Incubating Asia Start-Ups in Silicon Valley
Omar Mencin, President and CEO, US Market Access Center
Sun Ho, Founder, LittleLives
John Schliesser, Mentor, LittleLives
Tatsunori Suzuki, Co-Founder & CEO, Zeptor Corporation
Chuck Consorte, Co-Founder, Zeptor Corporation
I'm delighted to welcome former US-Asia Technology Management Center grad student research assistant Omar Mencin back to the Farm for this session!
Omar Mencin is currently the President and CEO of the US Market Access Center. The US MAC is the oldest high-tech business incubator in Silicon Valley for foreign companies seeking to successfully enter the Silicon Valley and the greater US Market. Omar joined the US MAC in 2004 as Vice President of Business Development where he created partnerships with several foreign trade agencies and incubators and designed the US MAC consulting services offerings. During his time with US MAC, he has helped over 100 foreign based technology companies successfully enter the US Market and regularly advises government agencies from Japan, Finland, China, Slovenia, Chile, Belgium, and Germany which work to bring small and medium sized technology companies to the US market.
Omar started his career with the World Bank in its Paris Office and then worked as an analyst in the New York Office of Goldman Sachs’ Merchant Banking Division. He has a BA from Swarthmore College with Honors, has studied mandarin Chinese at the Taipei Language Institute and National Taiwan University in Taipei, Taiwan, has a certificate in Management Science and Engineering and an MA in East Asian Studies from Stanford University and has recently completed the Executive Program for Leadership Development at Harvard Business School. Currently, he is a member of The Pacific Council on International Policy and serves on the board of two non-profit organizations and one private start-up.
LittleLives Inc. is a Singapore based start-up focusing on intuitive and user engaging educational products. Its flagship product, LittleLives.com, is an educational network for children that is safe, fun, and wholesome. Started in 2007, the network serves over 85% of the primary school market in Singapore, with recent in-roads into the pre-school education arena as well. LittleLives is now being developed as a pilot application for select California schools, with a bigger launch in the U.S. planned for the near future.
LittleLives founder, Ms. Sun Ho, started her career developing Sales Force Automation software at Toppan Forms. Then, at WorldGroup Consulting, Sun deployed a CRM system onsite in Pakistan. Moving to Chicago to work for Tellabs Inc., where she developed a software testing and simulation framework. On returning to Singapore, she joined ST Dynamics to develop the Video and Map portion for Ground Station Software of the Fantail Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. Sun's entrepreneurial inclinations led her to switch to doing business developing with eClub. Besides achieving profitability within six months of operations, she drove revenues to double in less than a year. Sun holds a BSc in Information Systems & Computer Science from the National University of Singapore.
John Schliesser holds a Ph.D. from UC Berkeley, where his research addressed the impact of digital and nonlinear media on traditional narrative form and cognition. He started his career as a consultant at Lightbulb, an early New Media subsidiary of Viacom in Los Angeles. From 2004-2007, he was the co-lead for Time Treks, an International Cooperative Research Project sponsored by the South Korean Ministry of Information and Communication for the purpose of designing a new edutainment platform for cultural tourism to be deployed on mobile devices in South Korea. During his time in Asia, John also worked on related projects with Hong Kong companies, such as Mobile Adventures and Sterling Ltd. On returning to the United States, he consulted for Decizium Inc., a Belgian company about to release anonline decision engine for travel planning in the U.S. consumer and business markets. He later acted as CEO of the company’s U.S. subsidiary. John began working with Little Lives in October 2010 as a business mentor through the US Market Access Center, more recently becoming officially engaged as a consultant to the company.
Zeptor Corporation is a nano-scale manufacturing firm dedicated to bringing the high-yield, low-cost systems and techniques developed and honed over decades in the semiconductor industry to the nascent clean energy industry. Zeptor's goal is to develop and manufacture high-efficiency, light-weight electrodes for use in lithium
batteries, fuel cells and capacitors. Zeptor manufactures an Enhanced Current Collector (ECC) that will replace the traditional metal current collector in li-ion batteries. The ECC will enable the transition to high-capacity anode materials in an existing li-ion battery manufacturing line.
Mr. Tatsunori Suzuki, Co-founder and CEO of Zeptor, started his career in the automobile industry. He produced several innovative products including Formula-1 racing engine systems. Combining his automotive expertise with his passion for green energy, he created a display for daily drivers that reinforces energy-conscious driving by growing tropical fish. He then lead electric vehicle research. At Intel he evaluated semiconductor manufacturing techniques for silicon based energy source applications.
Dr. Chuck Consorte, co-founder of Zeptor, comes from an academic career that includes research postings at NASA Ames, LLNL, and SNL, with project contributions including a NASA mission proposal and stewardship of the national nuclear stockpile. 8 years experience developing nano-scale metrology, thin film, and wet etch processes at Intel. He holds a Ph.D. in Physics from UC Davis.