7 Ways Ignitia is working with you to create a safe working environment in a post Covid-19 world

1. Increased Cleanings- We have doubled the amount of cleaning in our space, eliminated high contact touch points, provided cleaning and hand sanitizers at entrances as well as key locations around our space to keep you safe, healthy and clean.

2. Direct Access, No Elevators- We are a ground floor retail establishment. You never need to walk through a large public space or go upstairs or an elevator to get access to your office.

3. Private offices allow social distancing- Each office is designed to be a small private space with full glass enclosures. Teams can take multiple offices to allow social distancing but not lose the value of being onsite.

4. One way hallways- As we re-open our space our hallways are now one-way directional loops as well as split in half so that you don’t risk bumping into someone and can maintain social distancing.

5. Low population density- Our offices are larger than most coworking spaces per desk and desks can be removed. This allows for a lower population density throughout our space.

6. Isolated HVAC Systems- Our airflow system is set up to be separated into 3 parts. The air is pulled in from the rooftop of the building and is piped individually into each office. The split of different zones keeps air circulating within the space without having to share the air with the entire space.

7. We are working with you- We are all in this together, we will work with you and your team to make special accommodations to make sure you are comfortable and safe.

How to start a business

5 Things To Consider When You Start Your Business

How to start a business

When you set out to build your business you are looking to build a team of people that all have the same vision or end goal. However, you need diverse skill sets.

Most companies are comprised of some or all of the following

  1. CoFounders
  2. Investors
  3. Board Members
  4. Executive Leadership Team
  5. Auxiliary teams

The importance of each part of your team

1. CoFounders

If you choose to start your business with a partner this will likely be the most important and lasting choice you make for your company.

What to look for- The most important trait in a cofounder is integrity. Without integrity, nothing else matters. You need to be working with someone that you can trust.

To quote Warren Buffett "you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you"

Beyond integrity look for someone who you enjoy being around, is smart, has skills that are highly complementary to your weakness and believes in you and the bigger picture.

Keep in mind you don't need a Cofounder or business partner but most of the time the right person is incredibly helpful to have as a partner.

What to avoid- The most obvious things are poor ethics or character. However, you probably don't want a cofounder who has the exact same skill set as you do. If you are amazing at coding and programming you don't need another coder as a cofounder. You might be better off with a sales/marketing expert.

Think about Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. Jobs was master of sales and Wozniak was an amazing builder of computers

2. Investors

Not every company needs investors, but if your company does here are some basic tips.

What to look for- You want an investor group that shares your vision, believes in you and has experience investing in your type of business. Ideally, someone who is a "value add" investor that has connections in your industry that can help you with anything from hiring, to raising capital to important introductions.

Professional investors typically have investment classes that they like to invest in. Each class of investment has different pros, cons and expectations.

Examples: A professional early-stage venture capital investor expects that over 50% of her investments will fail and lose 100% of their value. They make a positive ROI on investing because 10% of their investments will yield extraordinary results of 10-1000x.

Thus, a VC investor is much more likely to be ok with taking high risks.

Inversely, a professional real estate investor typically has a much lower risk tolerance but typically can expect to make money on each deal.

Why this is important- A professional investor who invests in your type of business will typically understand your needs and be far more comfortable with the ups and downs of your business. They may be able to help you with specific problems like contractors for real estate or hiring for VC. You will have many challenges along the way building your company. In an ideal world you want to avoid unnecessary challenges associated with an investor who is not familiar with your style of investment.

However, if someone is open to investing but somewhat new to your class this isn't necessarily fatal. The key is to give them a clear understanding of the risks and not give away too much power.

What to avoid- You want to avoid people who do not share your vision and people who have unrealistic expectations. You want to avoid giving up too much control, equity or power to people who don't have your business's best interests in mind. If you feel like an investor is grinding you down during the investment process, that is not likely to change once they are actually an investor. Remember this is a long term relationship not a one night stand. Choose accordingly.

3. Board Members

Your board will be a group of people who will functionally control your company. Not all businesses have board members or a board of directors. This is typically reserved for businesses that have investors

What to look for- Very similar to investors, look for many of the same things.

Composition of a board- There is no perfect way to build your board of directors, however there are certainly some "wrong" ways to build them. Try to keep your board to a reasonable number of people who are actively engaged in each meeting. Having too many people on your board can make decision making challenging. Typically a board will have an odd number of people for voting purposes, consist of investors, executive staff, and a potential outside party.

What to avoid- Avoid board members who don't come prepared to meetings with valuable insight. Remember, even though the board is a form of a corporate governance, their job is to help your company be successful.

Investor and Board Relationships- Often times each class of investors will want at least one board seat. So your seed round, series A, Series B etc. each will likely want a place at the table to help the company grow and control their interests.

4. Executive leadership team

Your executive leadership team will directly relate to the size of your company. As your company grows you will look to add pieces to your executive team.

When a company first starts out a few people wear many hats. However, as your company grows you will hire more specific people. Additionally, as your company grows, you as the CEO should be more focused on managing your executive team and less focus on performing tasks.

When you look to add someone new to the executive team, typically look for what role can have the most positive impact on the overall business and also look at where the company might have a potential weakness.

Make sure each new person brings a divergent viewpoint and has a skillset that enhances the company while sharing the overall vision for the greater picture.

Let people grow- As a side note make sure that the people in your organization have room to grow if they want to do so and are proving the right value for your team. Don't be overly romantic and put someone in a position that they cannot handle, however you don't always need to hire someone outside of the company.

5. Auxiliary Services

Legal, accounting, design, etc.

Get good work and don't get robbed.

Potentially easier said than done. Your legal team will be incredibly important. You will need to find a balance of a highly competent lawyer or lawyers to look over your documents but someone that isn't going to charge you an unreasonable amount of money as a startup.

What to look for- A good lawyer should give you legal advice and some general good business advice as well. They should know best practices for your venture. Bonus points if they can make introductions to valuable people like investors.

The same holds true for the accountants graphic designers etc.

Remember that you are in charge, you run the company and trust your gut instincts to find people that are helping you achieve your goals. At the end of the day you are employing the services and they work for you.

In an ideal world pick people that you have either gotten as references or that have a great reputation.

How Dr. Dre Built a Multi-Billion Dollar Music Empire

Dr. Dre is one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the music industry. His hustle, work ethic, and skill have taken him from the streets of Compton to a multi-billion dollar exit to Apple. His unyielding drive is what separates him from his contemporaries and makes him one of the best professionals the industry has ever known.

Humble Beginnings

Dre grew up in a rough household with an abusive father. After dropping out of high school, Andre Romelle 'Dr. Dre' Young started his career in the early 80’s DJ-ing at a local Compton nightclub called, Eve After Dark.

From a young age, Dre was crafting his skills in business and sales. After recording one song called ‘Surgery’, Dre managed to sell 50,000 copies of it on his own in and around the Compton area. Soon, Dre found himself hosting his own radio show on the local radio station, KDAY.

The Rise of N.W.A.

In 1986, Dre met fellow rapper Oshea ‘Ice Cube’ Jackson who introduced him to the record label Ruthless Records which was run by rapper, Eric ‘Eazy E’ Wright. Together the three formed the group N.W.A. and two years later, in 1988, released their debut album, Straight Outta Compton. The new harder, grittier form of gangster rap redefined the direction hip-hop would take and the album went triple platinum, selling over 3 million copies. What separated Dre from many others in the industry was an unyielding work ethic.  In 1991, at the behest of his bodyguard Suge Knight, Dre left N.W.A to form his own label with Knight called, Death Row Records.

The Formation of Death Row Records

As a businessman, Dre has was capable of spotting great talent and crafting relationships as well as opportunities. Dre’s first solo album on the label was called The Chronic and featured a young and unknown artist, Calvin ‘Snoop Dogg’ Broadus, as well as Dre’s younger stepbrother, Warren ‘Warren G’ Griffin. The Chronic went multi-platinum and to date has sold over 7.5 million copies. Along with working on his own album, Dre was busy producing for these young artists as well. In 1993, Death Row Records released Snoop's debut album, Doggystyle, which went RIAA certified quadruple platinum and sold more than 4 million copies. Two years later the label signed another young rapper they planned to position as the next big thing, Tupac Shakur.

Pivot Perseverance & Partnership

When Dre was down he never stayed that way for long. In 1995, amid growing concerns that Knight was no longer dealing honestly, Dre left Death Row Records. One of Dre's best skills was knowing when to cut ties in a professional relationship that was no longer profitable.

After cutting ties with Death Row Records, Dre decided to form his own label Aftermath Entertainment, and partnered with legendary producer Jimmy IovineThis was the start of a symbiotic business relationship that would eventually create a multi-billion dollar empire.

But, success didn't come easy, or without perseverance.

In the early days of Aftermath, Dre faced financial difficulties as well as a trademark infringement lawsuit against him. Additionally, after several records that fell short of expectations, critics began to ask if Dre was still relevant. Despite all the negativity surrounding him, Dre pressed on and soon had the insight to sign an unknown young rapper out of Detroit named, Eminem.

Going Platinum Again

Dre produced three songs on Eminem’s debut album The Slim Shady LP, which went quadruple platinum. In 1999, Dre continued to prove he was back when he released his second solo album 2001, which went six times platinum. He also won Producer of the Year at the Grammy Awards that year for it. In May or 2000, Dre released Eminem’s follow-up album, The Marshall Mathers LP, which went certified 10 times platinum.

Over the next few years, Dre would continue to release hit-after-hit including artist 50 Cent’s first two albums Get Rich or Die Trying and The Massacre, which would combine to go eleven times platinum. But by 2011, Dre announced he would be taking a leave from music to focus on his other ventures full-time. Just before doing so however, he decided to finish producing an album for one last up-and-coming young superstar, Kendrick Lamar.

Music Film & More

Along with his music career, Dre easily made the transition from music into film producing and worked on several successful projects including the Academy Award nominated N.W.A biopic, Straight Outta Compton.

Along with recording, producing, and securing endorsement deals with Coors Lights and Dr. Pepper, Dre was also heavily involved in other business ventures as well. In 2001, he reportedly sold a 30% stake in his Aftermath label to parent company Interscope Records for $35 million. This sale, combined with another $17 million from his production work, placed Dr. Dre at #2 on Rolling Stones Magazine’s list of highest paid musical artists that year.

The Birth of Beats By Dre

In 2006, while Dre and Iovine were discussing what they saw as the two biggest problems in the music industry at the time - piracy and the audio quality of Apple’s earbuds - Iovine recalls Dre remarking, ‘"Man, it's one thing that people steal my music. It's another thing to destroy the feeling of what I've worked on."

Despite harsh criticism, and the prevailing belief that very few customers would pay $200 for a pair of headphones, the two pressed on and soon developed their first set of studio quality headphones, Beats by Dre Studio.

According to Iovine, "When you believe in something, the last thing you say to yourself is, 'Well, no one's doing this, so there must be no good reason to do it."'

Utilizing the pool of celebrity talent available to them, the team sent samples to celebrity friends and asked them to wear them to help with advertising. One of the smartest such moves was when Dre sent 15 pairs to Lebron James in 2008. When the US Men's Basketball teams arrived in Beijing for the '08 Olympics, all 15 members of the team wore the Beats headphones.

Growth To Exit

By 2011, Beats had already provided laptop speakers to HP and surround sound audio for Chrysler. In August, Beats accepted a $309 million offer from HTC for a 50.1% ownership stake of the company. The marriage was short-lived however. According to a statement by Beats COO Luke Wood,  “I think that they really wanted to focus on core phones and I think their ambition is to try to build other channels of support with their accessories.”  A little over 2 years later, after already having bought back $150 million in shares from the struggling HTC, Beats bought back the remaining 24.84% in shares owned by HTC, for $265 million.

On the same day the buyback was announced, a concurrent announcement was also made that Beats would sell a minority share of ownership to the Carlyle Group for $500 million. The deal placed the value of Beats over $1 billion.

Then, one year later, on May 28, 2014, it was announced that Apple would buy Beats Electronics for $3 billion. The deal included the purchase of Beats Music's streaming service which was in direct competition with Apple iTunes. The deal consisted of $2.6 billion in cash and another $400 in Apple stock, and marked the largest single acquisition Apple had ever made. After taxes, Forbes estimated that Dre’s cut alone was $620 million, which was the largest single payday for any musician ever.

After all of his shrewd business dealings, today Dre’s net worth sits at an estimated $740 million dollars. Not too bad for a guy who started out as a local DJ.



5 Must-Watch YouTube Videos for Business


With over 1.5 billion monthly users, YouTube is the seconds largest website in the world. Among those 5 billion videos uploaded are many indispensable lessons in business. Today, Ignitia highlights five of the videos every entrepreneur should watch.


Steve Jobs’ Stanford Commencement Speech
Runtime: 15 minutes, 4 seconds.
Video Description: In what has become one of the most landmark speeches in business leadership, in his address at the 2005 Stanford commencement luminary Steve Jobs lays out his advice on living our best lives. As illustrated in a previous Ignitia article, the speech comes in three parts - Mr. Jobs recounts his reasoning for dropping out of school, Mr Jobs recounts what it was like to be fired from Apple, and Mr. Jobs describes what it was like to face his diagnosis. This video is an absolute must-watch for everyone.


HBS: Developing the CEO Within You
Runtime: 9 minutes, 11 seconds.
Video Description: In this video posted by Harvard Business school, HBS professor Joseph L. Bower explains why in order to become an effective CEO it is necessary to work at companies which foster cultures of employee development. Professor Bower stresses the importance of being able to objectively evaluate the company's effectiveness, and offers approaches to improving these skills as well.


What Stops Successful People from Breaking Through to the Next Level?
Runtime: 5 minutes, 2 seconds.
Video Description: In this video famed business consultant Greg McKeown examines the question he has obsessed over for fifteen years - 'What is it that holds capable driven people from breaking through to the next level?' According to Mr. McKeown, the answer to this question - to his great surprise - is success. Over the rest of the video, Mr. McKeown examines ways to make sure we never fall into these traps.



Simon Sinek’s TED Talk
Runtime: 18 minutes, 35 seconds.
Video Description: Simon Sinek is one of the leading motivational speakers working in the field of business leadership today. It what has since become one of the most viewed TED Talks of all-time, Mr. Sinek explains his simple yet powerful model for what it takes to become an inspiring leader. According to Mr. Sinek, if we as leaders can get clear on our 'why', then many other answers will fall into place. The video is an absolute must-watch and was also highlighted in this previous Ignitia article.


Marc Andreessen on Being a Creative and Courageous Entrepreneur
Runtime: 55 minutes, 24 seconds.
Video Description: In this video recorded live on the campus of Stanford, legendary VC Marc Andreessen sits for a nearly hour-long interview. During the interview, Mr. Andreessen explains the types of ideas his VC firm looks for, and explains how "Big breakthrough ideas often seem nuts the first time you see them."



How Jeff Bezos Built An Empire


Jeff Bezos is the current wealthiest person alive. As of this writing, his net worth sits at more than $151.3 billion. So today, Ignitia takes a closer look at how he built his fortune.

Humble Beginnings

Jeff Bezos was born on January 12, 1964 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. His mother was a seventeen-year-old high school student, and his father was a bike shop owner. When Bezos was four years old his mother married a Cuban immigrant named, Miguel Bezos. The three moved to Houston, Texas where Jeff was officially adopted by his new father. Years later, the family moved to Miami, Florida where Jeff would attend high school.

A Glimmer of Brilliance

In high school, Jeff worked at McDonald’s. He graduated as his high school’s valedictorian, and was a National Merit Scholar. After high school Jeff attended Princeton University. While there, Bezos was admitted into the nation’s oldest academic honor society, Phi Betta Kappa and was also admitted to the nation’s oldest engineering honors society, Tau Beta Pi. While at Princeton, Jeff also became president of the university’s Students for the Exploration and Development of Space chapter. Bezos graduated with a GPA of 4.2, and double majored in electrical engineering and computer science.

Entering the Work Force

After graduation, although he was offered positions at Intel, Bell Labs, and Andersen Consulting, Bezos decided to accept a position at a small financial telecom startup called, Fintel. There he was tasked with building the company’s international trading computer infrastructure. From there, he took several other jobs in the banking and IT sectors before landing a job at the hedge fund D.E. Shaw and Co. where he served as a senior vice president.

A Risk Worth Taking

In 1993 on a cross country trip from Seattle to New York City, Bezos developed the idea for Amazon. Bezos believed the rapidly expanding internet would one day make bookstores like Borders and Barnes and Nobles obsolete. While the initial idea for the company was to sell books, even from the beginning Bezos intended to sell other items as well. With all this in mind, Bezos was still unsure whether or not he should take the risk of leaving his good job to pursue his own idea. So to make the decision he applied what he called his 'Regret Minimization Framework'. In doing so, he asked himself one simple question: ‘In X years, will I regret not doing this?’ What Jeff decided was that he would regret attempting to start this company. So, with a reported $300,000 loan from his parents and several other investors, Bezos left D.E. Shaw and started Amazon out of his garage.

The Birth of an Empire

At the time, Bezos told investors there was a 70% chance the company would fail. But he remained undeterred. Bezos settled on the name Amazon because it was ‘exotic and different’ two traits he hoped the site would embrace. He also chose the name because it started with the letter ‘A’ which Bezos believed meant it would often appear higher up in alphabetical searches. Initially, Bezos decided to sell books because they had a low price point, there was an international market for literature, and a huge inventory already existed on hand. So on July 5, 1994 the company launched. It was an immediate success. Within two months of launching, Amazon sales generated more than $20,000 per week. Two years later in 1996, the company grew in revenue from $511,000 to $15.75 million. Then the next year, on May 15, 1997 the company offered an IPO at $18 a share. The IPO raised $54 million and gave the company a $438 million market value. The stock closed that first day at $23.50.

'Get Big Fast'

Bezos had a philosophy that in order to keep up in the internet age, a company needed to ‘Get Big Fast’. He even had t-shirts made with this slogan printed on them. In 1996 the company had 180,000 customers. By 1997 that number had grown to one million. In 1997, company revenue was $148 million, and in 1998 it had reached $610 million. The next year in 1999, in recognition for his foresight in the growth potential of e-commerce, Time magazine named Jeff Bezos their 'Person of the Year'. Finally, in the forth quarter of 2001, the company turned a profit, earning $5 million ($0.01 per share) on $1 billion of revenue.

Beyond Just Books

In 2002, Amazon launched its Amazon Web Services (AWS). This service initially offered internet analytics for web developers, but by 2006 would expand into the cloud computing space which allowed users to rent out both processing power and data storage space over the internet. This move popularized the notion that individuals no longer needed to own large, expensive hardware units and could instead rent as much of Amazon’s high powered processor speeds and storage capacities as needed.

Expanding Even Further

Since its launch, Amazon has disrupted numerous industries. From publishing to retail, delivery to print, and even news, movies, music, and food Amazon has proven successful in almost any venture it undertakes. In his aim of becoming an ‘everything store’, Jeff Bezos has grown Amazon to become not only the largest internet retailer in the world in terms of revenue and market cap, but has also become the second largest in the world in total sales behind only, Alibaba. In 2015, Amazon surpassed Wal-Mart as the most valuable retailer in the United States by market cap and is currently the forth most valuable public company in the world behind only Apple, Google, and Microsoft. Amazon has also grown to become the second largest employer in the United States behind Wal-Mart.

As of this writing, the stock value has risen over 1,000-fold from the $18 IPO price, and is currently trading at over $1,863 per share, giving the company a market cap of over $890 billion. Jeff Bezos currently serves as the company’s president, chairman, and CEO, and today owns a personal net worth of more than $143.1 billion making him the wealthiest person alive.

DocuSign's $4.4 Billion Valuation

Since going public last week, DocuSign has already seen a 58% increase in its share price, trading at a high of $46 per share. Today, Ignitia takes a closer look at the IPO, and how DocuSign managed to garner a $4.4 billion valuation.

DocuSign's $4.4 Billion Valuation

Last Thursday before it’s IPO, DocuSign shocked observers when it set its IPO price at $29 per share. This was higher than the adjusted projection of between $26 and $28 per share, which had already been adjusted up from the initially proposed price range of between $24 to $26. With 152.1 million outstanding shares, the $29 per share pricing gave the company a valuation of $4.4 billion. This too was up from a 2015 private-market valuation of $3 billion as reported by The Wall Street Journal.

A Company on the Rise

According to the SEC filing, DocuSign saw revenues of $518.5 million last year, up from $381.5 million the year prior, and $250.5 million the year before that. Also according to the SEC filing, losses for the company last year dropped for the third year in a row to $52.3 million, down from $115.4 million, and $122.6 million the two previous years.

A History of Investor Confidence

Since its founding in 2003, DocuSign has raised over $500 million in funding after an anomalous twenty-seven rounds. The largest publicly disclosed round was a $233 million Series-F led by Bain Capital Ventures and Brookside Capital. And the customer base is quite robust. According to the filing more than 370,000 customers use the e-signature company’s paid services.

Many Top-Tier Clients

Since it's inception, DocuSign has become the preferred platform for e-signature functionality. The cloud-based system allows approvals and transactions to be conducted in a matter of moments, opposed to traditional models of faxing or pen-and-paper which can take much longer.

According to their website, DocuSign is already used by 7 of the 10 largest tech companies on earth, 18 of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies, and 10 of the top 15 global finance service companies. And with investor confidence on the rise, these numbers look to only be increasing.


DocuSign is traded on the NASDAQ under ticker symbol, DOCU. Morgan Stanley and J.P. Morgan were lead underwriters on the offering.


16 Great Quotes From Warren Buffet


Warren Buffet is one of the most successful businesspeople of all-time. And he also has quite a knack for making timeless quotes. Today, Ignitia takes a look at 16 of the greatest quotes from, 'The Oracle of Omaha'.

1. "I will tell you how to become rich. Close the doors… Be fearful when others are greedy. Be greedy when others are fearful."

2. "Opportunities come infrequently. When it rains gold, put out the bucket, not the thimble."

3. "Our favorite holding period is forever."

4. "I don't look to jump over seven-foot bars; I look around for one-foot bars that I can step over."

5. "Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago."

6. "It's better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you'll drift in that direction."

7. "It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it."

8. "The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything."

9. "Whether we're talking about socks or stocks, I like buying quality merchandise when it is marked down."

10. "Should you find yourself in a chronically leaking boat, energy devoted to changing vessels is likely to be a more productive than energy devoted to patching leaks."

11. "If you aren't willing to own a stock for ten years, don't even think about owning it for ten minutes.”

12. "You only have to do a very few things right in your life so long as you don't do too many things wrong."

13. "Price is what you pay; value is what you get."

14. "Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken."

15. "It is not necessary to do extraordinary things to get extraordinary results."

16. "The key to investing is… determining the competitive advantage of any given company and, above all, the durability of that advantage."

Bonus: "Rule No.1 Is never lose money. Rule No.2 Is never forget Rule No. 1." 


The First Annual Ignitia Open- $10,000 Cash Prize Pitch Event

Ignitia Office is proud to announce our first annual Ignitia Open! June 20th 2018


What is the Ignitia Open?

The Ignitia Open is a winner-take-all pitch competition open to startups based in New York City.  Hosted by Ignitia Office, a premium coworking space located at 1002 Dean Street in Brooklyn, the winning company will receive $10,000 in cash as well as $10,000 in office rental credit to be used at Ignitia Office for a total prize of $20,000. There is no second place prize.

Each of the companies that reach the final round will receive $2,000 in credit for office space at Ignitia Office

*The event will be judged by investors who manage billions of dollars in capital*


Sponsored By Thompson Hine 


Who Qualifies for The Ignitia Open?

Any startup whose primary office is located in New York City. Additionally, in order to qualify your startup must not be a subsidiary of a larger company, must have raised less than $5 Million in funding and must have less than $250,000 in Monthly Revenue.


How to Apply?

Submit the application form in the link below.


***Click Here To Apply***


What is the timeline for the event?


*Deadline for Application Submissions May 25, 2018*

  • May 1 2018 through May 25 2018- Open Registration 
  • May 25-26- Announcement Semi-finalists Announced
  • May 28 through June 8th- In-Person Semi-Finals
  • June 11- Announcement of Finalist Companies
  • June 20, 2018- Main Event 


Does Ignitia Office take a percentage of our company if we win?

No. The cash and the coworking space are gifted without any exchange of equity. It is yours to keep to help grow your business. We believe in helping the NYC startup community and are excited to do so.

Who will the Judges Be? 


Anthony Westreich- Founding Managing Partner , Monday Properties- Under Mr. Westreich’s leadership, Monday Properties has completed over 60 property transactions representing $13 billion in capital value and 28 million square feet, and has leased over 10 million square feet of office space. Mr. Westreich is an active investor and donator to multiple charities.

Peter Mobberley- Managing Director at Stamford-based SPM LLC Hedge Fund- SPM has over $1.5 Billion in assets under management. Peter is an expert in fundraising and throughout his career has raised over $600 million in capital for various funds  

Josh Bobrowsky- CoFounder & CEO of Ignitia Office: Ignitia Office has raised $5 million in Seed Round funding and was named "Top NYC Startups for of 2018" by Inc Magazine. Josh is a serial entrepreneur with over 15 years experience building and running companies.

Terry Rice- Founder of Brooklyn Digital Marketing- Terry is a digital marketing expert and SXSW Keynote speaker. Former employee of Facebook, he currently consults with Venture Capital firms to evaluate potential investments based on their Digital Marketing presence. He also mentors startups at Techstars and the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute.


Jeffrey Bergman- General Counsel and Executive Vice President of Expansion and Development, Westchester Management- Jeff raised capital for The Bergman Residential Real Estate Fund, LP (“BRREF”), a fund managed by Westchester Management, which launched in April of 2016. BRREF  has acquired nearly $100 million worth of assets, and Westchester Management now manages approximately $225 million in assets.

Kristina Fan- Co-founder and CEO of 7 Chord, a fintech start-up that empowers bond traders with predictive pricing and trading signals. BA in Economics from NYU, MSc in Finance from LSE. Markets Choice Awards: Women in Finance 2017. Barclays Accelerator, by #Techstars, Class of 2017.

Jason Cahill- Managing director of McCune Capital (Venture Capital Firm), Jason is an early stage investor specializing in supply chain, infrastructure, agtech and cleantech. Additionally, Jason is a US Army Special Forces combat veteran and a adjunct professor at Columbia University.



For any additional questions about the event please feel free to call or submit a form request.

AMEX: Won't Lose Knowledge to Retirement


In almost any company, the most important element is human capital. But what happens when older employees with a wealth of knowledge, and years of experience, decide to retire? Does all that know-how walk out the door with them? Not necessarily. Below is a great solution found by American Express.

The Coming Tsunami of Knowledge Loss

As the baby-boomer generation gets set to retire, many companies are facing the question of how they will replace this loss in workforce experience. According to one report, starting in 2017 more than 10,000 baby boomers will be leaving the workforce every day. So, how can this knowledge be replaced?

AMEX Finds A Solution

To combat this, American Express implemented a smart solution several years ago. In this solution, AMEX instituted a program that allows these more knowledgeable employees to give up a portion of their daily tasks in order to teach classes and mentor their successors.

A Win-Win Proposal

This program benefits both retiring employees and the company at-large in several ways. First, the program allows retiring employees the benefit of a lighter workload. For retiring employees, this lighter workload often allows them to remain with the company for an additional year or two longer than they had intended before retiring. This fact allows the retiring employee to earn more income, and contribute further to their retirement funds, rather than deducting from them.

For the company on the whole, the benefits of sharing this invaluable knowledge are immeasurable. The knowledge gained by employees working within the company for 10, 20, or even 30 years provides a base of knowledge that cannot be gained anyplace else. For those just entering the workforce, learning these benefits is also immeasurable. By learning what works, and almost as importantly, what does not, the day-to-day operations of the business can be made to run that much more smoothly. These situations extend from the boardroom, to the office floor, and even to relationships outside of the company.

A Happier, More Knowledgeable Workforce

Reportedly, American Express believes this program has been a tremendous success so far. By allowing retiring employees to more thoroughly enjoy their final working years while simultaneously training the next generation, American Express may have discovered a human-capital based solution for a modern-day problem. Perhaps this is one more reason American Express was named #23 on Fortune's 2017 Best Companies to Work For.


General Assembly: One Hot Coding Bootcamp


One of the hottest coding bootcamps in NYC right now is Flatiron-based, General Assembly. Now, with 20 campuses stretched over 4 continents, and a great new deal in place, General Assembly (GA) seems well-positioned to make an even greater impact on the coding community for years to come.

Why Bootcamps Are So Important

According to Glassdoor’s annual report of the 50 Best Jobs in America, 20 of this year’s top 50 jobs can be found in tech. This includes both the first and second top spots - data scientist and devops engineer, respectively.

Also, according to a report by Code.org, based on estimates from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, by the year 2020 there will be more than one million more tech jobs available than there will be qualified candidates to fill them. Knowing this, General Assembly hopes to helps fill this gap by providing best-in-class instruction and unparalleled career-placement opportunities for its students.

What Makes General Assembly Excellent

General Assembly’s stated mission is to empower a flourishing community of professionals pursuing careers they love. In order to do this, General Assembly provides world-class training in today's most in-demand fields. These fields include, tech, data, UX design, marketing, and business, among others. Classes are available on-campus or online, and may be completed at the pace of the student’s choosing, either full-time or part-time.

99% Graduate Career Placement

General Assembly has some of the highest career placement rates of any bootcamp. This is in large part due to GA's excellent Career Services program. According to GA's student outcome report – the only such bootcamp report verified by a Big Four accounting firm – a full 99% of full-time graduates who utilized this service find career placement within 180 days of graduating.

What Distinguishes General Assembly Further

One of the main reasons General Assembly's career placement rates are so high is because the bootcamp partners directly with over 10,000 employers who who communicate to General Assembly the exact skills they are looking for when they hire. These partners include Google, Microsoft, and IBM to name just a few. Finally, for those students in need an options for tuition assistance is available as well. With all this in mind, General Assembly makes it possible for almost anyone, at almost any stage of their career, to make a full and lucrative career transformation within a relatively short amount of time.

How It All Started

General Assembly was founded in 2011 by Jack Schwartz, Adam Pritzker, Matthew Brimer, and Brad Hargreaves. Initially, the company was developed as a co-working space, but soon evolved into the school it is today. In that same year, General Assembly opened its first location in the Flatiron District of New York City with a $200,000 grant from the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

Later that same year, according to Crunchbase, the company raised $4.5 million in Series-A funding led in part by, Jeff Bezos. Since then, the company has managed to raise 3 more rounds of funding, including a $70 million round of Series-D funding, led by investor, Advanced Publications. All told since its inception, General Assembly has raised more than $119.5 million, from five rounds of funding. Since its launch, General Assembly has also given back in substantial ways as well. At more than one location, the company has participated in programs designed to help the homeless learn skills aimed at making them more employable.

An Enormous Opportunity

According to various sources, on April 16, 2018, the staffing firm Adecco reached an agreement with General Assembly to purchase the company for a reported $412.5 million. According to the statement, Adecco claimed it made the decision to purchase General Assembly after seeing it had been, ‘experiencing 30% compounded annual revenue growth and that its profits were above the Adecco Group average.’

All indications seem to suggest Adecco recognizes a good thing when it sees it and plans to continue the tradition of excellence General Assembly has already established.

If approved, the deal is reportedly expected to close in the second quarter of 2018.