Belo Miguel Cipriani is a freelance writer, speaker, and author of Blind: A Memoir. Belo was the keynote speaker for the 2011 Americans with Disabilities Act celebration in San Francisco and was a guest lecturer at both Yale University and the University of San Francisco. Amber Clovers, his first work of fiction, will be published in 2013. Belo is a Lambda Literary Foundation fellow, a fellow with Yaddo (a premiere artist colony), and he loves his guide dog, Madge. He welcomes anyone to reach out to him at belocipriani.com or on Twitter @Beloism.
Zachary Yungst grew up in Sarasota, Florida before attending Penn’s Wharton School. Before starting Cater2.me, Zach worked in investment banking at Morgan Stanley and in private equity for TPG in San Francisco.
Founded in 2010, Cater2.me connects chefs, food trucks, restaurants, and top local food vendors with offices and startups. They’re focused on making office meals exciting and the process of ordering group meals excitingly simple. Cater2.me has served over a million meals, feeding many well-known companies and startups in Silicon Valley and New York City.
MO: What inspired you to launch Cater2.me? How did you make the leap from investment banking to catering?
With an MBA from Sabanci University and 10 years of professional experience, Tekin Tatar has built his career around e-business, digital brand management, and interactive advertising. Prior to starting BeFunky in 2007, Tekin wore many hats as the Business Development Manager of McCann Relationship Marketing Turkey, a leading multinational company focusing on digital brand management.
After realizing one day that he was tired of working for someone else’s company, his passion for digital media led him to establish the company BeFunky and a team that will always feel funky.
Founded in 2007 by engineers and cartoonists with a unique desire to integrate art and technology, BeFunky’s photo editor was designed to be a fun, easy-to-use tool that helps you turn ordinary pictures into incredible works of art. Today BeFunky is not only the photo editor that gives people the most creative control, but it’s also the only one available across every platform, including phones and tablets for iOS and Android, and the web. BeFunky is more than just an app: It’s a digital dream come true for people ready to get creative with their photos at home or on-the-go!
MO: How did your background and previous experience help contribute to the direction and vision of BeFunky?
Matt Mickiewicz was named to the Forbes Magazine “30 under 30″ list in 2012, co-founded 99designs which has hosted more than 130,000 design contests and paid out more than $30 million to designers, while winning a 2010 Webby Award for “Best Web Service” and raising $35 million from Accel Partners. Matt has also co-founded Flippa.com which has helped entrepreneurs sell more than $70 million in websites & domain names. INC Magazine named Matt to their “30 under 30″ list in 2011.
MO: You started your first company while still attending High School. What inspired your early interest in entrepreneurship and how did you manage to gain such insight and credibility to attract a client base before even having your driving license?
Dr. Linda D. Sharkey is Global Managing Director and Partner at Achieveblue a boutique consultancy that specializes in leadership development, cultural transformation and talent and organization development. Prior to joining Achieveblue, Linda was the Chief Talent Officer for HP and also held numerous Executive Human Resources roles at GE. Linda is co-author of Winning with Transglobal Leadership which has been recognized as one of the Top 30 Best Business Books for 2012 by Executive Summaries. She has also co-authored a ground breaking book on talent management entitled Optimizing Talent. Linda is a widely sought after executive coach and as such is a Founding Member of the Marshall Goldsmith Group. She is a frequent keynote speaker at industry and company events and is often cited as one of the best thought leaders in her field. She holds a Ph.D from Benedictine University and lives in Saratoga, California.
Kevin Rohling has an engineering background, business savvy and significant experience leading and managing teams. He came up with the idea for cisimple while working as the CTO at a previous startup. When he went looking for a simple, easy solution for setting up continuous integration for his engineering team he came up empty handed and knew this was a great opportunity.
John Frost is a serial entrepreneur with a background in Business Development and Marketing. At 23 he co-founded a company that he helped grow to 6 divisions with operations in 7 countries and eventually to a public listing on the NGM stock market. He and Kevin met through a mutual friend visiting from Australia and ever since John has been driving sales and business development at cisimple.
Cisimple’s cloud services automate the continuous testing, build, and deployment of mobile applications and SDK’s. Tight integration with Github and Testflight means the setup process takes minutes instead of days and all without the cost of setting up and maintaining build servers.
MO: How did you come up with the idea for cisimple?
Maggie O’Neill brings 15 years of communications and event planning experience to Peppercommotions, the experiential events division of Peppercom Strategic Communications. The division, which she created in 2005, has grown to a $1M plus arm of Peppercom with a client roster which has included Whirlpool, Tyco, T.G.I. Friday’s, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Panasonic, Crocs, Nikon and more.
Peppercommotions is the award-winning experiential marketing branch of Peppercom, a strategic communications agency that combines strategic events and integrated communications expertise. Headquartered in New York with offices in San Francisco and London, we deliver experiences that build your brand, create industry buzz and address your bottom line.
MO: What’s your favorite part of your job?
Taro grew up in Tokyo, Japan. After college, he moved to Singapore and launched his career as an engineer.
Taro is now a cofounder and the chief executive officer of AnyPerk, focusing his efforts on the business and financial aspects for the company.
AnyPerk provides hundreds of perks to small and medium sized companies—discounts off of gym memberships, entertainment tickets, T-mobile, Dell and HP products, just to name a few. Companies can sign up for our service at no cost while they are in Beta. Having launched in March, AnyPerk currently serves thousands of companies and is growing quickly.
Our mission is to help businesses attract and retain top talent while providing a rewarding work environment. We believe that every employee, regardless of company size, should have access to high-quality employee perks.
MO: How did you come up with the idea for AnyPerk?
written by MO.com Subject Matter Resource Laurel Sutton
How do you reconcile the tart sweetness of blackberries picked on a lazy summer afternoon with a multitasking cell phone? At first glance, product names and company names like BlackBerry and Apple have nothing to do with the companies or products they brand. So why do they work? Because strategic naming rarely requires a literal descriptive name. In fact, if you want to set a brand apart and make it fresh and memorable, an evocative name borrowed from another field is often far more powerful. Especially if you dig deep to create a name that’s rooted in the brand’s essence. Here are some rules for successfully “borrowing” a name from an unexpected source-in this case, the garden.
Michael Soon Lee is a marketing guru who is the leading expert in selling to people from diverse cultures. He was a Marketing Director for the State of California, a professor of marketing at universities and a producer for the ABC Television Network.
Michael has spoken around the world on the subject of selling to multicultural customers for over 20 years. He has been an award-winning salesperson as well as sales manager of both large franchised companies and small independent firms.
EthnoConnect helps companies increase sales to multicultural customers. Clients include: Coca-Cola, Chevron, Boeing, State Farm Insurance, University of Wisconsin, National Association of Realtors and over 1,000 others. They train salespeople how to build trusting relationships with Hispanics, African Americans, Asians, Middle Easterners and others.
MO: What inspired to create EthoConnect?
Chris Cunningham co-founded adtivity by appssavvy, an activity advertising technology company and serves as CEO.
The vision of activity advertising has established Chris as a recognized thought leader. He frequently speaks at industry conferences and forums, including ad:tech, IAB, iMedia and 4A’s events, and comments on the latest developments in the social space live on CNBC and Bloomberg TV, or in leading publications, such as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Bloomberg BusinessWeek and USA Today. For insight into Chris’ unique perspective, read The New York Times’ Corner Office.
MO: Could you please break down what activity advertising encompasses and possibly provide a few examples?