Brian Kaufman is a founding partner of Westridge Capital and a member of its Investment Committee. He has a long history of investing in and actively managing struggling businesses and turning them around.
Prior to launching Westridge Capital in 2003, Brian served in a number of professional capacities in both investment banking and law including partner level positions at Montgomery & Co., where he managed both the middle market and media sectors and Imperial Capital, LLC, a Beverly Hills-based boutique investment bank, where he focused on principal activities including leveraged buyouts and private equity investments. He also co-founded Kirkland Messina LLC, a Los Angeles-based boutique merchant bank targeting buyouts of middle market companies.
Brian began his finance career at Drexel Burnham Lambert in New York. In addition, Brian was a member of the Business and Technology group at the San Francisco law offices of Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison, where he advised growth technology companies and venture capital firms in public and private securities offerings and mergers and acquisitions.
Brian’s numerous charitable efforts have included board positions on various organizations from food provision, education, health and the arts. A native of Indianapolis, Indiana, Brian graduated summa cum laude from the University of Notre Dame, and later obtained his law degree, cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center.
Jonathan Davidson is a founding partner of Westridge Capital and a member of its investment committee. He brings expertise in financial structuring and financial operations to the firm and its portfolio companies.
Prior to launching Westridge Capital, Jonathan was a partner at Montgomery & Co., where he co-founded the investment banking practice and managed the Business & Consumer Services sector. He previously held a senior position with JPMorgan Chase, providing corporate finance and merger & acquisition advisory services to the filmed entertainment industry. Jonathan also was a founder and Chief Financial Officer of Screenz, the developer and distributor of a private online service in the Chicago market.
Jonathan obtained an M.B.A. with an emphasis in finance and entrepreneurship from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) Anderson School of Management and holds a B.A. degree in Economics and Business from UCLA. Amongst his many charitable endeavors, Jonathan has served on the board of directors of the Jonsson Cancer Center Foundation at UCLA for over 20 years.
Rick Bloom worked in investment banking for his first decade after college and then spent the next two decades buying, turning around, operating and building small to mid-sized businesses for himself and his investment partners. Prior to joining Westridge Capital as a partner and a member of its investment committee, Rick served as a frequent advisor in their exploration and evaluation of investment opportunities. He currently serves as the CEO of WestMountain Gold, Inc., a precious metals exploration company with an active gold exploration project in a remote part of Alaska and as a Director of the company. He was most recently President, CEO and CFO of Support.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPRT), a publicly traded provider of technology support services and software and continues to serve as a Director.
Rick is a Director on the Advisory Board of PakLab, a family-office owned personal care products manufacturer based in Southern California and also a part owner and Director of NexCore Companies, LLC, a national healthcare real estate developer, operator and property manager. Rick helped NexCore through a going-private transaction and today the company is management and family-office owned. He was previously an operationally active Director of Glide Rite Corporation, a national field-service operator that provides equipment repair and maintenance services to the country’s largest retailers and the Executive Chairman of Myprint LLC, a private equity-owned web-based marketing execution services company. He served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Renaissance Acquisition Corporation, a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), from their initial public offering through closure. He served as the Chief Executive Officer of Caswell Massey, a branded personal care consumer product company with a catalog and internet sales division as well as retail stores throughout the country and as a director and Vice Chairman through its turnaround and sale to a private-equity firm.
Rick served as CEO, President, COO as well as various positions at Marietta Corporation, a maker and marketer of personal care and household products for the country’s largest consumer products companies. Rick was on the Board of Marietta since he managed the going-private transaction and continued serving for a few years past the sale to a private equity firm. Rick also served as a director of AmeriQual Group, LLC, the largest producer and supplier of meals ready-to-eat to the United States military. Rick was a Founder, Managing Director and member of the Board of Imperial Capital, LLC, a Los Angeles based investment bank, where he focused on M&A and raising capital for small to middle-market companies as well as taking public companies private. Prior to that Rick was a Managing Director of Dabney|Resnick, Inc., a boutique Beverly Hills based investment bank and also an analyst at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jeanrette (DLJ) in both their New York and Los Angeles offices, focused on Corporate Finance, M&A and Merchant Banking transactions.
Rick earned his Bachelor’s in Economic Science from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and graduated summa cum laude with concentrations in Finance and Entrepreneurial Management. Rick has also served on the Boards of select non-profit organizations and has played an active role in the schools that educated his children. He earned a 1st Dan (degree) black belt in taekwondo and is trying to find the time to train for his second degree.
Our Experts in Residence
Jim Berklas: Legal and M&A
General Counsel and VP of Corporate Development for XL Fleet, Inc., Chief Growth Officer and General Counsel for Westfall-Technik (a private-equity sponsored roll up), General Counsel for Barnes Group (publicly traded Industrial tech), Associate General Counsel for Herbalife International, Hotel Division Manager and GC for Marietta Corporation and Legal Associate at Vinson and Elkins as well as Simpson Thacher, earned a Juris Doctorate at Harvard Law School and an undergraduate degree in Political Science at UCLA.
Blake Johnson: Entrepreneur
A highly successful serial entrepreneur, who founded, built and sold numerous companies including IM Capital Access (a merchant cash exchange), The Prime Companies (small business credit repair), Currency (online lending to small businesses), and byte (direct to consumer orthodontic products).
Jacob Moelter: Finance and Accounting
VP, Finance & Investor Relations at Support.com and MAANA, FP&A Manager at PayLease, Senior Investor Relations at Market Street Partners, Research Associate at Fisher Investments, earned a BS in Business Administration at California State Polytechnic University – Pomona.
Jeff Shupe: Operations
Co-founder of SRAM, LLC, a multi-billion dollar privately owned bicycle component manufacturer based in Chicago, IL. With SRAM for over 30 years as he built a global supply chain through organic and acquisition growth. Earned his Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame.
Renee Soulliard: Marketing
Chief Marketing Officer at Support.com, CMO at Quad Learning, SVP Marketing at AOL, VP of US Card Marketing and Strategy at Capital One, VP Digital Marketing at 1-800Flowers, General Manager of Consumer Sales at Philips Consumer Electronics, earned an MBA at Harvard Business School and a BS in Finance and Marketing from the Wharton School of Business.
Jerry Wise: Commercial Real Estate
Over 36 years of commercial real estate experience as a developer of condominiums, multi‐family and commercial properties, and owner and manager of commercial and multifamily properties with a value in excess of $250 million. Has also handled in excess of $1 billion in real estate sale and financing transactions on behalf of his clients.