Chris Silva is the CEO of Allied Minds, a U.S. investment firm that deploys private equity to form, fund, manage and build start-up companies based on early-stage technologies developed at renowned U.S. universities and U.S. government laboratories. Allied Minds serves as a diversified holding company that supports its businesses with capital, management and shared services. The company has formed over 25 majority-owned subsidiary businesses to date and Chris serves on the boards of many of the firm’s portfolio companies. Prior to joining Allied Minds, Chris was a Partner at JSA Partners, an M&A firm. He was also a member of AT Kearney’s Aerospace Aviation & Defense Practice and GRC Intl, a Dept. of Defense and Intelligence Agency contractor. Chris served in the US Air Force and Intelligence Community and holds a BA and an MBA from Tufts.
Ulli provides critical, high-level support to the CEO and the General Counsel at Allied Minds. She has over 10 years of experience in executive leadership support, organizational operations, human resources, board support, as well as relationship and event management. Ulli worked for Second Nature, a Boston-based nonprofit organization, where she supported the President and Founder for five years. Prior to joining Allied Minds, she worked in London supporting the CEO and as Office Manager of the CT-based Hedge Fund SAC-GI. Ulli holds a BA in Public Relations and MA in Communications from Hawaii Pacific University and a certificate in Non-Profit Management and Leadership from Boston University’s School of Management.
Mark Pritchard is President and Chairman of the Board of Allied Minds. Mark spent his earlier career as an investment banker based in the City of London, latterly working as a director in the corporate finance department of Nomura International. He has been an active investor in a number of early stage companies, including FuturaGene a spin out from Purdue University, Indiana. FuturaGene was admitted to the AIM market in 2004 and Mark was Chairman from 2005 until its acquisition by Suzano Papel e Celulose, a Brazilian based multinational in 2010. From 2009 until 2010 he served on the board of Gold Oil PLC (now Baron Oil PLC), an oil and gas exploration company focussed on South America. Mark founded the Company in 2004 and has been directly involved in its strategic direction and growth since inception. He graduated from Cass Business School, London in 1984 with a B.Sc (Hons).
Marc Eichenberger is the Chief Operating Officer of Allied Minds. Before joining Allied Minds, Marc established his own professional services firm. His previous roles have included valuation, management advisory, M&A support and temporary senior executive roles, most recently as a Senior Vice President of Mergers & Acquisitions with a transportation services firm. He also served as Vice President of Marketing and Business Development for a small manufacturer of expansion joints. Prior, Marc was a Senior Principal with the leading consultancy A.T. Kearney. For over 10 years, he supported acquisitions, strategy development, and drove the restructuring of underperforming businesses. Marc's education includes a degree in economics and German from New York University and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business. Marc was awarded the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.
Michael Turner is the General Counsel of Allied Minds. Before joining Allied Minds, Michael was a Partner of DLA Piper LLP (US), one of the largest international business law firms. Prior to joining DLA, Michael was a Partner of Goodwin Procter LLP, a Boston-based national law firm. Michael acted as outside general counsel to public and private companies, investment banks, and private equity and venture capital firms, with an emphasis on serving the needs of growth companies in the software, semiconductor, data storage, analytics, telecommunications, medical devices and biotechnology sectors. During his more than 15 years in private practice, Michael provided counsel on company formation, equity and debt financings, public offerings, mergers and acquisitions, strategic partnerships, intellectual-property transactions, executive compensation, employment law, and other operational and transactional matters. Michael is admitted to the bar in Massachusetts and New York, and earned a BA in Political Science and Economics from Colgate University, and his JD in Business Law and Regulation from Cornell Law School.
Omar Amirana is a Senior Vice President for Allied Minds. Omar previously served as a Partner at Oxford Bioscience Partners, a Boston-based venture capital firm with ~$1B under management. He sourced and led the Series A investment in nFocus Neuromedical which commercialized a catheter-based aneurysm therapy and was recently sold to Covidien for ~$100M. He has served on the boards of Flowmedica (renal therapy; sold to AngioDynamics), SmartPill (GI capsule technology; sold to Given Imaging), Coherex (catheter closure of LAA and PFO), Mitralign (percutaneous heart valve repair), and Cambridge Endoscopic Devices (articulating laparoscopic surgical tools). He was the co-founder of Cardima (AF ablation; IPO) and Resolution Medical (cardiac mapping) based in Silicon Valley. He was also the VP of Marketing of MedicaLogic/Medscape, (EMR/HCIT), and served as VP of Business Development at St. Jude Medical (STJ, $5.2B in revenue). He has developed and launched products worldwide. He is currently on the board of Cardiofocus (AF catheter ablation) as well as the Oversight Committee for the Coulter Translational Research Partnership at Columbia University. As a co-founder of Propel Careers, he is passionate about helping aspiring entrepreneurs in life sciences. Omar earned a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Tufts University and an MD from Eastern Virginia Medical School.
Sam Milenkov is the Director of Finance at Allied Minds. Prior to joining Allied Minds, Sam was a manager for KPMG’s Audit and Risk Advisory practice with close to seven years of audit experience across the full cycle of an audit engagement. His credentials span across a broad variety of industries, including a background in consumer products, retail, technology and early stage R&D companies ranging from start-ups to large multi-national private and public corporations. Some of his select clients included Allied Minds, adidas, Lycos, Osram Sylvania, Wienerberger and UPC Austria. In 2011, Sam completed an eighteen months rotation at the KPMG Vienna, Austria office where he was able to integrate his experience in US GAAP and IFRS. Sam is a Certified Public Accountant with the State of Massachusetts and received his MS in Accounting and BSBA in Accounting and International Business from Suffolk University, Boston.
Thomas R. Sharpe is Senior Advisor at Allied Minds. He comes to Allied Minds with a 35 year career in academic research and administration. Most recently Dr. Sharpe was Associate Vice President for Economic Development at the University of Iowa where he led the IOWA Centers for Enterprise, an umbrella organization that included five units responsible for economic development activities of the University: the University of Iowa Research Foundation (UI's tech transfer and business development unit), the University of Iowa Research Park, the UI BioVentures Center and UI Technology Innovation Center (UI's technology business incubators), the Office of Corporate Partnerships, and the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center.
Previously, Tom served as Executive Director of the University of Missouri Office of Technology & Special Projects, the tech transfer and business development office for the UM System and its four campuses (Columbia, Kansas City, Rolla, and St. Louis). Prior to that he was a research professor in the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy, where he ultimately acted as Director of its Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, a separate state agency operating within the University. At Mississippi, he launched and directed the University's tech transfer and business development programs from the early 1980's until 1999. He holds a B.S. degree in Pharmacy from the University of Illinois at the Medical Center and Master's and Ph.D. degrees in Health Care Administration from the University of Mississippi.
Vincent Chun is a Vice President at Allied Minds. Previously, Dr. Chun was senior manager in finance and operations at EMC, a large data storage company, managing projects to improve revenue performance by developing and collecting operational metrics, by standardizing global structure and processes, and by streamlining and enhancing IT infrastructure. His business experience includes several years as a consultant with A.T. Kearney where he participated and led strategic and market analyses, operational improvements and performance optimization efforts. Dr. Chun spent seven years as Vice President and Chief Technical Officer at a biotech subsidiary of Photon Research Associates, Inc., developing and commercializing molecular modeling software and services, through collaborations with academic and industry researchers and liaison with a major software distributor. Prior to that, he spent nine years in aerospace engineering, performing dynamics and controls modeling, simulation, and assessment for spacecraft and aircraft. Vincent's education includes a PhD from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management. He has published 18 journal articles, and has served as peer reviewer for several professional publications.
John Serafini is a Vice President at Allied Minds’ Boston office where he focuses upon the commercialization of technologies originating from U.S. federal research institutions with sector concentration upon dual-use communications, cyber, mobility, robotics, and unmanned systems technologies. John's investment activities center upon the intersection of profit-maximizing private capital and the unique requirements and R&D capabilities of the US Government and include Allied Minds Federal Innovations, Optio Labs, Federated Wireless, Foreland Technologies, Whitewood Encryption, and Percipient Networks. Before joining Allied Minds, John was a Principal at Good Harbor Consulting where he partnered with Mr. Richard Clarke (former Special Advisor to three Presidential Administrations) and Paladin Capital as a venture capital/growth equity investor and M&A specialist with sector concentration in cybersecurity and expertise in managing investments impacted by U.S. national security regulations. During this time, John was also responsible for the origination and transaction of numerous acquisitions, joint ventures, and strategic partnerships for Good Harbor and its affiliated investment funds and provided cybersecurity advisory services for governmental, commercial, and investment fund clients. A former Airborne Ranger-qualified U.S. Army infantry officer with duty stations at the 82d Airborne Division & UNCSB-JSA of the Korean DMZ, John earned a B.S. degree with highest honors from the United States Military Academy at West Point, an MBA degree from the Harvard Business School, and an MPA degree from the Harvard John F. Kennedy School of Government. John has been awarded both the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation and the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) designation and was recently named to the 2014 Boston Business Journal's annual list of 40 under 40.
Roger Yang is a Vice President at Allied Minds in our Los Angeles office. Roger has extensive experience in technology assessment and planning, implementing integrated business and supply chain solutions as well as negotiations. He has worked both in industry and management consulting and was most recently with the turnaround and restructuring firm AlixPartners. His experience spans industries as diverse as High Tech and Aerospace to Consumer Packaged Goods and Energy around the world. Earlier in his career, Roger worked for Philips Lighting as a manufacturing engineer where he managed projects in their U.S., Mexico, and China facilities. Roger holds a Masters of Science in Industrial Administration with an emphasis on Operations and Strategy, from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and a Bachelors of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California at San Diego. He is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.
Dan Espinal focuses on the commercialization of technologies originating from U.S. federal research institutions. Before joining Allied Minds, Dan was a management consultant at JSA Partners where he provided strategic counsel to tier one domestic and international defense suppliers, including Lockheed Martin, Spirit Aerosystems, Thales, and Hamilton Sundstrand. While at JSA, Dan conducted a variety of due diligence and advisory engagements for private equity firms seeking acquisitions in the aerospace and defense industries. A former airborne ranger qualified U.S. Army infantry officer, Dan earned a B.A. from Tufts University and an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Matt Thoms is an Associate in our Boston office. Before joining Allied Minds, Matt was a management consultant at OC&C Strategy Consultants where he developed growth strategies for companies in information and technology services. In his graduate studies, Matt led research in nano-scale heat transfer for applications in utility-scale concentrated solar power. Matt graduated summa cum laude from Tufts University with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and earned an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Damien Browne is the Controller at Allied Minds. Prior to joining Allied Minds, Damien was the Assistant Controller for Setra and Sonix, both of which subsidiaries of Danaher Inc. His previous experience also includes six years in Internal Audit between EMC World Wide Audit and Deloitte Enterprise Risk Services. In the corporate audit environment, he audited the finances and operations for subsidiaries in North America, South America, Europe, and Africa. While in public accounting, his breadth of experience involved a variety of industries, including: manufacturing, health care, and technology. Damien is a Certified Public Accountant with the state of Massachusetts and received his Masters in Accounting and BS in Corporate Finance and Accounting from Bentley University.