Westlake Venture Partners invests in emerging companies in a variety of ways, from hands-on management to capital investments. Depending on the stage of the company and their needs, Westlake Venture Partners will vary the degree to which it takes a hands-on approach.

Among the services we provide are:

  • Capital investments from private equity
  • Assistance in venture capital financing
  • Management consulting and advice on:
    • Strategy
    • Public Relations
    • Personnel
    • Marketing
    • Technology
    • Business Plan
    • Financial Model
    • Financing

The Team

Ronald T. Burr

Ronald is an accomplished technology executive with a focus on SaaS, Internet, Interactive Marketing and Digital Media. His perspective on companies is heavily influenced by his software engineering background and further shaped through his experience as an executive in both startups and large enterprises. “I believe the team is everything; People make the company; it’s critical to stay focused on culture and talent. Whether a company is old or young, most problems are ultimately overcome though building the right team”. Mr. Burr is a recognized industry pioneer having co-founded and NetZero (NASDAQ: UNTD) and taken it public with Goldman Sachs.

Mr. Burr maintains active executive leadership roles while being a partner in WVP. Currently he is Chief Revenue Officer at CallFire, Inc. Over the past decade Mr. Burr has held senior leadership roles including Chief Executive Officer of WebVisible an online advertising network for local interactive advertising. Chief Product Officer for LRN, the leading SaaS provider of online education and solutions for corporate governance, ethics and compliance processes; Director and Strategic advisor to Jambo a leading Pay per Call local interactive marketing company; Chief Executive Officer of Layer2 Networks; Chief Executive Officer and President of NetZero; Partner with IMPACT Software, an International IT consulting firm servicing Fortune 500 companies.

Marwan A. Zebian

Marwan A. Zebian is a Partner at Westlake Venture Partners. Mr. Zebian is an entrepreneur and technologist with 20+ years of experience. Known to us as “the idea man” and based in Lebanon, Mr. Zebian manages international investments for WVP. His career has spanned roles in many of the worlds largest companies to startups including Bank of America, NetZero, Sempra Energy, Admiral Ship Management and Impact Software. He received his degree in Computer Science from Beirut University.

Stacy A. Haitsuka

Stacy A. Haitsuka is a Partner at Westlake Venture Partners. Mr. Haitsuka is an entrepreneur and technologist with 15+ years of experience. He co-founded NetZero in the Spring of 1997, and was its Senior Vice President of Technology. NetZero which went public in 1999 and from its launch, raised over $400 million; signed multi-million dollar deals with companies such as GM, Qualcomm and Compaq Computers; filed 50 patents (seven of which have been issued so far); acquired over seven companies; serviced over 5 million subscribers; and maintained one of the highest service quality ratings for Internet Service Providers. Mr. Haitsuka also has served as the Chief Information Officer at Jambo, Inc. was a co-founder and Senior Vice President of Layer2Networks, Inc., and was a Partner with IMPACT Software, an International IT consulting firm servicing Fortune 500 companies. He currently serves as a Member of Board of Advisors of Green Plug Inc. Mr. Haitsuka received his B.S. in Computer Science from California State University at Dominguez Hills.

Harold R. MacKenzie

Harold R. MacKenzie is a longtime technology innovator beginning with his co-founding of NetZero (IPO 1999), where led Software Development and holds eight technology patents related to online advertising and market research systems. He brings extensive experience in the areas of operations, technology and strategy from his leadership and advisory roles with a diverse range of companies such as: Inventiv Focus (online ad services) Jambo (pay per call innovator), JetEye (search result aggregation and sharing), Jumpcut (online video editing and sharing), Qmania (deal distribution network), Green Plug (digital power innovator) and WebVisible (local online advertising).

Mr. MacKenzie maintains hands-on leadership and technical roles while being a parnter in WVP. Currently he is Founder and CEO of Dnote Mobile, a digital cash company.

Trish Burr

Trish Burr is a Partner at Westlake Venture Partners and is also the Vice President of Operations, at BlackLine Systems. During the course of her career she has held various leadership positions with an emphasis on Operations and Human Resources covering both the software and finance industries.

Trish began her career in Finance at Vault Corporation. She then spent several years holding various roles at Bankers Trust in the Municipal Bond division. She was recruited by Brokers Investment Corporation as Director of Operations. During her tenure with BIC she not only managed operations but also performed a turn around for a portfolio company which managed distressed assets. She restructured the workforce, shed unprofitable activities and focused the business on the highest value assets, successfully generating a positive return for investors.

Trish was then courted by the founder and CEO of insurance subrogation firm Locke & Lambert to be the General Manager. Trish helped double revenues and close major clients including AllState and Famers and State Farm.

During a 10 year career hiatus to raise a family, Trish performed management consulting and assisted many charitable organizations in fund raising and effective leadership structure. She worked with the founders of NetZero, helping launch the company, developing organizational strategy, hiring for key roles even coming up with the name. She also, alongside her husband, has participated in providing funding for over 14 technology startups. She was a Board member The Wellness Community, a non-profit cancer support organization and continues as a Director with Faith Horizon her family charitable organization.

About Us

Westlake Venture Partners was established in 2001 to assist young and emerging companies in the growth and success of their business. Created and managed by the original four founders of NetZero, Westlake Venture Partners employs practical and innovative business strategies, as well as capital investments, to help our portfolio companies succeed in achieving their business goals.

Utilizing over 50 years of combined business consulting experience and the "in the trenches" experience the four founders had in managing the success of NetZero, Westlake Venture Partners can provide the type of practical and "been-there-done-that" knowledge to help young companies navigate their road to success.

Our history as founders

Engineers by training and business men by nature, Ronald Burr, Stacy Haitsuka, Marwan Zebian and Harold MacKenzie founded and incubated NetZero in the Spring of 1997 through IMPACT Software, their IT consulting business that serviced Fortune 500 companies. The NetZero service was first launched in October of 1998. It quickly became one of the fastest growing companies during the Internet boom. In only eleven months from its launch, NetZero went public in September of 1999.

From its launch in 1998 through 2001, NetZero raised over $400 million; signed multi-million dollar deals with companies such as GM, Qualcomm and Compaq Computers; filed numerous patents; acquired over seven companies; serviced over 5 million subscribers; and maintained one of the highest service quality ratings for Internet Service Providers.

NetZero founders at Nasdaq IPO

How to Reach Us

Westlake Venture Partners only works with companies referred to us by trusted individuals. We do not accept unsolicited business plans or proposals. Westlake Venture Partners is not a venture capital firm and does not manage investments for private investors.

Please direct any inquiries to: info@westlakevp.com

© Westlake Venture Partners, LP