Lauren Abda runs Branchfood, the largest community of food innovators and entrepreneurs in New England. Branchfood provides resources for individuals launching and growing food businesses by way of workspace for food startups in downtown Boston; events that highlight food innovation in the city; and educational resources for new food entrepreneurs. She is also working with two other local angel investors to launch an angel group dedicated to supporting early stage food and foodtech businesses, Branch Venture Group.
Alex is a Nutritionist and CPG Food Product Developer with a successful history of formulating, commercializing, and launching innovative Organic, Non-GMO, Allergen-Free, Paleo, Kosher, and Vegan food products in the Natural/Organic space. Experienced, but not limited to: Cookies, Crackers, Pretzels, Granola, Bars, Chips. Experience within a food innovation lab setting managing client relationships, product development, and the launch process. Able to generate Nutrition Facts Panels, ingredient statements, and advise on regulation concerns and claims.
BovControl is A data collection and analysis tool to improve performance on meat, milk and genetics production. Science and field practice bonded like never before. Reliable information improve meat production. BovControl shows your true potential and points out ways to achieve it. We also help you achieve goals on daily milk production. A productive cow gives more milk given the proper care and enjoys more life quality. Knock out mistakes when registering bulls and cows. This helps prevent that your champions get lost on paperwork – or the lack of it.
Founder at Nama Kiss
Andi founded Nama Kiss, an organic, plant-based chocolate company, with her sister in 2008 while living in Tokyo, Japan. A year later, she opened Manna Raw Vegan Restaurant in Tokyo. They restarted Nama Kiss in Raleigh, NC upon their return to the US in 2011, but made the decision to close the business in 2014 to pursue graduate school and other career options. In August 2016, Andi graduated from Tufts University with my Masters in Nutrition Science and Policy, and worked for all of 2016 as a Research Coordinator at Tufts University's Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging in the Energy Metabolism Laboratory. While working at Tufts, she restarted Nama Kiss for a third time and started her nutrition coaching practice. She left her job in January of 2017 to run Nama Kiss and do nutrition coaching full time.
After 15 years in the production agriculture world (USAID, USDA, John Deere, W. Europe, Balkans, China, SE Asia, India, Brazil, U.S.), Renee is using her experience combined with her passion for sustainability to grow high potential sustainability-focused agriculture businesses. She is an agriculture economist with cross functional business experience (market analysis, portfolio planning, program management, manufacturing and sales & marketing) making a difference! Areas of Expertise include: China, SE Asia, India, Brazil, Cotton & Sugar, Global production agriculture- investment analysis, Marketing and Distribution strategy development.
Founder at NewView Media
Tom is a passionate entrepreneur who recognizes the potential of media to educate, entertain and engage. As new technologies continue to develop and allow individuals to connect and communicate efficiently like no other period in our history, the importance of video has risen astronomically. Tom strives to gather passionate teams together to collaborate and produce video projects that promote innovative ideas and push humanity forward. Tom has produced media content for Boston based food businesses and foodtech startups.
Co Chairperson and Convener at the Maine Food System Innovation Challenge
Thepurpose of the Challenge is to encourage entrepreneurs to create innovative and sustainable enterprises that support the expansion of locally grown and harvested food and seafood. The Challenge is a competition combining aspects of a Startup Weekend, Hack-a-thon and a Challenge. Teams receive feedback and technical assistance during the event and the weekend culminates with teams making pitches to a panel of judges. Winners of the Challenge receive cash awards and technical assistance. Bill is a serial entrepreneur and has expertise in managing complex organizations, building and facilitating teams, raising capital and developing innovative products and services.
Marcia Hooper has over 29 years of venture investing experience having been a partner at Advent International and Ampersand Ventures Ventures. Her portfolio is driven by supporting leading technology entrepreneurs across a number of industries including food-related services, consumer, Internet marketing, and business services. She has served as a Director of over 30 private and publicly listed companies. She began her career at IBM in marketing. Hooper received her Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and mathematics from Brown University. She also earned a Master of Arts degree in chemistry from Columbia University and a Master of Business Administration degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Business.
Founder at Craft Hot Sauce
Craft Hot Sauce is a website that was created to promote and bring awareness to small batch and artisanal craft hot sauce companies. We are here to educate hot sauce and spicy food followers about chilli peppers, the process of making artisanal sauces, the latest information on the growing hot sauce industry, and create a network to connect chiliheads across the world.
Goose, Inc. is a holding company with investment interests in the Caribbean and United States. They currently have interests in consulting, tourism, adult beverage, and consumables spaces and are always interested in expanding our portfolio of investments. Rachel began her career with major consumer packaged goods companies which provided her with a strong understanding of the business needs and pressures CPG companies face in creating and maintaining key retail relationships. She specializes in category management, space planning including product assortment, data analysis, consumer segmentation, account management, training/ demonstrating techniques, creativity, leadership, interpersonal skills. She is also a member of NEW. NEW is more than 10,000 members, 950 companies, 100 corporate partners and 20 regions working together to advance gender equality in retail and consumer goods, improve the lives of our members and build a better workplace for all.
Willem was part of the Stellenbosch-based PSG Group Private Equity team that built and listed South Africa’s Zeder Investments in 2006. Zeder is a JSE-listed agribusiness investment company with interests in food processing, fruit exports, agri inputs, seed and farming. Willem’s tenure as CEO with Chayton Africa, an African farming enterprise in which Zeder invested, gave him first-hand experience in leading a large African operational agribusiness.
In 2015, Willem moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts, where helped start the African Agribusiness Knowledge and Innovation Leadership Initiative. In collaboration with faculty and students of the MIT and Harvard, Willem researched models of African agribusiness, drawing from his experience from working in investment and operational sectors in Africa. He relocated to South Africa to start Campitor Investments.
Rootastes is a curated lunchtime delivery service providing healthful, globally-inspired meals to corporate offices in Greater Boston. They believe a great lunch can create a more positive and productive environment for employees and deliver measurable results to a company's bottom line. Their mission is to create an exciting corporate lunch experience without compromise. They envision food that not only is authentic and tastes great - it’s also made with healthier, fresher ingredients. Good for people, our community, and the planet. Mint has over five years of experience in marketing and communications in the real estate, petrochemical, non-profit organization and startup industries with responsibility for various detailed projects. She excels at creating and executing both traditional and digital media campaigns across a variety of platforms as well as generating data analysis reports, monitoring media, and coordinating with both internal-external departments and clients efficiently.
Founder at Dinner Belles
Dinner Belles is an on-site, meal prep concept that brings people together to prepare great tasting, healthy meals to take home and enjoy stress-free. We prepare the meals with your friends, coworkers, clubs or social groups. All preparation is done on-site, whether that’s in your home or in your board room! Simply put: Good food paired with good company is a major key to health! Our goal is to improve overall health and morale through meal preparation and socialization in a group setting. Specialties: Business conceptualization to development and implementation of systems, programming and infrastructure. Areas of concentration: education and training, program development, sales and marketing, and operations and system design Excellent with start up and re engineering as well as strategy and brand development.
At Nibble, you’ll find an eclectic mix of tasty, well-sourced up-and-comers to tickle your taste buds again and again. Snacks you love to eat. Snacks that fuel your day. Snacks that nurture your body. At Nibble, we take our snacking seriously. You won’t find much in here that you’ll recognize. We think that’s a good thing. That’s why we scour the country for the tastiest snacks around and stock them all here for your snacking pleasure. Prior to launching Nibble, Joyce had stellar professional career leading marketing for Unidine, Welch's, Cosi, Bertucci's, and more.
LaDoce is the first authentic Brigadeiro boutique in the greater Boston area. They handcraft Brazilian style chocolate truffles, made to order, with all natural ingredients. They believe that food needs to be appealing to all the senses and crafted with simple but great ingredients. Bruno is an accomplished business leader with more than 15 years of experience in the packaged food industry, with a passion for solving difficult market challenges and helping businesses and organizations achieve sustainable growth. Specialities include: Sales, Marketing, Trade marketing, Go to Market strategies, Incentives, Negotiation, Strategic Pricing, Financial management, Strategic Alliances, Team Leadership and motivation, P&L Management, Turnaround management, Development of organizational structure.
Prachi is a driven, creative and self-motivated professional with 10 years of experience focusing in digital health and consulting. Proficient at managing the product life cycle, analyzing user workflows and collaborating across departments to develop innovative and functional products. Interfacing with clinicians and end customers for voice of customer activities and coordinating usability studies. She specializes in: Agile Product development, User focused product design, System design, Strong presentation skills, Medical Devices (Class III and MDDS), Risk Management, Verification and Validation, Digital Health Solutions, User Validation, Customer Market Research, Product demonstration, Medical Mobile Applications (iOS, Android) Prachi is developing a line of food products for diabetic patients.
Senior Vice President of Media Solutions at MyWebgrocer
MyWebGrocer offers the only complete Digital Experience Platform for grocers and CPG brands. The platform powers every interaction to attract, engage, transact with and retain grocery shoppers through digital offerings, ranging from planning and shopping platforms to mobile and social tools. The company also offers opportunities for CPG brands looking to reach consumers with relevant advertising, promotions, and offers throughout their grocery path to purchase. Shaun is a digital media veteran with over 16 years of experience managing large scale, blue chip clients. He has led the creation of award winning partnerships with top publishers such as ESPN, Google/YouTube, Yahoo, Aol and Microsoft. He thrives on media creativity, innovation, analytics and performance. He has a thirst for unique insights/knowledge and possesses an overall sense of curiosity. He wants to know the how and the why.
Liza's passion for marketing and advertising started when she was very young. Liza loves understanding people, how their minds work, and what drives them. That's when she quickly began to understand that her love for the mysteries of the human brain could easily be connected to brands and services. She pursued her dream of studying advertising at Pace University, where she graduated at the top of her class. She was able to make it into Advertising Club senior year, and had the luxury of having wonderful professors who coached her along the way. After 5 years in media planning and buying, she dabbled in the startup culture and ended up staying at one company for 4 years. The proprietary data and insights she was able to provide her sales associates and clients truly excited her. During this time, she took the opportunity to move to Boston to be closer to family, and has been with MWG ever since.
Scott's experience includes: consulting on sales management, marketing, and pricing strategy for Fortune 500 and private-equity backed consumer packaged goods companies; Leading the consumer packaged goods (CPG) practice for a provider of analytics solutions; Working with syndicated scanner data to better understand how people shop and how to promote consumer goods more effectively; Managing analytics teams and providing professional development; and reinvigorating his family's classic chocolate syrup brand, Bosco, with results. Specialties: consumer packaged goods, CPG, food, marketing analytics, Excel, IRI, Nielsen, data, analytics, grocery, supermarket retailing, branding, strategy, social media, writing, food, beverage, and chocolate syrup.
Aston Plus is an e-commerce and consulting company. Heather provides fractional marketing leadership for technology innovators across all aspects of marketing, including branding, corporate communications, digital marketing and content strategy. She also puts her marketing skills to work for herself by selling products on Amazon. Her brand, Kensho Kitchen, has been awarded "Hot New Release" status and was immediately profitable.