Mark Thomann, Managing Director

Mark Thomann is an entrepreneur who is dedicated to helping early-stage companies and their management teams scale their businesses. The lack of seed capital available to early stage companies that are focused on better for you products inspired him to co-launch Spiral Sun Ventures. He takes a hands-on approach to investing and takes an active role in assisting many of the SSV portfolio companies.

In addition to SSV, Mark serves as Chief Executive Officer of Dormitus Brands, a company that acquires, redevelops, and monetizes iconic dormant brands.

Mark received a B.A. from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts.  He lives in Chicago with his wife and three children.

Michael Kaplan, Managing Director

Michael Kaplan is an experienced business and transactions professional.  Michael started as an attorney working for national law firms such as Mayer Brown, and was employed on the business side for over 12 years at JLL (formally Jones Lang LaSalle), specializing in transaction management, team building and innovation.  Michael is also a founding member of the Urban Physic Garden, a 501(C)(3) organization dedicated to educating the public on the healing power of plants and food as medicine.

Michael earned a B.A. from the University of Michigan (1985) and a J.D. from the Northwestern Pritzker School of Law (1990).

Originally from New York, Michael has lived in Chicago for the past 25 years.  He currently resides in the Hyde Park area of Chicago with his wife and two teenage sons.

Margot Shapiro, Managing Director

Margot Shapiro began her career in the investment banking division of Goldman Sachs & Co. She then spent five years working in private equity on leveraged buyouts and venture capital deals, and later as Director of Business Development for the education division of The Washington Post Company. Prior to a move to California, Margot helped launch the Wolverine Venture Fund at University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, and actively served on its founding advisory board for six years.

In 2010, she co-founded LMN Ventures, a seed capital fund that invested in women-led businesses and had two exits in the Better-For-You CPG sector.

Margot holds a B.S. in Applied Earth Science and an M.S. in Petroleum Geology from Stanford University, and an MBA from Harvard Business School. She is married, lives in Laguna Beach, and has three children.

Mayuri Baheti, Associate

Mayuri Baheti is currently a first-year full-time MBA student at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Prior to Booth, Mayuri spent almost 4 years at Microsoft as an Enterprise Solutions Consultant for Manufacturing and Retail clients across the US. She was able to take what she learned back to her family business, Yash Technologies, an IT services company headquartered in India. There, she spent 3 months rotating through each major department of the company to understand how they operate and then assisted C-Suite through the due diligence process of two acquisitions in London and Dubai. Now, Mayuri is pursuing her MBA to transition her career to Entrepreneurship. Growing up with a Father who is a bootstrapped entrepreneur, her love for startups and innovation has been instilled in her since she was young, and she is passionate about helping people like him build and grow their ideas.

Mayuri holds a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She currently lives in Chicago and in her free time you can find her running along Lake Michigan, attempting to whip up something delicious in the kitchen, or crossing off things on her numerous bucket lists including new restaurants, new experiences, and new countries!