Roberto has over 20 years of experience working in high tech and business. He has held executive roles in General Management, Operations, Marketing, Product Development, eCommerce and Sales, and is a business advisor and board member at several technology companies. He has international management experience and strong technical knowledge.
He is the CEO of Fractal River, a management consulting firm that helps emerging growth companies improve their strategy, create scalable structures and improve their operational execution.
He believes in innovation and value creation through startups, and works with several as mentor, investor or board member. He participates in the technology startup ecosystem in a variety of roles, including seed accelerators (Surge Accelerator), angel investor networks (Houston Angel Network), non-profit business incubators/accelerators (Houston Technology Center), universities (UoH RED Labs, Rice) and venture capital groups; as well as specific events such as South-by-Southwest (SXSW) and 3 Day Startup (3DS). Over the past seven years, he has:
- Evaluated 700+ startups for the HATCH competition at SXSW
- Judged 250+ startups in START’s monthly Demo Day
- Coached SXSW Accelerator’s startups for 5 consecutive years
- Taught 100+ startups as part of HTC Ignition, UoH RedLabs, Rice OwlSpark, and other programs
- Evaluated hundreds of pitches and personally invested in multiple startups (Houston Angel Network, SURGE Accelerator, Directly)
- Directly worked with entrepreneurs as a fractional CxO resource, primarily in strategy, operations and product development.
He also created Softtek’s InnoVentures program, a corporate-sponsored idea competition and internal seed accelerator that gathers the best ideas from internal entrepreneurs to launch them as corporate initiatives and/or independent startups, backed by venture and institutional capital.
Roberto started his career developing software, and became the General Manager of one of the largest software and IT service providers in Mexico at age 23. He led a startup pioneering electronic fund transfers and telecom solutions in Mexico that grew to $50M US, and later joined Compaq Computer which was acquired by Hewlett-Packard in 2002.
At Compaq/HP, he led several functions at the Mexico, Latin America, and Americas level, including managing Operations for HP’s $9B direct business in the region (US, Canada, LatAm). From there he led a $450M global business where he successfully executed the integration of Neoware, a company HP acquired, created a variety of innovative software and hardware products, and extended HP’s share leadership to 30% of the worldwide Thin Client market.
He has participated as keynote speaker and panelist at numerous industry events (Comdex, InternetWorld, ExpoManagement), written a monthly column on Unix & Open Systems for the Personal Computing magazine and been the radio host for a weekly program on IT News and Trends.
His academic background includes computer engineering and software development studies at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico as well as numerous leadership programs at a variety of US universities. He taught computer science at the Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico and was a collaborating author of the “Computers & Programming” college textbook.
Roberto is continuously looking for ideas and exciting technology companies that are changing the world. He believes in technology and education and continues to have fun developing mobile apps and open-source websites as time permits.