TeXchange Houston Chapter Engages and Supports Technology Entrepreneurs with May 11 Dinner Seminar on Effective Advisory Boards and Risk Management Best Practices

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The Houston chapter of TeXchange continues its campaign to engage and support technology entrepreneurs. The group is hosting a dinner seminar on Wednesday, May 11 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Briar Club. The topic of the seminar is "Effective Advisory Boards, Advisors and Risk Management Best Practices." The event is open to both members and guests.

Our goal is to provide a platform through which technology business owners can learn from each other and successful technology entrepreneurs who volunteer their time and knowledge by serving as panelists at our seminars.

The Houston Chapter of Technology Entrepreneur’s Exchange (TeXchange, http://www.TeXchange.org) is continuing its campaign to attract and support Houston area technology entrepreneurs who are interested in growing their business and creating wealth while contributing to the local economy: TeXchange is encouraging members and guests to attend its May 11 dinner seminar, “Creating Wealth and Scale through Effective Advisory Boards, Advisors and Risk Management Best Practices.”

The Houston Chapter of TeXchange is part of a statewide non-profit 501(c)(3) member-based organization that supports the economic growth and prosperity of technology companies in major metropolitan areas, operating additional chapters in Dallas and Austin. TeXchange is committed to being a conduit for exchanging helpful ideas and insights that contribute to the growth of member companies through high-quality networking and continuing business education dinner seminars. TeXchange member companies typically have generated annual revenue of $1 million to $20 million and are represented by technology business leaders and entrepreneurs, venture and private equity investors, technology lenders and key supporting organizations. TeXchange complements other Houston area organizations that are focused on technology entrepreneurship and economic development.”

The May 11 TeXchange seminar will be held at The Briar Club, 2603 Timmons Lane in Houston, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. The cost to attend is $25 for members and $35 for non-members. A panel moderated by Garry Meier, Houston TeXchange Chapter chairman of the board will address several key topics:

  •     The purpose and nature of corporate governance;
  •     The roles of a company board and/or advisors;
  •     The timing and circumstances that necessitate outside advisors for making investments or strategic decisions; and,
  •     The difference between entrepreneurial and investment risk profiles.

A summary of the credentials for Meier and the panelists for the May 11 seminar is provided as follows:

  •     Newt Hamlin has started up and served as chief executive officer and board member for a variety of privately held and publicly traded companies. He has provided merger and acquisition services to more than a dozen companies. In addition to holding several prestigious board positions, he is currently the chairman of Texas Multicore Technologies, which commercializes software tools developed for NASA at Texas Tech University.
  •     Dennis Murphree is the managing general partner of Murphree Venture Partners, a series of early-stage and growth-equity venture capital funds. The firm is now one of the more active venture capital managers in the southern United States and is considered a “generalist” firm, addressing a wide variety of traditional industry categories wherein new technologies or new business models can be employed to spur growth. In December 2010, the firm was chosen by the Houston Technology Center to manage its new $100 million Houston Technology Future Fund.

Murphree also has helped to start and grow over 100 companies in the course of his career. Murphree graduated from Southern Methodist University in 1969 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics. after serving in the U.S. Air Force, he graduated from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a Master of Business Administration degree in finance.
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  •     Jack W. Plunket is the CEO of Plunket Research, Ltd., a Houston-based company that provides market research and industry information to corporate, library, academic and government markets around the world. He is the author and editor of more than 30 books. He also has been recognized as a finalist in the “Entrepreneur of the Year” competition sponsored by Ernst & Young.
  •     Garry E. Meier is the founder and chairman of The Ephor Group, an investment and advisory firm based in Houston that focuses exclusively on business-to-business mid-market technology and service providers ranging from entrepreneurs seeking fast growth to emerging enterprises looking to carve out a new niche in their industry. With more than 34 years of experience, Meier is well known as an industry thought leader and speaker on many topics, including strategic effectiveness, outsourcing, useful capital, institutional capital, economic trends and performance improvement.

The content of all seminars hosted by TeXchange is a synthesis of information, strategies and experiences that equip TeXchange members to adapt to the current business and market conditions while also preparing for effective expansion. Through an “exchange” or direct dialog with seminar leaders and group roundtable discussions, members and guests gain access to lessons learned and anecdotal information that can be applied effectively to their own business models. To deliver on the “exchange” promise, each TeXchange dinner seminar features in-depth table discussions that are facilitated by table leaders inclusive of a question and answer session with the guest speakers. Members receive a comprehensive written recap within a few business days of the dinner meeting.

TeXchange Leaders and Sponsors

“TeXchange’s leadership team members share a passion for small business. Our goal is to provide a platform through which technology business owners can learn from each other and successful technology entrepreneurs who volunteer their time and knowledge by serving as panelists at our seminars,” Meier explained. “TeXchange is unique for many reasons -- our audience demographics. our series of seminars that offer a playbook for success, our commitment to addressing current management issues and challenges, and our approach to delivering high value to our members.”

The Houston Chapter of TeXchange is governed by a local board of directors who strengthen the chapter through business relationships and affiliations. Board members for the 2010-2011 term include:

  •     Garry E. Meier, Founder and Chairman, Ephor Group
  •     President - Jeff Brown, Vice President, Corum Group
  •     Treasurer - Mike Goodwin, Co-Founder, Technology Entrepreneur's Exchange
  •     Secretary - Charles Bedard, Growth Practice Leader, Ephor Group
  •     Events Chair - Mike Eyre, Founder, Apollo Sales & Marketing Group
  •     Technology Chair – Mark Leary, Founder, Serenity Systems Inc.

The table discussion leaders include:

  •     Mike Patton – Partner, Longview Ventures, LLC
  •     John Yonkers – Chair, Vistage
  •     Scott Clingan – Managing Partner, Clingan & Co., LLC
  •     Paul Schatz – Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Interactive Network Technologies
  •     Keith Frazier – Owner and President, BirdNest Services
  •     Mike Goodwin, Co-Founder, Technology Entrepreneur’s Exchange

The Houston TeXchange sponsors are Apollo Sales & Marketing Group LLC; Aventine Hill Partners Inc.; Ephor Group; Fizer, Beck, Webster, Bentley & Scroggins; Oracle; PKF Texas; and Weaver LLP.

Other TeXchange Events

The schedule of the remaining 2010-2011 TeXchange events is as follows:

  •     Thursday, July 21, 2011

“Management Effectiveness”

This panel seminar will challenge participants to condense their business strategy into a so-called “Twitter moment,” as well as determine if a company’s measurements mirror and compliment its business strategy. The panel will also discuss the need for a company’s management process to translate into regular action items for business growth and efficiency.

  •     Thursday September 15, 2011

“Leadership and People Effectiveness”    

This seminar will discuss leadership skills as well as effectiveness. The speaker will present tips on making sure that investors believe in the integrity and abilities of a company’s employees, as well as tips on measuring progress and success in leadership skills.

  •     Thursday November 10, 2011

“Useful Capital and Financing”        

This seminar will present information on financing options, including how to identify “useful capital” providers and tips on ways that boards or advisors can be helpful when considering financing options.

Panelists for the remaining 2011 seminars will be announced four to six weeks in advance of each event. To register for TeXchange events, members and guests may contact Mike Eyre at 713-783-1038 or mde(at)apollosmg(dot)com. Attendees can also register for TeXchange events and learn more about the group at http://www.TeXchange.org.

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Laura Pennino
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