In our June meetup we will discuss innovation as it relates to fashion and shopping online: how disruptive business models, competitive advantages and innovative promotional techniques make one company a category leader. Schedule: 6-6:30pm - Networking, reception, cash bar 6:30-7:30pm - Speakers panel 7:30pm and later - Networking
1. Michael J. Smith, President and CEO, AVELLE (the new Bag Borrow or Steal)
Michael has served as president or CEO at four consumer Internet sites, with a proven track record in online retail and direct marketing that spans 20 years. Previously he served as president and CEO of Classmates.com, a leader in online social networking and the fourth largest paid content site on the Internet. While president of Nordstrom.com, he orchestrated a turnaround that resulted in its first quarterly profit. In 1999 he founded LifeSketch.com, the first scrapbooking site. As president and CEO of Lands' End Inc., he launched LandsEnd.com and executed a company turnaround that led to record sales and profits. Michael holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
2. Alexis Maybank, Founder Gilt Groupe
Alexis has dedicated her career to building and launching innovative and compelling online ecommerce experiences for consumers. In 2007, Alexis founded and served as the founding CEO of Gilt Groupe, which provides access, by invitation only, to Men’s and Women’s coveted fashion brands at prices up to 70% off retail. Gilt Groupe is now the leading provider of online flash sales with over 1 million members nationwide shopping at over 30 sales weekly. Gilt Groupe has received numerous industry citations, from Forbes and InStyle Magazine to ABC-TV’s The View and the Wall Street Journal. Alexis Maybank most recently served as General Manager for AOL's ecommerce businesses. Prior to that Alexis joined eBay in 1998 as an early member of the team, first working for the co-founder in the launch of the company's first strategic planning group. Later, she launched and ran eBay Canada, which at the time grew to become Canada's largest ecommerce business. She later helped found eBay Motors, which grew to over $2.5B in gross sales and continues to be the largest category of goods sold on eBay today. She holds a B.A. and M.B.A. from Harvard University.
3. Adam Dell is the Managing General Partner of Impact Venture Partners
, a venture capital firm focused on information technology investments. Prior to founding Impact, Mr. Dell was a partner with Crosspoint Venture Partners in Northern California and a senior associate with Enterprise Partners in Southern California. Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, Mr. Dell worked as a corporate attorney in Austin, Texas, with the law firm of Winstead, Sechrest & Minick. He received a B.A. in political economy from Tulane University and a law degree from the University of Texas School of Law. Mr. Dell's investments include: Buzzsaw (ADSK), Hotjobs (YHOO) and Connectify (KANA). Mr. Dell founded and served as chairman of the board of MessageOne, which was acquired by Dell, Inc. in 2008. He currently serves on the board of directors of XO Communications, BagBorrowOrSteal and Open Table and is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Santa Fe Institute. Mr. Dell teaches a course at the Columbia Business School on business, technology, and innovation and is a visiting professor at the University of Texas School of Law where he teaches a class on the role of law in innovation. 4. Susan Engel, CEO, Portero
After graduating from Cornell University, Susan Engel began her career at the JCPenney Company spending time in both Corporate Human Resources and Marketing. She began a 14 year consulting career at Booz, Allen and Hamilton after receiving her MBA from the Harvard Business School. During her time at the firm, Susan focused on the retail and consumer goods industries, working on strategy, organizational and operational issues. She left BAH to join the Sara Lee Company as the CEO of its athletic apparel division, Champion Products. She left Champion and became President in 1994 and subsequently CEO of Department 56 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, at the time the most successful marketer of Christmas collectibles, trim and gifts. She retired in January 2007. In her time in Minneapolis she served on the Boards of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Planned Parenthood and the Guthrie Theater where she also served as President and Chair of the Board. She currently sits on the boards of Wells Fargo and SuperValu as well as on a number of private company boards. Moderator:Yuli Ziv, My "It" Things/ Style Coalition