tobe icons reviews75 Endorsements for Jon Gillespie Brown


From colleagues:

“Jon is a veteran entrepreneur who knows what he’s talking about.
Savvy, street-smart advice.”

John Mullins, Associate Professor, Chair – Entrepreneurship, London
Business School

‘Jon has been invaluable in his role coaching business teams in my course Tech Venture Formation at Stanford School of Engineering. Over the past several years he has coached numerous teams in building businesses from the ground up while avoiding many of the usual failure modes in startup companies. His depth of experience makes him immediately credible in this role and is one of the characteristics that distinguishes the quality of the Stanford offering.’

Mike Lyons, Stanford University

‘Jon Gillespie-Brown is an entrepreneur who knows what it takes to be
an entrepreneur.  He has shared his used-wisdom as a mentor in my
course, Technology Venture Formation, at Stanford University where
he has
been an inspiration to the student teams who have benefitted from his guidance.  I’m
pleased to see that Jon has captured his insights in a book which can influence
aspiring entrepreneurs everywhere.’

Audrey MacLean, Stanford University

“Jon and I worked together when he was an Entrepreneur in residence
at the London Business School and we had a fun time together helping the
students and developing the course. Jon not only engaged with the MBAs
but also added value to the course with ideas and insights. The students
rated Jon’s performance as 4.8/5 so that says a lot about his dedication
to helping others develop their entrepreneurial dreams”

Miller, Director, A Miller & Associates
(lead for
FEM program, London Business School)

“Jon puts full energy behind the projects he gets into. I first
met Jon through mutual friends at London Business School (LBS) where he
has mentored and championed many projects. He works hard, connects with
people and promotes entrepreneurship like a champion. I suggest reading
his latest book and grab a coffee with him in Silicon Valley while he does
his latest startup!”

David Gardner, CEO at

“Jon is one of my mentors and is a true entrepreneur. Jon helped
me in my journey towards becoming an entrepreneur by giving up his time
and advice whilst I was on the Entrepreneurship Summer School Program at
London Business School. Jon was one of the Entrepreneurs in Residence and
provided me with a great deal of support and guidance, along with inspiration,
which ultimately led to me setting up my own venture with two other co-founders
called WAYN (Where Are You Now?). I thoroughly recommend Jon and his new
book, which is filled with useful anecotes and exercises designed to inspire
and encourage the next generation of entrepreneurs and ultimetly help you
to decide whether entrepeneurship is for you? I’ve already given a copy
of the book to my cousin who has said that having read it – she really
wants to set up her own business and that the boke helped her to believe
more in herself and what potential she has in the future. I have read the
book and found it to be a useful reminder on the key lessons to follow
and will continue to recommend this book to others.”

Ward, Co-Founder & Co-CEO,

“Jon is an enthusiastic and energetic entrepreneur with a thorough
understanding of the needs of the IT industry, but in addition he is much
more broadly based. He also has a strong interest in education and mentoring
in the field of entrepreneurship. I have worked with him at the London
Business School Entrepreneurship Club, and found him an interesting and
inspiring colleague and friend.”

Barr, Chairman, InterResolve Holdings Ltd

“Jon’s success as a serial entrepreneur has been an inspiration
to many of us who have had the chance to know and work with him. His work
with business students at Stanford University and The London Business School
have been an inspiration to a number of young entrpreneurs on both sides
of the Atlantic. Over the past decade Jon has provided me with very insightful
help in both my personal and professional life – and in particular – with
insights into starting and managing high growth, entrprenuerial software
companies. His ideas and objective advice are of value to anyone working
in similar environments.”

Michael Cottle, Vice President, Worldwide Sales, deCarta

“I have known John for over 15 years and have greatly enjoyed my
time with him. He has a true flair for business and is an ideas person
with unlimited energy and a strong personality.He has been a pleasure to
work with.”

Howard Shaw, Managing Director, Timeplex

“Ever since first meeting Jon over 8 years ago, we have ‘sounded’
each other out many times on Entrepreneurial discussions and possible business
ideas. His unwavering contribution to other like-minded individuals to
help them nurture and develop their own business is nothing short of phenomenal.If
there was ever anyone who embodies the ‘contribution theory’ then this
depicts him brilliantly. He has selflessly given over the years with
many many hours of advice, which frankly, has proved invaluable.

Jon has a superb brain forged from a well rounded career, sharpened
by mentoring aspiring individuals in the London Business School, polished
by surrounding himself with his own dream-team of self made business builders
and the end product is a vault of information which if you ever have
the chance to sit down with and unlock you’d be wise to draw from.”

Lucien Butler, Managing Director, Healthworks Ltd

“Jon is an entrepreneur extraordinaire. I have known him for a few
years now and have come to realize how much he understands the true nature
of entrepreneurship and what it takes to bring a business to life. His
dedication to the business world and commitment to enable entrepreneurs
(and other individuals for that matter) to succeed is refreshing in a world
consumed with personal interest and narcissism. There are no conversation
with Jon in which you wouldn’t gain some insights. I highly recommend him
to whomever has a chance to come in contact with him.”

Philippe Lavie, President, KeyRoad Enterprises, LLC

“As an entrepreneur myself, I have asked Jon for his opinion on
many occasions and on a wide variety of subjects. He has consistently provided
excellent advice and shown a very solid understanding of the mechanics
and the machinations involved in founding, running and growing a business.
This understanding has helped me in my endeavours on more than one occasion
and I am sure I will be the beneficiary of Jon’s wisdom in the future.”

May, CEO, Quask

“Jon, is in my view a classic entrepreneur with a very good track
record of building businesses and selling them at the right time. I am
an investor in Nalpeiron, because I felt that Jon has the creative, sales
and leadership skills necessary to build a business with substantial value.”

Carey, Executive Chairman, Melorio plc

“Jon is a keen listener, an insightful businessman, and a refreshingly
humble guy for someone with his experience and history of success. If he’s
got something to say about the art of entrepreneurship, I’m going to make
sure I’m on line to hear it.”

Corrigan, Vice President, Product Management, Emmi Solutions,

“Jon Gillespie-Brown is a brilliant entrepreneur who can really
communicate the value behind his vision and strategy. I have had the opportunity
to know Jon for about 5 years and he is one of the most driven and passionate
individuals I have ever met. He has an uncanny ability to recognize the
value of combined experience to bring people and ideas together to ultimately
create opportunity. I think overall his honesty and warmth is what makes
him very unique in the business community.”

Goldman, Managing Partner, Maxwell Taylor LLC

“Jon has shown himself to be a man of openess, honesty, action and
determination. Despite the hurdles we have faced in trying to find a relationship
between our respective businesses over a long period of time, Jon shows
continual respect, and a drive to deliver exceptional value to both sides
of a deal.”

David Wright, Worldwide Director, Licensing Technology, Symantec

“I knew Jon as a young man, starting out in his career, but even
then he had a pioneering entrepreneurial spirit and always carried out
his job with great panache. He joined an Australian start-up as their first
salesman in the UK and enjoyed considerable success getting them established
in a very mature market. He’s been successful in everything he set out
to do since and I wish him well.”

Foster-Fletcher, Owner, Focus Executive Ltd

From mentees:

lbs big Endorsements for Jon Gillespie BrownLondon Business School:

“It is without hesitation that I would recommend Jon as a mentor
to other aspiring entrepreneurs, both personally and professionally. Wihout
his guidance it is unlikely I would be where I am today and for that I
am truly thankful.”

Peter Ward, CEO, WhereAreYouNow

“I would fully recommend Jon to anyone looking for impartial advice.
That’s not to say working through the issues Jon raised was easy – far
from it in fact!. But his suggestions were always thoughtful and resoundingly
practical. He has a great ability to present complex interelated issues
in a logical way which speaks to his years of entrepreneurial experience”


“I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all of your
support, time and advice during the Entrepreneur Summer School of 2004.
I really appreciated your frank and “straight to the point” advice
and comments and believe you had a significant impact in changing my business

Jason Neal, CEO, Omniglobe

stanford Endorsements for Jon Gillespie BrownStanford University and UC Berkeley (HAAS):

“Jon, I wanted to leave a small note of thanks for all the hard
work and passion you put into team Budushei, Please feel free to use
all or part of this on your website.

I wanted to write this note to thank you for coaching Team Budushei as
part of the Technology Venture Formation.  As our mentor, you infused
the team with genuine enthusiasm and kept up the energy levels, particularly
during some high pressure points.  You were always direct in your
feedback and constructive in your criticism.  Never letting us lose
perspective and the miss bigger picture.  I now apply the AIDA framework
routinely in my personal and professional life.  I am also spending
significant time and energy doing research before launching my next venture!”

Girish Pashilkar, Sloan ’08, Stanford Business School

“Hi Jon,

Thanks for being a great mentor to us this quarter.  What I found particularly useful were the sessions where we fleshed out
our ideas and got some good feedback as to what the VCs were looking for
(something visceral, an advil not a vitamin), and also presentation coaching
– your advice helped get us amped and confident for our presentation.

You really helped get us on the right track right…Overall I’d give your
performance a 9 out of 10. Thanks for spending the time with us given
your busy schedule of work plus writing your book and other things.  Happy
holidays and see you in the New Year.”

Jamie Wu, Student, Stanford Business School

“Jon has been a great mentor. He is very prompt in giving feedback. He communicated very effectively to us on how one should present ideas. He made us realize that there is an art of how to convince people while presenting.” December 5, 2008

Namita Das, Student, Stanford University


“Jon’s hard learned lessons as an entrepreneur and his ability to provide honest and sincere feedback have been extremely valuable assets to my Entrepreneurship team at Haas and my learning experience as an Entrepreneur in training. Jon has enabled our team to approach entrepreneurship as it should: a tough battle in which only the smart and well prepared succeed. Thanks Jon!” November 25, 2008

Abhijit Sawant, Software Development Manager / Principal Software Engineer, Wily Technology Division of CA


“Jon is an excellent mentor for entrepreneur. He mentored my team for technology venture formation class. We obtained his help in evaluating our business opportunity, optimizing operation stack and improving VC presentation skills. Since he has rich business experience in VC scale start-ups and wide spectrum of field knowledge, his advice is always to the point and very constructive. In addition, his advising style is friendly while persuasive. I would highly recommend him to be a mentor for early stage start-up companies.” November 18, 2008

Yingjie (Roger) Zheng, Student, Stanford University


“Jon brings a tremendous amount of insight as an entrepreneurship coach. He helped our startup team navigate the early phases of the venture creation process, guiding us by asking the hard questions, identifying gaps, and consistently giving us honest and direct feedback throughout.” November 17, 2008

Vince Wu, Student, University of California, Berkeley – Walter A. Haas School of Business


“Jon has been a great guide and mentor for us in our Technology Venture Formation course here at Stanford University. We look forward to further guidance from him and also working with him in the future.” November 17, 2008

Aditya Mittal, Graduate Student, Stanford University

“Jon is great coach and mentor. He provided great insights into the world of startups based on his personal experiences and hundreds of students that he has mentored. His innovative approach at Guerilla Marketing and Competitive Intelligence were great learning experience. He provided us with candid and constructive feedback, which went a long way in enhancing our business plan. He was able to provide us great feedback on our presentation skills namely how to invoke interest of the VC and then keep them engaged through the presentation. The guidance went long way in successul delivery of the final presentation to the the VC. I would highly recommend Jon to anyone who is really serious about starting on his own and ready to take candid criticism.”

Ashish Sabadra, Student, University of California, Berkeley – Walter A. Haas School of Business

“Jon was a very helpful and outgoing mentor to my entreprereurship class team. We appreciated his insights into the entrepreneurship and venture capital community and his active willingness to help us through our venture idea. He helped us refine our business idea to create unique value.”

Maheen Samad, Student, University of California, Berkeley – Walter A. Haas School of Business

“Having a busy schedule, Jon impressed me with his involvement and continuous guidance for us in Technology Venture Formation that I took last quarter. From crafting effective VC presentation to validating business idea through rentless market assessment, Jon taught us every step along the way to succeed in the process. Thanks Jon!”

Lisa Wang, Student, Stanford University Graduate School of Business

“Jon was my mentor while I was enrolled in the Entrepreneurship class at the Haas School of Business. He was a great mentor, and provided us with terrific feedback and guidance throughout the semester. He was also very fun to work with, and made the class more enjoyable.”

Alyson Abrego (Miller), Product Line Marketing Manager, Sun Microsystems

Top qualities: Great Results, Personable, Expert

“Jon was our team’s mentor for the Entrepreneurship class. Jon’s guidance, creative ideas and his voice of reason were invaluable to the team. He has a unique ability to focus both on the high level big picture and dive into the nitty gritty details at the same time. He helped the team to think creatively and try different things.”

Prashant Bansal, Student, University of California, Berkeley – Walter A. Haas School of Business

“Jon taught me a lot about being an entrepreneur. I highly recommend his book “So You Want to be an Entrepreneur?” to anyone who is thinking about being an entrepreneur.”

Kelly Lu, Student, University of California, Berkeley – Walter A. Haas School of Business

Other mentee examples:

“I have known Jon for several years and have valued his input on
all parts of my business. Jon helped me understand what running a business
really involves and that once the idea forms in your head you must establish
if it can sell. I used to think raising money through banks and investment
would be all I needed to make a business work Jon has taught me that money
only has a real value once you are able to add value to it and make more
from it. He is bright, knowledgeable, quick thinking, very straight and
direct. You can trust in what he tells you is the best he can offer and
when he is not sure he will tell you, that sort of trust goes a long way
when you are on your own trying to make important life changing decisions.”

Greg Wood, CEO, Connect360

“Jon provided me with amazing insight on how to pursue my life goals
and how to get to accomplish them. His help has been crucial to expanding
my “context” to allow more “content” to flow in.
I am looking forward to reading his latest book “So you want to be
an Entrepreneur” which is poised for an amazing success. Thank you
Jon, I look forward to learning from you!”

Cirlig, CEO Zilpy

“I think Jon is one of those extraordinary people who shares so much needed positive energy with others. His expertise, advise and energy was extremely helpful to my company and I hope more and more startups can meet with Jon in the future. If you have a chance to work with him, don’t hesitate!” December 19, 2008

Mark Kofman, Founder, Programeter

“Jon is a great teacher and adviser. He is energetic and passionate about your cause, and works earnestly with you to help you achieve the best. As a entrepreneur I would always want a investor like him on my side, working with you as a coach to guide you through the process till you get to the finish-line.”

Shekhar Yadav, Director, Technology, StrongMail Systems Inc

Top qualities: Personable, Expert, High Integrity

“Jon is a born leader and a very inspiring and talented individual – he has provided us with, on so many occasions, the right advice whilst challenging us on our thinking when required. I met Jon when he was an Entrepreneur in Residence at London Business School and I am proud to be having Jon as one of my mentors. His success and reputation follows him wherever he goes and he proved it one more time by setting a very innovative company called Digital Ventures. Jon even recently wrote a Book for which all proceeds go to the Grameen Foundation ( – Not only is Jon a fantastic mentor, he also is a very genuine and generous person. I would recommend to anyone without any hesitation – Whichever work association you may have with Jon in the future, he will shine and will be the most positive reflection of your institution.”

Jerome Touze Co Founder & Co CEO of

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