The Soho Loft Media Group TEAM
David Drake | Founder and Chairman
David Drake is the Chairman of LDJ Capital, a family office; Victoria Partners, a 300 family office network based in London; LDJ Real Estate Group and Drake Hospitality Group; and The Soho Loft Media Group with divisions Victoria Global Communications, Times Impact Publications, and The Soho Loft Conferences.
Mr. Drake has been involved in TMT (technology, media, telecoms), realty, hospitality, cleantech, energy and social impact investments for more than 20 years. He is an advocate of innovative investing in early-stage equity, capital formation policies and developments globally, and the US JOBS Act which he lobbied for in the US Congress and the EU Commission. Because of his leading work in this space, he represented the US Commerce Department at the EU Commission in Brussels and Rome in 2012 and was invited to the White House Champions of Change ceremony in Washington, D.C. and as a speaker at the UK Parliament in 2013.
His investment, The Soho Loft Media Group, produces and sponsors over 200 global conferences annually and his articles are syndicated in over 100 publications. One such event was April 2013 for the institutional media leader Thomson Reuters, with speakers from Nasdaq, NYSE, KKR and Carlyle Group. He advances financial innovation through his work as an international speaker and writer. He has spoken in top universities like Cambridge, NYU, Cornell, Columbia, and writes regularly for major publications like WSJ, Forbes, Huffington Post, Thomson Reuters. He is the co-author of the books Planet Entrepreneurand ####crowdfunding and Other Animals and is the author of the upcoming booksThe Crowdfunding Economy and LIFEE: Life Instructions for Entrepreneurs and Executives.
Previously, Mr. Drake has acted as general partner in fund-of-funds, realty funds, venture capital funds, seed funds and hedge funds. Mr. Drake’s holdings have media partnership with the European Business Angel Network, European Venture Philanthropy Association and Angel Capital Association of North America. He sits on 4 angel networks and has co-founded two angel networks.
His focus today is to take on board advisory positions at companies, angel networks and venture funds, and to guide them on international regulations, corporate strategy and fund structures, with emphasis on the growing trend of online investment automation for retail and angel investors.
Privately, Mr. Drake has hosted the Harvard Business Club of NY at his home, produced Carnegie Hall concerts and raised funds for the charities Trail Blazers and Best Buddies for many years. Today he is a board director for the New York City Opera Renaissance, London-based UBS Charity of the Year ARCHIVE Global, and a board advisor for The Washington Ballet. He is a board director also of the Carnegie Hall Einhorn Oratorio Project in honor of the Ukraine MH17 flight victims which allows him to work and advise US Ambassadors from, but not limited to, Dominica, Ukraine, Marshall Islands, Australia, Canada and Sweden.
Born in Sweden and fluent in six languages, Mr. Drake has an MBA in Finance and an MA in International Law and Economics from George Washington University, where he was awarded the Wallenberg Scholarship for academic merit.
Ian Shapolsky | Publisher, Times Impact Publications (NYC)
Publisher, Times Impact Publications (NYC)
Michael Bohlmann | Director, Film and TV Content (NYC)
Director, Film and TV Content (NYC)
Michael Bohlmann is Founder and CEO of Creatis Capital LLC, a new media finance company and registered broker-dealer that offers investors access to film, television and multimedia projects as an alternative investment and provides diversified sources of funding to producers, developers and creators of entertainment content. Michael has over 15 years of experience in structured finance, capital raising and independent film production.
Chris Fure | Director, Business Development (SF)
Director, Business Development (SF)
Chris Fure brings a lot of experience and guidance to LDJ Capital Fund efforts as he joins as the Business Development Director. He is a former partner and Business Development Director for 7 years at TransGlobal Ventures (a Private Equity firm in NY, SF and Beijing). Beyond serving LDJ Capital and serving as a Crowd Funding panelist for the Soho Lofts (NY), Chris also serves as the Development Director for the Abundant Seas Foundation (Washington), and he is a founding partner and the Head of Development for Wonder Animation (LA).
Chris’ efforts span in media to clean tech from the development of a Wind Park in China, to the launch of the world’s leading face-capture system with IP that originated in Moscow, to the creation of inner-city solar power stations in California, and water/waste management systems in Peru, to being a pioneer in visual effects and animation out-sourcing to both China and India.
Chris has been a Business Developer for more than 25 years, where he has supported and led globally focused projects with multi-nation partners, who co-operatively fill the spectrum of product offerings. Horizontally, Chris focuses on revenue-share JV partnerships for product production. Vertically, Chris focuses on performance enhanced strategic partnerships to develop new markets and product ideas.
Chris earned his MBA from NYIT, which was awarded with distinction (4.0 GPA), and he earned his BA from UC Berkeley, which was awarded with honors: his Political-Economics thesis was published by the International Trade Institute.
Bruce Powers | Director, Financial Services (Middle East, Dubai)
Director, Financial Services (Middle East, Dubai)
Bruce Powers joined LDJ Capital in spring 2009, originally from Connecticut, USA, has been involved in the financial markets for over 20 years and possesses a wealth of knowledge in the areas of corporate development, trading, investing, and market strategy. His key role has been to develop investment opportunities in the financial services sector for the Middle East, and other emerging economies. To this extent, Mr. Powers has focused on LDJ Capital relationships with regional family offices and asset managers through the formation of strategic alliances and business partnerships with international investment advisors and unique financial research firms for business development in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia.
Previously, Mr. Powers was Senior Vice President of Arab Capital Markets Resource Center in Dubai, a financial research and consulting firm focused on the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) financial markets and developing economy. The company was initiated within Better Trends Group, Dubai, where he was Vice President of Business Planning developing projects in various sectors for rollout in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. In addition, he was a regular contributor to The Wealth Matrix monthly magazine on topics including regional economic trends and world financial markets. Mr. Powers worked as a trading and technical analysis instructor and content developer for six years with a leading U.S. trader training company and began his career as an investment research analyst at a Los Angeles boutique investment bank focused on the high yield debt markets. He has been an active trader for over 10 years.
Currently, Mr. Powers is a weekly guest commentator on City 7 TV’s (Dubai) nightly “Inside Business” show covering international and regional markets, and a special bi-weekly contributor to the Gulf News newspaper covering the UAE stock markets. He is an associate member of the Market Technicians Association. Mr. Powers earned his MBA in Finance from the Eller Graduate School of Management, University of Arizona, USA.
Bianca Blake|Director, Marketing & Events (Santa Monica CA)
Director, Marketing & Events (Santa Monica CA)
Bianca is a Marketing executive with over 15 years experience working for major U.S. Corporations in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles including Prestige Magazine, IMN/Euromoney, Nielsen Media and The Merchandise Mart. She has produced global conferences in the Financial Services, Luxury Goods, Jewelry and Home Furnishings Industries. She recently opened and ran the US Office of a Swedish business consultancy firm located in Venice, CA. Bianca started her career at MTG Media in Stockholm after graduating from The University of Stockholm with an MBA in Marketing. Bianca is fluent in five languages and enjoys traveling, sailing, art and interior design in her spare time.
Carmen Campo | Director, Corporate Communications
Director, Corporate Communications
Carmen Campo is a communications and social media specialist for 3 years for The Soho Loft Media Group with its divisions The Soho Loft Conferences, Victoria Global Communications and Times Impact Publications working with Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Thomson Reuters, Huffington Post, Venture Beat and other key publications. Prior to The Soho Loft Media Group she pioneered Product Integrity programs and vendor programs for Gap Inc for 10 years to ensure customer safety of Gap Inc’s premiere brands such as babyGap, GapKids, Old Navy Baby, Old Navy Kids, Gap, Old Navy, and Banana Republic. She worked with industry leaders and international brands such as Intertek Testing, SGS, Bayer, BASF, J & P Coats, Lock Inspection, OSHIMA and others using corporate standards and global regulations such as ASTM, AATCC, BS, ISO, etc to create and implement global compliance programs . She collaborated with 160 production and service facilities in the SEA region to implement these programs and processes. Before joining Gap Inc, she managed the Fiber, Textile and Garment Laboratory for Intertek Testing for 8 years and contributed to the Quality Assurance programs of global brands such as Unilever, Procter & Gamble, Gap Inc, Levi’s, JC Penney, Marks & Spencer, Ann Taylor, H&M, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Bloomingdales, Disney, McDonald’s, Karlstadt, and other world leading brands of consumer products. She graduated from the University of the Philippines with a degree in Clothing Tech under the College of H. Economics.
BOARD OF ADVISORS
Kamran M. Khozan | Chairman, CVMR®, M-Power, iFinancial Management, Intermaritime Financial, SES (Abu Dhabi, Toronto, Geneva)
Kamran M. Khozan
Chairman, CVMR®, M-Power, iFinancial Management, Intermaritime Financial, SES (Abu Dhabi, Toronto, Geneva)
Financial & Technological Innovation is Mr. Khozan’s expertise. Mr. Khozan is the founder and major shareholder of 70+ highly successful multinational corporations generating north of $40 billion in annual revenue. Mr. Khozan and Mr. Drake have been working closely together in the Middle East, Europe and North America since last decade.
Among Mr. Khozan’s holdings are:
Chemical Vapour Metal Refining Inc. (“CVMR®”), a privately held corporation engaged in mining, metal refining and vapour metallurgy process development. CVMR® has extensive nickel, Platinum and Titanium mines and refining operations world wide. It uses a unique proprietary refining technology and has over 13,000 employees. (www.cvmr.ca)
Intermaritime Financial Inc. with offices in BVI, Canada, South Africa and UAE, is a Shariah-compliant financial institution engaged in financing mega-projects, mostly related to infrastructure development. (www.intermaritimefinancial.com)
Financial Management S.A., is a unique financial advisory company focused on redefining conventional and Islamic financial products and services. It establishes Islamic banking departments for various banks, on a turn key basis.Secure Environment Services (“SES”) is a leading provider of homeland security and risk management systems, manufactured at its own facilities in North America as well as those manufactured by its industry-leading strategic partners. SES provides a complete continuum of security, defence and risk management products and support services to Governments and the Private Sector. (www.secures.ca)
Al Khozan Holdings, oversees the operations of Khozan family’s corporations and assets.
From 1984 to 1992, Kamran Khozan was the Commissioner for the Lead Project’s Centers of Excellence, in Canada, reporting directly to the Prime Minister.
From 1992 to 1998 Kamran Khozan served with the Canadian Federal Department of Justice and the Ontario Ministries of Solicitor General, Community Safety and Correctional Services. He is a graduate of Oxford, McGill University, and University of Toronto in Philosophy, Economics, management, Criminology and law. He is an inventor with 32 international patents in metallurgy. (www.khozan.com)
Specialties: Strategic Planning, Media, Banking, Security and Defense, Mining and Metal Refining.
Bruce H. Lipnick | Founder and CEO, Asset Alliance Corporation & Ver-On-Demand (NYC)
Bruce H. Lipnick
Founder and CEO, Asset Alliance Corporation & Ver-On-Demand (NYC)
Bruce H. Lipnick is Founder, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Asset Alliance Corporation (“Asset Alliance”). He is also Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Asset Alliance Advisors, Inc. He has an extensive background in alternative investments with over 38 years of experience in the investment management and financial services industries, and was a pioneer in utilizing various hedging techniques in portfolio management in the early 1970’s through the 1980’s. Among other affiliate manager-related activities, Mr. Lipnick serves on the Board of Directors of many of Asset Alliance’s subsidiary and sponsored funds.
Mr. Lipnick is CEO and Founder of Asset Alliance’s crowdfunding initiative, Crowd Alliance. Prior to founding Asset Alliance, Mr. Lipnick served as principal, general partner and senior executive officer for several investment management organizations including Wharton Management Group, Inc., which he founded in 1982 and also served as president. Mr. Lipnick was a member of the Advisory Council of the Milken Institute California Center and of the Advisory Board of the Eco Power Conference in Brazil. He was also a member of United States House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Speaker’s Cabinet, and in 2002 he received Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Mr. Lipnick is a supporter of the New Combinations Fund for the New York City Ballet, a supporter of the School of American Ballet at Lincoln Center and a benefactor for the Washington Ballet. He is also a patron of MOMA and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a past Dinner Chairman of Petra Nemcova’s Happy Hearts Fund and a board member of Hedge Funds Care. In 2008, Mr. Lipnick received the Lifetime Humanitarian Award for Giving from Hedge Funds Care. In May 2011, Mr. Lipnick received the Lifetime Achievement Award from The Young Jewish Professionals (YJP) for his career in the corporate finance world, spanning almost four decades. Mr.Lipnick is also a founding member of the Young Jewish Professionals (YJP) CEO Conference. In 2012 Mr. Lipnick was named Executive of the Year in Investment and Financial Planning by Worldwide Who’s Who. Earlier in his career, Mr. Lipnick was President and Founder of the Elms Companies and was Vice President of Ladenburg Thalmann & Co., a merchant investment bank, in addition to founding and serving as President of Pierpont Management, Inc., a family office. Mr. Lipnick received a Bachelor of Arts in Finance from Long Island University in 1969.
Mr. Lipnick has directly or indirectly owned or operated seats on several major U.S. Securities and Commodities Exchanges. Mr. Lipnick is a member of the Board of Directors for the Federal Enforcement Homeland Security Foundation.
Count Carl-Edward von Bismarck | APCO International (Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International)
Count Carl-Edward von Bismarck
APCO International (Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International)
Count Carl-Edward von Bismarck presently works at the APCO International or Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International, an organization that is committed to provide expertise on public safety communications, technical assistance, professional development, advocacy and outreach to its members and the public.
Prior to APCO International, he was connected with the Investor Treuhand, an investor and fiduciary consulting firm located in Düsseldorf from 1989 to 1992. Afterwards, he worked with Princely Bismarck Administration.
In 1995, the Count joined the Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU). After the 1999 elections, the Count became the CDU vice-chairman in Lauenburg. In 2005, he won the election and joined the German Parliament. He resigned from his post in 2007.
He took Economics in college. Count Carl-Edward is the eldest grandson of the CDU politician Otto Christian Archibald, Prince von Bismarck, the great-grandson of Herbert, Prince von Bismarck and the great-great-grandson of German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck. His parents are Prince Ferdinand von Bismarck and Countess Elisabeth Lippens. Count Carl-Edward has two children, Grace and Alexei.
Kevin M. McGovern
Kevin M. McGovern
Kevin M. McGovern is the Chairman and CEO of McGovern Capital,LLC, which provides investments and business strategy to emerg- ing companies, particularly those engaged in consumer technologies and holders of Intellectual Property Rights. He has founded over a dozen companies, seven (7) of which have become world and/or category leaders, including SoBe Beverages, Tristrata (AHA skincare technology), and KX Industries (home-based water purification).
McGovern founded and serves as Chairman and CEO of The Water Initiative (“TWI”) (www.TheWaterInitiative.com), which develops and markets home-based water purification systems, particularly in developing countries. TWI has worked with the Mexican government and the people of Mexico as its first pilot. In less than 2 ½ years, TWI has formulated technology solutions to Mexico’s most severe unclean water conditions and has launched product distribution through the government and through those people most impacted.He also serves as Co-Chair of the Advisory Board and Board Member of the USA Pavilion and is Senior Advisor (only foreigner) to the Development Committee of the 2010 Shanghai World’s Expo.
McGovern was a founder of SoBe Beverages, which was the US’s fastest growing beverage company growing to $250mm in sales in less than 4 years, and estab- lished the “new age”/nutraceutical beverage category. SoBe was sold to PepsiCo.He also was a founder of KX Industries, which was the world’s leader in developing and marketing water and air carbon filters. KX developed and supplied the first home-based end of tap (“Pur”) filter for P&G and Brita and the first refrigerator water filter for Electrolux.McGovern co-published the pioneering Forbes/Wolfe Nanotech Report, which is currently the Forbes/Wolfe Emerging Tech Report.He created and directs the worldwide licensing program for Tristrata Inc., which owns the rights (over 100 patents) to Alpha Hydroxy Acids (“AHAs”), the most successful skin restoration and wrinkle reduction technology in skin care history. Tristrata licenses over 70 companies and is the leading seller of skincare products to dermatolo- gists and plastic surgeons in over 80 countries.
McGovern is a principal and strategist for Clean Coal Technologies, Inc. which has created proprietary technologies to clean coal; for EnviroFuels Manufacturing, Inc.,which markets and distributes proprietary smokeless stoves; and for Aquea Scientific,which developed and markets proprietary nanotechnology to “wash-on” additives to the skin, such as sunscreens; as well as an innovator to the fragrance industry.McGovern has served on various public and private Boards, including The Sports Authority (Executive Committee) and Nobel Education, and is the Co-Chairman of the Silver Shield Foundation, which provides education and counseling assistance to families of police and fire fighters killed in action in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey.
A graduate of Cornell University (BA) and St. John’s University School of Law (JD), he is a Presidential Councilor (highest honor to alumni) and Trustee Emeritus of Cornell University, having chaired its IP and Tech Transfer Committees. He also serves on Cornell’s Joint Venture (CNI) in Singapore, Chairs Entrepreneurship@ Cornell, and was named Cornell’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2007. He teaches each spring at the Johnson Graduate Business School (Global Innovation and Com- mercialization) and recently donated and founded the McGovern Family Venture Development Center,Cornell’s first on campus science/business incubator.
Johan Gorecki | Co-Founder, Skype; Founder and CEO, GlobeForum (Stockholm, Zurich, Warsaw)
Co-Founder, Skype; Founder and CEO, GlobeForum (Stockholm, Zurich, Warsaw)
Johan Gorecki is the founder/owner and CEO of Globe Forum, an internationally recognized marketplace for sustainable innovation. Globe Forum brings together innovators, investors, multinationals and entrepreneurs, and holds sustainability forums throughout Europe. Johan is also the founder of Globe Award, the leading sustainability prize for innovation. Europe’s 4th largest media company Bonnier is a large investor in his company.
An entrepreneur himself, he was a co-founder of Skype which sold to eBay for $4.1 billion in 2005. He also worked with the international entertainment broadcasting group Modern Times Group (MTG) where he was responsible for the internet portal Everyday AB. He is a board member of the Swedish Polish Chamber of Commerce and the Solar Energy company Solarus.
Johan Gorecki is committed to the search for sustainable ideas. His entrepreneurial career has included working with the creators of the pioneering IP telephony company, Skype. Today, as CEO of Globe Forum, he helps innovators and entrepreneurs focused on sustainability find partners and investors that will bring their ideas to life.
Allan Young | Founder, TopLine and Runway (SF, Richmond CA)
Founder, TopLine and Runway (SF, Richmond CA)
Allan Young is the founder of two large technology and business incubators, TopLine which is located in Richmond Marina Bay near UC Berkeley and Runway which is located in downtown San Francisco. Allan is an alum of the Y Combinator Winter 2010 batch. Previously, he co-founded an advertising technology company that was eventually acquired by one of Japan’s biggest e-commerce companies, Rakuten. Allan got his start in technology and finance as part of the founding team that launched a $20M student-run venture fund which achieved 4 IPOs in a portfolio of 15 investments.
Leon Kopyt | Chairman, RCM Technologies Inc. (Philadelphia & NYC)
Chairman, RCM Technologies Inc. (Philadelphia & NYC)
Leon Kopyt is the present Chairman of the Board of RCM Technologies Inc. Previously, he was the President and CEO from 1994 until 2014, the Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer from 1992 to 1994, and the Chief Operating Officer from May 1990 to January 1992.
In his more than two decades at RCM, the firm served across various industries like aerospace and defense, life sciences, manufacturing and distribution, utilities and energy, financial services, software and technology and facilities design & construction.
Leon Kopyt played a key role in assisting major aerospace manufacturers in the design and production of technology advanced aircrafts. In the life sciences, he helped in maximizing the IT resources and regulatory compliance of clients to generate savings for the company. Leon has built a large network base having worked with national and international companies across North America, and Fortune 1000 and mid-sized businesses.
Leon was also the President and Chief Executive Officer of a European-based industrial corporation and served as the Director of Ultimate Lifestyle Corp since March 2000.
He lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Joe Rubin | Founding Partner, ArcAngel Fund
Founding Partner, ArcAngel Fund
Joe Rubin is a Founding Partner of ARC Angel Fund, the first Member managed Angel fund in NYC. ARC has 70 Angel members and has invested in 12 companies so far in the early-stage tech, mobile, healthcare IT and web enabled services sectors. Joe is also the Director and Co-Founder of FundingPost.com. FundingPost has been introducing entrepreneurs to investors nationwide for over 11 years through its Online Venture Exchange, Dealflow Magazine and its Venture Capital and Angel Investor Conferences in 22 cities nationwide.
Joe has also invested in 11 seed deals over the past 7 years, including Sticky, Inc. (acquired by DeviceVM), Senscient, Revstor, Fly- cast, Giftworks, Virtus Sensors, and CIMA Systems. He spends much of his time coaching and helping early-stage companies, and speaks at events such as the NYC Economic Development Corporation’s Jumpstart and Fast trac Programs, Early Stage East, and Connecticut’s CTech, LIMs MBA program and is a sponsor of the UCLA Private Equity Club. Prior to FundingPost, Joe was instrumental in helping to raise $2.5 Million in angel and venture capital for his dot.com start-up producing a family-friendly network and over 100 flash-based video games which were playable online and sold as a compilation in stores like Comp USA.
Joe was also the Webmaster at Knight Securities (NASD: NITE), where he helped to design its online trading platform and website. Prior to working Online, Joe worked in television and design for companies such as NBC and MTV, in addition to doing freelance commercial production. Joe began working in television production, graphic design and 3D animation professionally when he was 15, and graduated from Hofstra University with a Bachelor’s degree in Communications. He now lives in Connecticut with his wife and 2 children.