Net Impact Monthly Gathering: Cleantech Shark Tank

Net Impact SF Monthly Event (9/16):

Financing Options for Cleantech Entrepreneurs


Date:  Wednesday, September 16th

Time: 6:30 - 8:30pm

Location: W Hotel San Francisco (Second Floor)
                181 Third Street
                San Francisco, CA 94103


This month, Net Impact is hosting a new event concept: “Cleantech Shark Tank: Financing Options for Cleantech Entrepreneurs.”  Based on the entertaining TV show, our panelists (“sharks”) from Angel Investing, Debt Finance, Government, Microfinance and Venture Capital will help cleantech startups determine “Where should I look for funding?”  Cleantech entrepreneurs will be given 2 minutes to pitch their company or idea to our panel, then the sharks will share their advice on which sources of funding the entrepreneur should pursue.  We have an amazing panel of sharks and this promises to be a highly interactive and lively event! 



Voice of Experience

Tom vonReichbauer, Senior Finance Manager, Tesla Motors 

Tom serves as the finance lead for the product development and sales, marketing, & service organizations at Tesla Motors.  He co-lead the successful $465M public debt financing from the Department of Energy and is involved in Tesla's financing activities.  Prior to Tesla, Tom worked as a Finance Manager for Ford Motor Company.  He has a BS in economics and management from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from The Wharton School of Business.



Angel Investment

Colin Wiel, Chapter President, San Francisco, Keiretsu Forum

Colin Wiel is a serial entrepreneur, President of the San Francisco Chapter of the Keiretsu Forum, and Co-Founder of Wildlife Works Carbon and Rainforest Capital. He is currently focusing his activities on investments that result in land conservation in Africa and Latin America. Colin is an active Angel investor, having made Angel investments in more than twenty companies in past ten years, including several cleantech companies.  He often remains actively involved in the companies in which he invests, and he currently serves on the boards of five companies.  Colin is also an Entrepreneur, having started a 35-person software engineering firm which he ran from its inception in 1998 through to its acquisition in 2001.  Over his career, Colin has made a wide variety of technical contributions such as co-architecting a genomics database to host the fruit fly genome; designing and developing a fuzzy logic based antiskid system for commercial aircraft for Boeing (two US patents issued); co-architecting the Java infrastructure for Charles Schwab’s online trading website (the largest dollar volume e-commerce website in the world); and developing and teaching the Java Servlet and JSP curriculum for UC Berkeley Extension.  Colin holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from U.C. Berkeley.

Debt Finance

Lafe Vittitoe, Director, Entrepreneur Services Group, SVB Capital

Lafe is a director in Silicon Valley Bank's Entrepreneur Services Group, acting as a strategic resource to companies in the cleantech sector.  Through tailored event programming and investor introductions, Lafe provides assistance with the fundraising process and helps generate exposure for Silicon Valley Bank clients.  Prior to joining SVB Capital in August 2008, Vittitoe was a lender with Square 1 Bank.  While at Square 1, Vittitoe's primary focus was on arranging debt financings for Series A and Series B companies in the software and internet spaces.  Before joining Square 1, he spent several years in a variety of technology and venture capital focused lending positions at Comerica Bank.  Vittitoe earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of San Diego.


David Pascal, Lead Clean Technology and Green Business Advocate, the City and County of San Francisco

David is responsible for attracting and retaining companies whose products and services address our greatest environmental challenges. David is also President of the newly formed San Francisco Carbon Collaborative, a non-profit partnership of local government, business, and environmental organizations working to accelerate the development of effective policy and market-based responses to climate change. Prior to entering the government sector, David worked as an environmental sustainability consultant, and he served as the Director of Events and Entertainment for Al Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection. David has been a senior political campaign advisor and has served on San Francisco's Public Utilities Commission Citizens Advisory Committee, offering assessment and analysis of the SFPUC's management of the region's water, wastewater, and power infrastructures. David was the Committee’s first Chair and served on the Energy and Environmental Justice subcommittees.


Jenny McNulty, Executive Director, Urban Solutions
Jenny oversees all programs and initiatives for Urban Solutions, a San Francisco-based microfinance and consulting group focused on fostering the well-being of disadvantaged communities.  Urban Solutions’ Green Business Initiative helps new and existing businesses identify money-saving opportunities that better our environment. In addition, the 504 loan program offers small businesses up to $4M in funding for company energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.  Jenny joined Urban Solutions in early 2002 to provide loan packaging and technical assistance to small business owners and to work on the creation and implementation of the Six on Sixth economic revitalization program. After serving as a Small Business Development Specialist and then Deputy Director, she moved into the role of Executive Director in 2005.  Jenny has extensive financial experience in both the non-profit and private sectors. She worked for four years in micro-credit programs, including two years in West Africa, where she was part of the management team for a micro-credit program providing credit and health education to 12,000 women. She also spent a year in a nature reserve in the Ecuadorian Amazon teaching environmental education and promoting community health initiatives.

Venture Capital

John Krzywicki, Associate, Alloy Ventures

John Krzywicki joined Alloy Ventures as an Associate in 2007. Prior to joining Alloy, John was an Associate in the Boston Consulting Group's San Francisco office. While at BCG, John advised clients in technology, financial services, retail and other industries on corporate strategy, operational improvements and organizational design. In particular, his responsibilities included assessing markets and potential competitive threats, analyzing business performance to identify paths to improvement, and working directly with senior client executives to implement recommendations. John holds a B.A. in International Relations from Stanford University.



Note: If you would like to present your cleantech idea or existing business to our sharks at this event, please email with a description of your company.



We host a gathering for the Net Impact SF community once every month, featuring a different discussion topic each time. This offers the opportunity for informal interaction with the invited guests and with your fellow Net Impact members, with the discussion topic serving as a launching off point for engaging conversations.



5:30 pm – 6:15 pm: Net Impact SF Leadership meeting (welcome to all NI members)

6:30 pm – 6:45 pm: Networking

6:45 pm – 7:00 pm: Introduction from Tesla Motors

7:00 pm – 7:45 pm: Cleantech Shark Tank and Q&A

7:45 pm – 8:30 pm: Informal discussions with the panelists and networking 


Contact Us:

Chapter Website:

Venue Website:  W Hotel SF


Speaker Websites:

Tesla Motors:

Keiretsu Forum:

Silicon Valley Bank:

City and County of San Francisco:

Urban Solutions:

Alloy Ventures:


The W Hotel is easily accessible via public transportation. Go to for more details.  Looking to carpool? Check out

Name Sales End Price
RSVP for NI-SF September gathering Ended Free

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