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Factory Investment Team

Managing Partner & CEO

David West

Dave has been investing and operating in the food and beverage sector for more than 15 years. Prior to Factory, he held senior private equity roles at Traub Capital and Brynwood Partners, where he was primarily involved with each firms’ food and beverage investments and served in various senior operating functions. He previously led an investor group to acquire LesserEvil Snack Company, where he subsequently executed a turnaround and successful exit as the company’s President. Dave began his career at BlackRock. He holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and Economics from Carnegie Mellon University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Managing Partner

Nick DiCarlo

Nick is an accomplished investor, board director, and operating executive with over 30 years of experience in middle market privately held companies. Prior to joining Factory, he was an Operating Partner at Starboard Capital and a longtime Managing Director at Brynwood Partners -- a leading private equity firm focused on consumer products. At those firms he was engaged in every aspect of the investment process and provided active, hands-on oversight of portfolio companies to accelerate growth. Before entering private equity, he was in the media industry, holding senior roles at McGraw-Hill, United Business Media, and Village Voice Media. Nick earned a B.S. in Finance and an M.B.A. from the University of Connecticut.

Keith Caldwell

Prior to joining Factory, Keith worked for eight years with Fortress Investment Group, where he was a portfolio manager responsible for the day-to-day operations of a real estate portfolio in the U.S. and Europe. In his time with the firm, he was responsible for the management of over $3B in invested capital and over $8B in total asset value. Keith earned his MBA at the MIT Sloan School of Management and holds a BS in chemistry from UCSD.
Vice President, Investments

Michael Perlmutter

Michael has over seven years’ experience in Corporate and Investment Banking. Prior to Factory, Michael worked at Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Deloitte Corporate Finance and Israel Discount Bank, where he completed both middle market and large cap M&A and capital markets transactions in the Consumer & Retail and Industrials sectors. He also served in the Golani brigade of the Israeli Defense Forces from 2010 – 2012. Michael holds a BBA from The George Washington University, where he was a 4-year letter winner on the Men’s Division 1 golf team, and an MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.

Factory Innovation Team

President - Factory Innovation

Erin Lifeso

Erin has worked on better-for-you CPG brands for over 15 years. Most recently, she led the snacks division at the Hain Celestial Group, where she worked on natural channel brands like TERRA Chips and Garden of Eatin’, and spent 4 years in leadership roles at B&G foods. Prior to that she led marketing for Balance Bar’s successful turnaround while working at a private equity-backed firm. Erin holds a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Cornell University and an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.
VP of Product Development

Linsey Herman

Linsey is a Certified Research Chef (CRC®) with 12 years’ experience working in innovation and new product development for food companies, with a focus on the natural, organic, and free-from spaces. Specializing in idea-to-shelf product development, with expertise in nutrition and formulation, she has helped bring over 300 new products to market in retail and foodservice. A chef by training, she puts a culinary spin on nutritional formulation. Linsey is a graduate of New England Culinary Institute, earned her B.A. from Harvard, and holds an MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management. Linsey is also the host of The Ingredient Panel podcast, where a food scientist, a chef, and a food product developer discuss what's in your food, why it's in your food, and why that matters.
Brand Strategy Advisor

Tim Pollak

Tim has four decades of CPG marketing and brand-building experience, was vice chairman at two of the world’s largest global ad agencies, Y&R and Dentsu, and co-founded a data analytics company. He has served on the boards of eight manufacturing, marketing, and education companies, including American Italian Pasta, Meow Mix and Freshpet, spent 5 years as a CEO, and has done business in over 50 countries. He earned his BA at Dartmouth and MBA at Columbia University.

Shopper & Digital Marketing

Director of Shopper Marketing

Ben O’Brien

Ben has over seven years of experience in shopper marketing. He has worked with a variety of CPG companies including Nestlé Waters North America, Heineken, Unilever, and Mars Wrigley. Prior to joining Factory, Ben led the grocery channel shopper marketing team at TWINOAKS, a shopper influence agency, for its client Beiersdorf, a company whose brands include NIVEA, Aquaphor, and Eucerin. Ben earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Susquehanna University.
Ecommerce Manager

Shannon Linsenbigler

Shannon has over 10 years’ experience in ecommerce, online merchandising, and website management at major retailers, including Party City, Lord & Taylor, and Bed, Bath & Beyond. She helps Factory’s brand partners develop and refine their ecommerce strategies, handling everything from launching and managing ecommerce sites through forecasting and reporting. Shannon earned her B.A. from Kutztown University.

Creative Studio

Eric Deutsch, Creative Lead
Creative Lead

Eric Deutsch

Eric has 15 years’ experience in all aspects of visual branding, including illustration, design, advertising, social media, and, especially, photography. His passion is visual storytelling, with a focus on creating visual content around locally sourced food and beverages.

Nicole Horsfield

Nicole worked in product photography for several years, first at Saks Fifth Avenue and then at Cigars International, before joining Factory. She’s a versatile photographer who can bring brands to life for ecommerce and social media. Nicole earned a B.A. in fine arts with a concentration in photography from Kutztown University. Her personal work ranges from photojournalism to abstract art.
Content Creator- Video & Animation

Amanda Brady

Amanda studied film and video at Penn State University. Since graduating, she has worked within the media and video creation sector at a variety of companies focusing on different campaign strategies. She has a passion for capturing and creating fun and inspiring content. She is an avid traveler and takes her camera everywhere she goes!

Graphic & Packaging Design

Art Director

John Stetz

John has over 15 years of experience in graphic design, creating on both the agency and client sides. His multidisciplinary skills span digital and traditional media, and his experience includes print and packaging design, digital solutions, brand identities, and integrated campaigns. As a design-focused problem solver, John, a Lafayette graduate, leans on his background with B.S./B.A. degrees in economics and business, civil engineering and environmental science, and, of course, visual communications.
Jane Henderson, Graphic Designer
Senior Graphic Designer

Jane Henderson

An artist whose talents include drawing, calligraphy, and photography, Jane’s passion is design. She earned a B.A. in graphic design, with a minor in mass communication, from Lehigh University, has experience as a designer in the food industry with Zavino Hospitality Group in Philadelphia, and was a senior designer at Fusion, a student-run design agency at Lehigh that does work for local businesses.
Trey Adams Graphic Designer
Graphic Designer

Trey Adams

Trey is a graphic designer with experience in UI/UX, branding, and advertising. He earned his B.F.A. honors in graphic and interactive design from Moravian College. While in college, he was president of the Moravian chapter of the Kappa Pi International Art Honor Society and of Studio South, Moravian’s student-run design agency. Prior to joining the Factory team. Trey worked at Discover Lehigh Valley, the destination marketing board for the Lehigh Valley.

Manufacturing, Supply Chain & Logistics

Director of Supply Chain & Logistics

Mike Chordas

Mike has over 30 years of experience in logistics, distribution, inventory control, and supply chain management across various industries. Prior to joining Factory, he spent 16 years as a senior operations manager for a third-party logistics company where he was responsible for the day-to-day operations for Godiva Chocolatier and other major brands. At Factory, Mike assists our brand partners in establishing operational procedures using business analytics to streamline their processes and deliver cost savings to the bottom line.

Finance & Accounting

Head of Finance

Marla Hyndman

Marla is a CPA and financial executive with over 25 years of experience in financial accounting and reporting, budgeting and planning, and treasury. Most recently, she was senior vice president and controller for the U.S. division of the Hain Celestial Group, where her responsibilities included integrating the back office functions of acquired businesses. Marla is a strong leader and problem solver with deep operational, financial, and managerial experience in the food industry. She holds a B.A. in accounting from Binghamton University.

Andréa Thompson

Andréa is a financial professional with 12 years of experience in general accounting, budgeting, treasury, financial planning, and banking. Most recently, she worked as a senior accountant for a global medical device organization, where her specialties included benefit plans and asset accounting. Andréa holds an MBA from DeSales University.
Accounting Manager

Asad Khan

Asad has 17 years of professional accounting and finance experience in the manufacturing sector, including CPG. His areas of expertise include general accounting, month- and year-end closings, inventory reconciliation, cash flow, budgeting, and tax reporting. Asad holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce with a major in accounting from the University of Mumbai, India. He is currently working to complete his Certified Management Accountant License from the Institute of Management Accountants.


Jessica Postal
Head of Human Resources

Jessica Postal

Jessica brings with her years of HR leadership experience in the manufacturing and hospitality fields. She enjoys crafting and curating HR departments that promote a team-first culture. Jessica is a SHRM certified professional and holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and minor in HR Management from Bloomsburg University.
Elias Maalouf Head of IT
Head of Information Technology

Elias Maalouf

Elias is an experienced IT manager and network administrator. He provides technical support for the Factory team and our brand partners across over two dozen hardware and software platforms. Elias earned his B.S. in applied science and technical leadership from Bloomsburg University.
Director of Building Operations

Kristi Wright

Kristi is a true facilities management professional. She spent the 20 years as facilities and space planning manager at Rodale Inc., where her responsibilities included property management, employee and vendor relations, space planning, and operations support. Kristi earned her degree in business administration at Muhlenberg College.