Robert Jewell is the CEO and Chief Revenue Officer of Exchange Solutions and is responsible for leading the company’s customer growth trajectory. Robert’s focus includes developing strong client relationships based on results, executing our sales strategy, positioning and driving awareness of our solutions and cultivate strategic partnerships that strengthen our business, and expand the company’s market reach.
Robert brings over 30 years of leadership experience in the information technology and software industries building, managing and leading sales teams, developing channel and strategic partnerships and providing general management and revenue growth for public and private technology companies alike.
Prior to joining Exchange Solutions, Robert held a variety of executive leadership and business development roles including: Director of Business Development, IBM Watson, Vice President of Global Sales, Services and Business Development for Bowstreet (now IBM), CEO of Altio, Vice President Sales and Marketing at Level 3 Communications (LVLT) and various executive and management roles at IBM.
Robert holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Westminster College.
Mike Hughes is the CEO and Chief Operating Officer of Exchange Solutions. Mike is responsible for leading the business, technology, operations, analytics, and administration functions of the company.
Mike is a seasoned executive with a long track record of success, leading organizations through rapid growth and expansion. As a senior operations and financial executive, Mike raised over $800 million in public and private financings, built companies from early stage through large scale growth and managed several highly successful exits.
Prior to his role at Exchange Solutions, Mike served as Chief Financial Officer and operating executive for several software companies, including Vertica Systems Inc., which was acquired by Hewlett-Packard. Mike also held executive level operating and finance positions at two telecommunications companies, both of which completed IPOs and were acquired by AT&T and KPN respectively.
Mike has broad high tech experience including: SAAS and enterprise software (Database, IT and Retail Systems), advanced analytics, marketing technology and telecommunications services. He earned his MBA in Finance from the Franklin W. Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College and a Bachelor’s Degree in Accountancy from Bentley University.
Shane O’Neil, Chief Technology Officer
As Chief Technology Officer, Shane O’Neil leads with pragmatic optimism, understanding that the problems of today need to be solved, while keeping an eye on the product and solution opportunities of tomorrow. He champions big sky dreaming for a team of architects, product owners, engineers and developers to constantly find ways to stretch, innovate and optimize.
Prior to joining Exchange Solutions as CTO, Shane’s tenure spanned multiple organizations including running global operations for DoubleClick Email and developing and integrating Web 2.0 product launches as CTO for Lavalife.
Shane is a certified Birkman consultant and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from McMaster University.
Ron Gerace, Senior Vice President, Product and Marketing
Ron Gerace brings a focus to loyalty solutions and technologies serving the retail industry as the SVP Product, Marketing and Sales. As a champion for voice of the customer, Ron galvanizes cross-function teams to problem solve for the customer’s customer.
Prior to joining Exchange Solutions, Ron led key initiatives in launching Staples.com and Wayfair as eCommerce leaders. His experience in change leadership, retail growth and innovation make him the perfect champion for creating a new playbook in retail loyalty and customer engagement solutions.
Ron has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Bentley University and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts.
Brenda Higuchi, Senior Vice President, Analytics and Optimization
Brenda Higuchi charts Exchange Solutions’ journey into applications powered by Advanced Analytics. Her extensive leadership and consultative experience in data analytics and loyalty program design enhances the team’s abilities to usher key accounts into the future of customer engagement and loyalty. Brenda leads her team in the design, build and operation of advanced analytics and machine learning applications that are fully integrated with our technology for powering Loyalty and Personalized Offers Solutions.
As a leader in the design and launch of programs such as SCENE and myHusky Rewards, Brenda has the credentials and experience to shape solutions that allow clients to stay customer-obsessed by harnessing the power of transactional and behavioral data for achieving customer engagement and loyalty goals.
Brenda has a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science in Statistics from McMaster University and the University of Toronto respectively. She is passionate about evolving her education and experience with Executive Education programs from the Harvard Business School.
Mark Schindel, Senior Vice President, Technology
Mark Schindel is one of the architects of Exchange Solutions’ original loyalty solutions and has been a long-time leader in the company’s evolution from its early days of offering contesting and campaign solutions to its current tenure in Loyalty and Personalized Offer Solutions. As SVP, Technology, Mark is responsible for the team that develops, tests, configures, integrates and operates the platform and solutions for our customer-obsessed clients
With more than 20 years of cumulative technology experience, Mark remains architect, engineer, builder and problem solver alongside the team he leads to keep the lifeblood of Exchange Solutions flowing.
Prior to joining ESI in its founding years, Mark spent 6 years at IBM in AIX Support, DB2 development and Global Services. Mark holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from McMaster University.
Jennifer Trant, Managing Director, Account Management
Jennifer Trant is an experienced marketing executive with a strong track record of driving results through the creation and development of high performing teams. She joined Exchange Solutions in 2016 to support key clients in achieving market growth through transformative change in their customer engagement and loyalty strategies. With strong leadership and executive experience in loyalty and customer engagement, gift card & payments, direct and digital D2C marketing, P&L management and strategic planning, Jennifer brings a pragmatic approach to building customer-obsessed engagement and loyalty.
Prior to joining Exchange Solutions, Jennifer held a variety of roles in Account Management, working with leading North American brands to support the development, launch and optimization of loyalty and engagement initiatives.
Jennifer holds a BA and MA from the University of Guelph.
Board of Directors
Alan Grant, Non-Executive Chairman of the Board
Alan The founder of Exchange Solutions, Alan led the innovation of the value exchange networking platform. Alan currently provides thought leadership and strategic guidance to the company’s executive team and the Board of Directors. Additionally, Alan is actively involved in helping the company find and develop significant new commercial and business partnership opportunities.Before founding Exchange Solutions, Alan was the CEO and founder of a company (Exchange Partners, Inc.) that used Alan’s innovative “value exchange” methodology to build one of the first campaign-management software applications. Earlier in his career, Alan gained a solid grounding in the science and methods of customer profit improvement as result of his 10 years of experience at Bain & Company where he was a leading practitioner in the customer value management practice area.Alan has an MBA from the Harvard Business School, a Canadian Chartered Accountancy designation and a BS in Accounting from the University of Toronto.
Geoffrey S. Oblak
Geoff is a General Partner at Ascent with 16 years of experience investing in early stage information technology companies. He specializes in opportunities within information security, data analytics, and enterprise infrastructure. Prior to joining Ascent in 1998, Geoff served as an Investment Analyst in the Boston office of Norwest Venture Partners, where he researched emerging technology markets and worked on successful investments, including Quadritek Systems (acquired by Lucent) and Nashoba Networks (acquired by Cisco). Prior to Norwest, he worked in the audit/business advisory division of Arthur Andersen LLP, where he was sponsored by the firm in an accelerated MBA program.Geoff currently represents Ascent on the boards of ClickFox, Exchange Solutions, Fidelis Security, Vi Labs, WebLayers, and Auction Holdings. His prior Ascent investments include Guardium (acquired by IBM), Network Intelligence (acquired by EMC), Business Layers (acquired by Netegrity), Synchronoss Technologies (NASDAQ: SNCR) and Forefield (acquired by Broadridge). Geoff serves as an independent consultant to the US Department of Defense Venture Catalyst Initiative (DeVenCI).Geoff has a BA in Economics from Hamilton College, an MBA from Boston University, and studied at the London School of Economics. He is a former CPA and current CFA Charterholder.
Brett J. Rome
Since founding North Hill Ventures in 1999, Brett has worked closely with companies in several financial services sectors, including information services, compliance management, and electronic payments. Previously, Brett was a Principal at Westbury Capital Partners, a New York-based venture capital firm. Prior to Westbury, Brett was a Principal at The Parthenon Group, a Boston-based strategy consulting firm. Brett’s current portfolio includes not only Exchange Solutions, but also Smart Destinations and Live Well Financial.Brett holds an MBA from the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College, where he was an Edward Tuck Scholar and an AB, magna cum laude, from Princeton University.
Harry D’Andrea has served as the Chief Financial Officer for both established and startup companies for over twenty years.
Prior to founding Valhalla Partners, Harry was the Chief Financial Officer for Advanced Switching Communications, Inc., a telecommunications equipment supplier that he helped take public. Prior to ASC, Harry was the Chief Financial Officer at Call Technologies, Inc., a start-up telecommunications software company. At CTI, Harry played a central role in preparing the company for growth and for its ultimate sale to 3Com Corporation.
Harry also served as the Chief Financial Officer for Yurie Systems. Prior to Yurie Systems, Harry served as Chief Financial Officer for American Communications Services, Inc., a facilities based publicly traded competitive local exchange carrier. Earlier in his career, Harry held positions with Marriott Corporation and Xerox Corporation.
Harry serves on the Board of Directors of the Washington chapter of the Private Equity CFO Association, the Board of Directors of the Alumni Society of the College of Liberal Arts of the Pennsylvania State University and on the Advisory Board of MTECH Ventures. He served for ten years as a member of the Nasdaq Stock Market Listings Qualification Panel, was a judge for the Greater Washington Technology CFO Awards, and was a charter member of the CFO Steering Committee of the Maryland Hi-Tech Council.