Tuesday, October 21st


12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Admiralty Room

Track VII: Big Data: Je t’Aime, Moi Non Plus”

Gil Elbaz, Founder and CEO, Factual

Larry Vincent, Chief Branding Officer, UTA Brand Studio

Ravi Iyer, Principal Data Scientist, Ranker

Yves Bergquist, Business Development Manager, Ranker, Moderator


Gil Elbaz, Founder and CEO, Factual:  Gil Elbaz is an accomplished entrepreneur and pioneer of natural language technology and structured data ecosystems. Gil is passionate about building scalable information systems that drive innovative application development which ultimately enables better decision-making.  In 1991, Gil earned his bachelor's degree from Caltech, with a double major in Engineering/Applied Science and Economics. After college, Gil worked in engineering roles at IBM, Sybase, and SGI. In 1998, he co-founded Applied Semantics (ASI). ASI helped define and build new addressable markets with its AdSense and other contextual advertising products. The company was acquired by Google in 2003, at which point Gil became Director of Engineering for the Santa Monica office. His work there helped establish Google's place as a leader in the field of online advertising. In 2007, Gil left Google to start Los Angeles-based Factual Inc., an open data platform founded to maximize data accuracy, transparency, and availability  Active in a number of nonprofit areas, Gil is on the board of trustees for the X Prize Foundation and Caltech, and a member of the Los Angeles Social Ventures Partners. He and his wife, Elyssa, also manage the Elbaz Family Foundation, supporting environmental and educational causes.


Larry Vincent, Chief Branding Officer, UTA Brand Studio:  Larry is the head of The Brand Studio at United Talent Agency (UTA). Over the past two decades, he has developed brand strategies for some of the world’s most beloved brands, including CBS, Coca-Cola, Four Seasons Hotels, MasterCard, Microsoft, the National Football League, Sony Playstation, Southwest Airlines, The Home Depot and vitaminwater.

  Larry is an active writer. He is most recent book, Brand Real, was released in March, 2012. It focuses on the strategic behavior that drives the success of the world’s leading brands. His first book, Legendary Brands, was released in 2001 and was translated into seven languages. It focused on the storytelling potential of brand and implications  for strategic and creative development.  Prior to joining UTA, Larry headed up strategy teams at several leading brand and marketing agencies, including Siegel+Gale, Octagon Worldwide and Cabana Group. He began his career in the corporate strategic planning group of The Walt Disney Company, where he led projects that leveraged Disney’s brand equity and integrated marketing power with corporate partners such as AT&T, American Express, Coca-Cola, and Kodak.  Larry has an MBA from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. He also received his Bachelor’s degree from USC, where he attended the School of Cinema-Television.


Ravi Iyer is the principal data scientist at Ranker.com. He combines 15 years of hands-on experience with database technology with a PhD in social psychology from the University of Southern California. He publishes regularly in top scholarly journals and his research has been featured in the New York Times, Wall St. Journal, The Atlantic, and at SXSW Interactive.

Day Two - SuperSession Day

Yves Bergquist, Business Development Manager, Ranker:  Yves is the Director of Business Development at Ranker. He is a business strategist and data scientist with an interest in applying machine learning to solve the issue of complexity in business strategy.  He was part of the founding team at Singularity University, a partnership between NASA and Google, which aims to "assemble, educate and inspire a cadre of leaders to understand the development of exponentially advancing technologies".  Prior to SU he spent five years as a consultant in Washington, DC, building models to understand and manage high-velocity strategic environments for public and private sector clients including the US Department of Defense, the Walt Disney Corporation, and the Japan External Trade Organization. As part of this effort, he did several years of groundwork in the Middle East and South Asia looking at the distribution of trust and influence through the social networks of radical Islamic militant organizations. He has an MBA from the Monterey Institute of International Studies.