Townsgate Media

Why Work With Us?

We have been in your shoes – we recognize the role of the entrepreneur can be frightening, and exhilarating. We also know that being an entrepreneur can feel like one hard lesson after another. We understand that this business is your passion and startups move at light speed, so if we are all aligned we will move quickly with the financing, and work creatively with you to grow your business. We also do our best to balance the needs of our investors with your business goals; we seek winning outcomes for all stakeholders.

Our Philosophy

We believe early stage opportunities provide greater return potential for investors. We believe L.A. / Orange County is home to a large number of exciting internet media and advertising business opportunities. We believe our presences in L.A. / Orange County, combined with our experience operating internet technology and media businesses provide our portfolio companies with significantly more value than the money we invest. We believe in building businesses that last, not in driving entrepreneurs to a forced exit because of "Venture Math".

We believe in building businesses that last

Meet the Team

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    Tom Chou

    Tom Chou is an owner of International Sensor Technology, a high technology firm that manufactures toxic and combustible gas detection equipment for industrial use. Tom has over a decade of successful experience in seed and angel investing, and is currently invested in several successful companies in Southern California. Tom graduated from the University of California, Irvine in 1992 with a Bachelor's degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering. In 1994, Tom completed his advanced studies and graduated from Rice University with a Master's degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

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    Sean Cowell

    Sean Cowell is a high-energy entrepreneur, angel investor, and innovative marketing specialist. He is the founder of InQfish Labs, a business incubator/accelerator which helps guide entrepreneurs through the startup phase of their business. He is also the founder of Newport Coast Investment Group, a company that primarily invests in real estate and financial services. In 2007, Sean founded the Freedom Debt Center, a financial education company that has helped over 10,000 families achieve financial freedom. Sean has overseen the growth of Freedom's marketing, sales and business development efforts, as well as its expansion into lead generation with the acquisition of Diversified Marketing Group, a multi vertical marketing company.

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    Ken Lawson

    Ken Lawson has been focused on internet monetization, technology and media since 1996. Ken began acquiring high value domain names in the mid 1990's and subsequently built a series of successful e-commerce, advertising, merchant processing and other businesses. These ventures include a highly successful search monetization business (DDC.com), a search engine (acquired by ValueClick.com), an online credit card processor (acquired in a private transaction), and InsuranceQuotes.com, a leading provider of online insurance quotes (acquired in a private transaction). Ken is currently the CEO of DDC.com and is involved as a lead investor in several early stage companies.

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    Mike van Loon

    Mike's financial and operating background is centered around investment fund management, equity research and investment banking. Mike currently oversees the finances and operations of Townsgate Media, and is the CFO of DDC.com. Prior to DDC.com, Mike was focused on a $250m investment allocation within Passport Capital, a San Francisco based hedge fund. Mike was the Founder, Chief Financial Officer and Portfolio Manager responsible for equity research and portfolio allocation for Quantitative BioEquities (BVI) Fund, Ltd. Prior to 2004, Mike worked in the Investment Banking Group at Banc of America Securities, LLC and Fox-Pitt, Kelton, Inc. Mike graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Economics and with a focus on Finance
    and Marketing.