Speakers

Luke Nosek

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Luke Nosek is notable for being a co-founder of PayPal and famous VC firm Founders Fund. His venture capital career was influenced heavily by the connections he made as one of the first employees at PayPal, the online payment company bought by eBay in 2002 for $1.5 billion. Nosek followed fellow PayPal mafioso Peter Thiel to Founders Fund, where his two biggest investments to date have been in companies founded by former PayPal employees. He was the first institutional investor in Elon Musk's SpaceX, a company whose progress, Nosek says, is "critical to the human race." Nosek was also the first backer of PayPal COO David Sacks' Geni, which later spun out Yammer (acquired by Microsoft in June 2012 for $1.2 billion). While at PayPal, he served as vice president of marketing and strategy, creating the company's "instant transfer" product.

Robert Siegel

Robert Siegel researches strategy and innovation in both large and small companies, as well as the opportunities and challenges that technological change brings to these firms. Additionally, Robert teaches product management and product development best practices and methods, as well as entrepreneurial finance over the life-cycle of growing companies

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Steve Ciesinski

Stephen Ciesinski was recent president of SRI International (www.sri.com), one of the world’s leading independent research and development organizations. SRI performs client-sponsored R&D for government agencies, commercial businesses, and private foundations.

 

Steve’s professional experience includes a number of industries and businesses: consumer products, semiconductor capital equipment, telecommunications, mobile/wireless, applications software, Web 2.0, open source, medical devices, and many others. As a corporate officer, board member, advisor and investor, he has participated in or managed numerous strategic events, including new business formation, major product launches, private financings, IPOs, M&A transactions and leveraged buy-outs.

 

Over the course of his career Steve has held executive management positions with Applied Materials, the global manufacturer of semiconductor capital equipment; Octel Communications, the worldwide leader in voice-messaging products; Resumix, Inc., the inventor of Web-based personnel recruiting applications; and Laszlo Systems, a pioneer in Web 2.0 software and provider of complex Internet applications to Global 2000 and telecommunications service operators. He started his career at Procter & Gamble, was a consultant with Booz, Allen & Hamilton, and also served as a venture partner with Earlybird Ventures.

 

Steve is past Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Union College and is a lifetime trustee. He is also past chairman of The President’s Cabinet at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly), and has been on several advisory boards at Stanford University.

 

Steve is an active angel investor, and assists several Silicon Valley-based private companies as advisor and board member.

He is a graduate of Union College with a double major in Electrical Engineering and Modern Languages, and received an MBA from Stanford University.

Steve resides in Los Altos Hills, California with his wife. They are founders of the Kalele Foundation, dedicated to providing character and self-esteem development experiences for disadvantaged children

Steve Ciesinski

Stephen Ciesinski was recent president of SRI International (www.sri.com), one of the world’s leading independent research and development organizations. SRI performs client-sponsored R&D for government agencies, commercial businesses, and private foundations.

 

Steve’s professional experience includes a number of industries and businesses: consumer products, semiconductor capital equipment, telecommunications, mobile/wireless, applications software, Web 2.0, open source, medical devices, and many others. As a corporate officer, board member, advisor and investor, he has participated in or managed numerous strategic events, including new business formation, major product launches, private financings, IPOs, M&A transactions and leveraged buy-outs.

 

Over the course of his career Steve has held executive management positions with Applied Materials, the global manufacturer of semiconductor capital equipment; Octel Communications, the worldwide leader in voice-messaging products; Resumix, Inc., the inventor of Web-based personnel recruiting applications; and Laszlo Systems, a pioneer in Web 2.0 software and provider of complex Internet applications to Global 2000 and telecommunications service operators. He started his career at Procter & Gamble, was a consultant with Booz, Allen & Hamilton, and also served as a venture partner with Earlybird Ventures.

 

Steve is past Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Union College and is a lifetime trustee. He is also past chairman of The President’s Cabinet at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly), and has been on several advisory boards at Stanford University.

 

Steve is an active angel investor, and assists several Silicon Valley-based private companies as advisor and board member.

He is a graduate of Union College with a double major in Electrical Engineering and Modern Languages, and received an MBA from Stanford University.

Steve resides in Los Altos Hills, California with his wife. They are founders of the Kalele Foundation, dedicated to providing character and self-esteem development experiences for disadvantaged children

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Susan Colby 

Susan is the CEO and Co-founder of Imagine. Prior to founding Imagine, she was a partner at McKinsey & Company, and led the education practice. Susan also served as the CEO at Stupski Foundation, a founding partner of The Bridgespan Group, and Co-President of the Sustainable Development Sector at Monsanto, where she developed and led businesses throughout the world. Susan serves on the boards of CODE2040 and Stanford’s Clayman Institute for Gender Research. She is a fellow of the inaugural cohort of Pahara-Aspen Education Leaders and a Lecturer at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and Graduate School of Education. Susan earned a BA from American University and an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business

Abdulrahman Tarabzouni

Abdulrahman Tarabzouni is the CEO and Managing Director of STV, the largest technology venture capital fund in the Middle East. STV aims to work with founders to back and scale the region’s most exciting and disruptive technology companies.

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Raymond Levitt 

Dr. Ray Levitt joined Blackhorn Ventures in 2017 as an Operating Partner. Ray primarily focuses on bringing new investment opportunities to the team from his extensive network focused around the Built Environment. His deep expertise and connection to the Stanford ecosystem provides extensive access to high-quality investment opportunities. 

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Tarek Asaad

Mr. Asaad is a Managing Partner at Algebra Ventures, the leading Venture Capital firm in Egypt. He started his career as an engineer at Lucent Technologies then as a software developer for SAQQARA Systems, an internet startup in Silicon Valley. He later became General Manager of CID Consulting where he led the company’s high growth, helping it to become one of the leading local consulting firms in Egypt. Tarek is also Managing Partner at Ideavelopers where he has been managing $50m of VC investments since 2009

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Eric Bahn

Eric Bahn is a Co-Founder and General Partner at Hustle Fund, an early-stage venture capital firm based in San Francisco. Hustle Fund invests in software startups at the pre-seed and seed stages, making 100 investments out of its current fund.

Previous to Hustle Fund, Eric was an angel investor and partner at 500 Startups. And prior to becoming a professional investor, he spent over a decade as an operator (Facebook, Instagram) and entrepreneur (Beat The GMAT, The Hustle). Eric draws from his product and growth experience to advise his founders in scaling their own enterprises.

Eric is a native of Detroit, Michigan and first arrived to Silicon Valley to attend Stanford University (BA, MA), which launched his career into software and startups. Eric is happily married with two kids

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Hatem Zaghloul 

Egyptian Canadian, is recognized as a visionary leader in the hi-tech community. In 1992, Dr.Zaghloul co-founded Wi-LAN Inc., and under his direction, the two technologies he co-invented with Dr. Michel Fattouche became the heart of many wireless communications standards: WiFi (IEEE802.11a/g/n), 3G (H and H+), LTE and 4G (WiMAX)

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Marco Chisari 

Global head of semiconductor investment banking at Bank of America Merril Lynch. Chisari previously worked for Credit Suisse Group AG , where he was managing director in the technology M&A group. He focused primarily on the semiconductor, software and internet space. 

He was previously head of M&A for the technology group at Mubadala, an Abu Dhabi-based investment fund. Over the course of his career, Chisari worked on transactions for companies including Toshiba Memory and NXP Semiconductors NV

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Dr. Ossama Hassanein 

Dr. Ossama Hassanein is the Chairman of Rising Tide Funds, Board Member of Bank of the West, MBR Innovation Fund, UBC School of Applied Science, and AUC School of Business. Co-managed $1B+ of international technology funds in Silicon Valley, Canada and France, investing in 200+ companies whose current worth exceeds $200B.

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Omar Tawakol 

Omar Tawakol is Chief Executive Officer of Voicea that was recently acquired by CISCO. Prior to Voicea, Omar Tawakol was the founder and CEO of BlueKai which built the worlds largest consumer data marketplace and DMP. Oracle acquired BlueKai in 2014 & Omar served as the SVP & GM of the Oracle Data Cloud. Omar earned an MS in CS from Stanford (BS, MIT) where he researched and published work on AI agents.

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Raed A. Masri

Raed A.Masri has been founding and investing in software, digital, tech and telecom companies over the past 19 years across Canada and parts of the USA.

 

Raed was partially responsible for the introduction of new wireless telecom national policy in Canada, bringing new competition and giving Canadians more wireless options when Raed founded Jaguar Wireless, a qualified bidder in Canada’s national wireless auction with a last bid of $213m. Also, Raed was entirely responsible for bringing inflight internet across all of Canadian airspace when he founded SkySurf Canada, the exclusive telecom operator for inflight communications (Wi-Fi and GSM), exiting to GoGo Inflight, the world’s largest inflight wi-fi provider.


Raed became a VC and institutional LP when he co-founded Mubadala Ventures (MV) in San Francisco, California, where they invested in both tech start-ups as well as other VC funds.

 

Recently, Raed launched Transform VC, a Mubadala spin-out seed fund in the heart of Silicon Valley. The investments focus revolves around high impact, deep tech, impacting boring traditional industries such as energy delivery, manufacturing, agriculture, financial services, healthcare and others.

 

Raed holds an engineering degree from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada and an MBA from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Raed remains a resident Canadian as he continues to build bridges between Silicon Valley, the Middle East and Canada (specifically the Toronto/Ottawa/Montreal corridor) where he's been living for nearly 30 years.

He was previously head of M&A for the technology group at Mubadala, an Abu Dhabi-based investment fund. Over the course of his career, Chisari worked on transactions for companies including Toshiba Memory and NXP Semiconductors NV

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Mohammad Musa started Deepen AI in January 2017 focusing on AI tools and infrastructure for the Autonomous Development & Robotics industries. Mohammad used to lead product efforts for Google wide Initiatives to enable teams to build excellent products.

 

He worked specifically on infrastructure products for tracking user centered metrics, bug management and user feedback loops.

 

Prior to that, he was the head of Launch & Readiness at Google Apps for Work where he lead a cross functional team managing product launches, product roadmap, trusted tester and launch communications. Before Google, Mohammad worked in software engineering and technical sales positions in the video games and semiconductor industries in multiple startups.

Mohammad Musa 

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Aly ElBadry

Aly is an Egyptian citizen who obtained his Bachelor's of Electronic Engineering from Aston University in Birmingham, UK and started his career as a telecoms engineer with Research In Motion (BlackBerry) based out of the European Headquarters in London.

 

Aly moved back to Egypt in 2012 to join the founding team at KarmSolar, as COO then Director of Business Development. In 2015 Aly moved to the Bay Area to obtain his MBA from the Stanford GSB. During his time at Stanford, Aly was immersed in the BioDesign Innovation Program, which triggered his interest in outpatient remote monitoring platforms, a passion that eventually lead to the founding of CloudCath.

 

18 months, later CloudCath is a team of 8 based in San Francisco with a clinically validated technology revolutionizing infectious disease out patient remote monitoring & data driven care

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Alex Mehr

Alex Mehr, Ph.Dis an American serial entrepreneur and online marketer based in San Francisco, California. He is the co-founder and chief executive officer of MentorBox and founder of Zoosk.
Zoosk was sold to Spark Networks for $255 million in March 21, 2019.

Education
Mehr graduated from Sharif University of Technology in 2000 with a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering. He then attended the University of Maryland, College Park, where he received his Ph.D and M.Sc in mechanical engineering.

In 2006, Mehr attended the Haas School of Business, but dropped out in 2008 to work on Zoosk.

Career
Mehr co-founded Zoosk in 2007 and has served as an advisor to the company since December 2014. He served as the co-chief executive officer of Zoosk, Inc. from November 2007 to January 2013 and also served as its President from November 2007 to December 2014. He has been a Director of Zoosk, Inc. since April 2007.

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Samuel Bertram

Samuel is the CEO and Co-founder of OnePointOne, Inc (OPO). OPO is developing robotically-automated technology to grow fresh food in cities around the world. By utilizing preexisting warehouse space, OPO can have complete control over the plant's environment. Therefore, OPO will provide a stable supply of delicious, pesticide-free food using 98% less water, 99% less land & 99% less shipping. OPO will also license this technology to numerous markets around the world. Samuel's background is in Robotics.

Harry Rigs

Harry developed, built and operated the world's largest vertical farm. Having developed joint venture vertical farms in Dubai and Oman in conjunction with the $30BN SHARP corporation of Japan, Harry was also a founding member of a US vertical farm that served 300 supermarkets in the USA. With positions as CEO and CFO of growth businesses in the US, Asia and the GCC Harry brings business acumen developed working in 53 countries for global companies including IBM, Accenture, McKinsey and Boston Consulting Group.

Bijay Baniya

3 x CEO. Passionate about digital workplace design, employee learning and change management. My current company, Sparkwork has now over 40K paying users including customers such as Postal Services Finland, R-kioski, Hotel Chancellor etc. We are looking for a seed capital to expand Sparkwork's US sales team and capture an underserved 100M market in 3-4 years.

Khurram Jamil

Dr. Khurram Jamil is President of Strategic Initiatives where he focuses on regional expansions, joint-ventures and partnerships, as well as oversees projects for all levels of education and training. Dr. Jamil’s entrepreneurial experience extends over 20 years. He has successfully led dozens of teams comprising of medical professionals and educational scientists, spearheaded large development and partnership efforts, and managed multi-million-dollar educational software development projects. After earning his medical degree at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark in 2002, Dr. Jamil chose to advance health care outside the clinical arena through the development of novel educational simulators at Laerdal Medical. These simulators were used in the U.S. Department of Defense for Combat Medic Training. Following this, revolutionary screen-based simulators were created for the American Heart Association (HeartCode ACLS & PALS) used by millions of providers. He co-founded Area9 in 2006 to evolve and expand these concepts beyond health care, while partnering with McGraw-Hill Education to deploy adaptive learning technology. Since then, more than 20 million students have used LearnSmart & SmartBook (property of McGraw-Hill Education – acquired in 2014). Dr. Jamil is a cultural bridge builder and is involved with various cultural & art organizations to support building creative and reflective societies. He is a board member at the Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center for the Boston Public Library – a center than develops programs to inspire curiosity and learning among people of all ages by using cartographic materials to illuminate history, geography, world cultures, science, and contemporary issues. He is a member of the Guggenheim Museum’s Middle Eastern Art Circle and a board member of American Friends of SMK – The National Gallery of Denmark. He also recently joined the Education Council of the Center for Global Education (CGE) at Asia Society.

Waleed Mohsen

Waleed is the Co-Founder and CEO of Salusive Health, a 500 Startups Batch 23 Company. Salusive is a tech-enabled services platform that helps doctors at Sutter Health and other Bay Area Health Networks look after the health of their patients between visits. Prior to Salusive, Waleed won multiple sales awards over his 10+ years selling to hospitals and medical groups at Cisco Systems and Siemens Healthcare.

Noor Atari

Noor Atari is a passionate, motivated leader with 15 years of experience managing and influencing innovation at hyper growth technology companies. He served as Director, GTM Sales Strategy at Salesforce, and went on to lead an international team as Head of Global App Strategies and Development at Google. As a consultant he has worked alongside top executives at the largest tech companies in Silicon Valley. He is a sought-after leader, offering actionable insights from big data methods and industry leading process optimization techniques for his clients. Noor’s unique combination of skills and experience has allowed him to lead the development of Account Spark, working in partnership with dozens of Salesforce executives and recruiting top industry professionals in data science and machine learning to transform the concept into a working reality.

Hussein Fahmy

Hussein Adel Fahmy is a consulting partner and entrepreneur with 10 years of expertise in the digital field in Europe. He led senior consultancy role in digital transformation and IT subject matter expertise for industry and services including insurance, finance and controlling, production, retail, and integrated business interfaces systems. He previously worked in research at the JKU Linz, consulting including IBM GBS Austria, then founded his own consulting startup. He is currently partnering with startups and policy makers in Egypt to help the promotion and growth of digital innovation especially in the area of public sector transformation and communication, education, and development. He has been awarded the certificate of recognition from President Abdelfattah Al Sisi and he is a member of the consulting board for the national association of Egyptian expats scientists and experts founded by the Ministry of Expatriates. He recently launched Storymate.me, a recruitment platform for creative talents using social media and AI to match for opportunities.

Sherif Khattab

A Southern California Plastic & Reconstructive surgeon for 30+ years. Now 2 year leading a healthcare startup at the intersection of healthcare delivery, payments & insurance

Khaled Jalanbo 

Khaled Jalanbo is the managing director of Valia. Valia is a diversified investment firm with presence in New York, Silicon Valley, Boston and across the GCC. The firm's investments are anchored by a strategic coalition of leading family conglomerates across the MENA region, including the Al-Dabal, Al-Hokair, Al-Tobaishi, Al-Wazzan, and Jalanbo families. Valia partners with visionary entrepreneurs transforming industries and helps them accelerate their access to the MENA market through their regional growth development platform