Speaker at Money20/20 2016
Speaker at Money20/20 2016
Lara serves as President & CEO of NOW Corp, a company she co-founded to free small businesses from the burden of funding trade credit and to enable small business growth. The concept for NOW Corp’s NOWaccount stems from the challenges Lara faced when growing her manufacturing business, Nourish. Lara co-founded Nourish Inc, and introduced its first patented products for children, in airports, hotels, entertainment venues and retail outlets across the US. Lara experienced the challenge of managing cash flow in a growing business and having to fund the trade credit required to support growth. Not finding a solution that worked, she partnered with John Hayes and launched NOW Corp and NOWaccount, the first payment solution for B2B. NOWaccount enables businesses to get paid immediately in a way that is not a loan or factoring, feels like but costs less than taking a credit card for payment and is largely invisible to their customer. NOWaccount will change the way small businesses manage cash flow and aims to turn a portion of the $1.2T of trade credit that small businesses hold into cash. NOWaccount’s innovative structure is the subject of a Harvard Business School case study.
Lara co-founded and served as CEO of Insomnia, LLC, a firm specializing in investment, development and management of complex and innovative “world-changing” projects. Lara developed a white paper on the state of global infrastructure and the impending shift in the global balance of power. She is a frequent speaker at industry conferences on innovative thinking that can reshape our infrastructure and community.
Lara spent 5 years at Dewberry Capital Corporation, an Atlanta-based commercial real estate development and investment firm, where she served as the company’s Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Operating Officer, overseeing development, sales & leasing, property management and marketing.
Lara was the Executive Vice President of Dunk, a performance footwear and apparel manufacturing/retail company built on the concept of mass customization and founded with Shaquille O’Neal & Mike Piazza. She built the operations, IT and sales & marketing groups..
Lara was the Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Retail and Consumer Products Division of iXL (now Scient), an Internet strategy and consulting firm. She founded the division in 1999 and built it into one of the top performing groups within iXL. The group operated across 26 offices worldwide with clients such as The Home Depot, Coca-Cola, and Nike. Lara began her career with Andersen Consulting as the first Business Analyst in the Strategic Services South Practice.
Lara is an internationally recognized speaker, leading seminars on creativity, innovation and access to capital. Internationally, Lara has worked in Koriyama, Japan with the U.S. Defense Department’s EAGLE Japan Program and served as the Ambassador to Lebanon for the 1996 Olympic Games.
Lara received an MBA from Harvard Business School, and a BS in Aerospace Engineering with highest honors from the Georgia Institute of Technology. She was featured in USA Today as one of the top 20 students in the US and was the ODK National Leader of the Year. Lara was a scholarship member of the varsity Track & Field team at Georgia Tech.
Lara has served on several Boards including: Georgia Tech Alumni Association Board of Trustees, Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business, the Georgia Tech College of Engineering, ACE Loans, Atlanta Heights Charter School, Flag Bank, Georgia Tech’s Alexander Tharpe Fund, and Society of International Business Fellows. Lara is a member of the Leadership Georgia Class of 2005 and the Leadership Atlanta Class of 2004. Lara taught finance as an adjunct instructor in Georgia Tech’s MBA Program for 10 years. Lara was appointed by the Governor of Georgia to serve on the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority (GRTA) Board. Lara was recently honored by the Georgia Tech Athletic Association with the Total Person Alumnus Award and by the Georgia Tech Women in Engineering as the Alumnus of the Year. She is a member of the Georgia Tech Young Alumni Hall of Fame, was a recipient of a Womenetics 2013 POW! Award honoring Purposeful Women and was named to the 2016 Enterprising Women of the Year.