Lush green plants filled the rooms, bamboo and wicker furniture dotted the walls and ceiling fan's circulated the air in sexy Le Colonial in San Francisco on May 10th. The swanky 20’s style French Vietnamese restaurant was the setting for our second Cocktails with Courtney event. As some guests settled outside on the veranda, Red Herring, the lead sponsor, set up a photo booth to take pictures of guests for mock covers of their magazine. IBM's Web Integrator group also was a generous sponsor and LavaStorm filled out the triumvirate. Each sponsor brought an item to raffle and we'll announce the winners here shortly!
Plenty of digerati crawled out from behind their desks for this soiree. Brad Nye of VIC and the suave Michael Tchong of Iconocast came to snack on the interesting hors d'oeuvres and sample some chilled wine. Other networking netnauts who came to meet and greet were Grey Direct West's VP e.Media Sallie Gamez, Liza Svenson of her own firm and ideadollar.com CEO and founder Mark Turrell. Mark Swanson of AppGenesys came by for some cocktails and brought me up to date since his days in NY at iXL. Craig of Craigslist's mom was visiting from NJ and came to the party with Phil Knowlton of the list. In the vein of David Letterman and his mom's reports, Craig of Craigslist will be instituting an "Ask Craig's Mom" section to the wildly popular list. Nancy Jaffe of Fresher, Arno Hesse (director of Appnet), Jennifer Palmer of Marketing Edge and Kevin Prigel (Pres/CEO of StreetAdvisor) came to meet old and new friends. Eric Grover of Intrepid Ventures, Jim Marver of VantagePoint Venture Partners and Bill Sautter of Galaxy Ventures were among the VC set that stopped by. People from Autodesk, Scient, McCann-Erickson and IPO.com also met some of the sponsors, including Red Herring’s Tricia Taggart, IBM Web Integrator’s Susanne Wood and Rich Farber and LavaStorm’s Asim Brown and Ben Wong. I met Kathryn Surso and Todd Santino of Acetva.com and Webby nominees Caryn Cammeyer Epstein and Josh Urist of Bla-bla.com came by before their big night tomorrow. Chay Samudrala of The Square announced her setting up this East-coast company’s West coast headquarters.
Kirsten Bartok from Chase Capital partners took a break from her long nights at the office to steer the handsome Smoke Wallin, CEO of eskye, about the room. Caroline Waxler (Markets Editor) and Annika Jensen (Director of Communications) of the trendy new eCompany Now dropped in for a few refreshments before their big launch party to be held the very next day. Eric Jaffe Levy of Veon and Victoria DeGuzman of Lycos, Dimple Billimoria of Zentropy Partners and Saurabh Agnihotri of Deutsch Banc were mingling with other guests like Kenneth Goldberg of First Registry and Thomas Soevyn of AllAdvantage.com. John Shin of Web-On-Site and Andrew Rosen were also there to meet Buzzsaw.com's Ciaran Obroin and Leo Vezzali of Ground Zero. Deja.com's Chief strategy officer Richard Gorelick and PR@vantage's CEO Ilene Adler also came to meet Niehaus Ryan Wong's Chairman Bill Ryan and team of Carla Schlemminger and Wendy Brittan. All in all, a great turnout. And you can be sure we'll be back soon!