"I believe that entrepreneurship is the greatest force for positive change in the world today. Growthink’s products, services, and ideas make a meaningful contribution to the spread and success of entrepreneurship worldwide. This is good and important work."
Growthink's co-founder and CEO, Jay Turo has led Growthink's emergence as one of the nation's largest strategic advisory and investment banking firms focused on the entrepreneurial marketplace.
In his 15 years at Growthink, Jay has advised dozens of emerging, middle market, and corporate clients regarding their growth and capital formation strategies. His corporate clients have included Deutsche Bank, McKesson, Infospace, Samsung, Porsche, & Paramount Pictures.
He has worked with a wide host of emerging companies including Accelerant, C8 Medisensors, Dakim, DCIP, Free Conference, Fresh Games, Green Medical, Integreon, L3D3, Mobeze, MyPublicInfo, Nolatek, Ometric, Pocketsonics, Precision Time, Raise Capital, Recoup IT, Research Scientists, Sandel Medical, Spring Medical, Telverse, Thrombovision, XCOM Wireless, and Xorbent, among others.
Jay is an active angel investor and speaker and writer regarding private equity, entrepreneurship, and technology. His column appears on the Growthink blog on Mondays. View his past columns here.
Jay has an MBA from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA and earned a Bachelor's degree with Distinction and with Departmental Honors from Stanford University. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two sons.
Serving as Director of Growthink's Expert Market Research Program, Bridget Quinlan has a broad background in public relations and marketing. Bridget’s expertise is used to work with Growthink clients across various sectors to develop and implement marketing and customer acquisition strategies.
MISSION: A results-driven determination to be innovative and maximize sales by creating enriching, engaging and enduring brand relationships with customers through, honesty, integrity and excellence in all I do.
As a CIO Consultant and owner of an award winning web design business, I design and develop complex interactive, film, mobile and gaming related workflows, content and experiences and manage a wide range of creative digital content for B2C and B2B use from inception to completion meeting creative, budgetary and strategic marketing needs.
Dustin Salem joins Guiding Metrics as the Vice President of Capital Markets with over seventeen years of financial and investment experience. Dustin has worked with a wide range of institutional clients in sales, trading, and investor relations capacities for both institutional money managers and investment banking firms. Dustin began his career at Wells Capital Management in San Francisco as a buy-side equity trader working with several portfolio money managers implementing the execution of international trading strategies, banking deal participation, and distribution of timely market information. Dustin later transitioned into an institutional sales role covering several mutual fund and hedge fund companies across the Western region as a Senior Vice President for Roth Capital Partners in Newport Beach and more recently Imperial Capital in Los Angeles. Dustin then transitioned into investor relations with MZ Group where he oversaw the investor relations outreach efforts for several public and private companies.
Before getting his start in finance, Dustin served as an officer in the United States Marine Corps specializing in public affairs. He was stationed in Quantico, Virginia and then served at Camp Pendleton as a media relations and press officer where he completed joint training exercises in Kuwait, managed the base newspaper and worked as the Marine Corps liaison to the entertainment industry. Dustin graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a degree in International Relations and also played on the UCSB Men’s Varsity Water Polo Team. More recently, Dustin completed the Investor Relations Certificate Program at the University of California, Irvine. Dustin currently holds the Series 7, 63, 55, and 24 securities licenses.
Why did I join Growthink? Simple, I now access a collective experience and global reach across boards, disciplines, and business verticals. I have one goal: “helping business owners of all sizes realize their full potential by reducing time and energy to achieve stated outcomes and transactions." Robert Schwenk
As a member of Growthink’s Strategic Board of Advisors,
Robert Schwenk brings over 30 years of strategic thinking, creative innovator, governmental relations, investor relations, entrepreneurial - been there done that, and growth consulting expertise from a variety of industries.
Robert currently serves as CDBG city commissioner for Huntington Beach. In this role, I lead efforts to identify and develop new solutions fighting for women’s rights and financial development helping transitioning from a mindset of “Handout to a Hand-up.
Prior to joining GT Securities, Robert has worked for large financial banks, corporate America, become an entrepreneur with two CRM S/W companies started and sold, transitioned to SEC investor relations working with public relations and lobbyist to achieve client goals, only to bring a wealth of experience to investment banking clients.
Robert attended ENMU studying computer science and business finance. Robert Schwenk currently lives in Huntington Beach, CA with his wife Marcie.
"The Growthink team is passionate about helping businesses of all sizes realize their full potential and approaches this mission with both creativity and analytical diligence. I am very much looking forward to both contributing to and learning from this dynamic group of entrepreneurs."
As a member of Growthink’s Strategic Board of Advisors, Mathew Segal brings over 20 years of strategic thinking, entrepreneurial know-how and growth consulting expertise from a variety of industries.
“ I am delighted to be working with such a bright and talented group of people. I look forward to gaining more exposure to Growthink’s network to further all of our entrepreneurial interests.”
A member of Growthink’s Advisory Board, Dave Shevock brings to this role an extensive background in marketing and business strategy combined with true thought leadership from the technology industry.
Dave has more than 18 years of experience with entrepreneurial technology companies focusing on sales, marketing, product management and operations. Most recently, he served as senior vice president of sales and marketing for DecisionStep, Inc. (Buy.com). Truly a serial entrepreneur, he has also been part of the executive growth team for Subimo (WebMD), Pictage (Apax Partners) and Trividia Corporation (ValueClick).
Dave holds an MBA in marketing from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and BA in economics from the University of Michigan.
"Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage." - Niccolo Machiavelli
As a Growthink Growth Advisor with over 10 years of advisory experience, Bret is responsible for the scope, design and management of consulting, business planning, M&A and financing engagements. Bret works extensively with growth stage companies to develop capital raising strategies and materials and proceeding through fundraising and capital transactions.
Notable Client Engagements Include:
• Private Placement / Reg D creation and ongoing advisory for established multinational commodity brokerage
• Business Planning and Financial Modeling for reinsurance / stop loss insurance for major liability holders
• Strategic Growth Planning and Retreat Moderation for a $300 million premier engineering firm with heavy emphasis on civil construction
• Market Research and Business Planning for established Australia-based telecommunications company with innovative smart phone to computer instant messaging solution
• Operational Expansion Strategy for industry leader in digital infrastructure space (e.g. data centers)
• Feasibility Study and Business Planning for Israel-based technology company bringing a social media platform, via integrating magnification, text-to-speech and speech-to-text to the blind and visually impaired
• Business Planning for cutting edge training apparatus, endorsed by NFL talent, catering to professional athletes and franchises
• Market Research and Offering Package Development for the expansion of a three location campus charter school network in Chicago
Prior to joining Growthink in 2011, Bret worked in Commercial Real Estate at CB Richard Ellis and in Commercial banking at US Bancorp. Each experience gave him the unique opportunity to advise corporations in a wide array of industries. Collaborating with corporate executives enabled Bret to maximize their potential and achieve positive results for their real estate based and financial transactions.
Bret received his MBA from USC’s Marshall School of Business and his Bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of the Pacific.
Jon has more than a decade of merger and acquisition, strategic advisory, and business valuation experience and has successfully advised clients across a broad range of industries, including technology, aerospace & defense, business services, consumer and industrial products, and metals and mining. He has closed over $2 billion in aggregate transaction value in his career.
"I never dreamed about success. I worked for it." - Estee Lauder
Anna holds an MBA in Finance from Saint Louis University’s John Cook School of Business and bachelor degrees in Magazine Journalism and Music from the University of Missouri-Columbia.
“Anna worked with me through the development of my business plan and investor deck for a cloud based application I am developing called CareVineTM. Anna showed attention to detail, professionalism, integrity and great communication ability and enthusiasm for the project. I felt very comfortable and confident in her skills and ability to help me understand the relevant details as the project evolved and have always been pleased about the decision to bring in Growthink.”
"We initially contacted Growthink to help us develop strategies to grow our business. We were impressed with how quickly Anna became familiar with our particular industry, and the insightful questions she posed as we put together a growth plan. She and the Growthink team were excellent in keeping the conversation on track and focused on our goals. We were provided advice that was instrumental in changing the way we approach our business. One outcome of the discussions was to look at potential investors and buyers for our business. Anna’s work in coordinating discussions, providing support during initial calls, and offering constructive feedback during the debriefing phase was instrumental in making this process work. Although we decided not to pursue the offer that came through, we are now much better positioned for future opportunities."
- Owner of Northeast-based medical billing company
"It's not about money or connections--it's the willingness to outwork and outlearn everyone...And if it fails, you learn from what happened and do a better job next time." Mark Cuban
Serving on the senior management team; Melissa is the Director of Client Development for Growthink as well as a Growth Advisor for Guiding Metrics. Melissa has extensive experience in business development, project management, operations, and organizational redesign. Since joining Growthink in 2007 Melissa has been committed to fulfilling the company’s mission (and personal passion) to help entrepreneurs grow, start and exit their businesses.
Melissa has developed and worked with a robust portfolio of clients and investment arenas to include: SaaS, New Media, mobile application, e-commerce, healthcare/medical device, consumer products and fashion/entertainment.
Notable engagements include:
• Expansion Planning for a chain of urgent care centers in Texas
• Business Planning for Performance Management SaaS platform
• Operational Strategy for $300M division of $9B manufacturing company
• Strategic Planning and Investment Offering for well-known luxury women’s shoe brand
• Opportunity Assessment, Strategic Plan and Retreat Moderation for one of the country’s largest commercial and consumer collections companies
• Business Planning for predictive dialing software company
Melissa began her career in the healthcare arena with a start-up as one of the first ten employees for Los Angeles based Emerald Health Services. Serving as the organization’s Senior Business Development Manager, Melissa helped to grow the organization into one of the Top 20 healthcare staffing companies in the country, growing a client list to include many of the nation’s largest hospital systems. Melissa left Emerald to join the Lucas Group, one of the world's largest retained executive search firms.
Melissa earned her Bachelor's in Legal Studies from Johnson & Wales University and her MBA from Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management. Melissa is an active member of the National Association of Women MBAs as well as a frequent speaker for Youth Business Alliance and mentor for Fulfillment Fund, a Los Angeles based non-profit organization focused on empowering disadvantaged youth through education.
What can I say about Melissa...Honestly, anything would be an understatement. From the first call to the work she advises me with today, Melissa exceeds every expectation I've put on her and her team without fail. Melissa never questions, but just gets the job done with superlative results. If there is a question from her, it's only to clarify or correct. Her value and knowledge is immeasurable, and unsurpassed. She is deeply committed to what she does, and how she gets it down. Melissa, is not one to come up with "out-of-the-box" ideas or concepts, because in Melissa's mind.. There is no box. She puts no limitations on her creativity, ideas, or processes. She passes that philosophy on to her team, as she leads in a manner that defines Leadership.
Thanks Melissa, and to Growthink for having such a valued asset on your team.
Vice President, Business Development
Palio's Licensing, LLC
Over the years, I have had the pleasure to work with Melissa on various projects from start-up strategy, fundraising, web design and business plan development. Melissa has the rare ability to incorporate strong technical ability with a creative side that adds significant value to her clients. Melissa has become one of my most important advisors and I highly recommend her for anyone looking for an advisor that can quickly grasp your companies vision and turn your dream into a reality.
CEO, Creative Capital Group