Advisors



Robbie Allen
Robbie Allen is the Founder & CEO of Automated Insights. Automated Insights is the creator of Wordsmith, the software revolutionizing the way people write with data. Wordsmith makes it easy to generate thousands of personalized stories, reports, and articles in the time it takes to write just one.

Robbie drives the company’s strategic vision, oversees engineering and research, and ensures the company continues to be named best place to work in the Raleigh-Durham area, an honor it’s received for four years in a row.

Robbie started writing code to automate the writing process while working at Cisco, where he was a Distinguished Engineer, the company’s top technical position.

He has two engineering Master’s degrees from MIT and has authored or co-authored ten books about enterprise software and software development. In 2015, Robbie was named the North Carolina Tech Exec of the Year by the North Carolina Technology Association.

Ryan Allis
Ryan is the Co-Founder and CEO of Connect, a San Francisco-based social mapping startup. Previously, Ryan was the Co-Founder and CEO of iContact from 2003 until it was acquired in February 2012 by Vocus (NASDAQ:VOCS) for $169M. Ryan is an active angel investor via the HumanityFund, which invests in businesses in the USA and East Africa. He is a board member of Nourish.org which uses social entrepreneurship as a tool to end global poverty. Ryan currently serves as a member of the UN Foundation Global Entrepreneurs Council. Ryan is the author of a book on entrepreneurship called Zero to One Million (McGraw-Hill, 2008), which reached #11 on the Wall Street Journal Bestseller list and #2 on the Amazon.com bestseller list. Ryan has been recognized as one of BusinessWeek’s 25 Entrepreneurs Under 25 (2006), Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year for the Carolinas (2008), one of the Ten Outstanding Young Americans by the U.S. Junior Chamber (2009) and a member of the 30 Under 30 List By INC Magazine (2010). Ryan attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Harvard Business School.

Sridhar Chityala
Sridhar Chityala is a ​B​oard member​ and Advisor ​to​ ​​fintech firms that focus on product innovation, and also to private equity, asset management and venture capital firms making strategic investments on emerging technologies and financial services businesses. ​He has also advised firms in the retail and TMT Sector on growth and market expansion opportunities. ​

​Sridhar is a global leader in the financial services industry having held senior executive leadership roles at JP Morgan Chase, Citi Bank, Wachovia/Wells Fargo, National Australia Bank and Commonwealth Bank Australia.

Sridhar is presently Founding Partner of Vedas Group LLC, Chairman & Founder of ​SSC Advisory LLC, and Senior Advisor to SVX Group​ and Partner, Kore Fusion, a boutique global payments consulting firm​. ​

​Sridhar is a Co-founder of the Global Payments Council, World e-money council, a board member of various payment networks and industry bodies and is recognized as an industry expert on retail distribution, payments and digital & mobile commerce through published articles and appearances at industry conferences.​ Sridhar has a Masters Degree in Computer Science from Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, Management Degree from Australian Graduate School of Management and Advanced Management Program from Stanford Business School. ​

Harry “Bud” Deffebach
Bud has extensive experience in intellectual property law and the monetization and licensing of intellectual property. He was a Patent Attorney for the Atlanta, GA based intellectual property law firm Jones & Askew, with broad experience in patent prosecution, licensing and trademark/copyright litigation. Bud also served as Senior Licensing and Litigation Counsel for the semiconductor sector of Harris Corporation, where he was responsible for all patent litigation and a licensing program that resulted in hundreds of millions of dollars in royalties. In 1997, Bud joined ATLC, Ltd., a patent licensing firm, as a Partner. ATLC has generated over $2 billion in royalties for its clients, including entities such as AT&T, Stanford University, Harris Corporation, Kodak and Cypress Semiconductor. He is an active board member, investor and advisor to start-ups including Audigence, Sarda, Small Demons, Tasting Room, TireVan, ZippSlip, Matt’s Cabash and others. Bud received his BSEE with honors from the University of Florida and his JD with high honors from Emory University.

Rob Soni
Rob is a Special Limited Partner at Matrix Partners, a Director at several private and public companies and Chairman of ZippSlip. Before joining Matrix, Rob was Managing General Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners where he led the firm’s investments in Powertel (acquired by Voicestream for $8.7 billion), Sirocco (acquired by Sycamore for $2.7 billion), Bladelogic (NASDAQ:BLOG before being acquired by BMC for approximately $900 million), and Broadsoft (NASDAQ:BSFT), among others.

Prior to BVP, Rob was an Associate in the Boston office of the Boston Consulting Group where he worked with industrial, technology and health care clients. He is a past member of the Executive Committee of the National Venture Capital Association, the Global Semiconductor Alliance and several charity, educational and foundation boards. Over the course of his career, Rob has produced aggregate transaction value of over $20 billion, with his most recent exit being the acquisition of Bytemobile by Citrix in the summer of 2012.

Rob is also an active private investor in over 15 private companies and advises several venture firms. Rob is an honors graduate of Harvard College and a Rotary Scholar.

Scot Wingo
Scot Wingo served as Chief Executive Officer of ChannelAdvisor Corporation and President of ChannelAdvisor Corporation at CA Marketplaces, Inc. Scot co-founded ChannelAdvisor Corporation in 1999 and previously served as its Chief Executive Officer from 2001 to April 28, 2015 leading from inception through to a successful IPO in 2013. He has been the Executive Chairman at ChannelAdvisor Corporation since May 4, 2015 and served as its Chairman since 2001. He serves as an Advisory Board and Investor at Cofounders Capital. He serves as a Member of Corporate Advisory Board at Virtual Heroes, Inc. He serves as a Member of Advisory Board at Windsor Circle, Inc. He serves as a Director of Shop.org. Scot served as the General Manager at GoTo Auctions, Chief Executive Officer, and Co-Founder of AuctionRover.com. He served as the Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Stingray Software. He has been a Director of ChannelAdvisor Corporation since 2001. Scot has received numerous awards including Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year and Triangle Business Journal’s 40 under 40. He received a Master’s in Computer Science Degree from North Carolina State University and a Bachelors of Computer Science degree from the University of South Carolina.