Dr. Vinay Nair
Founding and Managing Partner
Dr. Vinay Nair is the Founding and Managing Partner of Ada Investments, an equities-based investment platform. Ada has developed a unique program of systematic and consistent investment strategies globally by applying innovative research ideas in a practical manner. The firm has offices in New York, NY and Mumbai, India. He is also a visiting professor of finance at The Wharton School. He started Ada after working as a portfolio manager and research director at a multi-strategy hedge fund, Old Lane Partners which was acquired by Citibank.
Prior to becoming an investment manager, Dr. Nair was an Assistant Professor of Finance at The Wharton School where he developed a course on private equity and acquisitions for MBA students. He has also offered the course as a visiting professor at INSEAD and the Indian School of Business. Dr. Nair has been published in leading finance journals, and was quoted in several news media, in topics related to Investment Management, Emerging Markets, Sustainability, Corporate Governance, and Corporate Finance. He has also delivered talks on these topics to several audiences including universities as well as practitioner and policy forums. He is the author of 'Investing for Change' (Oxford University Press, 2008), a book on the use of social variables in investment management.
Dr. Nair completed his PhD in Financial Economics from the Stern School of Business at New York University with an award for the best thesis. His undergraduate studies were at the Indian Institute of Technology, where he was awarded the Governor's Gold Medal.
Dr. Bilge Yilmaz
Dr. Bilge Yilmaz is a Senior Partner of Ada Investments. He is also a Professor of Finance at the Wharton School. Before moving to Wharton, he taught at the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, and held visiting positions at the University of Chicago and INSEAD.
He received his B.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Physics from Boğaziçi University, and his M.A. and PhD in Economics from Princeton University.
Sundaram V. Rajagopal (Raj)
Sundaram V. Rajagopal (Raj) is a Senior Partner of Ada Investments. Raj was a Managing Director of Starwood Capital Group, where he led the firm’s activities in Asia and evaluated both public and private opportunities in the region. Before that, he was a Managing Director of Lehman Brothers’ Real Estate Partners. Prior to that, he held executive positions at Third Point and in Starwood’s US offices. Raj has also spent several years as an engineer and an architect and has executed several bridge and building projects. Raj has an MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School, a Masters in Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley and a Bachelors in Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.
Senior Partner and Chief Operating Officer
Sachin Shah is a Senior Partner and Chief Operating Officer of Ada Investments. Over the past 16 years, Mr. Shah has built and led multiple businesses within the financial services and investment management industry.
Prior to joining Ada, Mr. Shah was responsible for developing and managing the Emerging Manager Fund Allocation platform at RBC Capital Markets. In addition, he was a Senior Member of the Prime Brokerage management team and Global Prime Services Operating Committee.
Prior to 2007, when RBC acquired Carlin Financial Group, Mr. Shah was a Senior Partner at Carlin and a core member of the group driving strategic and operational initiatives across the broker-dealer and proprietary trading platform. In that capacity, he was responsible for the Prime Brokerage division and managing market risk across the firm. Prior to 2004, Mr Shah was a Founding Partner at Nextgen Trading, LLC, a proprietary trading and software company that was merged into Carlin.
In his earlier years, Mr. Shah worked in equity research for US Trust, RBC, and Bank of America and earned a Bachelors in Business Administration in Finance from George Washington University.
Senior Partner, Ada Emerging Markets
Delano Franco is a Senior Partner of Ada Emerging Markets. Prior to joining Ada, he was the Founder and Managing Partner of Behavior Capital Management in Brazil. Delano has also served as the CIO at BNY Mellon Arx, Managing Director at BNY Mellon Asset Management and Executive Director at Mellon Brazil. Prior to that, he was a Director at DDF Technologia and a Macroeconomic Analyst at Banco Icatu. Delano received his B.S. and M.S. degree in Economics from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janerio.
Dr. Chris Mayer
Senior Advisory Partner, Ada Real Estate
Dr. Christopher Mayer is an Senior Advisory Partner of Ada Real Estate. He is also Paul Milstein Professor of Real Estate at Columbia Business School, where he previously served as Senior Vice Dean and Director of the Paul Milstein Center for Real Estate. Prior to joining Ada, Dr. Mayer was Research Director and Board Member of Oak Hill REIT Management, a real estate-focused hedge fund, from 2004-2011. Dr. Mayer earned his PhD in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1993 and previously held positions at The Wharton School and the Federal Reserve.
Dr. Matt Rhodes-Kropf
Investor Partner, Chairman
Professor Matthew Rhodes-Kropf is a member of the Entrepreneurial Management Unit at Harvard Business School, where he teaches the Venture Capital and Private Equity course, and specializes in mergers and acquisitions, venture capital, hedge funds, and corporate governance. Professor Rhodes-Kropf is also currently the Chairman of Ada Investments, an innovative alternative asset management firm which manages and implements a unique program of systematic and consistent investment strategies globally. He is also an advisor to Correlation Ventures, a new breed of venture capital firm that leverages world-class analytics to make faster and better venture investment decisions. Moreover, he is a director at Xenex and at Neighbourhood Trust, a credit union and financial education program focused on low-income individuals, and on the board of advisors of Duke University’s Graduate School.
Previously Professor Rhodes-Kropf founded RK Ventures, an early-stage venture capital company with a focus on finance, technology, and biotech companies. RK Ventures funded companies— including Rackspace (NYSE: RAX), Avid Radiopharmaceuticals (sold to Eli Lilly), Cardiac Concepts, Xenex, and Axioma— that have gone on to raise an aggregate of over $200 million from leading institutions and create billions in market value. Professor Rhodes-Kropf has served as acting CFO of and member of the board of Avid Radiopharmaceuticals since its founding. Professor Rhodes-Kropf was formerly the Daniel W. Stanton Associate Professor of Business at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business, where he received the Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence.
A graduate of Duke University, Professor Rhodes-Kropf holds a BA in computer science and economics and an MA and Ph.D. in economics.
Dr. G. Felda Hardymon
Investor Partner, Capital Strategy
Dr. G. Felda Hardymon is a Senior Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners and the MBA Class of 1975 Professor of Management Practice at Harvard Business School.
Dr. Hardymon joined Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP) as a general partner in 1981. BVP is among the oldest venture firms, and invests approximately $250 million annually worldwide and has over $3 billion under management. At BVP, Dr. Hardymon has led BVP's investment in a number of young companies in the software, communications and retail sectors.
Dr. Hardymon served on the Board of Directors of the National Venture Capital Association for a number of years in the 90's where he was Chairman of the Tax Committee. He currently serves on seven private company boards as well as on the board of directors of Silicon Valley Bancshares (NASDAQ:SIVB). He advises several Venture Capital and Private Equity firms by sitting on investment committees and LP advisory boards. In 2010 he was the recipient of the NVCA’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
Dr. Hardymon joined the HBS faculty in 1998, and with Josh Lerner, developed the second-year MBA elective Venture Capital and Private Equity. He teaches in--and has been course head for--the Private Equity and Venture Capital Executive Education program held each fall.
Dr. Hardymon graduated from Rose Polytechnic Institute with a degree in mathematics. He attended Duke University, where he earned a Ph.D. in mathematics and remained at Duke to teach, eventually serving as Duke's Director of Systems and Research. He left Duke, and an academic career, to attend HBS (MBA '79, Baker Scholar), and in 1979 joined Business Development Services, Inc. (BDSI), the venture capital subsidiary of General Electric.
At BDSI, Dr. Hardymon became a Vice President and was an investor in the start-up of Stratus Computer (the second fault-tolerant computer company, later sold to Ascend), the turnaround of Western Digital (a communications chip company, later to become a disk drive company), and the growth financing of Ungermann-Bass (the first local-area network company, later sold to Newbridge Networks).
Dr. Hardymon is a recipient of the National Venture Capital Association Lifetime Achievement award.
Investor Partner, Capital Strategy
Tom Tinsley is an advisory director at General Atlantic, a global private equity firm, where he has worked since 1999. He provides specific expertise in strategy and global expansion, and is a director at two GA portfolio companies: Net 1 and Critical Path. He also serves on the board of BMC Software.
Previously, Tinsley served as chairman and CEO of Baan Company, NV, and as a director at McKinsey & Company, where he worked for 18 years.
Currently, he serves on the boards of BMC Software, and Guidestar USA, Inc.
Tinsley received a BA from the University of Notre Dame in 1975 and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1978.
Investor Partner, Product Strategy
Minder Cheng has spent his career in strategic management roles at the world’s leading financial institutions. Until July 2010, Cheng was with BlackRock in San Francisco as chief investment officer for index equity and capital markets as well as a member of the firm’s operating committee. Cheng joined BlackRock following its 2009 acquisition of Barclays Global Investors (BGI), where he was a member of the firm’s executive committee and worked in a variety of positions for 10 years, including as chief investment officer of BGI’s equity and capital markets worldwide. Within this critical role, he was responsible for active equity, index equity, transition management, securities lending and cash products, as well as securities finance, corporate governance, and equity, foreign exchange and futures trading activities. Cheng has also held research, strategy and proprietary trading roles at Convergence Asset Management in Connecticut, Sumitomo Finance International in London, Salomon Brothers in Tokyo, and the New York Stock Exchange in New York. In addition to serving on ParAccel’s strategic advisory board, Cheng serves on the board of directors at Investment Technology Group, a leading agency research broker and financial technology firm.
Investor Partner, Product Strategy
Mr. Kranefuss joined Warburg Pincus as an Executive-in-Residence (EIR) in 2012. Mr. Kranefuss will work to help Warburg Pincus identify and evaluate investment opportunities in the areas of exchange-traded funds (ETFs), index investing and asset management, particularly in Europe, Asia and Latin America.
Mr. Kranefuss was the architect and Global Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of iShares, part of Barclays Global Investors (BGI), where he built the largest global ETF platform. Mr. Kranefuss oversaw the global expansion of iShares from launch in 2000 to over $600B in assets in 2010. While at BGI, Mr. Kranefuss was a member of the Executive Committee, and – in addition to running iShares - managed all of BGI’s institutional indexing, money market, asset allocation, portfolio restructuring, securities lending and private equity businesses, which comprised total assets of more than $1.5 trillion. Subsequent to the acquisition of BGI by BlackRock, Mr. Kranefuss worked on post-merger integration and transition management before departing BlackRock in 2010.
||Ada has a 15 full time and 2 part time member team including 12 investment professionals focused on research and trading in New York, Mumbai (India) and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil).