About this event

Special purpose acquisition companies (SPAC) are an increasingly popular way to raise funds for an IPO. Learn the basics of the SPAC that boards ought to know when considering going public, including pros and cons of using an SPAC vs. a traditional IPO offering. Join board expert Carol Coughlin and securities and finance expert Tamar Donikyan (partner at Ellenoff Grossman & Schole) to learn best practices for forming and operating an SPAC, also known as a “blank check company.”


Coco Brown CEO

Coco is founder and CEO of Athena Alliance. Prior to her current roles, Coco served as President, COO, and Board Director of Taos, a market leader in IT Services serving hundreds of F1000 companies, including Apple, Cisco, ebay, Facebook, and Silicon Valley Bank. Coco brings rich experience across F1000 companies, start-ups, and nonprofits in the roles of CEO, COO, advisor, and Board member to Athena. She possesses a unique understanding of the breadth of challenges and opportunities of leadership. She empowers leaders to execute successfully, working with them to develop the relationship between a company’s strategy and its organizational design and environment. Coco’s expertise in developing and strengthening these important linkages makes her a powerful C-level advisor and Board member. In addition to serving on the Board of Taos from 2004 to 2014, Coco served as a Board Director for MentorNet during its rebranding, product transformation, and subsequent acquisition by Great Minds in STEM. Coco was on the finance committee supporting the Board of Directors of Samasource and established the Operating Committee for the Silicon Valley arm of Golden Seeds, a New York-based early-stage investment firm. She also currently serves as Chair of the Nominating Committee for the Anita Borg Technology Leadership Award, one of the most prestigious awards honoring women in technology.


Carol Coughlin CEO/Founder

Carol is an experienced public company board leader, board and audit committee chair, and is highly skilled in corporate governance, including board refreshment, strategic alternatives and M&A for growth and highly regulated companies. She is a Board Leadership Fellow (NACD) and sits on the boards of the University of MD Medical Center and Trusty Care. Following an IPO and after nomination to board chair, she led the board through acquisitions that doubled the size of the company, followed by a merger with a larger company. A qualified “financial expert”, she is an accomplished healthcare CFO with a track record of achieving profitability through growth, highly successful turnarounds and M&A. She is known as an energetic, collaborative leader and a quick learner in both organizational and board settings. In 2006, Carol launched BottomLine Growth Strategies, Inc., a growth advisory firm helping CEOs of privately held companies to transform enterprise value through best practice financial and operations strategies. Carol is a graduate of Loyola University in MD (MBA) and Towson University (BS Business), is a Board Leadership Fellow (NACD), and a Certified Public Accountant.

Tamar Donikyan Partner

Tamar Donikyan, a member of the Firm, practices corporate and securities law, with an emphasis on the representation of publicly-traded companies, the formation, financing and general representation of emerging growth companies and the representation of issuers, investors and investment bankers in transactions that raise capital through the public and private equity and debt markets. Ms. Donikyan has counseled public and private company clients in a range of corporate and securities matters, including initial and follow-on public offerings of equity and debt, mergers and acquisitions, venture financings, SEC reporting and compliance and corporate governance.  For many clients, Ms. Donikyan acts as “outside general counsel,” and has advised public companies and their boards on complex decisions as they balance best practices in corporate governance with attaining business goals and protecting shareholder value.  By combining a nuanced understanding of securities laws, market practices and deal dynamics with her deep understanding of clients’ history and background, Ms. Donikyan offers practical and creative approaches to problem-solving.

Key Details

Financial Acumen

Going Public: Pros & Cons of the SPAC

Wed, Mar 03 @ 9:00am PT (1 hr)

Virtual (RSVP for link)


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