Oct. 31, 2016

Nate Yohannes : How to Access Federal Venture Capital for Your Small Business

Nate Yohannes () is Senior Advisor to the Chief Investment and Innovation Officer at the US Small Business Administration. He was appointed by the White House Office of Presidential Personnel as a Presidential Appointee in the Obama...

Nate Yohannes (linkedin.com/in/nateyohannesgovernmentaffairs) is Senior Advisor to the Chief Investment and Innovation Officer at the US Small Business Administration. He was appointed by the White House Office of Presidential Personnel as a Presidential Appointee in the Obama Administration.

As the Senior Advisor, Mr. Yohannes assists with managing the Small Business Investment Company, a $25 billion private equity/venture fund and the SBIR program, a $2.5 billion per year grant program to high growth domestic small businesses to engage in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) that has the potential for commercialization.

Mr. Yohannes sits on President Obama’s Broadband Opportunity Council, a multi-agency team responsible for providing counsel to President Obama on how to advance the United States as the most broadband accessible country in the world. In addition, Yohannes held a leadership position and played a pivotal role with the first ever White House Demo Day.

Mr. Yohannes regularly works with staff at the White House’s Business Council, Domestic Policy Council, Office of Science and Technology Policy, Innovation Cohort and National Economic Council on issues that directly affect high growth small businesses across the country.

Prior to joining the Obama Administration, Mr. Yohannes was the Vice President – Associate General Counsel at the Money Management Institute (MMI). Earlier in his career he clerked for Chief Justice Paula Feroleto of the New York State Supreme Court. Mr. Yohannes received his JD from the University at Buffalo Law School and a BA from SUNY Geneseo and is a member of the New York State Bar.


In this episode, we discussed: 

  • government resources available to entrepreneurs looking to access capital.




SBA Growth Accelerator Competition

U.S. Economic Development Administration

Audacity of Hope, Barack H. Obama

*A special thanks goes to the following contributors to this episode:

Elias Aseged, Accenture

Brittany Déjean, AbleThrive

Jessica Eggert, Medley

Sumayyah Emeh Edu, Sumayyah Emeh Edu Consulting

Chioke Mose-Telesford, Grand Circus

Jon Pincus, A Change is Coming

Courtney Seiter, Buffer

Terrell Sterling, Oracle

Michael Young, BLOC



The FCC passed new privacy rules Thursday requiring internet service providers to obtain their subscribers’ permission before collecting and distributing their private information. Telecom industry giants like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon object to the new rules, saying they will harm the Internet ecosystem. Privacy advocates, though, applaud the rules. Critics of the rules say so-called edge providers like Netflix and other companies should also be restricted from freely sharing their users’ information without permission. But the FCC, of course, doesn’t have jurisdiction over internet companies like Netflix. Cecilia Kang has the story in The New York Times.

Eric Lipton at The New York Times reported last week on AT&T’s lobbying influence within the beltway. Lipton reports that AT&T is Congress’ biggest donor, contributing a total of over $11 million to most members of Congress since 2015, which is 4 times that of Verizon. The company also has almost 100 registered lobbyists, not including non-profit organizations it contributes to. AT&T announced two weeks ago that it has agreed to purchase Time Warner for $85.4 billion. Time Warner’s properties include HBO and CNN.


Senator Elizabeth Warren is leading progressive members of Congress who are pushing Hillary Clinton to crack down on large tech companies if Clinton becomes president. Warren says companies like Google, Amazon and Apple have too much market power. But according to the Center for Responsive Politics, tech companies have contributed some $39 million to the Clinton campaign, compared to just $787,000 for Trump. Shane Goldmacher has the story in Politico.


A new Pew Report finds that a fair number of people loathe the political dialogue that happens among friends, family members and acquaintances on social media. Almost twice as many social media users reported being “worn out” by political discussions on Facebook, compared to those who like seeking lots of political content. The report also found a large percentage of people found political discourse on line to be angrier, less respectful and less civil than political conversations in public. You can find these and other findings at Pew.


Finally, Alphabet, Inc.--the parent company of Google, is putting the brakes on further build out of its fiber network in places it’s not already committed. Google Access CEO Craig Barrett announced he is stepping down in a surprise blog post last week. Google Fiber will continue to be available in Atlanta, GA; Austin, TX; Charlotte, NC; Kansas City in MO and KS; Nashville, TN; Provo, UT; Salt Lake City, UT; and North Carolina’s Triangle region. In addition, Comcast is suing the Nashville metro government, including the city’s mayor, in the U.S. District Court in Nashville. Comcast argues that Google, when it comes into Nashville, shouldn’t just be able to come in and reconfigure wires on utility poles without first waiting for incumbent providers to adjust the wires themselves. Sam Gustin at Motherboard and Jon Brodkin at Ars Technica have the story.