Portfolio

Team

  • All
  • Silicon Valley
  • London
  • Tel Aviv

Young Sohn

President & CSO,
Samsung Electronics

Young Sohn is president and chief strategy officer for Samsung Electronics, and Chairman of the Board, Harman International. He leads development and strategy for global innovation, investment and new business creation. Young led the $8 billion acquisition of Harman International Industries.

Prior to joining Samsung Electronics, Young served as CEO of Oak Technologies, Agilent Semiconductor (now Avago) and Inphi Corporation. Under his leadership as CEO and board member, he took PLX Technologies, Synnex Technologies and Inphi public. He also has served on the Boards of ARM, Synnex Corporation and Cymer, Inc.

He serves on the MIT Sloan School North America Board, is a senior advisor to the private equity firm Silver Lake Partners, is a member of the board of directors at Cadence, is a board member of the Global Semiconductor Alliance (GSA), and is an advisor for the University of California Innovation Council. Young also was a senior advisor for the MIT Media Lab’s One Laptop per Child. Young holds a BS in electrical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania and MS from the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Shankar Chandran

Vice President & Managing Director

Shankar Chandran is Managing Director and Head of the Samsung Catalyst Fund (SCF), Samsung Electronics’ early-stage venture capital investment fund focused on core technology areas including smart machines, Internet of Things, smart health, deep learning/AI, cloud infrastructure and device level technologies.

Previously, Shankar was part of the founding team at Panorama Capital and has been an active venture investor for 15 years at Panorama Capital and JP Morgan Partners. He has held various engineering, business development and management roles at Applied Materials, Inc., and has been granted eight patents as the primary inventor. He also serves on the Advisory Board at the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Santa Clara University, and has served as a director or observer on the boards of over ten companies.

Shankar holds an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an M.S. in Materials Science from Arizona State University, and a Bachelor of Technology degree in Metallurgical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (BHU), India.

Francis Ho

Vice President & Managing Director

Dr. Francis Ho is the Managing Director of the Samsung Catalyst Fund. Francis has a background in venture capital, business development, strategy consulting, marketing, and engineering, with extensive operating experience in multiple industries including semiconductors, optics, networking, and storage. Prior to Samsung, he was vice president of Strategic Marketing at Inphi Corporation and has held roles at McKinsey & Company, JP Morgan Partners, and ONI Systems.

Francis holds a Ph.D. in physics from Stanford University, where he was a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, and holds a M.S. in applied physics and a B.S. in physics from the California Institute of Technology. He holds six U.S. patents relating to semiconductor technologies.

Christopher Chu

Managing Director

Christopher Chu is a Managing Director of the Samsung Catalyst Fund (SCF), Samsung Electronics’ early-stage venture capital investment fund focused on core technology. Chris currently focuses on Smart Machines and Digital Health investments, but also covers Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Mobile technologies, and device level solutions.

Chris has been a Partner at Pacific Venture Partners where he led investments in communications, consumer electronics, and semiconductor technologies. Combined with his previous investment roles at Crescendo Ventures, Worldview Technology Partners, and CMEA Ventures, he has helped to manage investments in dozens of startups for over 15 years. Chris has also held business and engineering positions at VLSI Technology (Philips), AnyDATA, National Semiconductor, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and IBM Watson Research. In addition, he was a member of the charter class of the Kauffman Fellowship in venture capital.

Chris holds an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, MS in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, and BS in Electrical Engineering from The California Institute of Technology.

Eyal Yanai

Business & Portfolio Development

Eyal Yanai is Head of Business Development for Samsung Catalyst Fund, Samsung Electronics' early-stage venture capital investment fund focused on core technology areas including smart machines, Internet of Things, Digital Health, Deep Learning / AI, Cloud Infrastructure and Device Level Technologies. Eyal works closely with portfolio companies to identify internal collaboration opportunities and win Samsung as a customer/partner.

Previously, Eyal served in Samsung’s Global Strategy Group leadership team in South Korea. For four years, Eyal worked with Samsung’s c-level executives in helping to define roadmap and go-to-market strategies of some of the company’s key products in areas of Consumer Electronics, Semiconductors and Retail. Prior to Samsung, Eyal was a Consultant at Trigger Foresight, a boutique consulting firm that got acquired by Deloitte Consulting. Earlier in his career, Eyal was a Semiconductor R&D Engineer and Product Manager for TowerJazz, a global specialty foundry.

Eyal holds an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Additionally he holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and a B.A. in Physics from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology.

Jeesung Lee

Finance & Accounting

Jeesung is a head of Finance at Samsung Catalyst Fund, Samsung Electronics’ early-stage venture capital investment fund focused on core technology areas including smart machines, Internet of Things, smart health, deep learning/AI, cloud infrastructure and device level technologies.

Prior to joining Samsung, she was an accounting manager at AIM Infrastructure Funds, a private equity firm focused on infrastructure industries and a manager in Finance and Operation at Northern Light Venture Capital, an early-stage venture capital firm focused on opportunities in China. Jeesung was also a Financial Manager at Newton Technology Partners, an early-stage cross-border venture capital firm based in Seoul, Korea and Palo Alto.

Jeesung holds a B.S. in Finance from Seoul National University and holds a CPA certificate.

Jonathan Charles

Principal

Jonathan Charles is a Principal at the Samsung Catalyst Fund (SCF), Samsung Electronics’ early-stage venture capital fund focused on core technologies related to Internet of Things, autonomous & connected car, digital health, artificial intelligence, cloud infrastructure and component level technologies for devices. Prior to Samsung, Jonathan held business development and product marketing roles at venture-backed RoamBI (a.k.a. Mellmo). His Silicon Valley experiences also include working at Apple in a business development capacity and as an investment banker at Jefferies & Co. During and directly after business school, Jonathan also served as an investment associate at Apjohn Ventures, an early stage venture fund.

Jonathan holds an MBA and MHA from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor. He also holds an MS from the Carnegie Mellon Schools of Computer Science and Business and has completed an MPH from the Tulane School of Public Health. His undergraduate studies were completed at Loyola Marymount. Jonathan is also Kauffman Venture Capital Fellow (Class 21).

Will Fung

Associate

Will Fung is an Associate at Samsung Catalyst Fund, where he is part of a team that leads investment in early-stage disruptive companies in a variety of sectors including Automotive, AI, Data Center Infrastructure, IoT, and Device-level technologies.

Prior to joining Samsung, Will was an early employee at Kovio (acquired by Thin Film), a startup that developed a printed silicon electronics platform with applications in the NFC, retail security, and display industries. At Kovio, Will held various engineering, product management, and business development roles.

Will holds an MBA from the Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Toronto.

Chen Zhou

Associate

Chen Zhou focuses on digital health investment activities for Samsung Catalyst Fund. She’s also interested in smart machines, Internet of Things, smart health, deep learning/AI, cloud infrastructure and device level technologies.

Prior to joining Samsung, she was a marketing manager at Affymetrix (acquired by Thermo Fisher Scientific in 2016). Chen was also on the investment teams of Aphelion Capital in San Francisco, Northern Light Venture Capital in Beijing and Healthbox in Chicago. Earlier in her career, she had TMT investment banking experience at Barclays Capital.

Chen holds an MBA from Kellogg School of Management of Northwestern University and a B.A. in Applied Math and Economics from Colby College.

David (Dede) Goldschmidt

Managing Director

David (Dede) Goldschmidt is Managing Director (Israel) of the Samsung Catalyst Fund, Samsung Electronics’ early-stage venture capital investment fund focused on core technology areas including smart machines, Internet of Things, digital health, deep learning/AI, cloud infrastructure and device level technologies.

Previously, David was Founder and General Partner of Valley Venture Capital. Prior to that, he was the Managing Partner and CEO at Mofet Technology Fund, a publicly traded venture capital firm. At both firms, David was an active investor supporting portfolio companies both financially and operationally.

Earlier in his career, David served as Vice President of Product Management, Product Marketing and Business Development at ADC Broadband Multiservice Access Division (Nasdaq: ADCT). Prior to his tenure at ADC, he managed the Business Development group for Teledata Communications (Nasdaq: TLDCF, acquired by ADC).

David holds an M.S. in Solid State Physics and a B.S. in Mathematics and Physics from the Tel Aviv University.

Rutie Adar

Head of SSIC, Israel

Rutie Adar has been heading Samsung’s Strategy and Innovation Center, Israel since 2013. She has been the main focal point for startups, mature companies and academia to explore potential collaborations with Samsung’s innovation platforms. Some of these collaborations included investments and incubation. The Israeli center operates a local incubator which hosts very early stage startups engaging in close collaboration and mentoring.

Rutie has been working in the consumer semiconductors industry during the past 27 years. She started her career developing image processing and parallel processing algorithms. In the past 20 years Rutie held various managerial positions in marketing, strategy, planning and business development. She joined Samsung in 2010 for technology sourcing for Samsung’s component business.

She has B.S. and M.S. in mathematics and computer science from the Hebrew University Jerusalem and MBA from Tel Aviv University.

Rutie has passion for studying and recently she finished her B.A. in political science and international affairs and she studies now for her M.A. in political communications at Tel Aviv University which will be her fifth degree.

Amit Shofar

Principal

Amit Shofar is an Investment Principal at Samsung Catalyst Fund, part of SSIC, Israel team.

Prior to Samsung, Amit spent 10 years as VP Business Development at Discretix (acquired by ARM), an embedded security provider for the mobile and semiconductors markets. Before Discretix, Amit was in charge of technical services at Trivnet (acquired by Gemalto), a commerce platform provider for telecom operators.

Amit has BA in Computer Science and Management from Tel Aviv University.

Oren Aharon

Principal

Oren Aharon is a principal at the Samsung Catalyst Fund (SCF) and responsible for the operation of the Samsung Strategy and Innovation Center Incubator in Israel.

Previously, Oren was a founder and co-founder of several startups: Kadoor Microelectonics, Vectorious Medical, Y-Sensors and Cytopx. He has been a multi-disciplinary engineer for seventeen years, held various roles in several companies.

Oren holds a Ph.D in E.E. from the Israel Institute of Technology (Technion), an MBA from Haifa University, Israel, a B.A in Physics, and a BSc and MSc in Materials Engineering.

Ekaterina Almasque

Managing Director

Ekaterina Almasque is Managing Director (Europe) of the Samsung Catalyst Fund, Samsung Electronics’ early-stage venture capital investment fund focused on core technology areas including smart machines, Internet of Things, digital health, deep learning/AI, cloud infrastructure and device level technologies.

For over ten years prior to that, Ekaterina was part of several corporate and independent venture capital funds in Silicon Valley and Europe, including EMC and Siemens Venture Capital. Ekaterina was also a founding partner of a global private equity advisory firm specializing in high-tech growth companies with $1B+ markets in the technology and environmental sectors, where she led investments in the US, Brazil, and Europe. And before that, she served in executive roles at Siemens Corporate Technology in Germany and at Amadeus in France.

Ekaterina holds an MBA from IMD. Additionally she holds an M.S. in Software Science and an M.S. in Economics from St. Petersburg’s State Technical University.

Roy Hamans

Associate

Dr. Roy Hamans is investment manager in Europe for the Samsung Catalyst Fund. Prior to Samsung Roy was managing partner of a venturing firm, led investments and actively supported innovative companies financially and strategically across a range of industries, as well as held various roles managing and (re) structuring investment funds and programs.

Roy holds a Ph.D. in Engineering from Cambridge University (UK), an MBA from IMD Lausanne (Switzerland), as well as followed executive education at Harvard Business School (US).

Contact

  • Silicon Valley
  • London
  • Tel Aviv
  • Seoul
2440 Sand Hill Road, Suite 302
Menlo Park, CA 94025
1-650-223-7898
catalyst@samsung.com
4 Hahoshlim St.
Entrance B, #1 floor
Herzliya
Israel
+972-3-7536248
catalyst@samsung.com
Cheil London
The Crane Building
22 Lavington Street
London SE1 0NZ
+44 (0) 207 593 9300
catalyst@samsung.com
1, Samsung-ro, Giheung-gu, Yongin-si,
Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea 17113
catalyst@samsung.com
Investment Breadth

In addition to Samsung Catalyst Fund, Samsung NEXT invests in software solutions and services, while Samsung Ventures provides mid- and later-stage investments focused on current Samsung’s business.

Samsung NEXT

Seed and Early Stage investments focused on Software Solutions and Services

Samsung Venture Investment

Mid and Later Stage investments focused on current Samsung’s business