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  • Here are the Investor speakers from our Sold-Out NYC VC & Angel Event: Adding AI and Chat, sponsored by McCarter & English, BDO,, RiseNY, ARC Angel Fund. This event was in New York on Thursday March 2, 2017.

    Joseph Sartre, Bleu Capital Joseph Sartre, Bleu Capital

    Joseph is an ex-entrepreneur and company operator in a big MNC, with a strong tech background. Before joining Bleu Capital as a partner, he worked for 5 years with Danone in China.

    Photo of Slater Chityala, EIP Fund Slater Chityala
    Managing Partner
    Elevate Innovation Partners
    Read the full profile for Slater here!
    Elevate Innovation Partners
    Slater Chityala is the Managing Partner of Elevate Innovation Partners - an early stage venture firm based in New York. EIP invests in enterprise software companies in US and fintech startups in US, Europe and India. EIP helps connect startups with financial services firms across its global network. Slater is an active member of the New York startup ecosystem. He is a mentor to several startups, accelerators and is on the Executive Committee of ARC Angel Fund and Charlotte Angel Fund. He has made several successful angel investments in US and Australia which provided the impetus to start EIP. Prior to EIP, Slater had worked in Corporate VC, Strategy Consulting and Investment Banking in US and Asia for UBS, Nomura and Westpac. He is a passionate sports fan with a particular love for football (all the various kinds) and basketball.

    Chris Hughes, Revolution Chris Hughes, Revolution

    Photo of Joshua B. Siegel, Rubicon Venture Capital Joshua B. Siegel
    General Partner
    Rubicon Ventures
    Read the full profile for Joshua B. here!
    Rubicon Ventures
    As General Partner – New York, Joshua oversees the day to day activities and operations of Rubicon including evaluating early stage technology companies seeking funding, assisting current portfolio companies with development and interaction with our angels, attracting LP capital, and development of our network. Joshua has extensive experience and connections in technology, real estate, luxury lifestyle brands, digital media, and consumer products.

    Previously, Mr. Siegel was an early stage strategic advisor for startups and real estate concerns, and board member of The Founders Club, an equity exchange based liquidity platform for entrepreneurs. Formerly CEO Professional Connection Resources, an enterprise level marketing system for the legal community, Manager Eastern European Banking Systems at Citibank, Director of Market Intelligence at Citicorp Debt Capital Markets.

    Mr. Siegel received his BA degree from Boston University in Economics and Business Administration and received his MBA from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business in Finance and Entrepreneurship in 2000. He also holds a Degree in Gastronomy from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York. Joshua was born and raised in New York City, attending Horace Mann, where he lives with his wife, son and daughter.

    Mitchell Kleinhandler, Scout Ventures Mitchell Kleinhandler, Scout Ventures

    Mitchell Kleinhandler is a serial entrepreneur with a record of success as a founding partner and senior level operating executive of numerous startup and growth businesses in the United States and Europe. As an ongoing advisor to digital startups, he has extensive expertise in the financing, development, and management of early stage and growth companies across diverse industry verticals. Over the past 25 years, he was the founder and chief executive of several cable television and communications companies, including Consolidated Communications Group, which he founded in 1985 and led for more than 10 years, and Alcas Holdings, presiding as Managing Director and chief executive for 7 years from 1999 through 2006. During that time, he also served as President and Chief Operating Officer of the largest global Muzak affiliate, publicly-traded Audio Communications Network, and its predecessor company, Suncom Communications, for which he played a key role in facilitating the acquisition and merging of the two companies in 1997.

    Photo of Bryan Ciambella, B Capital Group Bryan Ciambella
    Senior Associate
    B Capital
    Read the full profile for Bryan here!
    B Capital
    Bryan Ciambella is a principal at B Capital Group, a $250M venture growth fund that launched in collaboration with the Boston Consulting Group. Prior to joining, he was a manager at IAC, a media and internet holding company (brands include: Tinder,,, Vimeo, HomeAdvisor) focused on new investments, strategy and research. Recent investments include Apalon, a top 10 worldwide iOS app publisher based in Minsk, Belarus. Previously he worked at Liquidity Works investing in early stage software, sports & media companies (board observer at Actionable Data Solutions). Mr. Ciambella founded: Amped Fantasy a daily fantasy sports gaming company (acquired by the Global Gaming Network), Hello Fresh USA the largest global meal kit e-commerce company (valuation of $2.9B+) with venture incubator Rocket Internet, the World Championship of Ping Pong that aired in a billion homes worldwide – from ESPN Latin American to CCTV (acquired by Matchroom Sport). He began his career in international TMT equity research (Street Ratings, State Street Bank).

    David Beatty, Angel Investor David Beatty, Angel Investor

    Born in Ireland, David Beatty began his career as a headhunter in 1985, before joining IMI Computing in 1989. He was transferred to the United States in 1990.

    In 1993, he founded Empire Messaging, a company that provides enterprise messaging solutions, and ran it until 2004. He has gone on to cofound seven other companies, including Healthology, Inc., a health media company that was later bought out by iVillage/NBC, Acronym Media, a search engine marketing firm, and R2R Recycling, LLC, which processes roofing scraps.

    Beatty also co-founded Gorann, Inc in 1995, a company that invests in and works with early stage companies. Out of five projects, he has so far successfully excited three of them, and one is a profitably running company.

    He is currently a Managing Director of Golden Seeds, an angel investor group in New York. In addition, he is the co-head of the Golden Seeds Institute, where he leads workshops for angel investors and entrepreneurs both in the US and overseas. He is also a mentor at the Founder Institute, where he has lectured on “CoFounders, Hiring and Firing,” “Fundraising,” “Startup Pitch Bootcamp,” “Idea Review” and “Bootstrapping and Fundraising.”

    He is also co-founder and Vice President of Business Development at ProSeeder Technologies, which is an enterprise funding platform meant to help financial firms collaborate, syndicate and execute debt and private equity transactions.

    And as if all of this isn’t enough, he is also currently working on an online service called Angel Exchange to help startup CEOs organize their companies, and angel investors to organize their investment activity and holdings.

    Photo of Ryan Armbrust, ffVC Ryan Armbrust
    ff Venture Capital
    Read the full profile for Ryan here!
    ff Venture Capital
    Ryan joined ff Venture Capital in early 2012. Prior to joining ffVC Ryan spent seven years spinning out startups and otherwise commercializing early-stage technology at Columbia Technology Ventures, the technology transfer office of Columbia University. A self-taught hacker, Ryan has been involved in the New York technology scene for a number of years. Ryan is on the Board of Columbia Venture Community and is the founder of Brooklyn Venture Community.

    Ryan received a BA in American Studies from Columbia University in 2005.

    Photo of Nihal Mehta, Eniac Ventures Nihal Mehta
    Founding General Partner
    Eniac Ventures
    Read the full profile for Nihal here!
    Eniac Ventures
    Nihal is a noted expert in the emerging adoption of mobile technologies for media properties and consumer brands. He has over 15 years experience in marketing technologies through founding five startups and investing in 100+ since 1999. Prior to Eniac, Nihal co-founded Local Response, Inc. (now Qualia Media), which makes ads more relevant from social signals, which he pivoted from buzzd, the first mobile real-time city guide. As the Founding CEO, Nihal grew LocalResponses revenues 2153% over a three year period, which placed the company to #204 (#14 in NYC) to the 2014 Inc. 5000′s Fastest Growing Companies and #67 to the 2013 Forbes list of America Most Promising Companies. Prior to LocalResponse, Nihal founded ipsh!, one of the first full-service mobile marketing agencies in 2001, which was acquired by Omnicom (NYSE: OMC) in 2005. Nihal investment portfolio includes Admob (sold to Google), HotelTonight, Tapad, and Uber.

    In 2013, Nihal Mehta was named a semi-finalist for Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst & Young, in 2012 a top 100 Coolest People in NY Tech, by Business Insider, a NYC tech influencer by VentureBeat, one of the 25 People Every New Founder Should Meet in New York Tech a top 5 Up-And-Coming Startup CEO in New York by Business Insider, and a 2012 AlwaysOn Power Player NYC. Mehta was named a top 10 New York City Game Changer in the 2010 New York Enterprise Report, one of twenty RCR Wireless News Mobile Movers and Shakers in 2008, a BusinessWeek M-Commerce Baron in 2006 and named one of Ad Ages Top 20 Marketers in Their 20s in 2005. Nihal frequently guest lectures at business schools around the country on entrepreneurship and mobile marketing, and is published in over 15 books and white papers on the subject.

    Nihal graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA in Philosophy and a BSE in Computer Science.

    Bruce Weed, IBM Bruce Weed, IBM

    Bruce Weed is the City Leader/Developer Advocate (New York) for IBM's Digital Business Group. Bruce covers the Eastern part of the U.S. with a main focus in NYC. Bruce leads a team of technical advocates, business development/sales, marketing/events and community outreach staff. Bruce engages directly around latest technologies with partners and customers alike, his expertise is around Watson/AI, IoT, Blockchain, Cloud and Big Data. Bruce also has industry knowledge in Retail, Finance, Healthcare, and Automotive. Bruce drives IT and business strategy with clients and partners. Mr. Weed has extensive experience in technology, sales, business development and marketing. Additional skills and experience lie in software development, product and brand management. He runs LinkedIn groups with over 50K+ members on IBM Watson & IoT, IBM Big Data and Analytics, and Blockchain for Business; these groups look at both use cases and technology trends. Bruce also runs the IBM Watson - Cognitive Business & IoT Meetup in NYC with over 1600 members. He is a Watson/IoT, Blockchain and Big Data evangelist who keynotes many major conferences around the world

    Photo of Moderator: Kevin Pianko, BDO Kevin Pianko
    Read the full profile for Kevin here!
    Kevin is an audit partner and performs audits of public and private companies and assists them with the financial and operational aspects of their business.

    He helps clients obtain sources of capital and provides M&A and strategic alliance analysis. Kevin has industry experience in numerous sectors including technology, private equity and venture capital, life sciences, manufacturing and distribution, professional services, and financial services. He has extensive experience with 33 Act and 34 Exchange Act filings, including initial public offerings.

    Kevin has extensive experience in working with private equity and venture capital entities at the fund level and the portfolio company level. He brings practical experience in working with earlier stage companies to assist them in dealing with issues they face as they progress along their development timeline. He is actively involved in many technology focused organizations. He is an angel investor in the Angel Round Capital Fund located in New York City, where he serves on the Executive Committee and also chairs the Audit Committee.

    Kevin has been quoted in numerous business publications such as Crain's New York Business, Fortune Small Business, Commerce magazine and NJBIZ. He has also been a speaker at the New York State Bar Association and the New Jersey Bar Association. Kevin has appeared on Bloomberg Radio, CNBC and NBC.

    Kevin's career also includes 10 years of professional experience with two of the Big 4 and national accounting firms.

    Moderator: Howard Schwartz, Moderator: Howard Schwartz,

    Howie Schwartz is the CEO of, and AI and Chatbot company focused on the Tech Recruiting space.

    Howie is also a serial entrepreneur and an active Angel and Venture investor in early stage technology companies, including founding investor Angel Round Capital (ARC I&II) (UpNext, Sidecar, Medivo), the Scout Ventures I&II (FlowSearch, MobiTeris, Portalarium, Signpost), FF Ventures Silver, Rose, Saphire (Klout, 500px, Gamesalad, Kohort, Indiegogo), Metamorphic Ventures II, Eniac Ventures II & III, Female Founders Fund, CoVentures II & III, 645 Ventures, Future Perfect Ventures. Angel Investments including OfferVault, Sols,, StatSocial, CareCloud, Funding Wonder, Abandon Interactive Entertainment (Freaky Creatures), Blue Pearl Software (exited), AppMobi (acquired), CIMA Systems, GiftWorks (acquired), Senscient, Sticky, Inc. (acquired), ZoomCar, Augmate, The Water Initiative, nToggle, and other early stage companies.

    * SVP Mobile Ad Tech @ IgnitionOne (through acquisition of Human Demand - Aug 2014) *

    Howie founded and was the CEO of Human Demand (Mobile DSP / DMP) acquired by IgnitionOne in August 2014. Co-founded FundingPost and Offermobi (acquired by Moko Media), as well as product & marketing training companies with over 120,000 customers worldwide. In the 90's, Howie spent a decade in the video game industry with companies such as Acclaim, ASC Games, and Sega.

    Howie is on the board of the "Friendship Circle" (Stamford, CT) which helps children with special needs and actively supports "Al's Angels" (CT) which helps children with rare blood diseases and was recognized as "Angel of the Year". Howie lives in CT with his wife and 2 awesome kids.

    Howie MAKES STUFF and is fascinated by 3D Printing, laser cutters, CNC routers, sensors, and robotics. Howie is addicted to ordering things on Kickstarter and Indiegogo, loves to ski, rock climb and wants to be able to surf...

    Photo of Moderator: David Sorin, McCarter & English David J Sorin
    McCarter English
    Read the full profile for David J here!
    McCarter English
    Dave Sorin is the managing partner of McCarter's East Brunswick office and the head of the Venture Capital and Emerging Growth Companies practice. He focuses his practice primarily on privately- and publicly-owned startup, early stage, emerging growth, and middle market technology, tech-enabled and life science enterprises, as well as the investors, executives, and boards of directors who support and lead them. Dave has a long track record of successful representation of growth companies, having been repeatedly recognized by well-known periodicals for a unique combination of legal acumen and sound business judgment. He also brings to bear his broad range of knowledge and experience in counseling enterprises and investors in diverse emerging growth markets, technology industries (including software, information technology, e-commerce, and communications), and life sciences. Many of the companies he represents are well-known names throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

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