Board of Advisors
Chief Digital Officer at Stealth Startup
Michael Scharff has held leadership roles at some of the most well know retailers in the U.S. With over two decades of retail experience, he has a wealth of experience in all aspects of retailing and across numerous industry verticals and channels. Michael has built and managed highly successful omni-channel and global eCommerce businesses, led teams in merchandising, digital marketing, innovation and other functional areas. Michael serves as a consultant to retail and technology companies, ranging from major global brands to early stage companies. Michael is currently as the Chief Digital Officer for a stealth retail startup launching in 2016. Michael is also an Advisor to many B2B and B2C technologies companies, a member of the Board of Directors of Pley.com, and serves on the Board of Trustees for Presidio Hill School in San Francisco. Most recently, Michael served as Executive Vice President, Chief Digital Officer for Sears Canada. Prior to Sears Canada Michael held senior leadership roles with Toys R Us, Staples and Best Buy.
Independent Director and Former Retail Executive
Stephen Duchelle has more than 20 years of retail industry experience, including 16 years in various e-commerce leadership roles. He is a former Vice President of eCommerce for Juicy Couture, where he was responsible for business strategy and web operations. Previously, he served as the Vice President of eCommerce Strategy at GSI Commerce, Inc., now eBay Enterprise, a provider of eCommerce and interactive marketing services related to direct-to-consumers sales. Stephen has also served as the Senior Vice President of eCommerce for Belk, Inc., a retail provider of fashion apparel, shoes, accessories and houseware merchandise. He holds both a B.S. and M.S. degrees from Virginia Tech as well as an M.B.A. from James Madison University.
Strategic Advisor and Investor
Angela Kapp is a strategic advisor to multinational brands and an investor in mid-stage companies. Kapp spent 17 years as a senior executive at The Estee Lauder Companies and has a proven track record of creating, leading and scaling multi-channel businesses, including retail stores, digital/e-commerce, and DRTV. Kapp is a founding member of the Board of Directors for the National Retail Foundation’s shop.org, and was cited as one of the “top 25 Shapers of the Net” by Internet World magazine. Kapp holds an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
CEO and Co-Founder at Iterate.ai
Jon Nordmark is CEO of Iterate.ai (Iterate Studio) and Chariman of eBags. From 1998 to 2008 he served as founder and CEO of eBags, helping pioneer A/B split testing, drop-shipping in the United States and Europe, and the consumer-facing ratings and reviews space for retail. Over nine years, eBags sold 9.4 million bags, acquired 1.4 million customer-written reviews, and grew profitably in U.S., U.K., Germany, and Japan. eBags also operated Tumi and CaseLogic websites, globally. Additionally, eBags incubated and built 6pm.com within eBags, then sold it to Zappos in August 2006. Jon has also served as an investor in and advisor to dozens of startups. Since 2013 he’s been co-founder of Iterate Studio, helping multinationals discover, curate, test, and adopt emerging technologies with unprecedented speed.
Venture Partner, Insight Venture Partners
Thilo Semmelbauer is a Venture Partner at Insight Venture Partners and works with portfolio companies to accelerate growth, resolve key strategic and operational issues, and build scalable organizations. Thilo also supports new opportunities, with a focus on Internet, subscription, and marketplace businesses. Thilo has been involved in technology ventures for over 25 years, most recently as President and COO of Shutterstock, a global marketplace for licensing images, videos, and music to businesses worldwide. Under Thilo’s leadership, revenue grew from $60M to over $300M, and the business expanded into new areas, including video, music, and premium imagery. In 2000, Thilo co-founded and was President & COO of WeightWatchers.com, which became the global leader in online weight loss and was acquired in 2005 by the licensor, Weight Watchers International. Thilo then served as COO of the combined companies, where he oversaw revenue growth from $1.2B to $1.6B through 2008. In 1996, Thilo joined The Boston Consulting Group, focused on Consumer and Technology strategy, including projects in medical imaging, digital printing, and online retail. While at BCG, he helped launch Sotheby’s online auction business. In the early 1990s, Thilo worked for an internal startup at Motorola, where he launched Motorola’s first consumer wireless “communicator” (the Envoy), and then launched Motorola’s first cable modem for broadband Internet access. Thilo holds a dual masters degree from MIT, in Management and Electrical Engineering, from the Leaders for Global Operations program, as well as a BA in Engineering and Computer Science from Dartmouth College, summa cum laude.
Co-Founder and Chief Revenue Office, Intent Media
Damon Tassone is Co-Founder and Chief Revenue Officer of Intent Media, and early stage commerce media network funded by Matrix Partners. Previously, Damon was Deputy CEO of Travelocity Europe / lastminute.com, based in London from 2004 until returning to New York City in 2008. Before taking the helm at Travelocity Europe, Damon was Senior Vice President of Distribution at Travelocity.com. Damon was a co-founder Site59, which innovated the last minute space in online travel, and was sold to Travelocity in 2002. Prior to that, he worked for beer and spirits giant Guinness and was a consumer products and retail advisor at the Boston Consulting Group. Damon is an alumnus of Dartmouth College where he earned a degree in English.
President, Liberty Advertising
Greg Stevens is the President of Liberty Advertising, a digital media firm specializing in the monetization of e-Commerce companies including Barnes & Noble, ProFlowers, Backcountry.com, and other IR Top 100 brands. Prior to Liberty, Greg was the President of IAC/Interactive Corp’s central advertising group which represented the media assets of brands including CitySearch, Ask.com, Evite.com, Match.com and Gifts.com. Also while at IAC Greg was the Chief Revenue Officer of Pronto.com, a shopping search engine. His responsibilities included sales and account management of Pronto.com’s 1,500 retailer partners. Before joining IAC Greg lead publisher initiatives at LinkShare Corporation and served as the Director of Business Development. Greg graduated from Tufts University with a BA in English.
Advisor and Director
Henry Vogel has nearly 20 years of media and marketing experience and a track record of success leading and helping fast growth, consumer Internet companies. He is the former President and CEO of Apptera, Inc., a leading voice and visual mobile advertising network. Prior to joining Apptera, Mr. Vogel was Chief Revenue Officer at Quigo, an online ad network and Search Engine Marketing firm. Mr. Vogel also held a number of executive positions at eBay including Vice President of Internet Marketing and Business Development as well as leading the company’s Corporate Strategic Planning & Analysis group. He’s also been a successful entrepreneur and consultant. In the mid-late nineties, Mr. Vogel was the founder and CEO of eClips, a provider of data-mining and direct marketing services to retailers and consumer packaged goods manufacturers. Mr. Vogel started his career and spent nearly fourteen years as a Partner and Senior Consultant at The Boston Consulting Group focused on the Consumer and Retail sector where he gained experience in consumer marketing, branding, retail, sales, operations and corporate development.
Founder and Managing Director, the Loft Group
The Loft Group invests in and helps manage early stage entrepreneurial companies, such as mrqe.com, adventureus.com and industryconnect.com. Before founding The Loft Group, David was Vice President of the Larkin Group, the largest producer of fashion trade events in America. The Larkin Group was acquired in 1999 by Advanstar Communications. David is Founder and Chairman of The Tradeshow News Network, the leading tradeshow site on the Internet, which was sold to Tarsus Group, PLC in 2000 and reacquired by David in 2002. In 2006, TSNN.com was re-sold to Tarsus. He has taught at New York University in the Masters Program in Travel and Tourism and speaks frequently at industry conferences on trade show related issues and has received various industry awards. Prior to the Larkin Group, David worked in the film and video industry, in every role from production manager to producer in New York and Hollywood. He is on the Board of Directors of Trickle Up, an innovative group that helps the poorest people start businesses through micro grants and business training.
John Grech has been working in digital commerce since 1996 and continues to play an active role advising early-stage digital technology inventors as well as retailers and brands who are chasing the ever-changing needs of their shoppers. He was a co-founder of Iterate Studio, a new venture designed to close the gap on how retailers and brands access to early-stage startup innovation. Prior to Iterate, John was Chief Revenue Officer at ChatID, a SaaS company that enables brand manufacturers to interact live with shoppers directly on retailer websites. He was responsible for ChatID’s go-to-market and securing partnerships with large retailers and brands to build the network. John began his career in digital commerce in 1996 at Net Perceptions, the industry’s first personalization solution for multi-channel retailers, where he launched their EMEA business. Subsequent to a successful IPO, John worked with several other digital startups including Omniture, PowerReviews, and HookLogic. His responsibilities ranged from building and managing large enterprise sales organizations to fostering relationships with some of the world’s largest retailers and brands.