The Unique Path of Entrepreneurship Through Acquisition
Search Funds are innovative investment vehicles that allow entrepreneurs to achieve remarkable results and real impact through the acquisition and operation of a company. The Entrepreneurship Through Acquisition Panel will feature some of the most experienced entrepreneurs and investors in the industry who will discuss the model and share their stories
Founder & CEO, Search Fund Accelerator
Timothy Bovard is the founder and CEO of Search Fund Accelerator, a highly innovative accelerator program and investment fund dedicated to helping entrepreneurs successfully acquire and manage businesses of their own. SFA provides unparalleled mentoring and support to searchers throughout the search, acquisition and post-acquisition phases, in addition to providing the equity investment.
For the past 13 years, as Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at INSEAD, Timothy has taught a highly popular elective on Entrepreneurship through Acquisition to over 4,000 MBAs and EMBAs. This year he was also named Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at Columbia Business School where he teaches a similar course.
Prior to creating SFA, Timothy was the founder and former President of CPI S.A., a consolidation of 20 acquisitions to build Europe's leading book manufacturer with over $600 million in sales and 4,000 employees in 15 plants across Europe.
Timothy is an investor, a consultant, and mentor. He holds a B.S. in Management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, an M.A. in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and an MBA with distinction from INSEAD.
Chief Executive Officer, Integra Partners
Andrew is the CEO of Integra Partners, a healthcare services company he acquired through the search fund model in 2011. In 2015, Integra was sold to Tufts Health Plan of Massachusetts, one of the country’s premier health insurers. Prior to acquiring Integra, Andrew held roles at Goldman Sachs as an investment banker and Vestar Capital Partners as an investor for the multi-billion-dollar private equity fund. Andrew is an active investor in entrepreneurial, growth companies including Bonobos, Axial Markets, and numerous search funds and their acquired businesses. He is a board member of Integra Partners, Light Wave Dental, Datacor, and the Brooklyn Museum. Andrew received a bachelor degree in business administration from Emory University and an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.
Chief Executive Officer, American Security
Sean has developed a strong track record over more than 15 years of investing in and growing businesses in North America. He has acquired, successfully grown, and integrated multiple businesses over his career by forging long-term relationships with his team to grow through the introduction of new products and services and operational improvements. In 2007, Sean took private one of North America’s largest security and life safety companies, where he oversaw the investment from the boardroom through to the field level, working alongside management to more than double the size of the company. Sean received a BA in Economics from Lehigh University and an MBA from INSEAD.
Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Pacific Lake Partners
Coley is the Managing Partner and co-founder of Pacific Lake Partners, a firm focused exclusively on small-cap buyouts through the search fund model. Since co-founding Pacific Lake in 2009, Coley has invested in over 100 search funds worldwide. Coley is a board member of multiple search fund operating companies including DESCO/FieldEdge, Inspired eLearning, Aquavita, Ethos Risk Services, and American Security Systems and an observer at AlphaCredit, Raptor Technologies, and Vector Disease Control. Prior to starting Pacific Lake, Coley worked at Golden Gate Capital and The Parthenon Group. Coley received an MBA from Stanford's Graduate School of Business and a BA from Dartmouth College.
Moderator: Vincent Ponzo '03
Managing Director, Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center at Columbia Business School
Vincent Ponzo is the Managing Director of the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center at Columbia Business School where he leads the team responsible for all entrepreneurship related education, programming, positioning, fundraising and strategic initiatives.
Vince serves as an advisor to numerous startups, is a mentor to multiple Columbia Business School students and alumni, and plays an active role in the New York City entrepreneurial ecosystem. Vince previously held client facing executive positions at a wide variety of startups, including leading the build out and growth of General Assembly’s offline education business from its earliest days.
Vince has an MBA from Columbia Business School and a BS in finance from Boston College.