Please join us alongside other business school alums for a lively panel discussion with three Kellogg alumni founders on Business Innovation & Disruption Around Covid.
As the Covid-19 pandemic begins to subside, business leaders who have spent the last year shifting to a new, contactless, digital-only reality suddenly find themselves having to shift their thinking again.
Rebecca Balyasny (KSM '09), Ben Chou (KSM '95), Sam Lee (KSM '09), and Satish Varma (KSM '10) will share with us their unique journeys leading up to and during Covid, and discuss the opportunities and challenges they see in a post-Covid world.
Video conference details will be sent on the day of the event.
Rebecca Balyasny (Panelist)
Founder and CEO, bande
Rebecca Balyasny is the Founder and CEO of bande, a livestream social fitness company focused on bringing people together to experience their best workout. Prior to starting bande, Rebecca spent the prior six years building a portfolio of venture managers and hosting an annual venture conference, Elevate, which brought together leaders in the public and private markets.
Rebecca was also the Founder and President of Lionel Advisors, a consulting firm advising private equity and venture capital firms on their marketing strategies. In addition, Balyasny focuses on the private investment strategy within the Balyasny Family Office.
Earlier in her career, Balyasny served as a Director at Prudential Capital Group, where she was responsible for fundraising for the entire platform of private investments. She previously worked for Prudential Capital Group in an investing capacity. Balyasny began her career at UBS in a credit sales and trading role.
Balyasny earned a BA from Columbia University and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management. She serves on the Board of the Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund Teach For America. A lifelong competitive athlete and college tennis player, her passions include golf, skiing powder, and most of all, spending time with her growing family.
Ben Chou (Panelist)
Founder and CEO, Welcome Entertainment Inc.
Ben Chou is the Founder and CEO of Welcome Entertainment Inc., a for-profit enterprise born out of the pandemic quarantine to restore the arts, re-employ the displaced, and give back to the community by reimagining the great American drive-in theater experience.
Prior to launching WE Inc., Ben was and remains a Managing Partner of Impact Executive Partners LLC, a boutique executive search firm that notably placed the CFO that took VIZIO public. Prior to Impact Executive Partners, he was part of RSR Partners' West Coast financial services and technology practice founded by Russell S. Reynolds II. Ben brings more than 30 years experience in financial services, private equity and technology. Prior to RSR Partners, Ben was general manager of new ventures with an U.S. Venture Partners Series C-funded venture that was successfully sold. Before that, he was vice president of Western U.S. for an Union Square Ventures Series C-funded FinTech SaaS.
Prior to his entrepreneurial endeavors, Ben was co-director of strategic growth and development for Parsons, a global engineering firm with $3B in annual revenues. He was also a limited partner in ING Barings' Merchant Banking Group, an associate with Merrill Lynch's High Yield Finance Group, and an investment analyst with The Prudential. Ben started his career as a supervisor with Pacific Bell (AT&T).
Ben earned an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from University of California, Los Angeles.
Satish Varma (Panelist)
Founder and CEO, Clorder
Satish Varma Srivatsavaya is the founder and CEO of Clorder – a Digital Ordering and Marketing Platform that helps restaurants grow sales and profits. Under Satish's leadership Clorder grew to a cash flow positive company with $2M+ annual revenues. Satish's focus at Clorder is the Company's strategic roadmap, marketing, and business development.
Satish has over two decades of technology experience, spanning roles at both startups as well as established corporations. As Director of New Business and Products at Redbend (now Harman), Satish created a $500M+ worth of new market opportunities for Mobile Virtualization products in auto and mobile devices industries in North America. Prior to that he co-founded B3 Communications – a managed crowdsourcing platform for software development. While working in a stealth startup by Dell Satish launched new mobile devices to markets across the world. Satish also worked at Motorola for 10+ years where he planned and managed the global roll out of new mobile devices and carrier branded services, with annual revenues in the range of $400M to $600M. Satish began his career as a scientist in Defense Research where he worked on torpedo design.
Satish holds an M.B.A. from The Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, an M.S. in Software Systems from Birla Institute of Technology & Science, India, and a B.S. in Electronics and Communications Engineering from Andhra University, India.
Sam Lee (Panelist)
Managing Partner, Rough Diamond Capital Management
Sam Lee is Managing Partner of Rough Diamond Capital Management, an angel investor syndicate that advises and invests in early stage companies across sectors, typically at the $1-2 million seed round. Sam is an experienced investor, analyst, and business operator who has been a founder, co-founder, or key member of three different startups, two of which had successful exits. Prior to founding Rough Diamond Capital in 2017, Sam led the Research & Data Analytics team at L2 Inc., a digital intelligence and benchmarking firm acquired by Gartner for ~$140 million in 2017. Sam holds an MBA in Finance from the Kellogg School of Management and a BA in Economics from Stanford University.
This event will be recorded and available to view after the live event. By joining the live event, you automatically consent to such recording. Even if you cannot attend the live event, please register and you will automatically be sent a link to the recording.