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Non-dilutive Funding and Ways to Bootstrap Your Startup Company

  • 20 Sep 2016
  • 6:00 PM - 8:45 PM
  • Microsoft Technology Center, One Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA.



John Toomey, CEO, Celeriss, Inc., presentation

Richard (Rick) Lusignea, President, Fulcrum Solutions, Inc., presentation

Stephen Y. Chow, Esq., Partner, Burns & Levinson, LLP, presentation

Are you a founder? Are you trying to start your own business but don’t have a trust fund to get it off the ground?  Are you looking for ways to raise capital without giving up a huge chunk of equity?  Non-dilutive Funding and bootstrapping could be your solution.

As a savvy entrepreneur you have many funding options to choose from. Very few startups actually require VC funding as a initial funding source. If you want to learn about practical methods to finance your startup using creative techniques without giving up equity, this event is for you!

So if you'd like to avoid giving up equity before you have to, come and listen to successful speakers how they did it. This session will bring together experts who have built great companies, who have used non-dilutive funding or bootstrapping techniques to move ahead from bright idea through prototype or minimum viable product, beta, and beyond without giving up equity.


John Toomey, CEO, Celeriss, Inc.,

Mr. Toomey is currently the CEO and one of three founding shareholders of Celeriss, Inc an innovative broadband solution company. He is also a partner with The Portfolio Partnership, a group of senior executives that work alongside company management to help them scale their companies either organically or by acquisition. Prior to this John was CEO of Visible Inventory, Inc a startup company using sensor based technology to manage and control inventory. In a turnaround situation the company raised the funding and reengineered the products for the targeted markets. Visible Inventory was sold to its largest customer and now has a large installed base of it products.

John was also one of three founding shareholders of White Mountain DSP, Inc. a technology startup taken to a mature company and subsequently acquired by Analog Devices, Inc.  John has held senior management positions at Warren Power Systems, Inc, GCA Corporation and Baird Corporation, all technology based companies.

John holds a BSBA majoring in Accounting from University of Massachusetts and an MBA concentrating in Management and International Business from Southern New Hampshire University.  http://www.linkedin.com/in/johnetoomey/

Richard (Rick) Lusignea, President, Fulcrum Solutions, Inc.

Rick is a business development professional specializing in capture and proposal management to obtain federal, state, and commercial funding for contract research and development. Through Fulcrum Solutions Inc. Mr. Lusignea works with entrepreneurial companies to identify and qualify non-dilutive funding sources, and strategically align client capabilities with customer requirements. Rick is an expert in proposal writing, managing large and small proposal teams, and obtaining funding that leads to new products. Mr. Lusignea has over 20 years’ experience and has developed new business with most of the US government agencies. In addition to Fulcrum Solutions, Rick led new business development activities as the Capture Director at QinetiQ North America, Business Development Manager at Boston Engineering Corporation, and COO of Triton Systems Inc. Rick led efforts at Foster-Miller Inc. to grow a successful operating division almost entirely through non-dilutive contract R&D funding, employing over 20 professionals. He also negotiated several successful commercial licensing agreements, resulting in millions of dollars in non-dilutive fees and royalties. Rick holds a BS from Lehigh University and a SM from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, both in Mechanical Engineering.

Stephen Y. Chow, Esq., Partner, Burns & Levinson, LLP

Over three decades of practice, Attorney Stephen Y. Chow has developed numerous patent portfolios and strategies for chemical, electrical, information technology and life sciences enterprises, litigated patent, copyright, trademark, trade secret, antitrust, unfair competition, international trade, telecommunications and e-commerce cases before state and federal courts and agencies. Mr. Chow has coordinated or served as an expert in litigation before foreign tribunals. He has also advised manufacturers, telecommunications carriers, commercial exchanges and educational, financial and research institutions on commercial, legislative and regulatory matters, particularly in internal policies and development of new services and products, as well as in early-stage financing. Mr. Chow sees himself as a strategist and trouble-shooter for technology companies in financial, governance and intellectual property disputes and development. In particular, he offers integrated patent, technology and business prosecution, assessment and enforcement with the commensurate benefits.

Since 1995, Mr. Chow has taught corporate, intellectual property and litigation practice at Suffolk University Law School, including the perennial “Counseling Technology-Leading Emerging Enterprises.” In 1997, he was elected to the American Law Institute, for which he has been active on consultative committees on contract, corporate, employment, intellectual property, international and privacy law.

Gary Robinson is an active NIH and NSF early stage project grant reviewer having reviewed in detail over 200 grants and participated in funding decisions on likely double that number. He is an early stage drug development specialist with preclinical, regulatory, clinical, and CMC planning and execution experience. He has worked in drugs, biologics, and devices in diverse clinical fields. He is and has been a financial and intellectual angel investor and venture catalyst investing money and/or time and/or contacts in co-founding or developing companies or projects. To date, Gary has provided active participation in the corporate development of multiple early stage start-ups and has guided projects for early fundraising of >$100M, which includes accessing grant funding. From 2012 he has been an active member as an industry representative completing variously technical and/or commercial grant reviews on SBIR Phase 1 and 2 panels for the NSF on drug delivery, biomedical engineering, and smart health. Since 2011 he has also been a chartered and ad hoc member on a Special Emphasis Panel for the NIH’s NINDS typically reviewing SBIRs, U01s, R21s, R33, and R01’s. Gary has made AND lost significant resources (money and/or time) investing in biotech projects, but he is a committed serial entrepreneur that willingly and freely helps small companies and not-for-profits. He is currently on sabbatical from being a successful consultant having been recruited to help one company. Gary has a PhD in inflammatory arthritis from King’s College (U. of London) and completed post-doctoral positions at King’s College and at Vanderbilt University. He does not want to nor has ever worked for a large company. 


Stacey Arbetter, Co-founder & CEO of Mutt Maps, Inc., http:/muttmaps.com/

Stacey is a Serial Entrepreneur of several successful startups including the leading supplier in North America of an industrial product for the transportation industry and, previously, the largest independent exporter of automobiles in the U.S., excel at identifying market opportunities. She is motivated by new challenges where complex, innovative problem-solving skills and business strategy can bring direct and immediate value to an enterprise.  Stacey’s latest startup is Mutt Maps.  Mutt Maps is a web app developing a community for pet owners that delivers community-reviewed, geolocated, pet-friendly places, services and products.


Dr. Karthik Ganesan, Program Director, Cognizant Technology Solutions,

Dr. Karthik Ganesan is the American Program Director for Business Consulting and Enterprise IT at Cognizant Technology Solutions, a NASDAQ listed, Fortune 500 US corporation. He manages a multimillion dollar portfolio of services for corporate customers, leading globally distributed teams to provide domain knowledge and technical   services.

Dr. Ganesan’s experience spans applying optimization and domain knowledge skills to manufacturing, supply chain, logistics and retail operations in large corporations. As a domain leader, he manages teams spread across the USA, Latin America, Europe and India for delivering business and IT projects. He focuses on solving logistics operations and supply chain management and manufacturing problems faced by his customers. He is responsible for leading the business center in implementing full-life cycle solutions to his customers within competitive, time constrained contractual terms. His responsibility extends to internal and external team management, customer satisfaction and securing repeat business for his group. Prior to taking this industry position, he spent over a decade in graduate level teaching and research in both engineering and business schools.

Where: Microsoft Technology Center, One Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA. 02142 Phone: (781) 487-6400. MTC is across from the Kendall Square Post Office. Exit Kendall Square T Station to Main Street. Once you exit the station, head down the Marriott side of Main Street going in the direction of Boston/the Longfellow Bridge. The Technology Center entrance is located across from the new park at the confluence of Main Street and Broadway. See also: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/mtc/locations/boston_directions.aspx


Admission: General admission is $10. Free to ENET members. Free Pizza and soft drinks will be served. Advanced registration is requested but not necessary.