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MANAGEMENT TEAM

TIMOTHY L. HIROU, Founder

Mr. Hirou founded Convergence after dedicating 30 years working to develop and to bring to market pioneering hardware, software, and electronic solutions within the Original Equipment Manufacturing (OEM) market space.

Mr. Hirou started his career back in the 1980’s as an electro-mechanical engineer specializing in customized automation solutions and precision robotic design with Minarik, a 60-year old leader in providing custom engineering solutions and products used for automation and advanced control solutions. Minarik’s primary clientele were OEM clients. Mr. Hirou strategically created the advanced holistic hardened computer control arena, which included advanced remote control and monitoring via networked communications. The advanced control technologies that were part of Mr. Hirou’s holistic solution included not just the advanced holistic hardened computer control with remote monitoring and control capabilities, but also precision motion control (“robotics”), process control and even graphical operator interfaces, complete with touch screen technology, to provide machine operators a more intuitive interface experience with the machine and/or entire process. At the lower levels of Mr. Hirou’s holistic solution’s architecture, numerous technologies were utilized. Some of the key technologies Mr. Hirou’s solution included were precision servo motors, precision stepper motors, precision linear actuators, rotary actuators, distributed input devices, distributed output devices, distributed intelligent self-contained control modules and all types of sensors and switches. All of these disparate technologies were connected via a separate internal real-time standards-based communications network. Mr. Hirou’s innovative solution delivered far more value than the then “industry standard” use of Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs). Mr. Hirou’s strategy of providing holistic hardened computer based advanced control and monitoring solutions, complete with remote communications capabilities became a new industry standard within the OEM market place worldwide, due to increased productivity and increased operational efficiencies that it delivered not just to Minarik’s own clients, but also the respective OEM’s client. This innovative approach became “The Engine” that drove double digit compounded annual revenues that Minarik enjoyed under Mr. Hirou’s tenure. While at Minarik, Mr. Hirou was instrumental in growing the company from $13 million to over $100 million in annual revenue, all with a minimum of 20% gross profit margin each year. At the time of Mr. Hirou’s departure over 80% of the +$100 million revenues were as a result of the technologies that Mr. Hirou developed and introduced to Minarik. During his tenure at Minarik, Mr. Hirou’s advanced technologies delivered Minarik’s OEM clients significant differentiation in their respective market places. This differentiation enabled these companies to provide their solutions to clients such as Intel, Apple, HP, IBM, Beckman Coulter, Abbott Laboratories, Cardinal Health, Tyson Foods, 3M, Dow Chemical as well as many other Fortune 500 manufacturing companies. The Fortune 500 companies, which are involved in manufacturing products of all types in many different industries, loved Mr. Hirou’s solutions ability to tie all of their diverse manufacturing locations’ production details together while simultaneously delivering real-time key performance indicator (PKI) information containing the bottom line production and efficiency metrics to the Executive Suite via intuitive, easily understood, graphical dashboards displayed on their computer screens, continuously updated in real-time from all over the world. At the time of his departure in late 2001, he was Vice President and had profit and loss responsibilities for the entire organization, overseeing 26 branches located throughout the United States.

Mr. Hirou’s reputation for delivering advanced engineering solutions with respect to advanced automation and control systems led ThinGap, Inc. to recruit Mr. Hirou in January 2003 in order to help identify market opportunities for its then newly-patented electric motor technology. At ThinGap, Inc., Mr. Hirou’s contributions helped the company obtain Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) contracts and achieve a ten-fold increase in revenue during his approximately two-year tenure.

In 2006, Mr. Hirou founded Convergence. His early vision was to disrupt a new industry by applying his many years of technology innovations by leveraging innovative cybersecurity implementations of software and hardware control solutions, combining them with real-time networking and remote communications capabilities. This thinking led to his focus on developing and commercializing 100% wireless and 100% battery-free technologies in order to reduce energy costs throughout the vast number of commercial and government buildings, worldwide.

Mr. Hirou received his Bachelor of Science Degree from UCLA, where he graduated magna cum laude in interdisciplinary studies (engineering, law, and business). While attending UCLA, he competed as a Category 3 bicycle racer, licensed by the United States Cycling Federation (now known as USA Cycling). Post-graduation, Mr. Hirou achieved Pro Status as a bicycle racer while continuing to work full time.

Mr. Hirou and his wife Nora live in Orange County, California and have two children.

 

BRIAN SAX, President

Mr. Sax comes to Convergence after more than two decades in the telecommunications and energy industries (1997-2018), where he recruited, organized, developed, and directed a global sales team that yielded more than $4 billion in company revenue. Mr. Sax became a country launch specialist, opening markets in Australia (2004), New Zealand (2006), Poland (2006), South Korea (2010), Hungary (2011), the Czech Republic (2011), Mexico (2014), and Japan (2015). He spent an average of four months on the ground in each of these countries, recruiting and developing sales teams. From 2005 to 2012, he and his family relocated to Australia specifically to develop the Asia Pacific marketplace. During his tenure, much of Mr. Sax’s time was focused upon leadership development, training groups of up to 25,000 company salespeople in numerous locations around the world.

Mr. Sax graduated from Princeton University in 1994, earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering, followed by post-graduate coursework in Environment and Public Policy at CU Boulder.

Mr. Sax attributes his success in business in part due to his fierce competitive nature resulting from his training and successes as a competitive athlete. At Princeton, Mr. Sax was elected Captain of the Princeton Track and Field Team, guiding the Tigers to their first Indoor and Outdoor Heptagonal (Ivy League plus Army and Navy) Championships in many years, as well as to a brief #1 Indoor Dual Meet ranking for NCAA Division 1 Track and Field. Mr. Sax was a sponsored runner supported by Fila, and competed in Track for the United States in more than a dozen countries. For over 25 years, Mr. Sax has been (and continues to be) an active coach in Track and Field at the NCAA Division II, High School, and/or youth coaching levels.

Mr. Sax and his wife Andrea live in Calabasas, CA and have two children.

John Zazzera, Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Zazzera has joined Convergence after recently competing for the CEO position for the Head of Financial Services for Google Cloud; he was runner-up for the position with Google, and Convergence is fortunate to have a gentleman of his caliber working full-time on our Executive Team.

Mr. Zazzera has a storied, 30-year career in finance, investment, and technology, and is very influential within the regulatory and investment communities; in fact, one of the brightest spots in his career was serving on the United States Federal Reserve Board of Governors, Payments and Treasury Committees from 2012 through 2016, where he assisted in the oversight of trillions of dollars of assets. In addition to the Ferderal Reserve, Mr. Zazzera served as an Executive Committee Member with a number of financial institutions during his career.

In the private sector, Mr. Zazzera was a Managing Partner for Blueline Associates (2016-2018), with a focus upon global financial services technology, operations, strategic plan development, finance, and all aspects of business execution. Prior to Blueline, he was the Managing Director of Transaction Banking Services (2015-2016) for the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Union Bank (MUFG); at the time, the Bank’s assets totaled roughly US$2.3 trillion, and Mr. Zazzera oversaw a US$950 million budget, as well as the performance of 3800 employees, whose duties included critical global technology and operations services.

From 2011 through 2015, Mr. Zazzera served as a Senior Vice President (Shared Services, Transaction Services, Technology and Payments Operations, and Enterprise Risk) for Toronto Dominion (TD) Bank; he was an Executive Committee Member whose group was responsible for TD Securities and TD Bank North America, comprising over $US3 trillion in assets. Over five years, Mr. Zazzera helped TD Bank realize an enormous amount of savings across multiple divisions (Commercial Lending, Consumer Banking, Capital Markets, Trade Finance, and Investments). He achieved a 60% increase in efficiency one particular division, resulting in US$25 million in savings. Mr. Zazzera also created new departments within TD Bank, including Enterprise Risk Management for Payments, Data Governance and Remediation of Failed Audits, MRIAs, and MRAs.

While with TD Bank, the American Banking Association voted to recognize Mr. Zazzera in the category of “Best Treasurer Management” as well as for a category recognizing best “Cash Management Services” for three years straight. Throughout his five years at TD Bank, he completed three strategic plans, reaching 100% of all Target Operating Objectives. Mr. Zazzera worked as the Chief Information Technology Officer with the Fifth Third Bank (2010-2011); previously, while with the Royal Bank of Scotland (2008-2010), he was the Senior Vice President of Operations and Technology with global responsibilities, overseeing a US$700 million operating budget, 14,000 distinct revenue centers, and 1200 branches. Mr. Zazzera spent four years with Wells Fargo Bank (2003-2006), where as a Senior Vice President, he was the Director of Acquisitions and the Head of Underwriting and Operational Risk. Prior to Wells Fargo, Mr. Zazzera was with JP Morgan Chase (2001-2003), serving as the VP, Chief Product Officer, and Head of Retail Marketing Communications, directly overseeing a US$4.5 billion portfolio in commercial automotive finance and fleet leasing.

Throughout 16 years with General Electric Capital (1988-2001, 2006-2008), Mr. Zazzera held a range of senior executive officer roles for GE, including Mid-Atlantic Regional President, Chief Information Officer, Chief Technology Officer, Chief Accounting Officer, and Chief Compliance Officer.

Mr. Zazzera also commits time to philanthropic causes, as well giving back to society in general. Besides serving two stints on the United States Federal Reserve Board of Governors, he is also currently the Vice Chairman of the Ronald McDonald House Board of Trustees of South New Jersey, and has spent time on the University of Pennsylvania Wharton Alumni Investment Committee. Mr. Zazzera is the former Vice Chairman of the General Electric Elfun Society, leading the Board for GE Volunteers and Chapters across the United States and globally.

Mr. Zazzera earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from St. Peters College, a Master of Science Degree from the University of Bradford International School of Business (Harrington Institute), and is an alumnus in Computer Software Engineering from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. In addition, he earned an ABA Stonier Graduate Diploma, 2014 as well as an Advanced Management Program Diploma, both from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business in July of 2015.

Mr. Zazzera and his wife Diane live in West Chester, Pennsylvania and have four children.

 

ED SPAULDING, Chief Operating Officer

Mr. Spaulding intends to join Convergence during Q3 2018 as the Company’s Chief Operating Officer. He is widely recognized for his applied integrated expertise in Lean Six Sigma and in Total Productive Maintenance (TPM), and other programs.

Mr. Spaulding currently serves as the Director of Operational Excellence for The Wonderful Company, a privately-held company with $5 billion in annual sales. In his current role, Mr. Spaulding provides leadership and technical training in support of the company’s War on Waste imperative; he also oversees a program in developing sustainable problem-solving capability within the organization.

From 2010 to 2016, Mr. Spaulding served as the Global Integrated Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt at Mondelez International/Kraft-Heinz, where he worked in over 25 countries and positively impacted the end-to-end Integrated Supply Chain (ISC) for 165 manufacturing plants. Mr. Spaulding also served as the Global Focused Improvement Pillar Leader responsible for helping develop the company’s global loss reduction strategy.

From 2000 through 2010, Mr. Spaulding worked for Northrop Grumman/TRW Space and Defense ($30B in sales). His tenure there culminated in the role of Corporate Director of Operational Excellence, where he developed enterprise operational excellence strategies with the senior executive staff, delivered process improvement training, and coached project teams for the corporate office. Mr. Spaulding’s responsibilities included leading the team that oversaw the final assembly of satellites, as well as the mechanical testing of major commercial and national defense-related satellite systems valued in the billions of dollars.

Mr. Spaulding is a military veteran, and as a U.S. Air Force Officer, held a number of key technical, diplomatic, and leadership roles throughout his career, spanning 15 years from 1983 to 1998.

Mr. Spaulding earned a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Electrical Engineering from Youngstown State University, a Master of Electrical Engineering Degree from the Air Force Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science Degree in General Administration from Central Michigan University. He has taught a wide variety of engineering and graduate management courses at Chapman University and at West Coast University. He is currently a guest lecturer at the USC Marshall School of Business.

Mr. Spaulding and his wife Marcia live in San Pedro, California and have one child.

 

DOUG KOLKER, Chief Marketing Officer

Mr. Kolker boasts a successful career spanning marketing and finance. Mr. Kolker started his career in the mortgage industry, where he worked for the Weyerhaeuser Mortgage Company and for GE Money. While at GE Money, from 2002 until 2006, he managed operations and sales teams for his group, where he built one of the three highest producing teams in the country within the entire mortgage industry. By mid-2005, Mr. Kolker led his team to produce over $100 million per month in revenue, achieving over $1 billion in residential mortgages during a two-year period. Under Mr. Kolker’s leadership, his team of 14 evaluated an average of 1,200 loan proposals per month.

In 2008, Mr. Kolker joined a global telecommunications and energy company, where he recruited, trained, managed, and developed teams of thousands of independent sales representatives in multiple countries. Mr. Kolker’s sales force acquired over 100,000 individual customers during his tenure with the company.

Mr. Kolker attended the University of Santa Barbara, where he excelled in both academics and in tennis. In 1993, he competed on the professional tennis circuit in Europe, winning against numerous top 100 players in the world. After several years of competing and coaching as a professional tennis player, he transitioned to professional paddle tennis, becoming the #1 player in the world in 2009.

Mr. Kolker and his wife Sandrine live in Woodland Hills, California and have four children.

 

MARK LINDON, an outside legal consultant for Convergence, has over 30 years of corporate law and business transaction experience from both law firm and in-house positions. He has handled billions of dollars of transactions involving business, finance, mergers and acquisitions, technology, licensing and distribution, and securities offerings, and has substantial experience in supervising litigation. Mr. Lindon serves as an outside general counsel for a number of companies, and regularly advises companies and entrepreneurs on transactional, operational, and litigation matters. Mr. Lindon’s extensive experience spans a number of fast-paced industries, including medical devices, technology, healthcare, finance, and manufacturing.

Since 2006, Mr. Lindon has been the general counsel for Bioness, a neuromodulation medical device company founded and majority-owned by the late billionaire entrepreneur and philanthropist Alfred Mann.

Mr. Lindon was appointed to the Bioness Board of Directors in 2016 to fill Mr. Mann’s seat upon his death. and was elected Chairman of the Board in 2017. He is also a Board member and a strategic advisor of Mark Management Company, which manages several real estate funds which own over $250 million of multi-family properties.

Mr. Lindon began his career as a corporate lawyer for the New York law firm of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, where he spent eight years successfully representing a wide range of clients (early stage to Fortune 50) in numerous complex financings, mergers and acquisitions, venture capital investments, debt restructurings, public and private debt and equity offerings, and licensing transactions. He then founded his own law firm and continued to practice in these areas, in addition to advising hedge funds, structuring investment partnerships, and advising numerous small- and medium sized companies on various operational and legal matters. Mr. Lindon received his A.B. degree from Georgetown University, where he graduated magna cum laude in interdisciplinary studies (government, economics, and philosophy) and played rugby for seven seasons. He received his Juris Doctor from the UCLA School of Law, where he was Executive Editor of the Federal Communications Law Journal.

Mr. Lindon and his wife Dana live in Calabasas, California and have two children.