CoolTech Club panel : Israeli Success Stories , Top Executives / Venture Capitalists Panel


May 1,2008


Panel of Top Executives and Venture Capitalists discuss success stories of Israeli high-tech companies.



Boaz Chalamish, SVP & GM, Mercury Interactive/ HP

Boaz Chalamish joined Mercury Interactive in 1991 when it was an early startup company. Growing together with company , Boaz held various positions - from team leader to Senior Vice President and Israeli office General Manager.

Boaz led Mercury Interactive into new markets, extending business from 0 to $100M in just 3 years (2000-2004) . As a General Manager (2004-2006), Boaz manage global growth of portfolio, penetrating adjacent markets while maintain leadership in core markets.

After successful acquisition by HP, Boaz Chalamish accepted position of Senior Vice President of R&D at Hullet-Packard

Ravi Mhatre, Partner & Founder, Lightspeed Venture Partners

Ravi is a founder of Lightspeed and primarily focuses on Internet, digital media and software investments. He has twelve years of venture capital experience and six years of operating experience.

Before joining Lightspeed, Ravi was with Bessemer Venture Partners and invested in NetGenesis Software (NTGX), Verio (VRIO), VIA-Networks (VNWI), Webspective Software (acquired by Inktomi) and InCert Software (acquired by Geodesic).

Before entering the venture capital industry, Ravi was with Silicon Graphics, where he was a product manager and later directed the company's workstation market development efforts. Previously, he spent time in Lehman Brothers' technology investment banking group and in management consulting with Booz Allen Hamilton. Ravi began his career as a software engineer at BDIS, a Silicon Valley-based analytical instrument manufacturer.

Ravi has served on the Board of Directors for The Indus Entrepreneurs Group (TiE) in Silicon Valley, has been recognized as a Top 100 dealmaker on Forbes' Annual VC Midas List and has served as a judge for the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Competition.

He holds a BS in electrical engineering, a BA in economics and an MBA from Stanford University.

Eitan Bek , Partner, Pitango Venture Capital

Mr. Eitan Bek, who joined Pitango in 2000, works closely with early and mid-stage companies mainly in the Semiconductor (IC) and Wireless Communications areas. Mr. Bek contributes multidisciplinary managerial expertise to the companies with which he works.

Prior to joining Pitango, Mr. Bek worked at Lehman Brothers, where he initiated and managed a special technology project, enabling institutional investors to manage their accounts online. In the mid-90s, he served as Director of System Specification group at Elbit Systems. In this role, Mr. Bek led development teams in million dollar aviation upgrade projects and was responsible for marketing upgrade suites.

Mr. Bek holds an M.B.A. from the University of Michigan Business School in Ann Arbor, and a B.A. (magna cum laude) in Business Administration from the College of Management, Tel Aviv.

Ofer Vilenski, Founder & CEO (former), Jungo

Ofer Vilenski co-founded Jungo together with Derry Shribman in 1998, and led the company from inception to a profitable, market leader providing the operating software for residential gateways. Jungo was acquired in 2006 by NDS, a News Corp company. Prior to Jungo, Ofer worked for Check Point Software Technologies, a global leader in Internet security solutions, and served as a fighter pilot in the Israeli Air Force. Ofer graduated Cum Laude in Computer Science from the Technion Institute of Science in Israel. Very recently, Ofer and Derry have founded a new software venture which they hope will profoundly change consumers' Internet experience.

What They Say About Us

"The wonderful thing about entrepreneurs is that their passion for starting new companies transcends languages and geographic boundaries."

Ron Conway, Founder and Managing Partner of the Angel Investors LP funds, early stage investor in Google and PayPal

"Networking is very important for start-ups. The challenge for them is often not money: it is mentoring and finding people who can give good advice from experience."

Esther Dyson, Founder, EDventure Holdings

"This conference is clearly a labor of love for a group of dedicated professionals who care deeply about the Eastern European entrepreneurs. From the value-packed educational panels, to the star-studded key note speakers' line up, to an amazing quantity of venture capitalists – this is a not to be missed event for any high tech entrepreneur,"

Richard Guha, President of the Marketing Executives Network and Managing Partner at MaxBrandEquity

"As Stanford MBA students, we were exposed to a lot of VC firms both from the Valley and abroad. It is at Stanford that we met Anna Dvornikova, an absolutely amazing business leader and (by our big luck) our friend, who was the center of the Russian Silicon Valley professional community, and was doing a huge work to connect Russia and the Valley. Anna helped us a lot with kick-starting Wikimart, put us to our first-ever conference, introduced us to most of Russian VCs. And all that happened in a very short time span! It was the beginning of a six-month journey that despite the particularly tough times resulted in an extraordinarily group of investors backing our start-up."

Maxim Faldin and Kamil Kurmakayev,
co-CEOs, Wikimart