CEO and Founder
Ben’s passion for philanthropy was cultivated over time through major fundraising efforts he spearheaded for a variety of charities. Over time, he began to understand the need to democratize giving and the idea grew into the concept for 4ME4WE. Developing a scalable philanthropic platform that put the power of giving into the consumer’s hands was a compelling concept, and Ben assembled a strong team to make his vision a reality. Today the platform is live, where brands, charities, and consumers finally have the power and technology to collaborate.
Ben has an analytic and financial background, providing Forensic Financial Analysis and Risk Analysis. He invested and co-developed Integrated Analytics, Inc. in the late 80s, a real-time trading system with integrated data feeds and artificial intelligence that provided expertise in computer modeling and hedging techniques. Integrated Analytics, Inc. was sold to Jefferies. In the mid-90s, an early-stage investor and consultant in Peregrine Systems, Inc. an enterprise software company that sold solutions in the enterprise asset management, change management, and ITIL-based IT service management markets. A graduate of the University of Virginia, Ben studied Biology and Business at the Darden Business School. Ben played Soccer and Tennis at Virginia and has been involved in soccer and youth development programs over the years.
Currently CEO of N!cks, and a several time venture capital backed CEO with a 18year record of proven successes building, managing and exiting high growth IT software companies in the wireless telecommunications (including Internet of Things/Machine to Machine (M2M)/Connected Devices and MVNOs), mobile messaging(email/text/SMS), e-commerce (B2C/B2B), and digital media (VOD/OTT) industries.
Todd Harrison is the Founding Partner of CB1 and our Chief Investment Officer. Todd has spent almost three decades on Wall Street managing risk and researching financial market strategies. His institutional experience includes Morgan Stanley Global Equity Derivatives (VP), The Galleon Group (MD-Derivatives), and Cramer, Berkowitz LLC (President and Head of Trading).
Todd was also the Founder and CEO of Minyanville Media, Inc., an Emmy Award winning financial media company that covered global markets in real-time, developed, and licensed investment content to broker-dealers, and wrote real-time content that enabled millions of traders and investors to make more informed financial decisions. He oversaw all operating segments, enterprise relationships, dot.com properties, investment products and newsletters, gaming platforms, production studios and events.
Bob Bellano is Senior Partner in the Los Angeles office of NGS Global. With over 25 years of experience in executive search, he has placed executives throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia within Fortune 1000 companies, as well as small to midsize organizations, many of which are private equity or venture backed. Mr. Bellano’s areas of expertise include advanced technology, business services, healthcare, entertainment, interactive media, industrial, defense, infrastructure/engineering services, and clean technology.
Charles Schott has extensive business and government experience and has held senior positions in both the public and private sectors. He previously worked for Seattle-based patent development and licensing firm, Intellectual Ventures, where he was head of strategic sales and licensing. He also was a management consultant in the London office of McKinsey & Company. Later he was a founding executive of Hearst New Media & Technology, an operating group of the Hearst Corporation. There he was responsible for creating Hearst New Media ventures. He also founded Paradigm Partners, LLC, a strategic advisory firm based in Greenwich, CT and Palo Alto, CA.
During the second Bush Administration, Mr. Schott served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Trade and Investment at the U.S. Treasury. There his office oversaw the Treasury-chaired inter-agency Committee of Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Mr. Schott also was a founding senior advisor to Invest in America (now “Select USA”), the Commerce Department’s foreign direct investment promotion office. Prior public sector positions include FCC Chief of Staff and as Deputy Administrator of the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (NTIA). Mr. Schott began his career as a corporate attorney in New York and Washington, DC with Dewey Ballantine. He received both a B.A. and an M.B.A. from Stanford University, and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.
Ramesh Swamy currently serves as the Managing Partner of Halifax West, a California-based firm focused on business advisory services and active ownership of companies. The firm provides strategic, operational and financial guidance that ultimately leads to value creation for its stakeholders. Ramesh served as the Executive Vice President, Operations & Strategy at Curacao, a consumer and retail company focused on Hispanic / Latino communities. Prior to this role, he served as the U.S. Retail & Distribution Leader at Deloitte Financial Advisory Services, LLP, leading multi-disciplinary, cross-functional teams for some of the world’s most prominent consumer companies.
Ramesh currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles and the Association for Corporate Growth Los Angeles where he has held leadership roles on various sub-committees. A nationally recognized business leader and a widely sought-after conference keynote speaker, author and media spokesperson, Ramesh is often quoted around the world in hundreds of major publications read and seen by millions in media including: The Associated Press, USA Today, Bloomberg, Forbes, Los Angeles Times, Reuters, Washington Post, and many others. He also appears nationally on TV (CNBC Closing Bell & Street Signs, NBC Nightly News) and radio (NPR, ABC, AP) and in industry webinars viewed live by over 2,000 executives at a time. In addition, Ramesh has received commendations for leadership for his work in diversity from the City of Los Angeles, State of California, U.S. Department of Commerce and many others including being named an Outstanding Man of Minority Business.