The VTC Innovation Fund is managed by Middleland Capital and supported by a top-tier advisory board with deep industry experience. The Fund’s management team and advisory board apply a proprietary mix of deal execution, scientific, engineering, tech, and operational experience as well as a robust syndicate network and Virginia-based and national connections to work with superior management teams to drive growth and value creation.
Deal Team and Fund Management
About Middleland Capital – Middleland Capital is a private investment firm focused on global early-stage technology opportunities. Leveraging a unique breadth of geographic and industry experience, the firm seeks partnerships with exceptional management teams to commercialize innovative technologies, accelerate growth, and build long-term value around the world.
James Ramey, JD – Principal and Fund Manager – VTC Innovation Fund
James has been a VTC Innovation Fund member since inception. James’ responsibilities include deal sourcing, due diligence, deal and closing document review and negotiation, portfolio monitoring, and other day to day operations.
Before joining the VTC Innovation Fund and Middleland Capital, James was a Vice President at Tyton Partners, a leading M&A advisory firm in the education and ed-tech sectors. Notably, while at Tyton, James led the deal team in the sale of WebAssign, a provider of digital learning solutions in higher education to Cengage Learning, an education and technology Company.
Prior to Tyton Partners, James was a Senior Associate at Invest Nebraska Corporation, a sector-agnostic venture capital & development firm specializing in equity and debt financings within the lower middle-market. While at Invest Nebraska Corporation, James actively led and/or supported a significant number of transactions through sourcing, financial analysis, valuation, due diligence, deal structuring & negotiation, closing, and monitoring.
Prior to Invest Nebraska Corporation, James was an Associate Attorney at Knudsen, Berkheimer, Richardson & Endacott, LLP where he practiced in a wide range of legal fields including transactional law, bankruptcy, estate planning, creditor rights, landlord/tenant, real estate, corporate law and civil litigation.
James attended law school at the University of Nebraska College of Law. While in law school he was awarded the prestigious Gross & Welch Best Brief Award in 2009 for the best overall brief in legal writing. He received his Juris Doctorate with distinction from the University of Nebraska College of Law in 2011 and was admitted to the Nebraska State Bar Association in September. James holds a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice. While attending the University of Nebraska James made the National Dean’s List and was awarded the Aaron Douglas Academic Scholarship from 2004 through 2007. In November, 2013, James attended and graduated from the Venture Capital Institute, an intensive 3-day venture capital certificate program.
Brian Mixer – Investment Director at Middleland Capital
Brian Mixer is an investment director at Middleland Capital. Brian works with technology companies in the food, agriculture and sustainability sectors. He led Middleland’s investments in and holds the board or observer seats in Aerofarms, Arable Labs, Agrivida, Aquaspy, Conservis, Groundwork BioAg, Rootility and Shenandoah Growers.
Prior to joining Middleland in 2010, Brian worked in investment banking and held senior positions in multiple US political campaigns. Brian holds a BA in economics from Bucknell University, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He has an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
Scott Horner – Investment Director at Middleland Capital
Scott is an Investment Director at Middleland Capital where he is responsible for portfolio management and evaluating investment opportunities. Scott lead Middleland’s investments in and holds board or observer seats in ZeaKal, Advanced Animal Diagnostics, Virgin Plants, Mycotechnology, Benson Hill Biosystems, Blue Prairie Brands, and Plant Response Biotech.
Prior to joining Middleland in 2013, Scott was a Managing Director at Third Security, LLC, where he was responsible for managing investments in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors. He served on the Board of Directors of Synchrony Inc. (acquired by Dresser-Rand Corp.) and took on interim operating roles within several portfolio companies, including President and Chief Executive Officer of Pinnacle Pharmaceuticals, VP Chemistry, Intrexon Corporation (NYSE:XON) and VP Business Development, Intrexon Corporation. Scott received his Ph.D. in Bioorganic Chemistry and an M.S. in Biophysics from the University of Rochester, and a B.S. in Biochemistry from the State University of New York at Albany.
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