About Astia

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Happy New Year! We got interns for Christmas, what did you get?

Welcome to 2010! We like it better than 2009 already.


Already this year, three Astia clients secured funding in the last two weeks, two more are in due diligence, we have an Investor Forum on January 14 with over 100 investors confirmed, Moss Adams renewed its sponsorship of Astia for a 4th Year, and the Astia Advisor community continues to deliver on the promise of working with our clients to shortcut their pathways to success (if you are an Astia client, add your comments to this post about your team of Advisors).

And there is more happening inside of Astia...

Astia NYC welcomes four new interns (3 MBAs + 1 Ph.D.) this semester from Columbia and NYU Stern. We look forward to everyone getting to know them throughout the year.

Carolyn Simnett Branco (Columbia Business School ’11): Carolyn joins us for the Spring Semester to focus on Astia’s business development efforts and new client services. Formerly with Google in California and Buenos Aires and UBS Investment Bank, Carolyn brings a passion for entrepreneurship and deep digital media and technology experience.

Eileen Puklin Faucher, PhD: Eileen will serve as our resident Life Sciences expert moving forward our Life Science initiatives on the East Coast. Eileen has worked with Columbia University's Office of Technology Ventures and with Lux Capital Management and has held a variety of scientific research roles, including with the ËTH in Zürich, Switzerland. In addition to her work with Astia, Eileen currently conducts experiments as a postdoctoral research scientist at Columbia.

Stephanie Palmeri (Columbia Business School ’11): With deep strategic consulting and web marketing experience at Sitaro Consulting, Accenture and Estee Lauder Companies, Stephanie brings a hands-on digital media integration and strategic campaign perspective to the team. She mentors entrepreneurs through the InSITE program and is organizing the first ever Entrepreneurial Panel for Columbia’s Women in Business conference: “Redefining Business, Reinventing Yourself” on February 19, 2010.

Avanti Paranjpye (NYU Stern ’11): Avanti is focusing her applied mathematics and publishing background on finance, entrepreneurship and innovation at NYU Stern. She has received several academic and research awards and looks forward to a career in strategic business development upon graduation.

Together, Stephanie and Avanti will be focused on client management. Their work will be to ensure Astia companies derive measurable impact from our community.

We are thrilled to have such talent available to us and delighted to have them on board. Please join us as we welcome them to Astia!

Oh, and do let us know what you got for Christmas and how your 2010 is shaping up.


  1. Thanks to our great advisory team we have a better story and biz plan going forward. They listened, advised, critiqued, supported and most of all gave us valuable time from their hectic schedules. Thanks to everyone!

  2. Thank you, Carol, for the shout-out to your Astia Advisors. Carol is the CEO of givezooks!, Inc. (http://www.givezooks.com/) - social fundraising for nonprofits. Good stuff!

  3. One of Astia's taglines is: The Power of Astia -- meaning the wide and deep network they bring to the member companies. We have experienced that power, its very real!

    A Great Big Thanks to our advisors. They are smart, experienced and generous with their time. Terrific!

    Martha Amram, CEO, Ennovationz

  4. Happy New Year Astia, I'm so glad Santa brought me my formal advisors and my non-formal Astia advisors. January has already gotten off to a big start, with Jon Stillman, Lee Blackwell and Beverly Parenti having given me above and beyond support. Jennifer Hill, you have got to be the mother of all ROCKSTARS, THANK YOU!!

  5. Great post, Charlotte - wow, you had a great team. Charlotte is the Founder and CEO of Coveted List (http://www.covetedlist.com/). I look forward to seeing you present this Thursday, Charlotte. http://www.astia.org/content/view/1439/1156/

  6. Martha,
    That is high praise indeed. I am looking forward to seeing the Ennovations (http://www.ennovationz.com/) solultion fully funded. We need more green solutions for our homes and this one makes so much sense and is just so simple!

  7. Thanks to the Astia network and our esteemed advisors, Carat Exchange is experiencing strong growth. We are doubling our sales month over month since our beta launch in Oct and have a committed strategic investor as of last week. We are looking forward to meeting interested investors at the Astia Investor Forum on January 14. Thank you Astia!

  8. Astia was integral to UniversalgGiving's (http://www.universalgiving.org) growth just a few years out of the gate. What was especially helpful was having mentors and advisors who were willing to spend, 10 minutes, an hour, a lunch to help talk through some critical issues regarding our brand, legal points and management structure. Having legal support was critical before we were really known. Most importantly, we appreciated the community. Everyone was there to support the entrepreneurial venture as well as a woman's personal adventure in leadership growth.

    All my best,
    Pamela Hawley
    Founder and CEO

  9. What a support team! Astia advisors are invaluable. They have actually been there and done it. Only through Astia could I have been able to meet and work with such an experienced and knowledgeable team.

    Glennis J. Orloff/President&CEO/Samara Innovations, LLC

  10. It's one of my favourite times at Astia when you hear comments like these about our advisors. Hearing and seeing the impact for entrepreneurs of these carefully selected advisors makes the hard work here so worth while :)

    Evie Mulberry
    Astia, VP Europe

  11. Hello Astia Community! I’m glad I got myself under your Christmas tree and I look forward to helping your businesses grow. From the comments posted here I see I joined the right team! Some background on me: I’ve spent the majority of the last 10 years doing protein biochemistry experiments but my own roots go back to a Women’s Studies Concentration as an undergrad at Dartmouth. Now I look forward to blending these interests together while helping to increase Astia’s footprint in the Life Sciences. :&)

  12. Welcome, Eileen. Great to have you in! We are excited to get you in to the community.

  13. Sharon - Our Astia advisors have been absolutely top notch! It accelerated RumbaFish forward in ways we could not have imagined. We're completely bullish on 2010! Michelle Bonat

  14. Love to hear it, Michelle. We just learned that another Astia client just this week closed $3M from VCs - bringing us to 4 since the new year. I am loving 2010 for the Astia entrepreneurs!

  15. Qlubb's (http://www.qlubb.com) Astia advisors have been incredibly helpful - from strategy to sales to positioning, their expertise has been invaluable for Qlubb. As the company embarks on it's next phase of growth, the advisors have offered frank (and sometimes brutal:) assessment and feedback on our strategy - they really have Qlubb's best interest at heart. The entire Astia community has been wonderful. Here's to an inspired 2010.

  16. Keep the comments coming - this is music to our ears. The newsletter goes out tomorrow and we will share these with the broader Community via the newsletter. See you tomorrow at the investor forum - if you have not already purchased your tickets you can do so online www.astia.org.

  17. Love to see this discussion! It’s great to see you all working through the issues and also, it’s great to see recommendations for testing. In the end, it’s what your actual users do and prefer that should be your biggest driver in making these decisions.
    Great article and discussion!
    online marketing

  18. Kiboo's Astia Advisors have been truly invaluable. From evaluating our business plan to asking the hard questions to taking the time out of their busy schedules to help us build a stronger company to providing the support that a young entrepreneur needs to get through the day. Thank you!

    In addition, the Astia Advisors could not be all that they are without the strong Astia organization behind them. You guys rock!


  19. Global Health Research Foundation would like to thank our Advisory team. We have to particularly honor Ravi Mistry, who worked tirelessly for us on the crux of our infrastructure: our finances. Ravi seemed to have a magical ability to solidify our discussion (financial history, project goals and funding plans) into real numbers. Ravi was able to illustrate to us with great clarity what our options and opportunities are. Kathleen Imhoff and Ravi Mistry were increbible supports, anwsering that critical question, "Where do we start?" financially, and showing us what components of our development are cornerstones, and what can wait. We would like to thank Anula Jayasuriya, who we know helped open the Astia door to GHRF. Anula continues to provide key concepts and connections to GHRF. She has been a trade wind, picking up our minds and spirits with the big picture when we've felt overcome with the intensity of the everyday work.

    We want to thank the Astia community for its confidence in us. While we feel we have a key to creatining sustainability in health development, Astia has held the key to sustainability in our own development as an organization. I'm quite sure Katie and Sharon held there hand over their eyes and peeked through the fingers a few times, hoping to see us turn the corner but opening the doors wide for us along the way.

    This is just a small amount of the thanks we owe to Astia. We are delighted to be part of the community, and we look forward to giving back as we grow and solidify our resources.

    Erica Weirich, MD and Amy Muzaffar, MD
    GHRF Founder and Co-Directors

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