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Thomas J. Strauss
Tom Strauss, founder of Strauss Capital Partners LLC, has over thirty years of investment banking and operational experience. Before establishing Strauss Capital in 2006, Mr. Strauss was a Managing Director of Rosetta Partners LLC, a New York private investment / merchant bank founded by several senior members of Lehman Brothers’ management team. From 1989 to 1995, Mr. Strauss was Co-Head of the Mergers and Acquisitions Group of Barclays de Zoete Wedd, Inc., the U.S. investment-banking arm of Barclays Bank PLC, and from 1983 to 1989, he was in the Investment Banking Division of Lehman Brothers. In those capacities, Mr. Strauss has been involved in identifying, structuring, and executing transactions, including financings, acquisitions and divestitures, whose aggregate value exceeded $4 billion. Immediately prior to establishing Strauss Capital, Mr. Strauss was for two years the Chief Financial and Corporate Development Officer of MaxMD, a global provider of .md domain names. Mr. Strauss also acted as Chairman of Abaris Books, Inc., a New York based publisher of art reference books.
Mr. Strauss is a graduate of the University of Rochester (Cum Laude) and received a Juris Doctor degree from American University Law School, where he served as Senior Editor of the Law Review.
Mike Bruynesteyn joined Strauss Capital in 2008 with over 20 years of Wall Street and industry experience. Previously, Mr. Bruynesteyn was a Managing Director at Lehman Brothers in its proprietary investment group. At Lehman, his focus was on transportation-related investments, including rental companies, suppliers, automakers, trucks and energy storage. His particular emphasis was on new technologies and vehicle electrification, and he oversaw a portfolio of Chinese automotive suppliers. For eight years prior to his buyside experience at Lehman, Mr. Bruynesteyn was the senior sellside research analyst for the automotive group at Prudential Securities. In this role, he received numerous awards for stock selection and research quality from publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Fortune Magazine and Institutional Investor. Before joining Wall Street, Mr. Bruynesteyn was for eight years with General Motors, in overseas and domestic assignments spanning pricing, sales, budgets, capital planning and investor relations. He started his career in 1986 as an engineer with the British Columbia Research Corporation.
Mr. Bruynesteyn graduated as a Mechanical Engineer from the University of British Columbia. He earned an MBA from the London Business School and also studied at the Ecole Des Hautes Etudes Commerciales outside of Paris. Mr. Bruynesteyn is an active member of the Society of Automotive Engineers.
Richard M. Cohen
Richard Cohen’s career as an investment banker has spanned over 25 years, during which time he has played major roles in both public and private companies. Mr. Cohen is a Founding Partner of Chord Advisors, a firm providing financial accounting and advisory services to public companies, pre-IPO companies and private equity firms. Mr. Cohen has extensive public board of director experience, including as chairman of the audit committee, with such companies as Rodman & Renshaw Capital Group and Dune Energy. He has served as the Chief Financial Officer of ABC Funding (OTCBB: AFDG) and as President of National Auto Credit, a publicly traded sub-prime auto finance company. From 1992 to 1995 Mr. Cohen was the President of General Media, then a $150 million international diversified publishing and communications company. At General Media, Mr. Cohen managed 300 employees; raised $200 million in public and private financings; and secured international licensing rights for the company. From 1984 through 1992, Mr. Cohen was an investment banker at Henry Ansbacher, Furman Selz, where he specialized in Mergers & Acquisitions, Public Equity Offerings, and Restructurings. From 1980 through 1983, Mr. Cohen was a Vice President of Corporate Development at Macmillan.
Mr. Cohen is a Certified Public Accountant (New York State). He received a BS from The University of Pennsylvania (Wharton) and an MBA from Stanford University.
Thomas H. Remien
Tom Remien began his career executing both growth capital and acquisition financing for middle market companies at Michigan National Bank and Bank of America. He subsequently joined Merrill Lynch & Co., where he was a founding member of its Exclusive Sale and Divestiture Group. During his six-years at Merrill Lynch, Mr. Remien was responsible for providing investment banking and corporate finance advisory services to corporate clients represented by over four thousand Merrill Lynch financial advisors. He also served, for five years, as a Managing Director of The Silverfern Group, a mid-market merchant bank. While at Silverfern he focused on mergers and acquisitions, and corporate finance. He has extensive expertise advising both public and privately held companies on acquisitions, divestitures and raising growth/acquisition capital.
Mr. Remien is the President of Northeast Acquisitions LLC, a private equity firm that purchases small manufacturing companies. He is Chairman of Shawndra, Inc., a $10 million revenue manufacturer of commercial/industrial air and gas filters and pressurized filter vessels; and Chairman of Lanco, a company that refurbishes and sells used metal finishing and waste treatment equipment. Mr. Remien is also a Board Member, and on the Investment Committee, of East Side Settlement House in the South Bronx, NY. He earned his Master of Business Administration degree in finance from Michigan State University and his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan.
Greg C. Walker
Greg Walker is a seasoned finance professional with over 20 years of capital markets experience. His career began in 1987 at Manufacturers Hanover Trust in their asset based lending area as a senior lender working with both public and private middle market and large-cap companies. Later, over a ten year period as a Senior Vice President at LaSalle Bank and then at Wells Fargo Capital (Foothill), Mr. Walker sourced and structured over $2 billion of senior debt facilities for US and Canadian based companies. In 2000, Mr. Walker joined Silver Point Capital, a Greenwich, CT based investment firm as Head of Principal Finance. There, he grew that department from inception to a $3 billion investment portfolio that included senior and mezzanine debt and both traditional as well as distressed equity, managing a team of over 30 professionals. Mr. Walker currently uses his network of both traditional and non-traditional lenders and investment groups in assisting his clients to successfully source low cost capital.
Greg is a graduate of Baruch College (’84) and lives in Long Island with his wife and two children.
T. Joseph Fisher, III
Senior Industry Advisor
Joe Fisher was with the Energizer battery group for over thirty years, serving in a wide range of key executive capacities including Vice President and General Manager – Global Rechargeables, Vice President – Business Development, Vice President and General Manager - Energizer Power Systems, General Manager – Miniature Batteries, Managing Director – Southern Europe, and President – Energizer Argentina, as well as several other global positions in Finance, Accounting and Strategy. He most recently was CEO and President of Contour Energy Systems, Inc., an advanced battery spinout from Caltech. Mr. Fisher is founder and President of JCF International, LLC, a management consulting company focused on batteries and strategic planning. He also worked for Xerox, General Electric and Union Carbide earlier in his career.
Mr. Fisher holds a BS in Industrial Management from the University of Cincinnati (Cum Laude) and an MBA (Summa Cum Laude) from the West Virginia College of Graduate Studies, now a part of Marshall University. He also attended an Executive Financial Management Program at the Wharton School of Business, of the University of Pennsylvania.
Senior Industry Advisor
Abbas Mohaddes, a seasoned business executive, was formerly the CEO and a Director of Iteris (NYSE: ITI), a company focused on services and products in Transportation and Agriculture markets. Mr. Mohaddes led the turnaround and transformation of Iteris into the software-based information technology organization that it is today through significant organic growth and acquisition strategy.
Mr. Mohaddes started his career at the City of Dallas as a traffic engineer in 1983. He has over 30 years of experience in application of technology in transportation and is an internationally recognized expert in intelligent transportation. He has published and presented numerous articles at industry organizations around the world.
Mr. Mohaddes is a member of the Forum for Corporate Directors; a founding member and past Chairman of the Board of ITS America, the largest technology-based trade organization in transportation, and current chair of the ITS America Leadership Circle. He is a member of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Executive Committee; member of the Advisory Council of the business school at Chapman University; member of the University of California Irvine Chief Executive Roundtable; and a board member of the National Operations Center of Excellence (NOCoE). Mr. Mohaddes holds a B.S. in civil engineering and a masters in transportation engineering from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He also holds an Executive Management certificate from UCLA Anderson School of management.