An interactive session exploring the entrepreneurial challenges in the food industry. Innovative new products and concepts will be featured. Come learn, network, and eat!
This panel brings together a group of innovative Bay Area entrepreneurs that will offer a perspective on their experiences introducing new products and creating a successful brand in a highly competitive supermarket space.
We will cover the following topics:
• Marketing and brand development
• Operations management
• Channel strategy
• Business management
• This session will be highly interactive with hands-on participation from all!
Priya Dugal (Moderator) '11
CEO & Co-founder, Foodtourismo.com
Foodtourismo.com is a marketplace platform that connects eaters to the best homestyle meals by expert chefs & food entrepreneurs in their locale. After a successful beta, the start-up is now strategizing on taking things to the next level. Priya previously worked for McKinsey & Company with an expertise in cleantech; an energy efficiency start-up backed by Google & Goldman Sachs; and IBM. She holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Priya is experienced in strategy, data analysis and business development.
Serafina Palandech (Panelist)
President and Co-Founder, Hip Chick Farms
Hip Chick Farms a groundbreaking frozen food company focused on providing organic, sustainable and humane meal solutions for busy families, based in Sebastopol, CA. Since launching in 2013, Palandech with her wife, Jennifer Johnson, have launched into over 3,000 outlets and achieved 900% year over year growth in 2015.
Previously, Serafina spent more than fifteen years helping nonprofit organizations like AIDS Walk San Francisco access private funding streams for companies, and she founded and ran Tugboat Events, a boutique event production company which produced charity events for organizations. She currently serves as the Chairwoman of the AIDS Walk San Francisco Foundation Board of Directors, and volunteers with many other LBGT and family-led organizations.
In October 2015, Serafina was named Most Innovative Women in Food & Drink by Food & Drink Magazine (TIME, Inc).
Lisa Curtis (Panelist)
Founder & CEO, Kuli Kuli
Kuli Kuli is the first company to sell moringa food products in the US. Moringa is a green superfood that is more nutritious than kale and provides a complete plant protein, similar to quinoa. Lisa began working on Kuli Kuli while in the Peace Corps in Niger, West Africa. As a volunteer in her village's health center, she gained a first-hand understanding of the common nutritional challenges faced in West African villages and how moringa can play a role in helping to address those challenges while providing Americans with a healthy new superfood. Prior to Kuli Kuli, Lisa served as the Communications Director at Mosaic, wrote political briefings for President Obama in the White House and worked at an impact investment firm in India. Lisa is a graduate of Whitman College and lived the Booth MBA vicariously through her husband.
Jake Heimark (Panelist)
CEO & Co-founder, Plus
Plusgum is a premium cannabis infused product company that provides more consistent, higher quality, healthier alternatives to normal edibles. Launched in February 2016, Plus has already been featured in Forbes, High Times and DOPE magazines. Jake previously worked at Facebook and Gumroad, a payments startup backed by Kleiner Perkins. He holds two undergraduate degrees from Brown University.
Anjan Mitraa (Panelist)
Husband-wife team, Anjan and Emily Mitra, owners of DOSA, share a passion for South Indian cuisine and culture that is part of the experience they've created at their restaurants. DOSA is a renowned, San Francisco dining institution with two locations in San Francisco serving innovative and authentic South Indian cuisine with a world-class spice-driven cocktail program.
Anjan grew up in Bombay (now Mumbai) eating and learning the culture and cuisines and Emily brings a strong passion for local and sustainable produce from her years in the health food industry to DOSA. The Mitra's are long-time denizens of San Francisco and their passion for South Indian cuisine and culture is what energizes their restaurants. Together, their goal to introduce San Francisco to the food they love is what led to the successful conception of DOSA.