The management team at Initio Fuels consists of experienced entrepreneurs with broad operational experience and a demonstrated history of commercializing new technologies. Since 1993, the team (through related company, XL TechGroup LLC) has driven eight start-ups to commercialization and taken six of these through successful initial public offerings.
John Scott, PhD
In addition to having founded and managed several commercially successful technology companies, Dr. Scott has authored business theories surrounding the development of successful technology enterprises, and lectures to business schools throughout the USA. He has served in a number of technical and management positions in the private sector, including chairmanship of two public companies.
Dr. Scott became chief scientist of a U.S. public company in the early 1980s following a highly regarded career as an astrophysicist, academic and consultant to a number of governments, including the USA and several NATO countries. He then started his first company which was funded in the traditional angel/VC investment method which was sold about three years later. This was followed quickly by his second company, which also sold for a profit. By the early 1990s, Dr. Scott had become an investor in several venture funds and was on the board of various venture-backed companies. Combined with his personal company-building background, he had gained a significant amount of experience about the venture capital investing model and was already developing the original principles of a far more systematic way of building new companies. In 1993, together with some of the current XL TechGroup management team, he formed in 1993 a company called XL Vision where six out of eight companies they created achieved successful exits either through trade sales or IPOs. XL Vision became XL TechGroup in 2002.
Dr. Scott has also been a consultant to the U.S. and various European governments and was a national research council fellow at NASA. Dr. Scott holds numerous patents and has been published extensively in refereed scientific journal papers. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Physics and Astrophysics at Michigan State University and a Ph.D in the astrophysics/physics dual program from the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory.
As a member of the senior executive team of Initio Fuels, Mr. Dippold is involved in all aspects of the company’s operations. Mr. Dippold was a founding member of XL TechGroup LLC and served on the Senior Staff and was appointed as CEO of PetroAlgae LLC. Mr. Dippold also served as Chairman of Applied Photonics, a provider of laser-based solutions to the semiconductor and flat panel display industries.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Dippold was the founder, Chairman, CEO and President of Opto-Mecanik, Inc., a designer and manufacturer of infrared optical and laser-based systems and served in this capacity for 27 years. He joined Space Systems Laboratory in 1967 where he served as team leader for the design of next generation optical systems for the US Air Force and NASA. Mr. Dippold received a degree in optical engineering from the Deroy Optical Institute, Munich, Germany.
Mr. Haskell is responsible for corporate strategy for Initio Fuels and is part of the executive management team. With over 25 years of experience, Mr. Haskell has created, co-founded and built numerous technology companies. Mr. Haskell’s experience reflects a combination of executive management, private equity investment and company creation. In 1993, he co-founded XL Vision (now XL TechGroup) in and served as its president and chief operating officer. Mr. Haskell was also part of the early management team at Internet Capital Group (NASDAQ: ICGE) where he served as Managing Director of Operations. Mr. Haskell then rejoined XL TechGroup in 2001 and continued to serve as its President and COO. In 2005, he assumed the role of CEO of AgCert International, PLC (LSE: AGC) until its sale in 2008. Prior to XL, Mr. Haskell spent over a decade in various technical and management roles in private industry. Mr. Haskell earned a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering and applied mathematics from Iowa State University.
David P. Szostak
Mr. Szostak has been our Chief Financial Officer, Secretary and Treasurer since its inception. Mr. Szostak, a certified public accountant, began his career in Chicago, Illinois working as an auditor for Laventhol and Horwarth LLP, a large accounting firm. In 1987, he became the Corporate Controller at Extel, Inc., or Extel, a global manufacturer of electronic communication equipment for industry and government. In 1990, when Extel acquired Hetra Computer, Inc., or Hetra, a manufacturer of government specialty computers, Mr. Szostak became Hetra’s Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. In 1993, when XL Vision Inc. or XL Vision, the predecessor company to XL Tech acquired Hetra, Mr. Szostak continued in the same positions with XL Vision. At XL TechGroup he has been responsible for the fundraising and public offerings of all spin-out businesses, in addition to the normal accounting, finance and operational support functions. He holds a B.Sc. in finance from Southern Illinois University, with graduate studies at DePaul University.
Raveendran (Ravi) Pottathil, PhD
Dr. Ravi Pottathil specializes in biotechnology and ecotechnology assessment and development. Dr. Pottathil has unique experience with technology research and development in entrepreneurial environments. The technologies span a variety of scientific arenas including CleanTech renewable fuels (biodiesel), natural pesticides, antimicrobial compounds, medical devices, human and veterinary diagnostic assays, and functional foods. Dr. Pottathil brings this experience to his current role as Executive Vice President and Chief Technical Officer at Initio Fuels, an XL TechGroup owned company.