Scroll down for information on each of our panels this year. Final panel topics and participants are being continuously updated, so check back often.
What will the future hold for buyout funds? The panel will discuss the implications of a wide array of issues putting pressure on the industry ranging from the rise of traditional LPs as direct investors to equity markets being near record highs, and explore tailwinds and policies that may boost returns for the industry.
Partner, Apollo Global Management
Mr. Michelini is a Partner at Apollo having joined in 2006. Prior to joining Apollo, Mr. Michelini was a member of the Mergers & Acquisitions group at Lazard Frères & Co. from 2004 to 2006. Mr. Michelini serves on the board of directors of Athene Holdings, Athene Asset Management, Aleris International Inc., and previously served on the boards of Metals USA and Noranda Aluminum. At Apollo, Mr. Michelini has executed deals across the world including in North America, Europe, and Asia. Mr. Michelini is actively involved in various charities dedicated to helping underprivileged children in New York City. Mr. Michelini graduated from Princeton University with a BS in Mathematics and a Certificate in Finance and received his MBA from Columbia University.
Managing Director, The Carlyle Group
Adam W. Glucksman is a Managing Director with the Carlyle U.S. Equity Opportunity advisory team. He is based in New York.
Since joining Carlyle in 2010, Mr. Glucksman has been actively involved with the Firm’s investments in Dynamic Precision Group (DPG), Service King, Galaxy Brand Holdings (merged with Sequential Brands Group (NASDAQ: SQBG)), Bonotel Exclusive Travel and AxleTech International Holdings, LLC.
Prior to joining Carlyle, Mr. Glucksman was an Operating Advisor at Pegasus Capital Advisors in New York and a Managing Director in the Financial Sponsors and Leveraged Finance groups at BNP Paribas in New York. He also previously served as a senior member of the Corporate Development group at Pitney Bowes, Inc., where he was involved in over 10 transactions representing over $1 billion in invested capital. Mr. Glucksman began his career as a corporate lawyer at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison and Schulte Roth & Zabel in New York City.
Mr. Glucksman received his M.B.A. from Columbia Business School, his J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and his B.A. from Rutgers University.
Mr. Glucksman has served on the Board of Directors of DPG, Service King, Galaxy Brand Holdings (merged with Sequential Brands Group (NASDAQ: SQBG)), and is currently on the Board of Directors of Bonotel Exclusive Travel and AxleTech International Holdings, LLC.
Partner, Irving Place Capital
Devraj Roy is a Partner of Irving Place Capital. Mr. Roy has more than 15 years of private equity investing and financial advisory experience. He focuses on investments in industrial manufacturing and distribution companies. Since joining Irving Place Capital in 2005, Mr. Roy has been involved in evaluating and executing investments in the industrial, consumer and retail products, and financial services industries. Prior to joining Irving Place Capital in 2005, Mr. Roy worked as an associate of Parthenon Capital. At Parthenon Capital, Mr. Roy focused on investments in industrial distribution, consumer products and healthcare services. Prior to Parthenon Capital, Mr. Roy was with the investment banking division of Salomon Smith Barney.
Mr. Roy received his M.B.A. from Columbia Business School and B.A. degree, magna cum laude, from Yale University.
Parner, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice
Mr. Strum joined CD&R in 2003. He has played a key role in the Firm’s investments in agilon health, AssuraMed, Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare, Envision Healthcare, Healogics, PharMEDium and VWR International. He currently serves as a Director of agilon health, Drive and Healogics. Previously, he worked in the investment banking division of Morgan Stanley and at York Capital Management, a multi-strategy investment firm. Mr. Strum graduated from Emory University with a B.A. in economics and earned an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.
Partner, Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Armand Della Monica is a partner in the M&A/Private Equity Practice Group in the New York office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. His practice focuses on domestic and cross-border buyouts, mergers and acquisitions and growth equity investing. Armand serves as lead counsel to large and middle market buyout funds and to public and privately owned companies in variety of complex transactions, including leveraged acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, corporate restructurings and workouts. Armand has broad experience counseling clients in a variety of industries, including health care, business services, software, telecom, cable, broadcast, media, insurance and consumer products. He received his J.D. from The George Washington Law School and B.A. from the University of Vermont.
In the past 24 months, growth equity has attracted significant attention and capital. The rise of “hybrid” or “crossover” funds well as traditional buyout firms raising dedicated growth equity funds highlight this trend. The panel will discuss what implications this has had on their ability to source and compete on deals, and where they see continued challenges or new opportunities in growth investing going forward.
Managing Director, GTCR
Mark joined GTCR in 2000 and is currently a Managing Director of the firm. Mark currently is a Director of CAMP Systems, Cision, Global Traffic Network, IQNavigator, Lytx, Rural Broadband Investments and XIFIN. In addition, Mark was previously a Director of GTCR’s past investments, Land Lease Group and Landmark Aviation, and was instrumental in other GTCR investments including Skylight Financial, Solera and Transaction Network Services.
Mark previously worked at Gracie Capital and at Bowles Hollowell Conner & Co. Mark is active in education, serving on the board of the Chicago Foundation for Education, a non-profit organization that seeks to improve the educational experience of Chicago’s public school children. In addition, Mark is a member of the Chicago-area Jefferson Scholars Selection Committee for the University of Virginia.
He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BS from the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia.
Managing Director & Head, Providence Strategic Growth
Mark Hastings is a managing director and head of Providence Strategic Growth based in Providence, RI. Mr. Hastings is currently a director of Abacus Data Systems, Burning Glass Technologies, GlobalTranz, Netsurion, PaySimple, Skybox Security, SnapApp and Vertical Knowledge.
Prior to joining Providence in 2013, Mr. Hastings most recently served as managing partner and founder of Garvin Hill Capital Partners. Prior to spinning out of CIBC to form Garvin Hill in 2009, Mr. Hastings led CIBC’s technology focused growth equity team in the United States. At CIBC, he developed the successful investment strategy and recruited the team. He was the primary deal originator and investment team leader. Prior to joining CIBC, he was a principal and general partner at BCI Partners. Mr. Hastings started his investment career at Edison Ventures.
He received a Master of Business Administration from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Arts from Colorado College.
Managing Partner, Rho Capital Partners
Habib Kairouz is a managing partner of Rho Capital Partners, Rho Ventures and Rho Acceleration as well as a member of the Investment Committees of Rho Canada Ventures and Rho Fund Investors. With over 20 years of experience in venture capital, Habib seeks to partner with entrepreneurs who are visionaries, hungry to build massive opportunities, confident enough to challenge established market leaders and charismatic enough to attract top-tier partners, customers and other business personnel.
Habib joined Rho in 1993 and focuses on investments in new media, information technology and communication companies at various stages of development – from seed stage to private equity. Prior to Rho, Habib worked in investment banking and leveraged buyouts in New York with Reich & Co. and Jesup & Lamont.
His interests also extend internationally to the impact of the Internet on globalization and its disruption of geopolitical boundaries, as well as solutions to the Middle East conflict. A native of Lebanon, Habib is involved with a number of nonprofit organizations focused on reforms and economic development there.
Habib received a BS in engineering and a BA in economics from Cornell University and an MBA in finance from Columbia University.
General Partner, Edison Partners
Michael Kopelman is a General Partner at Edison Partners. Michael has nearly 20 years of venture investing, corporate finance and entrepreneurship with software, e-commerce and financial services organizations. Michael leads Edison’s e-commerce and consumer investment sector, and is a member of the financial services team. Michael is a frequent speaker at entrepreneurial events, technology conferences and financing seminars.
Michael began his career as an investment banker with Credit Suisse First Boston where he advised large retail and consumer products companies on numerous M&A and financing transactions. In 1999, Michael left CSFB to launch E*OFFERING, a venture-backed online investment bank affiliated with E*TRADE. He launched several new online products, including the first web-based roadshow for retail investors. E*OFFERING was acquired on year after its launch by SoundView Technology Group, where he remained to lead the firm’s internet and e-commerce investment banking franchise.
Michael received an MBA with honors from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania.
Partner, Investor Relations and Marketing, Kelso & Company
John Kim is a Partner and Managing Director at Kelso & Company, where he joined in 2014, and is focused on marketing, fundraising and co-investment syndication. He spent the preceding nine years as a Partner at Court Square Capital where he ran Investor Relations and Marketing. Previously, he worked at Capital Z Investments where he ran the Investor Relations and Marketing department. Prior to Capital Z, he was a senior fundraiser for J.P. Morgan’s fund placement team where he raised capital for numerous private equity funds.
What sectors do VC firms favor by region? Which regions have thriving entrepreneur communities and what drives the emergence of such communities? How does local culture impact venture investing? How do regional VCs pitch their differentiation to potential limited partners? What will venture capital look like five years from now in the US and worldwide? What uncertainty will VC in different regions face?
Partner, General Catalyst
Spencer is a Partner at General Catalyst and leads their NYC office. He focuses on early stage services leveraging network effects driven by a community, marketplace, or data. Recent areas of interest include financial services, insurance, and the future of work. His investments at GC include Giphy, ClassPass, WayUp, Lemonade, L2, and Fundbox.
PJ is a Partner at Northzone, a € 1 billion transatlantic venture capital firm. He has been a VC investor for over twenty years, investing in transformative startups in Europe and the United States. In September 2013, PJ received the “Investor of the Year” award at the Investor All Stars gala in London, one of the most prestigious awards in the European venture capital community. He primarily invests disruptive businesses in consumer internet, media, and fintech spaces. His current investments and board directorships include Spotify, Widespace, Bloglovin, Qapital, Play Dots, SourcePoint, Cryex, SoundtrackYourBrand, and Jukely. Over the years, he has also invested in Avito (Europe’s second largest VC-backed exit), Pricerunner, Jasper, Videoplaza, and many others. PJ established Northzone’s New York office in 2013. In a previous life, he was touring rock & roll guitarist.
Vice President, Norwest Venture Partners
Lisa focuses on early to late stage venture investments across a wide range of sectors at Norwest Venture Partners, with an emphasis on consumer Internet. She is a board observer at Jet and StellaService, and was involved with Norwest’s investments in Ritual, Minted and Opendoor.
Before joining the Norwest team, Lisa worked in Amazon.com’s Worldwide Corporate Development team. In this role, she identified and evaluated acquisition targets and strategic investments for Amazon and provided strategies for potential expansion. Prior to Amazon, Lisa worked at Bessemer Venture Partners, where she originated and conducted due diligence on early to growth stage investment opportunities, including several top eCommerce, SaaS, consumer Internet, and healthcare IT companies. Earlier, Lisa founded BANZAI! Fresh, a small business providing high-quality, nutritious foods to schools and hospitals in Northern California. Lisa began her career in the investment banking group at Merrill Lynch.
Lisa holds an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a double major in marketing and entrepreneurial management. While at Wharton, Lisa won first place at the International Venture Capital Investment Competition. Lisa also holds a bachelor of science, with honors, in business administration from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, and a bachelor of arts in psychology from the University of California, Berkeley.
Vice President, GGV Capital
Robin Li is a vice president in GGV Capital’s Silicon Valley office. She focuses on investments in ecommerce and consumer internet. She is a member of the board of directors for Lively and is actively involved with Boxed, Bustle, musical.ly, OfferUp, Poshmark, Prynt, Xiaohongshu, Wish, and more.
Prior to joining GGV, Robin worked at Flextronics' Venture Arm covering hardware and technology investments and at Qiming's Beijing office. Before venture capital, she spent three years at Teach For America as a teacher and administrator.
Robin holds an M.B.A from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, an M.S. from Hunter College in Education and Special Education, and a B.A. from Rutgers University in Art History and Economics.
Chair, Tech Group, Lowenstein Sandler LLP
Ed is a lawyer representing tech startups, growth companies and the venture capital and growth equity funds that back them. He co-founded and Chairs the Tech Group at Lowenstein Sandler LLP, where he’s worked since he was a summer associate in 1991. In 2013, Dow Jones ranked Lowenstein among the five most active law firms in America for venture capital and private equity deals. As an angel investor, Ed has personally invested in more than 80 startups and more than 30 venture funds. He’s been an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business since 2005, where he teaches Venture Capital and Angel Investing. Ed co-founded and chairs VentureCrush, which also includes FirstGrowthVC (which Pando Daily called “New York’s best Accelerator”). Ed has published approximately 100 columns on tech startups and growth companies (and sometimes wine and music), mostly on the Accelerators page of the Wall Street Journal, where he currently serves as a WSJ Expert Panelist. Ed worked harvest (briefly) in France and California, and had minor involvement in vinifying a wine granted a perfect 100 point score by Robert Parker.
Are we headed into an era of more disciplined valuations, or will that change? Which mega-trends are rising in 2017 and why?
The euphoria that characterized the past few years in the VC market appeared to wane in 2016. Global fundraising has been falling y-o-y with some unicorns experiencing difficulty in raising up-rounds while valuations in the early-stage market have returned to more rational levels. With VC investors now flush with cash (dry powder in excess of $100b globally) in a more favorable valuation environment, 2017 is expected to be a robust year of activity with new trends. Emerging breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and cryptocurrency are occurring. Record breaking M&A and a resurgent tech IPO market are bringing a renewed optimism to the VC industry. Meanwhile, companies that demonstrate more disciplined and sustainable growth are starting to command more premium valuations.