecticut Innovations
    Peter joined Connecticut Innovations in 1995. He manages CI’s array of initiatives, including its venture capital investments, laboratory infrastructure fund and support service initiatives. Under his leadership, CI introduced the Pre-Seed Support Services Program, Connecticut Clean Tech Fund and CTech, an entrepreneurial assistance initiative. Additionally, Peter oversees the administration of the ratepayer-funded Connecticut Clean Energy Fund.

    Peter has invested in over 20 early-stage investment opportunities across a variety of technology sectors, leading CI investments in Achillion Pharmaceuticals, CYA Technologies, Nufern, Perimeter eSecurity, Post-N-Track and Transaction Methods. He serves on the boards of CYA Technologies, ExeCue, Optiwind and Post-N-Track. He is a board observer of Perimeter eSecurity and Transaction Methods.

    In addition, Peter serves on the advisory board of the University of Connecticut School of Engineering.

    Prior to being named president and executive director of CI in 2007, Peter was a member of CI’s investment team and most recently was chief investment officer for CI. He also previously served as controller of CI before he joined the investment team.

    Peter is a certified public accountant and a chartered financial analyst. He earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Connecticut and holds a master's degree in business administration from the University of Hartford. Peter also served six years in the Connecticut Army National Guard.

    Photo of Nat Brinn, Principal, Vital Financial Nat Brinn
    Vital Venture Capital
    Read the full profile for Nat here!
    Vital Venture Capital
    Nat Brinn has a 25-year successful track record of private investments, acquisitions and business management. The most recent example is HSA Bank, the largest specialty bank in the United States focused on health savings accounts. Nat has successful management experience in growth companies, including his role as CEO of HSA Bank, where accounts and revenues grew four-fold and the firm developed a significant profit margin from an initial loss position.

    Nat's private equity investments have achieved positive returns, with many returning 4-5x initial investment within several years. In aggregate, he has completed more than 80 transactions with positive results, including the avoidance of any defaults during his tenure as a private placement bond investor.

    Currently he is acting CEO of Vital Financial's portfolio company, CR Certification Corporation. Nat has significantly built revenues and revamped this company.

    While he was Executive Vice President of Corporate Development at Webster Bank, Nat was responsible for mergers and acquisitions as well as strategic initiatives. He also oversaw management of Budget Installment Company, a premium finance company that Webster acquired and grew three-fold in outstanding balances, revenues and profits over three years under his supervision.

    Upon acquiring HSA Bank for Webster, he was appointed to become CEO of HSA Bank. HSA Bank was purchased in early 2005 for a net premium of $12 million and was valued at nearly $100 million upon his departure at CEO in July 2007 to join Vital Financial. Both the Budget Installment and HSA Bank situations involved upgrading IT, financial, compliance and operating systems as well as building national sales organizations.

    Prior to his tenure at Webster Bank, Nat held positions in corporate development (M&A and strategic investing) and private placement investments at Hartford Steam Boiler Insurance and Inspection Company, Phoenix Home Life, Canadian Imperial Bank and Metropolitan Life.

    Nat has an MBA in finance and accounting from The Fuqua School of Business (Duke University), where he was a Fuqua Scholar and his class graduation speaker. He did his undergraduate work in economics, with additional focus in mathematics and statistics, at University of Delaware where he was in the honors program.

    Photo of Mary Anne Rooke, Managing Director, Angel Investor Forum Mary Anne Rooke
    Managing Director
    Angel Investor Forum (AIF)
    Read the full profile for Mary Anne here!
    Angel Investor Forum (AIF)
    Mary Anne Rooke is the Managing Director of the Angel Investor Forum (AIF) based in Connecticut. AIF's mission is to create a dynamic investment environment where private investors and entrepreneurs can find mutual success. AIF is an investor group comprised of 3 clusters of angel investors located in Hartford, New Haven & Stamford.

    She is also the founder of Rooke & Associates, a boutique management consulting firm that provides interim management, strategic planning, organizational development & executive coaching for businesses of all sizes. Mary Anne enjoys judging business plan competitions and assisting universities' incubator programs. Currently, Mary Anne is working with UConn's Technology Incubation Program (TIP) at the Avery Point Campus to bring in early stage companies into the incubator with a focus on marine science & technology and to mentor these entrepreneurs. Recently, she helped the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute (YEI) link its Summer Fellowship student entrepreneur ventures to mentors from AIF and other business networks.

    Prior to founding Rooke & Associates, Mary Anne held positions as Chief Financial Officer and Controller in multiple industries ranging from start-up ventures to Fortune 500 companies in both publicly owned and privately held sectors. She has served on several boards and commissions in the San Francisco Bay Area and in Connecticut. Mary Anne holds a B.S. in Accounting from Annhurst College and a M.B.A. from Golden Gate University's Executive MBA Program.

    Photo of Joseph R Saviano, Executive Committee Chairman, ARC Angel Fund Joseph Saviano
    Chairman, Executive Committee
    ARC Angel Fund
    Read the full profile for Joseph here!
    ARC Angel Fund
    Joseph R. Saviano joined Baker Capital ( in 1997 and serves as a Partner and its Chief Financial Officer. Since 1998, Mr. Saviano has been a member of the General Partner and since 2001 has had portfolio management responsibilities including leading the new investment decision process, portfolio monitoring by serving on portfolio company board of directors and by managing successfully realizations. Through out his career at Baker Capital, Mr. Saviano has managed the administrative function of the Baker Funds (AUM $1.5 billion) including accounting, tax, investor relations, fund raising and operations. In addition, Mr. Saviano has accumulated over 25 years of board of director level experience by serving on Baker Capital portfolio company board’s, including; Action Engine, Dotster, IQNavigator, Musicnet and Mr. Saviano has twenty two years of financial and investment management experience, including eighteen years in private equity. Prior to joining Baker Capital, Mr. Saviano served as a Vice President at Harvest Partners, Inc. ( and, from 1992 to 1996, served as controller for the private equity funds of Apollo Management ( Mr. Saviano earned a BS in Finance from Lehigh University and an MBA from Fordham University. Joseph is the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the NY-Based ARC Angel Fund

    Moderator: Michael D. Downs, Founding Partner, Fincham Downs, LLC

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