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Our Team

Mark DeSantis - Chief Executive Officer

Mark founded and now runs kWantera as its CEO, managing its strategic direction and growth in addition to its day-to-day operations, employees, and services. Regarded as an entrepreneurial leader, he has co-founded a number of technology businesses and serves as director to several others. A former CEO at the growing online tutoring company Apangea Learning (renamed Think Through Math), Mark’s background in management consulting is complemented by his leadership roles within government. A former management consultant for Booz Allen, he was the U.S. Managing Director of ANGLE Technology, PLC, a venture capital firm and consultancy. Earlier in his career, Mark was the Director of Government Relations for Texas Instruments in Washington, DC and served in several policy positions in the U.S. Federal Government including as a Policy Analyst in both The White House and the late U.S. Senator, John Heinz. Mark holds a B.A. and M.B.A. from the University of Dayton, an M.S. in Technology Management from The American University and a Ph.D. in Public Policy from George Mason University.

Kyle O'Connor - Chief Commercial Officer

Kyle joins kWantera from GE, where he most recently led the company’s global sales force effectiveness, data science & analytics, commercial operations and training/development efforts for a 2,000-person sales organization. Previously, he held a number of senior sales, business development & corporate development/M&A roles in Europe & North America delivering >$3 billion in transactions across the globe with GE, and previously, PNC Bank. As CCO, Kyle now leads our partnership, sales, marketing and commercial operations’ efforts to deliver optimized energy solutions to companies of all sizes. Kyle holds an M.B.A. from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, and a B.A from Allegheny College, where he also serves on the Board of Visitors. In his free time, he is a math geek, aspiring father-of-the-year, amateur skier, and lover of all things Trivial Pursuit.

Matt Burlando - Chief Financial Officer

Prior to joining kWantera, Matt spent five years leading the finance organizations of two early stage technology companies – ALung Technologies and Seegrid Corporation. Previously, he held a senior finance role with Philips North America after Philips acquired Respironics in 2008.  Prior to Respironics, Matt spent 5 years within the audit practices of two Big 4 professional service firms.  As kWantera’s CFO, Matt now leads the finance, accounting, HR, risk management, and investor relations roles that are instrumental in supporting the team goals of delivering optimized energy solutions to companies of all sizes.  Matt is a licensed CPA and holds an M.B.A. from University of Pittsburgh, and a B.S.B.A from Duquesne University. In his free time, he is an ice hockey coach for his son’s team, father of three “high energy” kids, and can be found playing ice hockey at various local rinks.

Benjamin Schmidt - Chief Technology Officer

Ben joins the management team after being a kWantera Energy Data Scientist (EDS). In that role, he was responsible for understanding and modeling the PJM market as well as designing the real-time trading platform​ for predictive analytics. The development of those tools has given kWantera an edge in both trading and customer recommendations. During his time as an EDS, he developed considerable insight and experience into both the kWantera business model as well as the mechanics of the market. As the Chief Technology Officer, Ben is responsible for developing kWantera’s in-house software expertise to leverage available Big Data technologies that allow kWantera to grow rapidly into new markets and serve our customers where ever they are located to deliver them the best price on energy. Prior to working at kWantera, Ben attended graduate school at the University of Pittsburgh in the Department of Bioengineering. There, he studied fast real-time machine learning algorithms and the development of large-scale computing platforms which were used to unlock the secrets of the brain. He brings that same curiosity and Big Data philosophy to his role as kWantera’s CTO.

Kaiyu Shen - VP of Energy Data Science

Kaiyu joined kWantera as an Energy Data Scientist (EDS). He was responsible for analyzing real time data and market trend in MISO. He has developed a series of models addressing different market patterns in power market. He was then promoted as Senior Energy Data Scientist (SEDS) where his main focus is to develop large-scale automated algorithms, aiming to find arbitrage opportunities in the market. As well, he participated in a serious talks with customers developing new tools for analyzing market data. As the VP of Energy Data Science in kWantera, his main responsibility is to lead the data science team developing state-of-the-art models to help our prospects making the best daily decisions in power market. Prior to working at kWantera, Kaiyu finished his Ph.D degree from Ohio University, where his research focuses on the modeling of dynamic genome networks. This study renders Kaiyu with the capability to use advanced machine learning algorithms to identify certain patterns as well as anomalies inside a complex network, which resembles a lot of similarities with the electricity market. Kaiyu holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Science and Technology of China.

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​kWantera provides market data services to customers regardless of their intended utilization or market participation activities, including electricity consumption, procurement, resale or generation​​ in ​all markets where we operate. These services may differ​ by customer. An affiliate of kWantera is in the business of trading wholesale energy for its own account based upon market data services from kWantera that may differ​ from, or be contrary to, those services provided to kWantera's customers.​ kWantera has no liability to its customers on account of these activities.​