PALO ALTO, CA--(Marketwire - Oct 3, 2012) - VC Taskforce™, today announced that SVB Financial Group, the parent company of Silicon Valley Bank, and long term partner to the most innovative companies in the world as well as the premium wine industry, will be the Hospitality Sponsor for the 4th Annual Innovation Catalyst Awards Event to be held Oct. 30, 2012, at the Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club in Palo Alto, CA. This year's awards gala will honor three generations of the Draper family.
"For over a quarter of a century, Silicon Valley Bank's mission has been to help entrepreneurs succeed and our involvement with VC Taskforce's ICA Award Gala furthers this cause," said Harry Kellogg, Vice Chairman and head of strategic relationships, Silicon Valley Bank. "We are also pleased to be part of an evening honoring the Draper family, truly three generations of inspirational and visionary investors who have backed many world-class companies."
As part of its sponsorship, SVB Financial Group will be offering wines from Twomey Cellars, established in 1999 to pursue the discovery of varietals in California beyond cabernet. Twomey Cellars, which is run by managing partners and brothers David and Tim Duncan, grew out of generations of Duncan family entrepreneurship -- owners of Silver Oak Cellars. The family operates four wineries, Silver Oak in Napa Valley and Alexander Valley, and Twomey Cellars in Calistoga and Healdsburg, and own and manage vineyards throughout these regions.
During the evening, Twomey will be showcasing the following wines: the 2008 Twomey Merlot,
the 2010 Twomey Anderson Valley Pinot Noir and the 2011 Twomey Sauvignon Blanc. And, SVB will host a special drawing for a magnum of the Bordeaux-style wine. In addition, Sommelier Raymond Nasr, who is SVB director of wine programs, will be on hand during the evening to give attendees insights into the various wines.
The SVB Wine Division was formed in 1994 to serve premium wineries and vineyards. The company's first wine industry office stood as the only banking office in the United States dedicated exclusively to the premium wine industry. SVB has the largest team of commercial bankers dedicated to the wine industry of any bank nationwide. The Division has offices in Napa and Sonoma counties and serves clients in Napa, Sonoma, the Central Coast of California, Oregon and Washington.
Keynote speakers for this year's Innovation Catalyst Awards event include Kiva CEO Matt Flannery, Asset Management Founder "Pitch" Johnson and Draper Fisher Jurvetson MD Steve Jurvetson. In addition to the keynote presentations, Emcee Ellice Papp, senior vice president for investments at UBS Financial Services, Inc., will host honorees Bill and Timothy Draper in a fireside chat at the VC Taskforce awards dinner.
Over three generations, the Draper family has invested in hundreds of start-up companies, many of which have become household names, such as Activision, Hotmail and Skype. General William Draper Jr.'s son, Bill, left his father's firm to co-found Draper and Johnson Investment Company and later to found Sutter Hill Ventures. He has also founded several companies over the years. Bill's son, Timothy, founded Draper Fisher Jurvetson.
Rick Brounstein, Managing Director of the Emmes Group and this year's Chairman of the 2012 ICA Award Gala commented, "It has been exciting to see this Gala, now in its 4th year, mature into one of the premier events in Silicon Valley. This is due in large part to three strong traditions of the event which are reflected in this year's Gala -- from the recognition of highly deserving honorees to the involvement of outstanding speakers and to the support of key influencers in the Valley, such as SVB Financial Group and the entrepreneurial wine sector represented by Twomey Cellars, a prestigious winery with traditions originating with Silver Oak Cellars."
About SVB Financial Group
For nearly three decades, SVB Financial Group has been dedicated to helping entrepreneurs succeed. A financial holding company serving companies in the technology, life science, cleantech, venture capital, private equity and premium wine industries, SVB Financial Group (
About the Innovation Catalyst Award
VC Taskforce established the Innovation Catalyst Award in 2009 to acknowledge and celebrate the contributions made by visionary leaders in the investment community. The 2011 honoree was Reid Hoffman, partner at Greylock Partners and co-founder and executive chairman of LinkedIn. In 2010, Richard Kramlich, chairman and co-founder of New Enterprise Associates and one of the venture community's financial architects, was honored. The 2009 honoree was Franklin "Pitch" Johnson.
About VC Taskforce
VC Taskforce provides forums for real-time information exchange and dialogue through a series of networking events, panels, workshops and roundtable meetings conducted by business and industry experts that assist venture capitalists, institutional investors and venture-backed company executives in managing their businesses for maximum success. Visionary thinking, uncensored questions and opinionated discussions around pressing issues that face members are the hallmark of events. Today, more than 14,000 members and participants have been actively involved in VC Taskforce. www.vctaskforce.com.