MEET THE MENTORS
Marcus is a startup founder with a recent exit. He has also been a startup advisor & mentor, including for 500 Startups’ programs such as the 500 Mexico Accelerator and an EIR for the Misk 500 Accelerator. Marcus’s areas of strength include Strategic Business Development, Operations Management, Startup Management, SaaS, Sales Development, Fundraising, B2B Sales, Customer Success, Account Management, and Building Ecosystems, and more. He is cross-functional and experienced with team leadership.
Rebecca is an entrepreneur and healthcare changer. Previously she founded CakeHealth.com (acquired in 2015) and was a TechCrunch DISRUPT finalist. She is recognized as one of 70 Digital Leaders by the United Nations, and has also been an advisor to the White House health data standards movement for patient access. Rebecca also lead the 500 Startups Healthcare track in San Francisco.
Ajay has participated as an EIR at the 500Kobe Accelerator program for three consecutive years. In his role as EIR, Ajay helped tens of international founders get off the ground and assist them with their first mobile products. Prior to his work with 500 Startups, Ajay was a first employee of Sonar, where he developed an app that finds hidden connections with users nearby and which contributed to Rails development.
Bedy is a Managing Partner at 500 Startups. In her role, Bedy is responsible for Brazil and LATAM investments, micro funds and accelerator. Prior to joining 500 Startups, Bedy founded Brazil Innovators, an organization that nurtures entrepreneurship and innovation through the connection to Silicon Valley. Additionally, Bedy had a social business on income generation and fair trade working in Brazil and China.
Aaron is a Venture Partner at 500 Startups. Prior to joining 500 Startups, Aaron co-founded four different companies and has been a member of three founding teams, including one notable exit. At different points in his career, Aaron held the #1 SEO ranking for "car insurance" in Google, Yahoo! and Bing for 18 months, and he held the #1 position for casino games in iTunes App Store for 12 days.
Marvin runs 500 Startups’ San Francisco Seed program, as well as investing in Seed stage startups. Marvin has invested in Digital Media, Enterprise SAAS, Marketing Mobile, AdTech / MarketingTech, Digital Health, Internet of Things and FinTech startups. Previously, Marvin worked at Yahoo for over a decade, where he held roles in various departments of Sales, Business Development, Ad Operations and Marketing. Most of his roles were regional or global management roles, giving him extensive experience across Asia, Europe, LATAM and the US.
Tanya focused on Seed stage investment opportunities in the consumer space, with an emphasis on Beauty and Fashion. Tanya leads the Beauty and Fashion specialty track in 500 Startups’ Accelerator, and spends the rest of her time scouting companies all over the world. Previously, Tanya worked in AdTech before moving to Silicon Valley.
Zafer formerly led the Innovation team at 500 Startups. In this role, Zafer launched 500 Startups' Ecosystem Development Programs in Japan, which later scaled to LATAM. Zafer also led 500 Startups' Corporate Startup Innovation (CSI) Programs around the world which aimed at getting corporates and startups to innovate together. Previously, Zafer Co-Founded The Online Project, where his team developed and executed digital strategies for Fortune 500 companies and high profile organizations.
Pedro was previously an engineer who received his Ph.D. from U.C. Berkeley. His research and publications have won awards both in Europe and in the US. Pedro’s first venture was backed by NEA and DFJ and created tools to help companies sell, and consumers buy, safer and healthier products. These tools are used today by millions of users around the world, and by a diverse set of companies ranging from small companies to large Fortune 500, including the major US retailers. After that, Pedro started WiserGo to change the way people plan and book their trips, additionally he created West to West and the Discoveries Syndicate to help other entrepreneurs succeed in Silicon Valley. Pedro has experience as both an operator and investor, and with all different stages of a venture from- idea to growth, through fundraising, product development, engineering management and BD. Pedro has strong domain expertise in the Green and Digital Health spaces, but more generically strong analytical skills, data, science and technology expertise. He has invested and advised both EU and US startups including TalkDesk (500S), HypeLabs (AngelPad), Prodsmart (500S), Utrust (500S), Agroop (Top Seedrs) and ClimateEarth (UB Berkeley).
Rob specializes in B2B seed investments and leads the 500 Startups-General Motors Partnership. Previously was an executive for startups, having founded or worked at eight companies with four exits and four companies still operating. He was previously the CEO for two venture funded startups.
Ana Paula Gonzalez
Ana Paula González is an Innovation & Partnerships Director at 500 Startups. At 500 Startups, Ana leads the development and implementation of innovation and ecosystem development programs with partners around the world. Through the accelerator programs she leads, she also sources investment opportunities for the 500 Startups family of funds. Previously, Ana launched the 500 Startups Miami with the goal of supporting Miami to become a global hub for tech and innovation. Previous to 500 Startups, Ana spent 4 years at New Ventures, developing the impact investing field in Latin America, by leading investment and acceleration programs for for-profit social and environmental companies throughout the region. Ana started her career at The Boston Consulting Group, where she worked with clients in Private Equity, financial services and non-profit sectors. Ana holds an MBA from Columbia Business School with honors and a Bachelor in International Business from Tec de Monterrey with honors.
Clayton is an entrepreneur, product enthusiast and dealmaker, with over 10 years experience working in Tech. Clayton was previously a partner at Dorm Room Fund, and worked on Growth and Corporate Development at Airtime.
For the past 11 years, Justyna has focused on helping businesses launch their products, build and execute conversion optimization programs using emotional targeting and persuasive design to generate more revenues, leads, engagements and sales. She optimizes websites, creates better user journeys and online experiences that focus on the customer’s intent and needs to drive higher ROI. Justyna is certified in Landing Page Optimisation, Email Marketing and in the Fundamentals of Online Testing by MarketingSherpa, as well as Jeff Walker Product Launch Formula. Justyna is also a certified nutrition specialist.
Sam helps growth-stage B2B companies break into, reframe and dominate markets, apply creativity tomid-funnel selling activities that double conversion rates (first meetings, demos, proposals), and craft compelling stories to support critical activities like fundraising, partnerships, or keynotes.
Tash is the founder of Diversa.work, a company building AI-based technology aimed at increasing diversity of hires (especially women and people of color) within global tech startups. She is also the Co-President of mBolden (formerly Women in Wireless), supporting 10K+ members in raising their Voice & Visibility in the Mobile and Digital industries.Tash is also an Entrepreneur In Residence with 500 Startups, supporting founders and their organizations in the MENA Region (Saudi Arabia). Advising in the following areas: Diversity and Inclusion hiring, business development strategy and relationship selling, digital and social media strategy, and multimedia (video and podcast) marketing.As Seen In Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post and TEDx
* We are still adding speakers from the 500 Team! Speaker list is subject to change.