PALM SPRINGS, Calif., Nov. 17, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Three entrepreneurial leaders from KAYAK, MedExpress Urgent Care and SKYDEX Technologies Inc. received the Ernst & Young Venture Capital Award of Excellence on Saturday, November 17, at Ernst & Young 's 2012 Strategic Growth Forum® in Palm Springs, CA. Square 1 Bank co-sponsored the awards.
"There is no debating the fact that entrepreneurs are fueling our economic recovery, and venture capitalists do much more than merely provide capital to those entrepreneurs. They mentor them, provide access to valuable networks and offer the wisdom they have gained by investing in numerous enterprises, both successful and unsuccessful," said Bryan Pearce, Americas Director, Entrepreneur Of The Year® and Venture Capital Advisory Group, Ernst & Young LLP. Clearly, venture capitalists play an outsized role in the American economy. They fund innovation and improve productivity and we're proud today to recognize companies that have truly benefitted from these important relationships.
The Venture Capital (VC) Award of Excellence winners are selected from those Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® regional winners whose companies have been backed by venture capital funding. The recipients were selected on the basis of VC funding, equity and revenue growth, EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) margins, and the stories of their founding. The winners were selected by an independent panel of judges, including: Brad Feld, Co-founder and Managing Director, Foundry Group; Lawrence D. Lenihan, Jr., Founder, CEO and Managing Director, FirstMark Capital; Adele C. Oliva, Partner, Quaker Partners; Jon Sakoda, Partner, NEA; and Deepak Sindwani, Partner, Bain Capital Ventures.
"Square 1 is excited to continue our support of this great event and the Venture Capital Award of Excellence," said Doug Bowers, President and Chief Executive Officer of Square 1 Bank. "As a bank founded by entrepreneurs, serving entrepreneurs and their investors, Square 1 is committed to the entrepreneurial and venture capital community. We are proud to work with Ernst & Young to recognize innovators and investors in the venture capital space for their contributions, as they support job creation and fuel economic growth."
Highlights from the 2012 Venture Capital Award of Excellence winners' stories include:
- KAYAK, Paul English, Founder & Chief Technology Officer:
As one of the leading travel sites, KAYAK receives millions of searches a day. Though business is booming-English, a lifelong technology entrepreneur-believes in employing a small more nimble team in order to keep a finger on the pulse of their clients. He recognizes the importance of making fast decisions as in the online travel industry, any change that does not benefit the company or the customer will quickly be exposed. Clients are often surprised to find they are speaking with English himself who monitors the client comment line personally. KAYAK's performance has been growing and improving steadily-so much so-the company has developed Mobile applications, and expanded from being a search tool for flights and hotels, to a site where the user can convert these searches into purchases. KAYAK's goal is simple; to make travel easier.
- MedExpress Urgent Care, Frank W. Alderman MD, Chief Executive Officer:
MedExpress offers an innovative approach to high-quality health care in an efficient and welcoming environment while saving money for patients, employers, insurance companies and the government. Through working in emergency medicine at various independent hospitals, Alderman began to realize inefficiencies in the health care practice, specifically the overcrowded nature of emergency rooms and the inability for a patient to be able to see their primary care physician on a timely basis. Additionally, he noted that a vast majority of all cases seen in the emergency room are not emergent in nature and therefore a lower cost and more efficient option must be created to provide patients a better health care experience. This realization was what led to the initial business model, to create a walk-in medical facility that will provide a vast majority of all services offered at an emergency room or by a primary care physician at an affordable price.
- SKYDEX Technologies Inc, Mike Buchen, Chief Executive Officer:
Starting as a research and development firm developing athletic shoe components, SKYDEX Technologies Inc. has emerged as the leading provider for innovative impact and cushioning technologies. SKYDEX was introduced in 2001 by USA Retama Corporation to develop commercial and military applications using its patented technology. Since then, the company has been developing innovative attenuation solutions for blast mitigation, cushioning, impact absorption and vibration reduction for today's most important and demanding applications ever since. As CEO, Buchen is driven by his passion for the American Soldier, their families and protecting the things that really matter. Whether it is convoys across the desert, boat's patrolling the waters, troops keeping guard at the base, or aircraft surveying the airspace, SKYDEX is making service member's jobs safer and less stressful.
About Ernst & Young's Strategic Growth Markets Network
Ernst & Young's worldwide Strategic Growth Markets Network is dedicated to serving the changing needs of rapid-growth companies. For more than 30 years, we've helped many of the world's most dynamic and ambitious companies grow into market leaders. Whether working with international mid-cap companies or early stage venture-backed businesses, our professionals draw upon their extensive experience, insight and global resources to help your business achieve its potential. It's how Ernst & Young makes a difference.
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About Square 1 Bank
Square 1 Bank is a full service commercial bank dedicated exclusively to serving the financial needs of the venture capital community and entrepreneurs in all stages of growth and expansion. Square 1's expertise, focus and strong capital base provide flexible resources and unmatched support to meet our clients' needs. The bank offers tailored products and solutions aided by the latest in technological innovations. Square 1 has offices coast to coast in Austin, Boston, Denver, Durham, Los Angeles, New York, San Diego, Seattle, Silicon Valley and Washington, DC. For more information, visit www.square1bank.com.
SOURCE Ernst & Young LLP