Venture Finance SIG: Raising Seed and Early Stage Rounds for Growth Ventures



  • Registration is still open and available --- please pay at the door. On-line registration is closed. Thank you. 

    Topic: “Raising Seed and Early Stage Rounds for Growth Ventures – CEO/President and Founder Perspectives”

    Come listen to CEO’s, Presidents and Founders of new ventures that have successfully raised funding for their companies over the last 12 months, from the earliest seed funding to debt to institutional venture financing. Topics to be addressed include:

    · Building the “funnel” of investors, how to do it and what to expect

    · Funding terms in our recession economy

    · What are investors looking at now in terms of valuation expectations

    · Pitch decks – what works and what doesn’t

    · Choosing the right investors

    · Choosing what “type” of investors to go for – angels, VCs, others?

    · How to raise funding when the product isn’t ready yet and there are no revenues

    Panelists include:

    David Lachtman, President – Express Auto Funding

    David is a Director and President for Express Auto Funding, a business that helps dealers and consumers financing auto purchases. David has a great depth of startup experience and is the co-founder of Lien Funding Group LLC and American Lien Fund LP and was an EVP at Validus Technologies Corporation and COO at Running Man Ventures. Prior to starting his entrepreneurial ventures, David served as VP of Institutional Equity Sales at Dain Rauscher Wessels. David earned his bachelors from UC Berkeley.

    Hilary DeCesare, Co-Founder & CEO of Everloop

    Hilary DeCesare is the CEO and Co-Founder of Everloop, a new COPPA and CAN-SPAM-compliant social networking platform targeting the tween demographic (ages 8-13). The accomplished entrepreneur and Internet safety advocate has found a winning approach to developing kid-friendly technologies by creating kids’ sites that are separate from adults but with equally innovative technologies.   As a mother of three tweens, she also strives to ensure safe online experiences for children to provide parents with peace of mind. By creating sites that appeal to both kids and parents, DeCesare has earned praise in the national media at such outlets as “Mike and Juliet,” FOX, NBC and San Francisco Chronicle.

    Prior to Everloop, DeCesare co-founded White Space Ink, a management consulting firm that specializes in working with start-up technology companies.  During her five-year tenure at the firm, she specialized in counseling company executives on all areas of strategic planning and corporate development.

    DeCesare also spent 10 years in sales management at Oracle Corporation, where she won more than 100 sales awards.  She garnered such prestigious company-wide accolades as Top Worldwide Account Manager, Top Worldwide Sales Representative, Presidents Club, SWAT Team and member of President Task Force and Review Committee.

    Away from the office, DeCesare uses her business savvy to teach kids about Internet safety, technology, free enterprise, business and economics. Hilary has been a Chapter Director in California for Tween Angels for 2+ years. Tween Angels is a division of WiredSafety that teaches kids how to teach other kids about internet safety. She also participate on panels about kids online interests and coaches entrepreneurs. 

    A graduate of the University of ColoradoBoulder, with a BA in Psychology, DeCesare resides in DanvilleCalif.

    Peter Havas, Specialty’s CafÉ & Bakery

    Peter joined Specialty’s in 2003 with the acquisition of and brings entrepreneurial drive to the ongoing challenge of maintaining Specialty’s technology-based competitive advantage. Prior to co-founding, Peter founded two technology companies in his native Australia, one of which was awarded the Australian Software of the Year award in 1995. Peter graduated with honors in both his Commerce and Law degrees at the University of New South Wales, Australia and practiced at the leading Australian Commercial Law firm of Freehills.

    Moderator: Tom Cervantez, Partner – Business Counsel Law Group LLP. 
    Tom is a co-founder of Business Counsel Law Group LLP and has over 18 years experience working as a lawyer in the venture capital and startup technology company field in Silicon Valley. Tom's core area of focus is the securities and finance field, with a focus on helping emerging growth companies, venture funds, and software and hardware computer companies navigate issues concerning securities, capital structure planning, private placements, mergers and acquisitions, venture financing and licensing transactions. Tom has also participated at an operating level at several companies, including a venture fund, boutique investment bank and an ISP. Tom is also an active angel investor in the computer, communications and networking sectors (sample early stage investments include Open Table (IPO 2009), Friendster (acquired 2010), Geonet (acquired by Level3) and others) and runs the Harvard Angels (angel group for Harvard Business School NorCal Alum and Harvard Club SF) and the Golden Gate Angels investor group in San Francisco. Tom holds a Bachelor's in Business Administration, magna cum laude, from Loyola Marymount University, a JD from Harvard Law School and a MBA from Harvard Business School. Tom can be reached at [email protected].


    6:30 - 7:00 pm  Registration and Networking

    7:00 - 8:30 pm Presentation