Jon Goldman

Jon Goldman

As Managing Partner for Skybound Entertainment, Jon is focused on new businesses initiatives for the company.He has an extensive knowledge of emerging technologies and the confluence of content. He co-founded Skybound’s interactive division which developed and produced the company’s highly successful games including: Scopely’s The Walking Dead: Road to Survival. In addition to his guiding role at Skybound, Jon is a Venture Partner at Greycroft Partners. Greycroft is a venture capital investment company focused on high tech and innovative business startups. In this capacity he is an advisor to several startups and a board member of the largest children’s participatory philanthropy program in the US. Previously, Jon served as board member and CEO for two portfolio companies of Jerusalem Venture Partners in videogames and online video. He was a Founder, Chairman and CEO of Foundation 9 Entertainment, the largest independent videogame developer in the world with 11 studios and 1000 employees, ultimately selling the company in 2006. Jon started his career at a boutique investment bank focused on US-Asia strategic deals. Goldman attended Harvard and graduated magna cum laude in Asian Studies, Phi Beta Kappa, as well as the University of Kyoto and an entrepreneurial management program at UCLA Anderson School.

Lester Chen

Lester Chen is the Head of Gaming, Americas at YouTube, where he leads the company’s initiatives for driving in-region growth for YouTube’s largest content partners. As part of this, he heads efforts for securing alliances with global gaming publishers, top gaming content creators, live streamers and esports organizations. Previously, he served as the Global Head of Esports at Google, where he focused on building the business of digital rights and licensing. Additionally, he led YouTube’s advancement in product development as it relates to livestreaming, monetization, and mobile gaming. Lester is a former professional gamer with more than 10 years of experience in the esports scene. In 2018, he was recognized by Forbes magazine as one of the “30 under 30” to watch in the gaming industry. He holds a B.A. in Communications and Journalism and B.S. in Communications, Journalist and Related Programs from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Ned Sherman

For the past 20 years, Ned Sherman has worked in the entertainment, media and technology industries with a focus on dealmaking, investments, growth strategies and M&A.

He is a partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, a global professional services firm, where he leads the Digital & Technology Transactions Unit (representing top tier entertainment, tech and CE companies); director of Manatt Digital, the firm’s management consulting group; and a member of the investment committee for the Manatt Venture Fund. He is an active investor through Goal Venture Partners.

He is also Chairman and co-founder (previously CEO & Publisher) of Digital Media Wire, Inc., a marketing and strategy consulting firm that represents an A-List clientele of entertainment, media and technology brands and owns and operates media properties and events.

He has spent some time working with talent including as Global Artist Manager and General Counsel to multi-platinum, Korean-American hip-hop artist Jay Park (now signed to Roc Nation) and held legal and executive leadership positions at several media company ventures and with a boutique media-focused investment bank.

He holds a bachelor’s degree from Brown University, a master’s business degree from HEC Paris School of Management and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Texas School of Law.

Chris Petrovic

Mr. Petrovic is a games, technology and digital media veteran, with over 20 years of global experience in the sector. He currently serves as SVP and Head of Corporate Strategy, M&A and Business Development for Zynga, a leading developer of the world’s most popular social games that are played by millions of customers worldwide. Chris is responsible for driving the company’s growth through strategic M&A, partnerships and market expansion efforts, including the acquisitions of Small Giant Games, Gram Games, Peak Games board and card studio, Harpan and Puzzle Social, as well as licensing partnerships with Disney (Star Wars), Warner Brothers (Harry Potter), Univeral (Fast & Furious), HBO (Game of Thrones) and World Poker Tour.

Ann Hand

Ann Hand serves as CEO and Chairman of Super League Gaming {NASDAQ SLGG}, the leader in bringing live esports entertainment and experiences directly to the over 2 billion gamers around the world. 

Under Ann’s solid leadership, SLGG has seen exponential growth in its audience size, content production, and community engagement. Prior to joining SLGG, Ann served as CEO of clean tech start up Project Frog and held a variety of senior executive positions with BP plc. She holds a BA in Economics from DePauw University and an MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management along with executive education at Cambridge, Harvard and Stanford Universities. 

Having spent a significant part of her career abroad in China and the UK, she holds a dual US/UK citizenship, but is a proud Midwesterner at heart.

Chris Early

Chris Early joined Ubisoft’s San Francisco office in February 2010. As Vice President of Partnerships & Revenue, Early spearheads Ubisoft’s business partnerships and Business Development teams, and leads Ubisoft’s physical and digital game revenue efforts for the North, South and Central America territories.

Early brings an impressive breadth of experience with prior roles at Microsoft, most recently serving as the general manager for Windows Gaming Technology where he led development efforts designed to extend game experiences across multiple platforms and grow Microsoft’s casual and core gaming audiences. Early also served as president and chief operating officer of GameSpy and executive vice president and general manager of Mplayer. Early’s entrepreneurial exploits include founding Corporate Computer Rental and being a ComputerLand franchisee.

Early holds a BA in Economics and a BA in International Management from Claremont Men’s College.

Chris Enock

Chris Enock, the VP of Publishing for Riot Games is a marketing executive with 20 years of experience in video games. As a 10-year veteran of Riot Games, Chris oversaw the launch and growth of League of Legends from a small indie title to a global phenomenon, and pioneered the innovative marketing, messaging and community building that led to the game’s success.

After earning his BA in Computer Science from Carleton College, Chris started his career programming for racing games for startup Monster Games. He transitioned into marketing after getting an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management (part of Northwestern University). From there, Chris worked in brand management for Activision on their Dreamworks titles, then oversaw the launch of a couple Guitar Hero titles as the franchise exploded into mainstream popularity.

Chris Heatherly

Chris Heatherly is a games and media executive in Los Angeles. He worked for The Walt Disney Company for 14 yrs as it’s Vice President of Toys and later Senior Vice President of Disney Interactive where he oversaw Disney’s massively multiple online worlds and mobile gaming efforts, including Club Penguin, Star Wars Commander, Frozen Free Fall, and Disney Emoji Blitz. Most recently, he was Executive Vice President of NBCUniversal’s gaming efforts he led a push into gaming, most notably with the Jurassic World franchise, including the launch of the mobile location/AR hit, Jurassic World Alive, and a successful console game, Jurassic World Evolution. He also drove innovation in VR/XR with location based virtual reality experiences for Jurassic World and How to Train Your Dragon. Heatherly is currently working with mobile games leader N3TWORK and leading Funko Pop! Blitz, a multi-IP casual mash-up based on the successful toy brand.

Andrew Paradise

As CEO and founder of Skillz, Andrew has grown the company into the worldwide leader in mobile eSports and the fastest-growing company in America, according to Inc. Magazine. Under his leadership, Skillz has achieved an annual run-rate of $400 million in total transaction volume and raised over $50 million in funding from leading venture capitalists, banks, telecommunications companies and team owners across the NFL, MLB and NBA. A noted thought leader in the eSports industry, Andrew has been featured in prominent publications such as Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal and CNBC, and spoken at preeminent conferences including SXSW, CES and GDC. Andrew’s accomplishments have also resulted in recognition as part of the San Francisco Business Times 40 Under 40 Class of 2018. A serial entrepreneur and inventor with a successful track record, Andrew previously founded AisleBuyer, which was best known for pioneering mobile self-checkout prior to its sale to Intuit (NASDAQ: INTU) in 2012. Andrew has been the founding inventor behind companies in different technology sectors ranging from eCommerce to image recognition to HR technology.

Bruce Stein

As CEO and co-founder of aXiomatic Bruce Stein has been responsible for the strategic direction and operations of aXiomatic since it began operations in 2015. He is also a member of aXiomatic’s and Team Liquid’s Board of Directors, and brings a wealth of expertise to both companies in building IP for branded consumer products, entertainment, and intellectual property marketing on a global basis.

Bruce’s professional background includes executive management and operational experience at several world-class corporations as well as smaller start-up companies. He has served as COO/Worldwide President/Board member of Mattel, CEO Sony Interactive Entertainment (PlayStation), and President/CEO of Kenner Products. As President of Kenner, Bruce transformed a small, narrowly-focused toy company into one of the country’s largest, most successful promotional companies, leading it through two major transactions and ultimately selling it to Hasbro Toys where he oversaw its growth into Hasbro’s most profitable division.

Bruce has also worked at new media, entertainment and technology companies such as Mandalay Media where he served as CEO, Radical Communication where he served as CEO/Chairman, and family entertainment studio The Hatchery which he founded and led as CEO. Bruce has has also been an ongoing strategic adviser to PE, VC and early stage media, content and internet companies including 3 Black Dot, Dreamworks SKG, Warner Bros., KPCB, Dasym Investment Strategies B.V., Lottogopher and others.

Bruce served on the Board of Directors of ViewSonic, Inc. and was Chairman of its Compensation Committee. He is an alum of YPO, served on the Board of Trustees of the Toy Manufacturers Association, and as an adviser to The Freedom Center. Bruce received a B.A. from Pitzer College and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago Booth Graduate School of Business.