Challenges in Middle Market
PE and Early Stage VC Investing:
New Ideas and Strategies

Keynote Speakers

Jai Shekhawat ('96)
CEO and Co-founder of Fieldglass, Inc. (Portfolio Company of Madison Dearborn Partners)

Featuring guest speakers Doug Grissom (Managing Director, Madison Dearborn Partners) and Steve Vivian (Partner, Kestrel Capital Group)

Jai is the CEO and Co-founder of Fieldglass, which makes the world's most widely used Cloud platform for the procurement of contract labor and services. Under his leadership, the Fieldglass platform has grown globally with users in 100+ countries, multiple languages and currencies and over $25 billion in annual spend. He was Ernst & Young's 2012 Midwest "Entrepreneur of the Year" as well as the 2012 recipient of the Peter Yessne Staffing Innovator Award, recognized for pioneering the Vendor Management Software (VMS) space. In 2010, Madison Dearborn Partners made a significant investment in Fieldglass, valuing the firm in excess of $220m.

Jai previously co-founded Quinnox, an application outsourcing firm in Naperville, Ill., with development and sales operations in multiple countries. Formerly, he was a strategy consultant with McKinsey & Co. in Chicago where he served clients in various industries in the areas of corporate strategy, technology and cross-border alliances. He also worked as a senior executive at Syntel, a software services firm in Michigan.

Jai has held various civic and board positions including serving on the Mayor's Council of Technology Advisors (MCTA) for the City of Chicago, the Membership Committee of the Economic Club of Chicago and the board of TiE Midwest. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Field Museum of Chicago, is a Board Member of Metrosquash and is a founding member of the Firestarter Fund, which mentors and invests in Chicago start-ups.

Jai holds an MBA with specializations in finance and strategy from the J.L. Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, and a bachelor's degree in management science from the Birla Institute of Technology and Science in Pilani, India.

Doug Grissom
Managing Director, Madison Dearborn Partners

Doug Grissom is a Managing Director on the MDP Business & Government Services team. Prior to joining MDP, Mr. Grissom was with Bain Capital, Inc. in private equity, McKinsey & Company, Inc., and Goldman, Sachs & Co. He currently serves on the Boards of Directors of Aderant Holdings, Inc., Asurion Corporation, CoVant Technologies II, LLC, Fieldglass, Inc., City Year of Chicago, the Lincoln Park Zoo and METROsquash. In addition, he was formerly on the Boards of Directors of @stake, Inc., Cbeyond, Inc., Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Corporation, Intelsat Holdings, Ltd., and Neoworld Holdings, LLC.

B.A., Amherst College; M.B.A., Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration

Steve Vivian
Partner, Kestrel Capital Group

Steve Vivian has nearly 20 years of experience financing and investing in private middle market companies across all phases of a company's life-cycle, most recently at Prism Capital and Kestrel Capital Group.

Mr. Vivian joined Prism as its second full-time professional in 1999 and co-founded Kestrel in 2012. He has been an active industry leader, having served as past Chairman of the National Association of Small Business Investment. Mr. Vivian currently serves on the President’s Leadership Council of The Chicago Field Museum and has also served on various committees of the Illinois Venture Capital Association and other not-for-profit and for profit boards. Mr. Vivian received both an MBA and a BS in General Engineering from the University of Illinois.

Nagraj Kashyap ('01)
Senior Vice President, Ventures and Innovation (Qualcomm)

Nagraj Kashyap is a Senior Vice President of Qualcomm. In this role, Kashyap is the global head of the Qualcomm Ventures group and oversees the Company’s strategic investments in wireless industry ventures. In addition he oversees all business development activities for Qualcomm Research.

Prior to Qualcomm, Kashyap was a manager at PRTM, a management consulting company and had direct client engagements with Nextel, Motorola, DuPont, Caterpillar, Michelin, Bell Mobility and ADC. Prior to PRTM, Kashyap was a senior product marketing manager at Motorola. He has also held engineering positions at 3Com/US Robotics and Nortel. 

Kashyap serves on the board of Brain Corporation. He is a board observer at Livescribe, Location Labs, and Sotera Wireless. Prior board/observer positions include Airvana (IPO:AIRV), Bitfone (acquired by H-P), Novarra (acquired by Nokia) and Clicker (acquired by CBS), Gaikai (acquired by Sony) and Avaak (acquired by Netgear).

Kashyap graduated from University of Mysore in India with a Bachelor of Engineering, Computer Science degree. He then earned a Master of Science in Computer Science from the University of Texas, Austin, followed by a MBA from Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University.