Alan Cole-Ford is a corporate executive with a distinguished career in the fields of media, technology, and finance.
He served as Executive Vice-President of MGM/United Artists Inc. and was an integral part of the management team responsible for the turnaround and successful sale of the studio on behalf of its owner, Credit Lyonnais. Previously, he had held series of senior staff and operating posts for over a decade with Paramount Pictures Corp. including Senior Vice-President of its Entertainment and Television Groups and later as Senior Vice President of its parent company, Gulf + Western until its successful sale to Viacom.
Following his Hollywood Studio tenure, he served for two years as CEO of NVST Inc., a Seattle-based private equity research firm and Draper, Fisher, Jurvetson affiliate, and in 2005 became a senior partner with Hong Kong-based Stone Drum Capital. He has played a key role in the development of eChinaCash Inc., a Beijing-based marketing services company which is partnered with Sinopec, China’s largest oil&gas retailer and the country’s largest SOE (state-owned-enterprise). Since 2008 Cole-Ford has served as eCC’s Chief Operating Officer and a member of its Board of Directors.
He is also a Board Director of Mei Ah Entertainment Group, a publicly-traded Hong Kong-based media conglomerate with film production, theater, and content distribution holdings across China and other Asian markets.
Over the past decade, he has also served as an advisor to a diverse list of International companies, including:
- Hachette Publishing (Paris)
- VNU/Nielsen (Netherlands)
- Leavesden Studios (London)
- Banque Financiere De La Cite (Geneva)
- DKH Holdings (Kuala Lumpur)
- CMG Worldwide (Los Angeles)
- Second City Entertainment (Chicago)
His commentaries on media, technology, and finance have appeared in Barron’s, the Wall Street Journal, Daily Variety, Newsweek, and on ABC’s ‘Nightline’ among others.
Sailesh Chittipeddi Ph.D., served until recently, as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Conexant Systems, Inc. He was also a Board Member for Conexant Systems, Inc. as well as for all of Conexant’s international subsidiaries. He has over 25 years experience in the semiconductor industry with a deep understanding and strong results-oriented leadership in a wide range of functional areas within technology companies. He led the successful restructuring of the company’s debt through a pre-packaged bankruptcy process in less than 120 days. He assumed the role of President and CEO in April 2011 and successfully transitioned the company to private equity ownership from its public roots in 2011. Prior to assuming the role of President and CEO in 2011, served as the company’s President and Chief Operating Officer responsible for engineering, operations, quality, and marketing. From 2009 to 2010, Sailesh was the company’s co-president, with responsibility for global engineering, new product development, operations, quality, IT, and associated infrastructure-support activities. He was responsible for consolidation of the R&D facilities globally and streamlining the IT and Operations infrastructure of the company to scale with the needs of the business during that period.
In the period between 2008 and 2010, he was a key part of the leadership team that was responsible for the divestiture of 3 non-strategic businesses and acquisitions of 2 other product lines. Sailesh joined Conexant in June 2006 as Senior Vice President of Global Operations, and was promoted to Executive Vice President of Global Operations and Chief Technical Officer in April 2008.
Prior to Conexant Systems, Inc., he held several senior operations and technology-related positions with Agere Systems, Lucent Technologies, AT&T Microelectronics, and AT&T Bell Labs. He also served as Lucent Technologies’ representative to SEMATECH, and was a member of the Technical Staff with AT&T Bell Laboratories. Sailesh has 5 degrees including an M.B.A from the University of Texas at Austin, and a master’s degree and a doctorate in physics from Ohio State University, a certificate in finance from the Wharton School of Business. He also holds 64 U.S. patents related to semiconductor process, package, and design, and has authored nearly 40 publications.
Clean Tech Green tech
Dr. Sethi has over thirty years of experience in the fields of finance, business development , investment banking and technology & energy.
He is currently a Director, Chief Operating Officer and CFO of WorldWater & Solar Tecnologies, Inc., a company developing and marketing worldwide fixed and mobile solar energy platforms with applications for commercial, agriculture and water sectors.
Prior to his current engagement, Dr. Sethi was the Vice-Chairman and CFO of Entrada Networks, Inc., a developer and seller of network connectivity products. Prior to that, he was the Chairman and Chief Executive Office of iPing, Inc., a notification company linking the web and the telephone networks. Previously, he served as Director and Senior Advisor to Barclays de Zoete Wedd, an investment bank with global reach, advising major global clients in the technology sector to develop and execute corporate development opportunities. In that capacity, Dr. Sethi spent over four years as senior advisor to the Ellipso low earth orbit satellite system in forging relationships with several global telecommunications’ companies. Prior to that, he spent seven years at Bell Laboratories in operations research and communications network planning and seven years in corporate finance at AT&T. In parallel, he has served as a Director, advisor and CFO to several technology companies.
Dr. Sethi holds a Ph.D. and MS in Operations Research, Economics and Statistics from UC Berkley, and a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from I.I.T., New Delhi. He is a graduate of the Executive Management Program from Penn State.
Tony is a seasoned banking leader who spent 27 years at HSBC Group including 5 years as Group General Manager and Head of the UK Network of 1600 branches, 130 commercial, trade and treasury centers, 8 call centers as well as chairing HSBC Life UK Ltd. He then spent 2 years in Paris as Deputy CEO, HSBC Continental Europe responsible for all activities in 18 countries. While at HSBC he led the acquisition of banks in Malta and Kazakhstan, managed start-ups in Poland, Russia and Georgia as well as asset disposals and major restructuring of operations in UK, Czech Republic, Poland, Greece, Ukraine, Hungry and Greece.
Tony was most recently the CEO of Oman’s 3rd largest company, Bank Dhofar. He led the transformation of Bank Dhofar leaving it well on course to become a top bank in the GCC and engineered the proposed merger with rival Bank Sohar which is progressing to plan.
Based in Malta since November 2013, Tony is currently an advisor for the acquisition of a life company, banking operations, specialty finance and factoring companies. Further he is an adviser in some trade finance transactions as well as assisting environmental and property companies on their financing needs.
Shiv Grewal is a senior corporate partner with the law firm of Stradling Yocca Carlson & Rauth and is a member of the firm’s Executive Management Committee and Board of Directors. His practice focuses on representing technology, life science, consumer product and clean technology entities. Shiv specializes in corporate and securities law; including venture capital financings, M&A transactions, initial public offerings, joint ventures, etc. He practiced law in India before relocating to the United States and also advises U.S. business entities on investments in India, as well as Indian entities on acquisitions in the U.S. as well as on raising capital in the U.S. markets. Shiv is the author of various articles and publications on U.S. and on Indian law. In addition, he has chaired various panels and has spoken at various seminars on corporate finance issues, venture capital, mergers and acquisitions, as well as on U.S. and Indian law.
Shiv co-founded HealthScribe, Inc. which was one of the first U.S. companies to source medical transcriptions from India. He also was a co-founder of FirstRing, Inc., one of India’s first independent call centers.
Shiv is the past President of TiE Southern California and was the Chair of the Governance Committee of the TiE Global Board of Trustees. He is also a member of the UCI Chief Executive Roundtable, the Board of Counselors at the Chapman University School of Business, and is a member of the Board of Directors of OCTANe.
Shiv sits on the Board of Directors, and is a member of the board of advisors, of various companies. He was named one of Southern California’s Super Lawyers by the Los Angeles Magazine.
Technology / Silicon Valley Partner
John Hwang is the Chairman and CEO of AmbiCom Holdings Inc. Prior to AmbiCom Holdings Inc., Mr. Hwang had over 20 years of corporate and entrepreneurial leadership experience in semiconductor technology and consumer electronics. From 1985 to 1992 Mr. Hwang was VP of Samsung America, starting the first Samsung brand for monitors and PCs, selling more than U$ 120mil worth monitors and PCs in the first year. He then created Samtron, a new brand for Samsung, which became a second tier brand to focus into the VAR channel. Samtron has sold more than U$ 300million worth of monitors globally.
As President of Osicom, a fiber optic and network technologies manufacturer, from 1994 to 1997 he helped build the company to U$1.4 billion market cap. During the 3 years Mr. Hwang was with Osicom, he managed the sales and marketing department and helped grow Osicom by acquiring more than 8 companies. Additionally he helped reorganize the acquisitioned companies to focus on fiber networking products.
Gurjesh “Mikki” Suri is an investor, business operator, advisor and developer across numerous businesses’ within India for the past 28 years.
Gurjesh is currently the co-founder and director of Camelback Ventures Pvt. Ltd., an exclusive authorized distributor and partner to high-tech, clean-tech and “green” tech cutting edge firms primarily from the US entering Asian markets with a particular focus in India. Camelback is the sole distributor in India for World Water & Solar Technologies Inc. (USA). World Water is an off-grid solar powered portable water purification and pumping company for desalination, purification, disaster management and irrigation purposes. World Water’s cutting edge technology and products are used globally by various governments, agricultural companies, armed forces and NGOs for water purification, off grid irrigation, flood protection and disaster recovery efforts.
Gurjesh is the Founder and Director of HomeAlive Venture Pvt. Ltd., a Real Estate company in India focusing on direct investment, co-investment, corporate leasing of offices spaces for domestic and international clients, retail showrooms and other commercial spaces such as malls and plazas. In this role, he has been an active real estate developer and investor across numerous projects in commercial and residential real estate structuring, negotiating and managing of projects for strategic exit to end users or other real estate players in India.
Gurjesh is also an on ground consultant for Hill International Ltd. (NYSE: HIL) in New Delhi and the National Capital Region. He assists developers in the sourcing of contracts for Hill’s strategic initiatives and efforts in these areas. Gurjesh is also the Managing Partner of TPI, a distribution company of luxury home goods and appliances for the Indian market which has the exclusive rights for brands such as Bulthaup Kitchen (Germany), Sub-Zero Wolf (USA), De Dietreich (France), Aston Martin Furniture (UK) and Mercedes Benz Furniture (Germany).
Senior Advisor, Greece
Spyros Martsekis is the founder and the Managing Partner of Ionian Capital Ltd, an independent boutique advisory firm with focus on Private Equity and Hedge Fund advisory. Spyros has extensive business experience for almost 20 years in different industries and practices including advising numerous Private Equity firms and Hedge funds for business opportunities in South Eastern Europe and Turkey. Before founding Ionian Capital he was the Managing Director and head of Alvarez & Marsal’s Greek office and part of the European Growth Practice (Central/Eastern Europe & Greece/Turkey) and also founding member of the European Shipping Advisory Practice. Prior to that he held senior positions with KPMG (where he was responsible for the Corporate Finance and Private Equity Advisory Practice), Oxygen Capital, and Pantheon Airways (where he was Chairman of the BoD/CEO).
Spyros was also the Global Head for Greece/Cyprus for HSBC Private Bank (based in London and Geneva), and was a senior associate for five years with Morgan Stanley. He has a bachelor from the Athens University of Economics, and holds an MBA from Columbia University on an Onassis Foundation scholarship.
Sean Mulhearn is the founder and CEO of Jacaranda Capital Partners Pte Ltd, a Singapore based boutique investment, advisory and corporate training company. Mr. Mulhearn has been in the financial markets for 30 years and has had considerable experience in Asia, Europe, North and South America.
Prior to founding Jacaranda Capital Partners Sean was Global Head of Commodity Sales and Global Head of Commodity Finance and Structuring at ANZ based in Singapore from 2011-2014.
He was also Head of Commodity Sales (Fixed Income) at JPM Morgan Singapore from 2009-2011 and was Global Head of Commodities Sales at Standard Chartered Bank in Singapore from 2006-2009.
From 1999 to 2006 he was based in New York where he worked for Merrill Lynch in the Structured Commodity Finance business and Citigroup where he worked for 20 years in various role around the world including Global Head of Commodities Finance, Global Head of commodity derivatives sales, Head of Asian Commodities and Head of Australian Fixed Income and Interest Rate Derivatives.
He has designed and taught risk management courses around the world for banks, corporations and government agencies. He has been a regular guest speaker at international conferences and media outlets such as CNBC and Bloomberg.
Gene Shen is a Co-Founder of China Bridge, and has been active in the financial services industry for thirty-seven years. The former Vice Chairman of Options Group, President of AT Kearney Executive Search, and Managing Director of The Whitney Group, Gene has been active in working strategically on firm-building with global financial institutions, most recently with a focus on private equity, venture capital and portfolio companies in China. Gene’s responsibilities at China Bridge involve partnership development both internally and for clients seeking to extend their value proposition into the rapidly evolving Greater China market.
An Honors graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy and Trinity College, Gene attended a joint program in International Business & Finance at The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy and Harvard University’s Schools of Business and Law, subsequently beginning his career at Citigroup’s Global Banking and Capital Markets division, specializing in corporate finance, leveraged finance and derivatives. His areas of specialization in the executive search world have included capital markets, private finance, structured finance, and private wealth management.
Gene has served as a Trustee of Phillips Exeter Academy, international FINA water polo official, and professional PSIA ski instructor.
DAVID PINTOR SORIA
Iberia Region Advisor
David joins the Pelican advisory team driving connectivity and deal flow within Continental Europe & specifically Spain for various Real Estate and other structured finance opportunities. David’s career has included 7 years at several assets managers including Banesto Banco Privada SGIIC (Santandar Group), Gestifonsa SGIIC (Banco Caminos Private Bank) and GVC Group as Head of Asset Management, Head of International Equities, Head of Financial Derivatives and Fund and SICAV Manager.
Prior, David spent 6 years in Private and Wealth Management at Banesto (Santander Group) and Cajamar as Director of Wealth Management and Senior Private Banker for these various outfits. For the past several years he has been sought by various market participants for his deep knowledge of various transactions in Spain and Europe. He has been and is retained as a senior advisor by various law firms and global consulting groups in various M&A, Structured Finance, International/Cross Border Finance & Real Estate transactions with a focus on business analysis and valuation to drive execution.
DAN E. STOICA
Dan joins the Pelican advisory board leveraging his relationships and on the ground experience within Eastern Europe & specifically Romania to drive opportunities for Pelican in various Real Estate and other structured finance opportunities in the Region.
For more than 25 years, Dan has taken part in the development, implementation, management and execution of the first Romanian non- banking financial institution with his extensive hands on experience and creation of the legal framework from scratch. Dan was a member of a team that initialized and negotiated all the non-banking financial regulations between 1997 and 2006 in Romania. Dan brought the first leasing company in Romania, DRT Group, where he conducted all types of financial and operational leasing. Under his management role the business reached a portfolio of more than EUR 200mm.
Dan’s career includes 8 years of being the CEO of RomFactor, a business consulting firm specialized in tailor-made trade finance solutions, restructuring and financial advisory, servicing corporates based in the Middle East, Northern Africa and Europe. Further he continues to be very active in market serving for 8 years as Vice-President and Founding Member of the Romanian Business Men Association (AOAR), Vice-President of the Romanian Leasing Companies Association (ASLR), Board Member of Financial Services Association (ALB) and Founding Member of AREX and Factoring Association.
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