Excel Venture Management

Excel Venture Management builds companies that apply transformative life science technologies to solve problems in healthcare and beyond. The Excel investment portfolio is balanced across healthcare IT and services, diagnostics, medical devices, and life science platforms.

INVESTMENT TEAM

Rick Blume, Managing Director

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Rick Blume has been financing companies in healthcare for over three decades. His early investment banking career involved financing and banking relationships with hospitals, payers, physicians, and new biotech companies. The excitement he saw at Genentech, in its early years, led him to transition into venture capital in the mid 1980's.  Rick co-founded CB Health Ventures in 1998 where he assembled what is now the core of Excel including Steve Gullans, PhD, and Tricia Moriarty.  He is currently on the Board at Saladax Biomedical.

In each of his five prior venture funds Rick has followed the same successful strategy: invest broadly in healthcare across various sectors and stages and focus on businesses that lower costs and improve outcomes. By having savvy healthcare providers as limited partners and advisers, Rick has built up an extraordinary network to help with due diligence and market acceptance issues.

Rick has served as a director or active investor in many companies including Lantos Technologies, Cytyc (acquired by Hologic - HOLX), AbT (now OSI - OSIP), Somatogen (acquired by Baxter - BAX), EdenTec (acquired by Nellcor), Exact Sciences (EXAS), IPC The Hospitalist Company (IPCM), GeneOhm (acquired by Becton Dickinson - BDX), Zonare, US Servis (acquired by McKesson); and the former public health insurance company Washington National. In addition to Excel, Rick has been active in initiating and teaching courses in venture capital and entrepreneurship at both Boston College Carroll School of Management and Simmons College School of Management, and serving on the Boards of the Chicago Biomedical Consortium, the National Regenerative Medicine Foundation, and Stanford Associates Board of Governors. Rick did his undergraduate studies at University of the Pacific and Stanford. His MBA is from Stanford University.


Juan Enriquez, Managing Director

Juan Enriquez is a leading authority on the economic impact of life sciences on business and society and is a respected business leader and entrepreneur. Juan represents Excel on the boards of Synthetic Genomics, WellDoc, and Zipongo.

Prior to Excel, Juan was the founding Director of the Harvard Business School's Life Sciences Project, with many of his innovative thoughts captured in his bestselling book, As The Future Catches You, which provided an accurate blueprint of how a bio-based economy changes industries and corporations.

His most recent publication is Evolving Ourselves: How Unnatural Selection and Nonrandom Mutation are Changing Life on Earth which he co-authored with Steve Gullans, which describes a world where humans increasingly shape their environment, themselves, and other species. 

Following HBS, Juan became an active angel investor and founder of Biotechonomy Ventures which invested in BioTrove, Xcellerex, and Synthetic Genomics, a company he co founded with Drs. J. Craig Venter and Hamilton Smith to apply synthetic biology solutions to address global energy, medicine, clean water, and food challenges. As a business leader, advisor, and renowned speaker, Juan works directly with the CEOs of a number of Fortune 50 companies, as well as various heads of state, on how to adapt to a world where the dominant language is shifting from the digital towards the language of life. Mr. Enriquez serves on a number of boards including Cabot Corporation, the Public Interfaces Steering Committee of the Division of Earth & Life Sciences of the National Academy of Sciences, The Genetics Advisory Council of Harvard Medical School, The Chairman’s International Council of the America’s Society, and the Visiting Committee of Harvard’s David Rockefeller Center. He graduated from Harvard with a B.A. and an M.B.A., both with honors.


View Juan Enriquez's Selected Talks


Steve Gullans, PhD, Managing Director

Dr. Gullans is an experienced investor, entrepreneur, scientist and author. At Excel, he focuses on life science technology companies with a particular interest in disruptive platforms that can impact multiple industries. Steve is currently a Board Director at Cleveland HeartLab, Gemphire, Molecular Templates, NofOne, and Orionis.  He was previously a board member of Activate Networks which was acquired by Decision Resource Group, BioTrove which was acquired by Life Technologies (LIFE), Biocius Life Sciences which was acquired by Agilent Technologies, nanoMR which was acquired by DNAe and Tetraphase (TTPH).

Prior to Excel, Steve co-founded RxGen, Inc., a pharma services company where he served as CEO from 2004-2008. In 2002, Steve stepped in as a senior executive at U.S. Genomics to direct operations, recruit a new CEO, and assist with fundraising. In the 1990s, he co-developed the technology that launched CellAct Pharma GmbH, a drug development company. Steve’s experience with venture investing began in the late 1980s when he became an active advisor to small biotechs and venture investors, including being a Senior Advisor to CB Health Ventures for 10 years.

Dr. Gullans is an expert in advanced life science technologies and was a faculty member at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital for nearly 20 years. He has published more than 130 scientific papers in many leading journals, lectured internationally, and co-invented numerous patents. He recently co-authored with Juan Enriquez abook entitled, Evolving Ourselves: How Unnatural Selection and Non-Random Mutation are Changing Life on Earth, and a commentary in Nature entitled, “Genetically Enhanced Olympics Are Coming,” which describe a world where humans increasingly shape their environment, themselves, and other species. Steve received his B.S. at Union College, Ph.D. at Duke University, and postdoctoral training at the Yale School of Medicine. He is a Fellow of the AAAS and the AHA.


Caleb Winder, Managing Director

Caleb has nearly 25 years of operating, startup, and financing experience in life science and healthcare companies. He plays an instrumental role in sourcing and structuring deals and works closely with portfolio companies to form strategic partnerships and to develop commercialization and marketing strategies. He currently (or formerly) represents Excel as a Board Director or Observer at Aileron, Aventura, Ayogo, ClearData, InfoBionic, Molecular Templates, Oculus Health, ShapeUp (sold to Virgin Pulse), Saladax Biomedical, and MedVentive (sold to McKesson).

Prior to joining Excel, Caleb was a Principal at Biotechonomy Ventures, where he financed and managed several entrepreneurial ventures, including Synthetic Genomics, where he was also the Director of Finance, BioTrove (sold to Life Technologies), Biocius (sold to Agilent Technologies), and Xcellerex (sold to GE).

Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, Caleb was an award winning sales and marketing executive at medical equipment and diagnostics companies. He received his M.B.A. from Babson College, magna cum laude, where he was a Babson Fellow in the Center for Technology Enterprise. He received a B.A. in Biology with a minor in Economics from Colby College.


Gaye Bok, Venture Partner

Gaye brings more than 15 years of operating experience in business development, new product development, and strategic planning to Excel's investment process. Gaye is currently serving on the Board of QStream. Previously, Gaye headed up business and commercial development at Microbia, a bio-based chemical company.  She also served as Senior Director of Business Development of Synthetic Genomics where she was the first non-founder employee, and as Business Development Manager at Cabot Corporation. 

Gaye received an M.B.A in Finance and International Management from MIT's Sloan School and a B.A. from Harvard College.


Eric Zimmerman, Associate

Eric joined Excel Venture management in 2014 as an Associate.  Prior to joining Excel, Eric was an analyst at Santé Ventures, a healthcare venture capital firm based in his hometown of Austin. He was responsible for managing the deal flow process and focused predominately on the healthcare IT/services and biotechnology sectors.  Before Santé, Eric worked at Sofinnova Ventures in Menlo Park and at two venture-backed healthcare start-ups. 

Eric received his BA in Program II from Duke University, focusing on biotechnology and business, with distinction.


Kathryn Taylor, Associate

Prior to joining Excel, Kathryn was a project manager in The Advisory Board Company’s New Product Development group, where she led initiatives to refine the firm’s population health strategy and developed a new product offering to support health plans and provider organizations in the transition to value based care. Before the Advisory Board, Kathryn was a consultant at Putnam Associates, a pharmaceutical strategy consulting firm. While at Putnam she led projects advising clients on pricing, market access, launch strategy, and other strategic issues across therapeutic areas, including oncology/hematology, cardiology, rheumatology, and vaccines.

Kathryn received her B.A. in Quantitative Economics and International Relations from Tufts University, magna cum laude.



Susan Kish, Executive-in-Residence

Susan Kish is a senior executive with extensive experience building businesses in financial services, clean energy, and media in the US and Europe. She has been a successful entrepreneur inside large corporations and banks, as well as in start-up environments.  Most recently, Susan established the Cross Platform Initiatives team at Bloomberg LP. She was responsible for a portfolio of mandates to innovate and integrate across the media, data and analytical platforms. Susan joined Bloomberg through their acquisition of New Energy Finance, where she was Director of Knowledge Services, leading strategic marketing programs. Prior to Bloomberg and BNEF, Susan was an entrepreneur, founding First Tuesday Zurich in 1999.  Susan started her career as a banker at UBS and Chase.  Susan is an independent director and advisor on several boards.

Susan graduated from Harvard - Radcliffe College with a Magna Cum Laude degree in the History of Science.


Kevin Liang, Venture Fellow

Prior to joining Excel, Kevin was a Consultant at Putnam Associates, a pharmaceutical strategy consulting firm, where he led projects advising clients on pricing, market access, and portfolio management initiatives. He has experience across a wide range of therapeutic areas including oncology/hematology, cardiology, rheumatology, and vaccines.

Kevin received his B.A. in Economics and Health & Societies from the University of Pennsylvania, magna cum laude.  Kevin is currently attending Harvard Business School.



Shaan Gandhi, MD, DPhil, Venture Fellow

Dr. Gandhi is an entrepreneur, investor and resident physician in internal medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital. At Excel, he focuses on biopharmaceutical and healthcare IT investments. Prior to joining Excel, Shaan was a co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of Wellable, a mobile corporate wellness startup, as well as a consultant with the TriZetto Corporation, a healthcare analytics and processing firm. He is also a current trustee of the Boston Medical Library and a former trustee of the Massachusetts Medical Society.

Shaan is a graduate of Harvard Medical School and of Harvard Business School, where he was a George F. Baker Scholar. He received his DPhil in medical oncology from the University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar, and his BS with honors in biochemistry from Case Western Reserve University.