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

AngelList: VC Friend or Foe

Jason Heltzer
General Partner, OCA Ventures

Jason Heltzer is a General Partner with OCA Ventures and has been working at OCA since 2001. Jason serves on the boards of Red Foundry, Base CRM and Whittl. Previously, Jason had board responsibilities for Alert Logic (acquired by Welsh Carson), TradeKing and Pinpoint Health. Jason also led OCA's investment in Cartavi (acquired by Docusign), Brightnest (acquired by Angie's List) and FeeFighters (acquired by Groupon). In 2013, Jason was named by Crain's Chicago Business as one of the top 50 technology leaders in Chicago. Before OCA, Jason spent three and a half years as a management consultant and technical architect for Deloitte Consulting. He also led engineering and business teams at 1stUp, a San Francisco-based startup. Jason holds an MBA in finance and entrepreneurship, with high honors, from Chicago Booth, where he was selected as a Siebel Scholar and remains an active alumnus. Jason also holds a BS in computer science, with highest distinction, from the University of Michigan, where he founded a fraternity and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In addition to his professional responsibilities, Jason is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship at Chicago Booth, where he teaches the venture capital and private equity lab class. Jason serves on the boards of Temple Sholom of Chicago and the University of Chicago Private Equity Network (CPEN), which he founded in 2003.

Alex Mittal
Co-Founder, FundersClub

Alex Mittal is co-founder and CEO of FundersClub, the world's first online venture capital platform. Prior to FundersClub, Mr. Mittal was the founding CEO of Innova Dynamics, a touchscreen hardware company, leading the company from university laboratory to commercialization, securing design-in collaborations with today's major consumer electronics companies. Previously, he was the founding CTO of Crederity, an identity and credential verification enterprise software company, and co-founded and led Penn Engineers without Borders, a non-profit that has provided running water to thousands of people worldwide. Mr. Mittal currently serves on the Board of Directors of three companies, holds degrees in economics and engineering from Wharton and the University of Pennsylvania, and is an alumni of Y Combinator. He was recently named an advisor to First Round Capital’s Dorm Room Fund, and is a columnist for Inc. Additionally, Mr. Mittal has been featured in Forbes 30 under 30 in Tech, in BusinessWeek as one of America’s Best Young Entrepreneurs, and in Silicon Valley’s 40 under 40. Prior to his time as an entrepreneur, Mr. Mittal was active in science research, presenting at the 2002 Nobel Prize Ceremonies, and MIT Lincoln Laboratory named an asteroid after him for his work.

Ezra Galston
Senior Associate, Chicago Ventures

Ezra has been in the tech and marketing worlds for over a decade, having launched his first tech startup at age 13.  Ezra joined Chicago Ventures in March 2012, and helps lead the fund’s deal sourcing and research, with an emphasis on e-commerce, collaborative consumption, marketplaces, and mobile.

Prior to joining Chicago Ventures, Ezra was a Young Entrepreneur at Foundation Capital.  Before then, Ezra’s career had focused on the poker and gaming industries having played poker professionally for two years, before joining CardRunners in 2009 and scaling their video training platform.  After CardRunners, Ezra consulted for a variety of online gaming companies before launching a poker hedge fund in 2011, investing in over 100 unique players across 3,000 tournaments.

Before poker, Ezra served as Director of Interactive Marketing for Buzz Marketing Group where he worked with clients such as Midas Records, Sony Records, and MTV. Outside of Chicago Ventures, Ezra is a husband, and new father to a baby boy.  His varied interests have led him to launch a record label and produce a festival screened short film.  He is a Kauffman Fellow – Class of 18.

Guy Turner
Managing Partner, Hyde Park Venture Partners

Guy is a big fan of fast growth, entrepreneurs who know how to make that happen and helping them as much as possible. He blogs on topics venture and startup at Guy joined Hyde Park Venture Partners in 2011 from Boston Consulting Group where he focused on corporate strategy across a variety of industries. Guy has been an Associate and now actively investing Member of Hyde Park Angels since 2009. He spent his early career as a mechanical engineer with Raytheon and General Electric and holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University and an MBA from Chicago Booth. Guy is also a Siebel Scholar, Kauffman Fellow and a co-inventor on two US Patents. He loves his wife and kids too!