Founder and CEO
Natasha Kurtova is the founder of EngagePoint. She is an expert in US market entry strategies, international business development, partnership alliances and first client acquisitions. Her industry expertise spans 20 years in the areas of consumer products, financial services, web applications and telecommunications, with a specific focus in the areas of management, operations, product marketing, finance, and building multinational and cross-functional teams.
By applying a strategic approach from a big picture perspective, Natasha delivers results that spur rapid growth for her clients. Natasha built her skills when working for AirTouch, Globalstar, Chaincast Networks, Avidbank. Core competencies include evaluating market demand and opportunities, building customer and partner portfolios, forecasting revenue and preparing budgets, developing lead generation campaigns, and establishing strategic alliances and joint ventures.
As a mentor and advisor, Natasha sits on start-up evaluation panels and coaches boot camps for foreign entrepreneurs. She is a certified instructor for the Kauffman Foundation of Entrepreneurship FastTrac. Natasha earned an MA with high honors in Journalism from Moscow State University. In 1990, she participated in the John Knight Fellowship program for journalists at Stanford University. Subsequently, she earned an MBA from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business with an emphasis in Strategic Marketing. In addition to English, Natasha speaks and writes fluently in Russian and French.
Karen is an accomplished consultant who has developed new high technology businesses in multiple countries, both as an entrepreneur and as an innovator within large corporations. Currently, she focuses on assisting overseas companies with establishing their first market presence in the U.S.
Previously, Karen worked for IBM, American Express, AirTouch, and ARDIS in the U.S., France, Germany, and Greece. She held leadership roles in marketing, business development, product development, product marketing and sales.
Karen earned a Masters in Management in Finance and Accounting from the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University and a Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College in History and French. She was certified as a Financial Advisor and Insurance Agent in the state of Connecticut. In addition to English, she communicates in French and German.
Principal, Legal Affairs
Tom French is a partner in the Silicon Valley law firm of Heffernan Seubert & French LLP. He works primarily with startups and emerging companies. He also represents technology consortia. Tom's clients are focused mainly in the software, networking, new media, display, food and beverage, and semiconductor sectors. Tom was previously a corporate partner with the global law firm DLA Piper (US) LLP in its Silicon Valley Office, and with predecessor firms Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich LLP and Ware & Freidenrich. Tom's primary area of experience includes business formations, seed round investments, venture funding transactions, mergers, acquisitions, intellectual property transactions, corporate governance matters and general corporate counsel. Tom has extensive international experience, and works with many international companies to assist them with entering the US market.
Tom has been named one of Northern California Top 100 Super Lawyers, as designated by American Lawyer Magazine, and San Francisco Magazine. Global Counsel 3000 has listed Tom as a Recommended Company and Corporate Transaction Attorney. San Jose Magazine has listed Tom as one of Silicon Valley's Best Lawyers. Martindale-Hubbard has rated Tom as AV Esteemed, its highest rating.