Startup Launch Pad Judging

Gamiel Gran (Sierra Ventures), Roger Ehrenberg (IA Ventures), Alistair Croll (Solve For Interesting)
Location: Westside Ballroom

Five startups will be selected to deliver their pitches to the Strata Summit audience, to be judged on Wednesday afternoon.

Photo of Gamiel Gran

Gamiel Gran

Sierra Ventures

Gamiel Gran joined Sierra Ventures in 2008 as Vice President of Business Development. Gamiel leads the Business Development Strategy for the Firm including the development of external advisory boards such as the Sierra Ventures CIO Advisory Board, Sierra Strategic Advisory program, partnerships with services providers such as Angel investors, recruiters, venture banking, and law firms, and the Entrepreneur-in-Residence program. Gamiel develops lead sources for the firm and is focused on the broader software sector – including cloud computing, open source, collaboration, and application enabling software.

Gamiel brings 25 years of operational experience to Sierra Ventures with executive roles in Business Development, Corporate Development, Sales Operations, and Channels and Alliances. Prior to joining Sierra in 2008, Gamiel was Vice President Global Channels & Business Development at Cassatt, Vice President Global Channel Sales at Edify, Vice President Strategic Alliances at BEA, and Vice President Business Development at Asera. He also spent four years at Oracle in Channel Sales and ten years at IBM in Business Development and Sales. Gamiel holds a BA in Economics/Social Science from the University of California at Berkeley.

Photo of Roger Ehrenberg

Roger Ehrenberg

IA Ventures

Roger Ehrenberg is the founder and Managing Partner of IA Ventures, a seed-stage venture capital firm investing in companies that create competitive advantage through data.

Roger currently sits on the boards of DataSift, Metamarkets, Recorded Future, Simple, The Trade Desk, and Twice, and is a Board observer of MemSQL and SavingStar. Formerly, he served on the boards of Buddy Media, Global Bay Mobile Technologies, Magnetic and Selerity.

Prior to forming IA Ventures, Roger was an active angel investor through IA Capital Partners, a seed-stage investment firm focused on digital media and financial technology. From 2004 to 2009, Roger seeded 40 companies, including Bitly, Buddy Media (acquired by Salesforce), Clickable (acquired by Syncapse), Invite Media (acquired by Google), Magnetic, TheLadders, TubeMogul, and TweetDeck (acquired by Twitter).

Earlier in his career, Roger served as President and CEO of DB Advisors, Deutsche Bank’s internal hedge fund trading platform. Before DB Advisors, Roger was Global Co-head of Deutsche Bank’s Strategic Equity Transactions Group. As an Investment Banker and Managing Director at Citibank, Roger held a variety of roles in the Global Derivatives, Capital Markets, Mergers & Acquisitions and Capital Structuring groups.

Roger holds an MBA in Finance, Accounting and Management from Columbia Business School and a BBA in Finance, Economics and Organizational Psychology from the University of Michigan.

Roger blogs at and tweets at @infoarbitrage.

Photo of Alistair Croll

Alistair Croll

Solve For Interesting

Alistair Croll is an entrepreneur with a background in web performance, analytics, cloud computing, and business strategy. In 2001, he co-founded Coradiant (acquired by BMC in 2011) and has since helped launch Rednod, CloudOps, Bitcurrent, Year One Labs, and several other early-stage companies. He works with startups on business acceleration, and advises a number of larger companies on innovation and technology. 

A sought-after public speaker on data-driven innovation and the impact of technology on society, Alistair has founded and run a variety of conferences, including Cloud Connect, Bitnorth, and the International Startup Festival. He’s the chair O’Reilly’s Strata + Hadoop World conference.  He has written several books on technology and business, including the best-selling Lean Analytics.

Alistair tries to mitigate chronic ADD by writing about far too many things at “Solve For Interesting”.


  • Aster Data
  • EMC Greenplum
  • GE
  • Lexis Nexis
  • MarkLogic
  • Tableau Software
  • Cloudera
  • DataStax
  • Informatica
  • DataSift
  • Splunk
  • 1010data
  • Amazon Web Services
  • Connotate
  • Media-Science
  • Microsoft SQL Server

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