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SpaceFund Welcomes Business Veteran Leo Rodriguez to Board
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SpaceFund Welcomes Business Veteran Leo Rodriguez to Board
by Clarence Oxford
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Jan 31, 2024

SpaceFund, Inc., a leading player in the space venture capital arena, recently welcomed a new member to its Board of Directors - the internationally renowned business leader, Leonardo (Leo) A. Rodriguez. This addition marks a significant step in the company's journey to bolster its growth and enhance the prospects of its 21 portfolio companies.

Rodriguez, with a career spanning over four decades, brings to the table a vast reservoir of experience in managing high-growth technology companies. His appointment is expected to be a catalyst in driving SpaceFund to new heights. Dan Schatzman, SpaceFund's CEO and Board Chairman, expressed the team's enthusiasm: "We are extremely fortunate to have Leo join our board of directors. His extensive business experience in high-growth technology companies will help significantly in taking the fund to the next level as well as helping portfolio companies to successful exits."

Having served in an advisory capacity to the SpaceFund board for years, Rodriguez is not a new face in the company. His deep familiarity with the portfolio and team dynamics positions him as an ideal addition. His expertise, particularly in international markets and mission-critical process automation, is poised to add significant value.

Rodriguez's storied career has seen him making impactful contributions across various industries, including oil and gas, power, chemicals, metals and mining, pulp and paper, and pharmaceuticals. Notably, he retired from Emerson as chairman and CEO of Emerson Latin America, managing operations with a multi-billion-dollar annual turnover. Reflecting on his new role, Rodriguez shared, "There are very few projects that I would consider coming out of retirement for, and SpaceFund is that opportunity.

"I'm constantly amazed by the quality of the team, their fascinating portfolio of space companies, and the rapid and reliable growth of this cutting-edge industry. I'm excited to meaningfully contribute to the future of SpaceFund and the wider space industry."

Rodriguez's journey post-Emerson saw him joining Jaguar Precision Machine as an equity partner, a venture that underscored his growing interest in the space economy. His experience at Jaguar, serving commercial space, national security, and defense customers, underlines his valuable insights into operations, capital markets, and advanced technology sectors - all crucial for the burgeoning space industry.

Meagan Crawford, SpaceFund managing partner, highlighted the strategic importance of Rodriguez's appointment: "Leo is the missing piece that we needed to round out our board of directors. With Mr. Rodriguez's experience in capital markets, we now have a versatile and highly experienced board that is perfectly positioned to help SpaceFund, and our portfolio succeed."

Rodriguez, a graduate of Stevens Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Metallurgy and Materials Science, also has formal business education from Dartmouth's Amos Tuck School of Business. His journey from Cienfuegos, Cuba to becoming a naturalized United States citizen in 1970, and also holding Spanish citizenship, adds a unique international dimension to his profile.

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