John has been pioneering break-through storage system innovations for over 25 years, including his role as founder and CTO at LeftHand Networks. LeftHand was sold to HP in 2008. Prior to founding LeftHand, John was director of software engineering at Maxtor Corporation’s Network Systems Group. John holds three storage patents and was named Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award finalist in 2005 and 2006. He was selected by the Boulder Chamber of Commerce for the Esprit Entrepreneur of Distinction award in 2006. John holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Colorado State University.
John Spiers, CEO and Founder
Kelly Long, CTO and Founder
Kelly has been innovating in the storage industry for over 20 years. An expert in architecting and developing storage software, Kelly has contributed to the advancement of a wide range of technologies such as hard drives, high concurrency multi-thread/multi-processor/multi-computer computing, and clustered storage systems. He has multiple patents. Kelly has worked at leading companies including Maxtor, StorageTek, LeftHand Networks, Copan, Dot Hill, CrossWalk, MySQL, and Sun. He was a co-founder and chief software architect at LeftHand Networks. Kelly has a B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Kirk Holland, Managing Director, Access Venture Partners
As a managing director at Access Venture Partners, Kirk brings a long track record of successfully investing in, growing and exiting high growth technology. Prior to joining Access Venture Partners, Kirk was a general partner at Vista Ventures, where he led many of the firm's successful investments in software and digital media. Prior to Vista Ventures, Kirk helped launch Jupiter Media Ventures, where he was a pioneering investor in the digital media sector. Previously, Kirk helped start Piper Jaffray's Software and Internet Media investment banking practice. Kirk received his B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering with honors from University of Washington and an MBA degree from Stanford University.
Craig Hanson, General Partner, Next World Capital
Craig has been an investor or senior executive in 20 venture-backed companies. Prior to co-founding NWC, Craig was a vice president with FTV Capital, a growth-stage venture capital firm with $1 billion under management investing in enterprise software companies worldwide. He was also a principal at Vista Ventures, a technology venture capital firm, and a vice president at Berenson Minella & Company, where he worked on large growth capital and buyout investments as well as acquisitions and financings. He has also been the CFO of a venture-backed technology company, and began his career as an investment banker with Credit Suisse First Boston. Craig received a B.A. magna cum laude from Carleton College and an M.S. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he was a Sloan Fellow.
Lawson DeVries, General Partner, Grotech Ventures
Lawson joined Grotech in 2005 and focuses primarily on investment opportunities in software, internet, digital media, networking and infrastructure. Prior to joining Grotech Ventures, Lawson was an associate in the Institutional Equity Sales division of the Buckingham Research Group, a boutique independent research firm. Previously he was an associate in the Equity Research division at Deutsche Bank, where he rolled out coverage on a new division of the Industrials sector. Prior to this, he was an associate in Deutsche Bank’s Health Care group covering Managed Care stocks. Lawson has a BA in English Literature from Harvard University and an MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.
Larry Cormier, Member of the Board
Larry’s 30 years of experience spans key data center infrastructure technologies including LANs, WANs, storage, storage networks, and data protection. He is currently senior vice president of worldwide marketing for Silver Peak Systems, an industry leader in wide area data networking. Silver Peak is his sixth technology start up. Previous marketing and business development leadership roles include LeftHand Networks (HP), CommVault, Scentric, McData, Storage Tek and Datapoint. He also previously served as Chief Marketing Officer during two terms as a board member for the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA).
Access Venture Partners is an early stage venture capital fund. Together over the past 14 years, the partners have invested in over 50 early stage companies and have served as founders and early executives of numerous companies. Access invests throughout North America, typically making its initial investment as part of the first institutional round and often continuing investment in subsequent rounds. Current investment activity is focused on the following areas of interest; clean technologies, cloud computing, data integrity, and new media/consumer internet.
Founded in 1984, Grotech Ventures is a leading early investor in high-potential technology companies and one of the longest-established firms in the venture industry. Grotech has managed over $1 billion of capital and funded over 100 companies including LivingSocial, Advertising.com, the first ISP (Digex), the first ASP (USinternetworking), the new standard for digital radio (iBiquity), and many other successful information technology, software and communications investments. The firm continues to invest and add value throughout the growth of its portfolio companies and has a strong combination of financial backing, industry relationships, and deep domain and operational expertise to accelerate growth.
Next World Capital (NWC) is an international expansion-stage venture capital firm that invests in leading enterprise software, mobile and consumer internet companies. NWC has $200 million of assets under management and is part of the much larger evergreen capital base of the global investment firm Next World Group, which gives the firm considerable capital depth to be a strong partner with its companies. The firm brings strategic insight and in-depth sector acumen to help its portfolio companies grow into market leaders.