Ziad K. Abdelnour - President & Chief Executive Officer
Ziad K. Abdelnour is President & CEO of Blackhawk Partners, Inc., a New York based private equity "family office" that focuses on originating, structuring, advising and acting as equity investor in management-led buyouts, strategic minority equity investments, equity private placements, consolidations, buildups, and growth capital financings in companies and projects based both in the US and emerging markets.
Blackhawk Inc. is also a reliable trader and supplier of a wide range of commodities to industrial and financial consumers globally. The Firm’s customers around the world rely upon Blackhawk as a source of Metals and Minerals and Crude Oil and Oil Products. These products originate either from Blackhawk directly or indirectly owned assets, or are secured by Blackhawk from third parties.
Since 1985, Mr. Abdelnour has been involved in over 125 transactions worth in aggregate over ten billion dollars in the investment banking, high yield bond and distressed debt markets and has been widely recognized for playing an integral role in those three key market sectors.
Mr. Abdelnour also serves on the Advisory board of DPG Investments, a recognized premier multi strategy global merchant banking, alternative investment, management and advisory firm.
On a more personal level, Mr. Abdelnour is Founder and President of the United States Committee for a Free Lebanon (USCFL), Founder and Chairman of the Financial Policy Council, Member of the Board of Governors of the Middle East Forum and Former President of the Arab Bankers Association of North America.
Mr. Ziad Abdelnour holds an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and a BS in Economics, Summa Cum Laude, from the American University of Beirut.
He is the author of "Economic Warfare: Secrets of Wealth Creation in the Age of Welfare Politics" and a regular panelist and speaker on private equity and venture capital topics at industry conferences nationwide.
Hicham K. Abdelnour - Special Partner
Hicham K. Abdelnour, a citizen of Lebanon and Canada and brother of Ziad, has been involved in real estate and corporate transactions in the U.S. and Turkey, where he currently resides full time since 1995.
Among his key achievements, Hicham is the co-developer and owner of the Konak Pier project, a major waterfront retail centre located at the heart of Izmir, Turkey. Today, Konak Pier is the flagship of the city of Izmir and an essential destination center for international visitors.
Over the past three years, Mr. Abdelnour has also been advising some of the leading U.S. and European private equity funds seeking investment opportunities in Turkey. His advisory role includes product identification and origination, transaction negotiation and final execution, all within specific guidelines and parameters dictated by the investor.
In addition, Mr. Abdelnour provides post-closing asset management services, including performance monitoring, corporate restructuring, financial reporting, debt/equity financing, board membership and other on-going supervision tasks. Overall, Hicham remains fully involved in the company/project until final exit by the investor.
Prior to 1995, Mr. Abdelnour has been actively involved in real estate transactions in the U.S. and Europe, including corporate advisory work, cross-border transactions, debt and equity securitization and property portfolio management. During this period, Mr. Abdelnour was associated with the major Wall Street firms of UBS Securities Inc., Kidder, Peabody and Co. and Paine Webber, Inc.
Hicham Abdelnour received a BS in civil engineering, a BA in Economics from Stanford University and earned an MS in real estate development and finance from Columbia University.
Richard Block -
Richard Block is a member in the Employment, Labor and Benefits Section at Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.and a nationally recognized expert in the field of labor and employment law, whose clients include Fortune 500 companies, financial institutions, insurance companies, entertainment companies, cultural and non-profit institutions, Real Estate Private Equity Firm, and health care organizations.
Richard brings in invaluable deal flow and advice to Blackhawk when it comes to aforementioned companies and in structuring compensation arrangements and other incentives to management teams to make the deals work. .
Richard received a B.A. from Princeton University and his J.D. from Hofstra Law School. He has been recognized as one of the leading employment lawyers in the United States by The Best Lawyers in America (2005-2010) and The Best in the U.S. (2008). In 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010, Richard was also named a New York Super Lawyer.
Richard is a frequent lecturer who has spoken before American Express Tax and Business Services, Inc., the Institute of Management and Administration, the Investment and Financial Services Association, the University of Pennsylvania, and New York University’s Annual Conference on Labor, among others.
Richard is admitted to practice in New York. He has served on the Princeton University Alumni Advisory Council for Human Resources and is a member of the Board of Governors of The Princeton Club of New York, the New York Board of the Simon Wiesenthal Tolerance Center, and the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution. Richard also sits on the Employment Disputes Committee and is a member of the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation and the American Bar Association.
Yaron Eitan -
Yaron Eitan is the founder of Selway Capital and has over 25 years of experience acquiring, building and exiting businesses. Previously, he was the co-founder of Reshef Technologies, a specialty munitions company, the President of Patlex, an industrial and patent enforcement holding company and the founder and CEO of Geotek Communications, a wireless communications company. Geotek deployed a wireless network in 11 major US markets and nationwide networks in the UK and Korea based on innovative technology previously developed for military applications. The company grew to 1,200 employees and $120 million in revenues. It later filed for Chapter 11 and was sold to Nextel. Yaron recounted the story of Geotek in a book he authored called Riding The Waves.
In 1998 Mr. Eitan founded Selway Partners a technology-sector holding company. Selway Partners went on to found and build several companies including Magnolia Broadband and DVTel. In 2002, Yaron became a partner of SCP Partners, an investment firm with over $1 billion under management. At the same time, Selway Partners became a wholly-owned investment company of SCP Partners.
In 2007, Mr. Eitan launched the Vector Intersect Security Acquisition Corporation, which raised $60M with the goal of making a single acquisition. Vector purchased Cyalume Technologies in 2008. In 2009, Yaron decided to reinvigorate the Selway name and created Selway Capital of which Mr. Ziad Abdelnour; Blackhawk’s CEO, currently sits on the Advisory Board. Selway Capital manages several portfolio companies on behalf of SCP and Selway Partners. Yaron is also Chairman of a number of companies including Cyalume, DVTel, Inc., The Q Group and Magnolia Broadband. He also serves as a director of XVionics, Inc.
Mr. Eitan served in the Israeli Defense Forces for seven years, where he reached the rank of Major. He has an MBA from the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania and BA in Economics from Haifa University.
Daniel Galvanoni -
Daniel Galvanoni is the Chairman and Founder of DPG Investments, LLC, DPG is a multi strategy investment, advisory and merchant banking firm and affiliated companies managing diverse assets comprised of private equity interests, short term high yield notes, and private investment partnerships.
Mr. Galvanoni assists in managing portfolio investments and operating partnerships which the firm strategically holds and exits. DPG is active, managing over 30 operating private partnerships and portfolio investments/interests in which Mr. Galvanoni takes an active role by adding strategic value to DPG positions in its portfolio on an annual basis. The Capital Markets Group of DPG Investments focuses on the structuring and securing of both debt and equity for multi strategy alternative investment fund managers globally.
DPG Investments brings not only a West coast presence to Blackhawk Partners but a mutually profitable relationship as well; especially when it comes to middle market buyouts.
Daniel has originated over $1billion in high yield debt and equity since the formation of DPG Investments into DPG sponsored transactions and advisory mandates. Mr. Galvanoni is involved in the structuring of financial transactions inconjunction with private equity funds, hedge funds, REITS, equity portfolios, private merchant banks, public and private pension funds, and life companies with a special emphasis on ultra high net worth family office partnerships globally.
Daniel currently serves as a board member with DPG Realty Capital, DPG Investments, DPG Advisors and Fintramex. Prior to starting his own firm, Mr. Galvanoni was an associate at a Lazard Frères and Wesselink & Galvanoni Enterprises, a General partnership founded after the Galvanoni families successful sale of computing mobile wireless company, Telxon corporation and affiliated entities, a hand held mobile wireless conglomerate the family had economic interests in. Wesselink & Galvanoni Holdings was set up as a multi strategy family office deploying capital into international and domestic real estate development projects, early/mid stage private equity companies, and various early stage technology investments.
Mr. Galvanoni graduated from Fairfield University, in Fairfield Connecticut.
Andrew Gold -
A consummate negotiator, deal strategist and problem-solver, Andrew Gold has 20 years experience in finance, technology and law in the US and Europe and brings to Blackhawk Partners operational, strategic and legal support services to growth companies second to none.
Mr. Gold is also a global entrepreneur, having lived and worked in a dozen different cultures, including starting businesses in the US, UK, Germany and Malta. Most recently, Mr. Gold served as Chairman and CEO of Straitshot Communications, a Bellevue, Washington based network services provider. Previously,
Mr. Gold served as well as the General Counsel of Claritage Capital, a New York and Tokyo-based Private Equity Fund. He started his professional career at leading international law firms Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, in Dusseldorf, Germany, and Andrews & Kurth, in Dallas, Texas.
Mr. Gold is also a uniquely effective and accomplished communicator and presenter, having served as a spokesman for the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee in Washington, DC and as a Lecturer in Public Speaking at Stanford University.
Mr. Gold graduated Magna Cum Laude with a law degree from The American University, was a visiting scholar at The University of Pennsylvania Law School and holds a BA in History and Philosophy from Emory University.
Darcie Jacobsen -
Darcie Jacobsen is the President of JayJeen International Trading, a company that specializes in global trading of physical commodities. Over the past 17 years, Darcie has developed direct relationships with dozens of major buyers and traders for Iron Ore, Metals and Petroleum products in addition to working as mandate for an international petroleum trader, BPM International.
Darcie brings expertise in negotiations, logistics, and contract facilitation. She has almost two decades of experience in vetting companies and working through tough contract situations. In addition to trading physical commodities, Darcie is also part of Cascade Mining Equipment which refurbishes and sells mining equipment worldwide. She is an owner and President of Integrity Mortgage Solutions and has previous experience as an investment banker for US Bank.
Darcie graduated cum laude from University of Puget Sound (the Harvard of the West) where she was Vice President of her University and currently lives in the Seattle area.
Ashley John Heather -
A technology guru second to none, Ashley John Heather has over 15 years of experience in Silicon Alley having founded and operated a number of innovative media/tech companies including Entertainment Media Works, MusiKube and CuttingEdged Technologies and built in the process partnerships with leading interactive groups including ABC, AOL, CBS/Showtime, 20th Century Fox, Fremantle/19, Intel, Microsoft, MTV Networks, MySpace, and Virgin Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Univision.
Mr. Heather’s companies have received awards from the prestigious AlwaysOn Top 100 in Hollywood award in 2007 to European Interactive Consultancy of the Year in 2001.
Mr. Heather is also a frequent speaker at leading wireless/media industry events such as iBreakfast, CTIA Wireless, iWireless World, The Digital Media Summit, MoMeMo and the Digital Coast Roundtable and is regularly quoted in press including the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, with frequent appearances on NY1, CCN Headline News too.
Mr. Heather holds a BA in Economics from Sheffield University, England and is a board member of Nextcode Corporation, Cutting Edged Technologies, Zaah Technologies and co-founder of MoMeMo.org.
Sampath Kumar -
Sampath Kumar has nearly three decades of international / U.S Senior Management banking experience in India, the U.S, the U.K and the Middle East with cutting edge expertise in International Correspondent Banking, International Trade Financing, Treasury Management, Credit Management & Marketing, Private Debt & Equity Financing and Foreign Exchange Risk Exposure Management.
As the CEO/President of Comp Systems Inc, New York; established in early 1998, Mr. Kumar advises large Arab groups out of Dubai (UAE) & has deep & close connections with Oil Rig owners, Government owned Oil Majors in South America, investment banks in the United Arab Emirates and Private Equity firms in both the U.S and the U.K.
Through close affiliations, Mr. Kumar has built up over the years prized relationships with High Net worth entities and individuals including Single/Multi Family offices both in the U.S & South Asia.
Mr. Kumar headed an Arab International bank’s North American operation as the Executive Vice President/ Country Head & General Manager in New York for five years.
Prior to that, he had the responsibility of Group Treasury of the bank headquartered in Dubai as Group Treasurer & directed the resources of all the trading desks in different major centers of the world including the U.K, the U.S & Hong Kong.
Mr. Kumar has a BA in Commerce (with Distinction) from Chennai, India, an MBA from Mumbai University- India & is a Certified Associate of the Institute of Bankers- India.
Demetri Michalakis -
Demetri Michalakis is the CEO of Inter-M Traders - an international trading firm focusing on the physical trading and processing of oil products, LNG ship building/Management and a service provider of oil rig platforms - and an active board member of Inter-M companies, a multi-faced set of independent companies dealing in oil and energy related assets .
Since its inception in 2008, Inter-M Traders Ltd has become a capital partner with commodity related investment funds operating as the oil division for purchasing of crude oil, refining and selling off finished products of various clients .The company's longevity and success lies in is ability to add value beyond the relatively straightforward movement of physical products and resolutely customer focused, providing fuel oil solutions along with stock and hedging expertise in Europe and the Mediterranean .
Mr. Michalakis has also been involved since 1992 in numerous oil exploration projects in Europe, Middle East ,and Eastern Europe and has since then been involved in assisting raising capital for the companies financial group by forming business relationships with various hedge funds and banks located in the US , Europe and Asia .
Mr. Demetri Michalakis holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology .
Jeffrey Nichols -
With nearly four decades experience as a Wall Street economist, precious metals analyst, and gold-market guru, Jeffrey Nichols has long been recognized as one of the world’s top experts in the economics and finance of precious metals.
Jeff began his career as an international economist at Citibank, moved to Wall Street to head the international economic forecasting unit at Argus Research where he rose to chief economist, and then led the precious metals research group at Goldman Sachs before setting out on his own as a gold and precious metals market analyst and consultant.
Today, as managing director of American Precious Metals Advisors (APMA), he provides expert analysis of precious metal markets and offers strategic consulting and market research services to a wide range of corporate clients.
Jeff has advised mining companies on financing and investor relations, served as a director of two public companies, managed a mining-related mutual fund, and worked with national mints, central banks, jewelry manufacturers, futures exchanges, and industry associations. He has been a keynote speaker at dozens of investment and industry conferences, corporate meetings, and private company events around the world and brings invaluable expertise to the Blackhawk Partners team.
Kamyar Shadan -
Kamyar Shadan is the founder of DiginomeTM Inc., a Data Intelligence Platform firm in Silicon Valley. Mr. Shadan invented and holds Patent(s) in the concept and methodology of creating a "Genome for digits". DiginomeTM is the first company of its kind with patented technologies to create "embedded" DNA for any Digital Object. Mr. Shadan is also Chairman of Private Client Services, Inc (PCSFamilyOffice) based in Tiburon, CA. PCS is a comprehensive multi-family office platform offering service for Family Protection, Asset Management, Global Oversight, International Real Estate, Due Diligence and Private Jet/Yatch charters.
Prior to the founding of DiginomeTM Kamyar was Chief Operating Officer of Coherity Inc., a Silicon Valley based Database Software Company funded by Softbank and Accenture Technology Ventures. Coherity was later sold to a Draper Fisher backed firm. Mr. Shadan has served as a board member, provided corporate/financial strategy, executive coaching and raised venture capital for various companies over his career. His domestic and international advisory networks have included former CEO/Chairman of fortune 50 Companies along with Silicon Valley serial entrepreneurs, thought leaders and executives.
Mr. Shadan also served as President & COO of Internet Technology Group, a technology business accelerator, in Silicon Valley. He was a Managing Director at the Private Consulting Group and has held a private banking position at a major private bank and at Morgan Stanley, where he co-led development of a "specialized situation" investment management group – The Goldman Group.
Kamyar holds degrees in Bio-engineering, Industrial Organizational Psychology, with special studies in peak performance, Martial Arts and holistic health and has attended Programs and received certification from the Venture Capital Institute, SF Law School along with Executive programs at HAAS School of business.
Julian Sturton -
Julian develops executives and entrepreneurs into World Class Leaders beyond their already successful accomplishments.
Over the last 25 years he has developed a distinctive Leadership Methodology that empowers executives, business owners and other world leaders to turn their personal visions into reality and excel beyond all expectations. His methodology is a synergy of his highly refined business skills, his intense athletic training at Olympic level, and his accomplishments as a scuba diver and as an experienced explorer.
In the early eighties, with a successful and impressive track record in International Corporate Marketing, Julian founded and lead one of Northern Europe's leading motivational incentive and special events agencies. He met with extraordinary success in the design, development and implementation of his distinctive business motivation tools and major corporate events for a roster of multinational corporations including Ford, Volvo, Mobil Oil, Exxon, Ericsson and Noble Industries.
Now at the helm of The Business of Leading, Inc., senior management and CEO's of leading institutions recognize the transformational results of Julian's proven Leadership Methodology - from major financial institutions to law firms, advertising agencies to Fortune 500 companies, including American Express, Salomon Smith Barney, Pfizer, Ernst & Young, Fleet Bank, British Airways, Toyota and Young & Rubicam. Julian is an innovator in the field, teaching the skills to break through, break out and lead within any given circumstances.
Julian has been credited with creating what is called the Constitutional Leadership Model, an operating system, freeing executives of their fears and frustrations that have kept them from attaining their goals. Corporations have seen 100% achievement of desired, measurable results due to having Julian and The Business of Leading empower their executive teams.
Their vital leadership distinctions have shifted corporate thinking from an "employee mentality" to the vital "ownership mentality," with a complete win/win approach to teamwork, empowering individuals to become authors of their own success and ultimately corporate financial growth.