Mr. Swain is the founder and CEO of GeorgeSwain Investments. GSI is an independent global investment bank that assists small and middle-market companies in completing special situation transactions. Mr. Swain oversees all investments, investor relations, and operations at GSI. He is a seasoned investment banker with more than 25 years’ experience and has advised on more than $800 million of transactions. Throughout his career, George has leveraged his deep industry knowledge to take a strategic approach to deal making rather than chase transactions. The best compliment people say is that he is a visionary strategist. He has a broad range of experience in mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financing and strategic partnerships. Early in his career he served as Executive Vice President at American Savings Bank, (ASB) NY, where he led and managed the corporate and institutional client group. From ASB he progressed to the private investment banking arena providing corporate and institutional clients with strategic and financial advisory services, including restructuring, recapitalization, capital raising, and researched based investment analysis. Mr. Swain graduated from the State University of New York at Sullivan County where he holds a degree in Business Administration/Finance.
Mr. Fontenette’s broad professional experience spans 25+ years, focusing on media production, consulting environments, business management and finance; From industry-leading multinationals, to cutting-edge B2Bs.
Early in his career, Mr. Fontenette successfully negotiated thousands of transactions, initially for First Franklin/Merrill Lynch, then GMAC, earning GMAC’s International “Distinguished Leadership” award.
In this pursuit, Mr. Fontenette has helped cultivate an ever-growing portfolio of innovative, creative talent - From award-winning writing talent such as, multiple N.Y. Times Bestselling authors, to groups such as Zero Mass Energy, who are constantly reimagining possibilities inherent in augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR).
At GeorgeSwain Investments, Mr. Fontenette will be responsible for follow through and leveraging GSI’s partnerships in creating proprietary content for industry-leading enterprises. Mr. Fontenette also will be seeking to transform how GSI visualizes, collaborates and explores content, focusing on blending innovation and insight, designed to engage and drive action.
PRIVATE SECTOR EXPERIENCE:
Ricardo has spent most of his 15 years of business as an entrepreneur with a two-year stint at a non-profit. Ricardo’s experience has spanned advisory responsibilities within the Fortune 100, International Corporations, LA’s start-up eco-system, his own start-up ventures and extensive involvement with Southern California’s non-profit community.
As Managing Director and Founder of Vnesto Capital, Ricardo is responsible for overseeing operations of US Los Angeles offices, South Korea’s Seoul office, and Cuenca Ecuador office. Vnesto Capital is a financial services firm arranging debt and equity funding for projects in emerging markets. Throughout, he brings a disciplined and analytic real-world perspective to all of his deals and projects.
Ricardo was a Business Development Officer for CHARO Community Development Corporation and oversaw the Business Financial Center, which was funded by the Small Business Administration (SBA).
BS, Business Administration
University of Southern California
Mr. Paul Roberts is a veteran Wall Street professional with a 20-year career in providing strategic advice, corporate financings and principal investing. At GeorgeSwain Investments, Mr. Roberts expertise is focused on working closely with direct and indirect portfolio investments to develop and structure add-on acquisition opportunities and strategic investments as well as helping to maximize value at exit. In addition, Mr. Roberts will work closely with privately owned companies and institutional investors to develop proprietary investment opportunities that benefit from GeorgeSwain Investments unique business model and network of relationships.
Mr. Roberts has an extensive career developing and executing transactions for private equity firms and corporations based on relationships and deal experience. Mr. Roberts is skilled in capital raising, fund and direct deal diligence and financial analysis . Prior to joining GeorgeSwain Investments, Mr. Roberts was a Director at GoldPoint Partners, a private equity firm with $12 billion in assets under management. Mr. Roberts responsibilities included marketing GoldPoint’s investment funds, managing the investment due diligence process and making investment recommendations for the firm’s mezzanine and equity co-investments, and private equity fund commitments. Prior to joining GoldPoint, Mr. Roberts was a Principal at J.P. Morgan Partners where he was responsible for originating, structuring and executing private equity investments. Mr. Roberts has an MBA degree from the University of Michigan, Ross school of Business and a BS degree from California State University-Los Angeles.
Mr. Jesse Tyler brings extensive professional experience to GSI; a 28 year career spanning Aerospace/ Defense, Banking, Energy, Finance, HealthCare, Legal, Manufacturing, Non-Profit, Petra-Chemical, Government, Trade, Transportation/Shipping and Technology. Mr. Tyler’s skill set is multi-layered; with emphasis in business/economic development, finance, marketing, operations and program management. As an independent consultant, Mr. Tyler transferred the aforementioned skills to the Los Angeles Urban League; wherein he provided vital management and technical assistance to over 90 SME firms every year across a myriad of industry sectors as Managing Consultant at their Business Center. At GSI, Mr. Tyler will work closely with our team developing and implementing investment processes that will benefit and grow the firm.
Mr. Tyler holds dual degrees in Finance and Economics from the Myhalio School at CSU Fullerton and has done extensive graduate work in Finance at USC Marshall.
Michael Zyda is the Founding Director of the USC GamePipe Laboratory, and a Professor of Engineering Practice in the USC Department of Computer Science. At USC, he founded the B.S. in Computer Science (Games), the M.S. in Computer Science (Game Development), and the USC Games joint Advanced Games course and took that program from no program to the #1 Games program in the world. That program has been rated #1 by the Princeton Review for seven of the last eight years. His alums have shipped games played by over 2.5 billion players, about $100B in revenue. From Fall 2000 to Fall 2004, he was the Founding Director of the MOVES (modeling, virtual environments, and simulation) Institute located at the Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, and a Professor in the Department of Computer Science at NPS as well. At NPS, Zyda’s NPSNET Research Group built the first networked virtual environment with fully instrumented body suits that played across the Internet. His work on the networking of virtual environments contributed to the development of the IEEE 1278.1 standard for distributed interactive simulation. He was a member of the National Research Council Committee that put out the report “Virtual Reality - Scientific and Technological Challenges”. He chaired the NRC Committee that put out the study “Modeling and Simulation - Linking Entertainment and Defense”. That NRC report changed the entire Department of Defense towards the usage of games and entertainment technology for its future modeling and simulation systems. From that report, Zyda wrote the operating plan and research agenda that founded USC’s Institute for Creative Technologies.
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