Perfecting Your Pitch!

Thursday, June 5 2014
8:00 am – 10:00 am

Location: MassBio, 300 Technology Square, 8th Floor, Cambridge, MA.

A well prepared and delivered pitch can be the key to closing a successful financing or partnership deal or the failure of your business.  As a result, you need to be armed with the knowledge to prepare and deliver your best pitch to ensure success.

Our panelists will discuss pitch basics and also how to customize your pitch for your audience, whether its angels, venture capitalists or pharma partners.

Specific topics will include:

  • The major do’s and don’ts
  • A short but effective elevator pitch
  • The slide deck(s)
  • Follow-up
  • and, Moving on…

So come join us for some deal makers’ advice and insight to give you the edge you need to successfully deliver your next pitch.


  • Richard Anders, Founder and Executive Director, Mass Medic Angels
  • David Berry, Partner, Flagship Ventures
  • Luba Greenwood, Senior Mergers and Acquisitions Corporate Counsel, Pfizer Inc.
  • Michael D. Rivard, VP Corporate Development, Avaxia Biologics, Inc.


  • Marc R. Cote, Chief Operating Officer & Co-founder, Accellient Partners, LLC
  • John Hession, Partner, Venture Capital Financings & Emerging Companies Practice Groups, Cooley LLP

Speaker Bios:

Richard Anders, Mass Medic Angels, Founder and Executive Director

Richard Anders is a long-time entrepreneur with a background in computers and life sciences. A lawyer by training, he founded Jurisoft, which he sold to Lexis/Nexis, published newspapers including Boston Digital Industry and New York Digital Industry and is currently managing director of Rubin/Anders Scientific, which places scientists as consultants in patent projects. He served for many years as a member of the Institutional Review Board at the Dana Farber Cancer Center, and was a long-time trustee of the Museum of Science, where he currently is an overseer. Richard founded and currently runs MA Medical Angels (MA2), one of the country's leading angel groups focused exclusively on life sciences. He founded the angel group Launchpad, the nationally renowned Science on Screen event at the Coolidge Corner Cinema, and was a trustee at the Boston Biomedical Research Institute and was a founding trustee of the Massachusetts Interactive Media Council. He is a board observer at Avaxia Biologics and Sialix and an overseer at the Gardner Museum. Richard teaches medical device entrepreneurship at the Harvard/MIT HST program. He is a graduate Summa Cum Laude in Mathematics from Harvard and holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

David Berry, Partner, Flagship Ventures

David Berry joined Flagship in 2005 where he focuses on innovating, entrepreneuring, and investing in new ventures in life sciences and sustainability.  He is a founder of Flagship portfolio companies Joule Unlimited, Eleven Biotherapeutics (NASDAQ: EBIO), Seres Health, Pronutria, LS9 (acquired by Renewable Energy Group) and Symbiota.  David has served as founding CEO of Joule, Pronutria and Seres.  He currently serves on the boards of Joule, Eleven, Seres and Pronutria, Symbiota, and Avedro.  He was previously a Board member of CGI Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Gilead).

Prior to Flagship, David received an MD from Harvard Medical School and a PhD from the MIT Biological Engineering Division, working in the laboratories of Professors Ram Sasisekharan and Bob Langer, completing the dual degree in just over 5 years. 

David currently serves on the Leadership Council of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network.  He is currently on the Boards of the Hackley School, the Juventas New Music Ensemble and the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, and has served on the MIT Corporation, its Board of Trustees.

David was elected a 2014 Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.  Previously, David was named the Innovator of the Year by Technology Review, and received the prestigious Lemelson-MIT Student Prize for invention and innovation.  He was also selected by the US State Department as 1 of 12 Innovators Helping to Reshape Realty.

Marc R. Cote, Chief Operating Officer & Co-founder, Accellient Partners, LLC

At Accellient Partners, a niche drug development consultancy, Marc is a partner and key member of the management team responsible for leading the company's financial, operational and business development activities. Marc is also a co-founder and the Chief Financial Officer of Synchroneuron Inc, a privately-held VC-backed clinical stage biopharmaceutical company that is engaged in developing new therapies for tardive dyskinesia (TD) and other related movement disorders and a co-founder of Ternus Pharma, Inc. an early development stage biotech developing a new short term anesthetic.

Marc has extensive experience in the areas of financial management and helping to launch and operate both start-up and existing ventures. Prior to Accellient, he joined Aptuit Consulting in 2006 when Aptuit founded its global consulting practice.  Prior to Aptuit, he was Vice President of Finance and Shared Services with Dunkin® Brands where he spent a decade in a variety of finance, accounting and shared services roles.  Marc started his career in the Entrepreneurial Services Group at Ernst & Young in Boston where he spent 8 years servicing clients in a variety of industries including venture capital, biotech, high-tech and consulting.

Marc is also an active biotech investor and member of Boston Harbor Angels. In addition, he is a Co-Chair of Mass Bio's Entrepreneur University and a Program Committee Member of The Bioscience Network.

Marc was a licensed CPA in Massachusetts for 17 years and is a graduate of Bentley College, summa cum laude.

Luba Greenwood, Pfizer Inc., Senior Mergers and Acquisitions Corporate Counsel

Luba is a counsel and strategic advisor to multiple companies advising on development, commercialization, strategy, valuation, fund raising, risk analysis, and deal structures. Before Pfizer, she worked at WilmerHale where she litigated patent disputes in high technology and the life sciences and represented pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device companies, financial institutions, corporations, and officers in white-collar matters.  Luba is on the board of the Longwood Symphony Orchestra, a Co-Chair of MassBio’s Entrepreneur’s University, a mentor for the MIT $100K, and a Judge for MassChallenge. She is a lecturer at Bentley University on law, economics, and global expansion strategies and risks and will be teaching a course on biotechnology at Boston University School of Law starting this fall. Luba is also on the steering committee of the Boston Bar Association.

John Hession, Partner, Venture Capital Financings & Emerging Companies Practice Groups, Cooley LLP

John Hession is a partner in the Venture Capital Financings and Emerging Companies practice groups and a member of Cooley’s Business department.  He was also former Managing Partner of the Boston office.  John represents emerging-growth companies, principally in the medical device, life sciences, software, telecommunications and electronic commerce fields, as well as angels and venture capital funds in the investment process in these sectors.  During his thirty-year career, John has participated in, structured and negotiated more than 300 venture and angel financings, 30 public offerings, more than 250 strategic alliances involving technology transfers and joint ventures, and 200+ acquisitions ranging in size from $1.0 million to $4.2 billion.

Michael D. Rivard, Avaxia Biologics, Inc., VP Corporate Development

Michael Rivard is currently Vice President, Corporate Development at Avaxia Biologics, Incorporated, where he is responsible for business development, corporate communications, legal, and intellectual property. Mr. Rivard has over 20 years of experience in the biotechnology industry in both early stage and publicly traded companies, including 15 years in senior management. Previously, Mr. Rivard served as Vice President, Corporate Development, at VaxDesign Corporation, where he led the acquisition of the company by Sanofi Pasteur for $60 million, and Vice President, Corporate Development, at Galenea Corp. where he increased committed funding in its collaboration with Otsuka from $50 million to $90 million. Before that, Mr. Rivard held the positions of Vice President, Business Development, at Synta Corporation; Vice President, Strategic Development, at ArQule, Inc. where he led the acquisition of Camitro Corporation for $100 million; and Vice President, Legal, and General Counsel at ArQule where he co-led collaboration negotiations that generated over $150 million in revenue. Earlier in his career, Mr. Rivard served as Associate Counsel, Intellectual Property at the University of Massachusetts and as Corporate Attorney at Palmer and Dodge (now Edmands Wildman Palmer). Mr. Rivard earned a Juris Doctor degree at UCLA School of Law and an A.B. in biochemistry, summa cum laude, at Bowdoin College.

This Forum is presented by the Entrepreneur's University Forum Working Group

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