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Venture Capital
** Click Here to Register for our next Early-Stage VC & Angel Investor events:
  • Washington DC VC & Angel Event Jan 16
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  • Here are the Investor speakers from our Sold-Out Atlanta VC and Angel Event, sponsored by Chamber of Eco Commerce. This event was in Atlanta, Georgia on Thursday, March 1, 2012.

    Photo of Tom Hawkins, Managing Partner, Forte Ventures Tom Hawkins
    Managing Partner
    Forte Ventures
    Read the full profile for Tom here!
    Forte Ventures
    Tom has more than 24 years of venture capital, entrepreneurial and operational experience. He recently co-founded Forte Ventures, a stage-agnostic venture capital firm investing with corporate partners in Information Technology and Industrial Technology companies throughout North America. Investments range from $100,000 up to $3 million and include participation from leading corporate and strategic partners and co-investors. The firm is headquartered in Atlanta, with offices in Chicago, Menlo Park and New York.

    The Forte Ventures mission is to deliver venture grade returns on a risk-reduced basis by providing its investors with national visibility and access to investment opportunities validated by its global strategic partners and strong network of corporate co-investors.

    Prior to Forte Ventures, Tom co-founded the Venture Capital line of business at Arcapita Bank in 2005 and raised a $200 million growth stage venture capital fund in 2006. Tom managed investment activity in the IT, communications, energy and industrial technology sectors.

    Prior to Arcapita, Tom was an Investment Partner with the Corporate Fund of Siemens Venture Capital, the $850 million venture capital arm of Siemens AG (NYSE: SI), where he managed investment activity in IT, communications and industrial automation & control.

    Prior to Siemens, Tom was a General Partner with Cordova Ventures, a $250 million venture capital firm in Atlanta, where he focused on enterprise and infrastructure software, communications and industrial technology. Prior to Cordova, he managed Strategic Business Development at Radiant Systems, which was acquired by NCR (NYSE: NCR) in 2011.

    Tom currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of Junior Achievement of Georgia and is a Charter Member of TiE Atlanta. He has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Intelleflex, Navini Networks, Digital Envoy, DemandPoint, Arisdyne, Qcept Technologies, ManageSoft, SmartSynch and Quellan.

    Tom earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Duke University in 1992 and his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in 1999.

    Photo of Salvatore Masasro, Managing Director, EGL Ventures Salvatore Massaro
    EGL Ventures
    Read the full profile for Salvatore here!
    EGL Ventures
    Sal Massaro has been a partner at EGL since he and David Ellis founded the EGL venture capital and private equity business in 1988. Mr. Massaro has had responsibility for growth capital investments in a broad range of industries including information technology, telecommunications, instrumentation, and healthcare. As a board member of several EGL portfolio companies, Mr. Massaro has provided advice on strategic, financial and operational challenges to companies at all stages of development.

    Sal began his career in the management consulting group of Price Waterhouse in New York City in 1978. In this role, he advised clients on their financial management information systems, and on mergers and acquisition activities. Representative clients included Corning Glass Works, Drexel Burnham Lambert, and The Ford Foundation.

    In 1982, he took an operational role as CFO of Telesphere International, a supplier of long-distance and operator-assisted telephone service and telecommunications equipment to the hotel industry. He was responsible for all finance, accounting, tax, and investor affairs of the company, completing a mezzanine round of venture capital and managing the company’s initial public offering through D.H. Blair & Co. At the time, he was the youngest CFO of a publicly-traded company in the United States. Before leaving Telesphere, Mr. Massaro financed the company’s entry into the long-distance business by raising secured debt capital through Chemical Bank and through a secondary public offering managed by Smith Barney & Co.

    In 1985, Mr. Massaro moved to Atlanta to join Prudential-Bache Venture Capital, Inc. (“PBVC”) as Vice President, Business Development. PBVC was the venture capital arm of Prudential-Bache Securities, organized as a public limited partnership. PBVC was an early attempt to provide venture capital returns to the individual retail investor. Sal joined David at CFA in 1986. In 1988, he and David launched EGL’s private equity business.

    Photo of Rimas Kapeskas, Managing Director, UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund Rimas Kapeskas
    Managing Director
    UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund
    Read the full profile for Rimas here!
    UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund
    Rimas manages the UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund (SEF) which is the private equity strategic investment arm of UPS. The SEF is a corporate venture capital group which focuses on developing critical partnerships and acquiring knowledge returns from its investments in information technology companies and emerging market-spaces. Initial investments range from $100k – $1M depending on the stage of the investment. Rimas got his Bachelors of Science from the University of Connecticut and his MBA from Emory University - Goizeuta Business School.

    Steven Fifita, Best Buy Capital Steven Fifita, Best Buy Capital

    Experienced professional in the high technology, leading new business devleopment and incubation, product development and corporate finance. Specialties • Technology Incubation: IP strategy, business planning, product development/ commercialization • Corporate Finance: capital budgeting, global investment • Corporate Development: opportunity analysis, due diligence, financial modeling, negotiation, merger integration • Business Strategy: Consumer & Enterprise Mkg, Operations Optimization, New Product Introduction • Industries: Digital Entertainment, eCommerce, Enterprise SW, Telecom/Cable/Wireless, Digital Home, Consumer Electronics

    Moderator: Kenneth W. Hoogs, CFO, Chamber of Eco Commerce

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