Brian Ahlborn has over 25 years experience in the automotive sector, most recently, as the President of McLaren Performance Technologies and as Vice President, Corporate Development at Linamar Corporation, a major tier one automotive powertrain supplier. Brian previously worked at General Motors and in Deloitte and Touche’s automotive consulting practice. He also has prior experience as a vice president of a venture backed high tech startup. Brian joined Transonic after finding the company had “developed a fundamental improvement in the efficiency of the internal combustion engine, delivering dramatic results at a time when the global automotive community is searching for exactly this type of innovation”. Brian holds an MBA from The Wharton School, an MA (International Studies) from the University of Pennsylvania, and a BA from DePauw University.
Mike founded Transonic due to his concern about global warming and the world’s dwindling oil supply as the third project out of his invention lab in 2006. Mike and wife Charity were included in the top 24 disruptive technologists featured in Fortune Magazine May ’07.
In the late 90’s Mike’s invention lab formed cell phone content provider V-Star, now www.gotvnetworks.com and advanced battery maker ZPower www.zmp.com . Each of these companies is funded by America’s top VCs and F500 companies and have received numerous technical achievement awards. For example, Transonic received a Strategic News Service Top 10 New Innovators award for 2008 and ZPower just received recognition by the World Economic Forum as one of 11 energy technology pioneers for 2009.
Mike’s latest invention lab project www.CoolPlanetBioFuels.com is focusing on negative carbon fuels which can actually reduce the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and, thus reduce global warming.
Ray A. Rothrock is a managing general partner of Venrock Associates. He joined Venrock in 1988 and became a managing general partner in 2001. His investment interests include energy, materials science, and information technology. Mr. Rothrock has directly participated in over 40 investments for Venrock. In addition to his activities at Venrock, Mr. Rothrock serves on the Board of the Texas A & M Foundation and is Chair of its Investment Committee. Mr. Rothrock received a B.S. summa cum lade in Nuclear Engineering from Texas A & M University, an S.M. in Nuclear Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an M.B.A. with Distinction from the Harvard Business School. www.venrock.com
Matthew Trevithick is a Partner at Venrock, which he joined in 2004. His primary areas of investment are information technology, nanotechnology and energy. Prior to Venrock, Matt co-founded and sold two software companies, Flash Communications (a developer of instant messaging technology) was acquired by Microsoft in 1998 and LiquidMarket (a product search and comparison shopping service) was acquired by NBC Internet in 1999. Matt began his career in project finance and currency trading, gaining professional experience in Tokyo, London, Singapore and New York. Matt has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an M.S. in Management from the MIT Sloan School. www.venrock.com
Lee Bailey is an Advisory Partner at Rustic Canyon Partners, where he focuses on investing in energy based companies. Mr. Bailey started his career as a lawyer and then held several senior management positions with Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. ("ECD"), a publicly traded energy technology development company. Mr. Bailey also served as the White House Director for International Science and Technology Commercialization Programs from 1995 to 1997 where he represented the U.S. government in promoting its strategy of privatization and commercialization of technology developed in Russia, Egypt, Israel and South Africa. In addition, Mr. Bailey served as the CEO of several start-up companies, including the Rural Health Care Corporation and Quantum Medical Corporation. Lee Bailey is also a founding partner of US Renewables Group, LLC, a fund formed with the participation of Rustic Canyon Partners. US Renewables Group invests in renewable power and clean fuel assets. Mr. Bailey received a law degree from Washington University School of Law, an M.S. from Northwestern University and a B.A. from St. Lawrence University. www.rusticcanyon.com
Vinod Khosla was a co-founder of Daisy Systems and founding Chief Executive Officer of Sun Microsystems where he pioneered open systems and commercial RISC processors.
Sun was funded by Kleiner Perkins and in 1986 Vinod switched sides and joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB). In 2004, driven by the need for flexibility and a desire to be more experimental, to fund sometimes imprudent "science experiments", and to take on both "for profit" and for "social impact" ventures, he formed Khosla Ventures. Khosla Ventures focuses on both traditional venture capital technology investments and clean technology ventures. Social ventures include affordable housing, microfinance among others.
Vinod holds a Bachelor of Technology in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi, a Master's in Biomedical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. www.khoslaventures.com