TVI & Boston Consulting Group: Prior to co-founding Benchmark in 1995, Bob spent 12 years as a General Partner with Technology Venture Investors. Before TVI, Bob worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) where he focused on issues of corporate strategy in industries ranging from retail distribution to high technology manufacturing.
Industry Associations: Bob is a past director of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), a past president of the Western Association of Venture Capitalists (WAVC) and chairman of the board of trustees of Kettering University.
Education: Before graduating with an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1980, Bob was a General Motors Fellow. He was a Sobey Scholar and received a BS in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering from General Motors Institute (renamed Kettering University) in 1978.
eBags: Since May 1999.
Lands' End: Dave started at Lands' End in early 1982 when Lands' End sales approached $40 million. By the time Dave left Lands' End, 19 years later, Lands' End revenues were nearly $1.5 billion. After beginning his Lands' End career in circulation, Dave moved into merchandising, forecasting and inventory control. Eventually, he became their General Merchandise Manager for the coed division. After his GMM role, Dave helped Lands' End's start their International, Corporate Sales and Internet divisions.
Gemplers and Duluth Trading: When Dave left Lands End, he joined Gemplers, helping sell part of the company to Lab Safety Supply, a division of W.W.Grainger. Dave stayed with a spinout of Gemplers, a two year old catalog startup named Duluth Trading, when the Gemplers transaction was complete. Dave remains with Gemplers today, serving as an Executive Vice President.
Education: After graduating from the University of Colorado with a degree in economics, Dave graduated from General Electric's Financial Management Training program. After GE, he earned an MBA from Stanford. But, most applicable to eBags are the experiences Dave gained over 19 years while starting new business divisions for Lands' End.
eBags: Since April 2003.
MARY BETH LEWIS
Noodles & Company: Mary Beth Lewis joined Noodles & Company's executive team as chief financial officer and executive vice president in October 2001. Lewis is responsible for financing Noodles & Company's growth, setting expansion strategy in collaboration with the executive team and directing the finance, accounting, information technology and purchasing departments. As of early 2004, Noodles has raised $27 million and grown to 90 restaurants.
Wild Oats Markets: Mary Beth was CFO for Wild Oats Markets from 1992 to 2001, when the company grew from eight stores in two states with $36 million in revenue to 109 stores in 22 states with $840 million in revenue. In addition to overseeing the accounting and finance departments, her accomplishments include managing a successful initial and secondary public offering, financing business growth through private equity placement and bank debt, and assisting the CEO and legal team in numerous acquisition transactions.
Price Waterhouse & Earlier: Prior to her experience at Wild Oats Markets, Mary Beth spent six years as a CPA within the Price Waterhouse audit practice. Her earliest professional experience includes five years as a restaurant manager with Red Bull Inns of America, which helped her to develop a thorough understanding of restaurant operations.
Education: Mary Beth earned her MBA from the University of Pittsburgh in 1986 and earned two bachelor's degrees in psychology and speech pathology/audiology in 1980 from West Virginia University.
eBags: Since May 2004.
Samsonite: Prior to eBags, Jon spent eleven years at Samsonite, the world's largest luggage company. He worked on projects in the United States, South America, Europe and Asia. During most of his time at Samsonite, Jon directed the research, design, development, marketing and lifecycles of products introduced into over 20 different distribution channels - from warehouse clubs to department stores to mass merchants and even military accounts.
Boards: Active in the Colorado's community, Jon sits on the advisory board for the Deming Center of Entrepreneurship at the University of Colorado. He is also a board member of the Colorado Software and Internet Association. And in 1999, with a law firm and the Denver Mayor's Office, he co-founded an annual event, Startup Basecamp. He continues to help organize this day-long educational summit which draws about 500 attendees each year.
Education: Jon graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Business School at the University of Colorado in Boulder, 1985.
eBags: Jon has been president & CEO of eBags since 1998. He has been chairman since 2002.
Smith Barney: In 1982, Jeff began his career at Foster Marshall-American Express (now Morgan Stanley Smith Barney). He became a member of the Smith Barney Portfolio Management Advisory Board, member of the Chairman's Council from 1990 to 1996, Senior Vice President of Investments and Senior Portfolio Management Director. In 1993, Jeff was awarded the Consulting Group Bob Dwyer Award, which honors the Portfolio Manager whose integrity, knowledge and commitment to the discipline of investment management exemplifies the highest standards. Money magazine named Jeff their All-Star Broker, two years in a row (1997/1998).
Auxier Asset Management LLC: In 1998 Jeff left Smith Barney to start his own investment advisory, which currently has over $300 million in assets under management. In 1999 Jeff founded the Auxier Focus Fund, which he continues to manage. As a steward of this fund, he remains today one of the largest individual shareholders and has made it company policy that he will not sell a share during his tenure as manager. Jeff credits the firm?s and fund?s success to persistent daily research, which he believes is critically important to differentiate those businesses that can provide superior returns.
Education: Jeff graduated with honors from the University of Oregon in 1981. His studies at the U of O emphasized accounting, and he holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance.
EB Brands, LLC: in 2004 Frank joined EB Brands as Senior Vice President and General Manager. EB Brands is a leading designer and manufacturer of high margin, high impulse consumer products designed for the fitness, gift and travel accessories markets sold under well known brand names including Bally, Everlast, Sportline, Sharper Image, Samsonite and American Tourister.
eBags: Frank co-founded 2 startup companies and helped lead them to become successful business entities. One of these was eBags, where Frank utilized his years of experience to secure suppliers to provide well-known consumer brands to online customers.
Samsonite & earlier: During his 20-year tenure at Samsonite, Frank had many assignments of increasing responsibility. When Samsonite acquired its chief rival, American Tourister in 1994, Frank was named President of the new acquisition. By defining and implementing a new strategic and operational direction for both the wholesale and 120 store retail divisions, the company significantly grew sales and profits. Following his tenure at American Tourister, Frank was tapped to become President of Samsonite?s USA division where he was responsible for Samsonite operations within the United States.
Frank spent 7 years at McDonnell Douglas working as an electrical engineer on many aerospace programs, including Skylab, America?s first space station and the F15 Eagle jet fighter.
Education: Frank earned his MBA from the University of Missouri in 1976, and a BS in Electronics from Colorado State University-Pueblo.
eBags: Since May 1998.