Venture Finance SIG: An Evening with Opus Capital



  • The Monthly Meeting of the Venture Finance SIG

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    Please register at the door.


    Presentation Overview

    An Evening with Opus Capital

    Join us for an evening with Carl Showalter, Dan Avida, and Ken Elefant of Opus Capital. The panelists will offer their opinions on where technology is heading, give a preview on areas they will be placing their bets, and provide advice on how to raise venture funding in today's environment.

    Opus Capital is a brand new venture fund. From their roots at Weiss, Peck & Greer Venture Partners to the recent years of working as a team at Lightspeed Venture Partners, the team has collectively been involved in over 48 IPOs and 35 M&A transactions. In addition to investment success, the team also has a strong history of operating success at such companies as Juniper Networks, McKinsey & Company, AOL, Radius, UUNET and Formtek (acquired by Lockheed).



    Carl Showalter, General Partner:

    Carl Showalter is a founding partner of Opus Capital focusing primarily on networking software, systems and semiconductor investments. Previously, Carl was a General Partner with Lightspeed Venture Partners.

    Carl brings more than 12 years of operating experience to Opus. Most recently, he served as Vice President of Worldwide Marketing at Juniper Networks, where he built and led an organization that grew service provider market share against Cisco from 15% to 35% in under two years.

    Prior to Juniper, Carl was Vice President of Dial and Broadband Services for UUNET, overseeing the 300-person, $1B division.

    He also held various management positions at ANS, an AOL company, where he helped pioneer hardware-based firewalls and VPNs. Carl began his career at Bellcore, focusing on network security and data service delivery. At Bellcore, Carl's job included performing logical and physical attacks on phone companies, then helping them fix their vulnerabilities.

    Carl holds a BS degree in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia and an MS degree in Engineering-Economic Systems from Stanford University.

    Dan Avida, General Partner:

    With 16 years experience building successful companies and seeing them through to profitable outcomes, Dan Avida brings a strong operating background to Opus Capital.

    Most recently, Dan was President and CEO of Decru Inc., a pioneering storage security company that Dan co-founded in 2001. Decru was acquired for $272.5M by Network Appliance (Nasdaq: NTAP) in 2005. In 1989, Dan was a founding member of Electronics for Imaging (Nasdaq: EFII), where he initially led the Fiery project, the cornerstone of EFI's success. Dan was promoted several times, ultimately to Chairman and CEO. Under Dan's leadership, EFI experienced five years of dramatic, consecutive growth, placing the company on Business Week, Fortune and Forbes lists of fastest growing companies, and on the Nasdaq 100 index.

    Dan served as an officer in the Israel Defense Force during the years 1984-1989. He holds a B.Sc. degree in Computer Engineering from Technion, the Israel Institute of Technology, where he graduated summa cum laude.

    Ken Elefant, General Partner:

    Ken Elefant is a founding partner of Opus Capital focusing primarily on internet and software investments. Previously, Ken was a Senior Associate at Lightspeed Venture Partners. Prior to this, Ken was a Senior Associate and Kauffman Fellow at Battery Ventures.

    Ken brings strong operating experience to Opus. Previously, he worked at Radius Inc. as Director of International Sales and Marketing when the revolutionary Radius Pivot Monitor was the hot seller in Japan. His role at Radius included serving as a member of the executive staff and opening the company's first sales and marketing office in the Benelux region of Europe. He has also held various marketing and business development positions at Claris Corporation (the software subsidiary of Apple Computer) and RealNetworks. While at Claris, Ken devised the compensation plan for the U.S. sales force that helped move the company from being a Macintosh-only company to being a cross-platform company.

    Ken holds a BS in Economics from the Wharton undergraduate division at the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from Harvard Business School.


    Andrew Lee, Emerging Tech, Silicon Valley Bank

    Event Logistics


    DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary LLP.
    2000 University Ave.(University Circle)
    East Palo Alto, CA 94303
    Tel: 650.833.2000
    Note: These are the tall buildings on the corner of University Avenue and Woodland Avenue on the west side of Hwy. 101. They are in the University Circle complex.

    6:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Registration / Networking / Refreshments
    7:00p.m.-8:30 p.m. Panel discussion and Pitch Session (starts promptly at 7:00pm)

    $20 SDForum members
    $30 Non-SDForum members

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