• Michael Alfaro
    Michael Alfaro Co-Founder

    Michael is a preeminent figure in the world of fitness technology and brand partnerships. As the head of RhinoCo, Inc., the company he co-founded with Nathan Forster in 2010, Michael drives strategy and operations for a growing business that spans the physical and digital spaces in an effort to lead the market across both as the fitness industry continues to evolve.

    Before RhinoCo, Mike excelled as an entrepreneur at an early age. When he was 15, he began working for Neurology Mobile Systems, a medical company that provides diagnostic testing and intra-operative monitoring to hospitals. He quickly worked his way up to operating officer of the company in just five years. At age 20, he left to follow his passion and open the first CrossFit gym in South Florida, IMT CrossFit. Michael took IMT CrossFit from a 1,200-square-foot warehouse to a multimillion-dollar business operating in multiple states.

    Born and raised in Miami, Michael graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in business management from Florida International University. He holds multiple certifications and is regarded as one of the world’s most experienced fitness entrepreneurs.

    “I believe that through technology, we can make fitness more accessible and affordable for the world at large, giving everyone the chance to live a healthier lifestyle.”

  • Nathan Forster
    Nathan Forster Co-Founder

    Nathan Forster was born and raised in Baltimore. He began playing professional tennis at age 18, and after two years competing on the ATP tour, he retired from professional tennis to pursue a career in business. At age 21, he recognized a gap in the nightlife industry and opened DEK 23 in Miami’s South Beach. He then went on to own and operate B.E.D. nightclub in South Beach. Nathan served as operating partner and manager at both clubs and eventually facilitated the successful sale of both establishments.

    In 2010, Nathan co-founded RhinoCo. RhinoCo opened CrossFit Miami Beach in 2010, and soon after began an industry-leading Reebok partnership.

    RhinoCo is currently building the next generation of fitness facilities through their all-in-one concepts, which combine the world’s best fitness methods under one roof while giving clients an unprecedented degree of choice. After launching the idea with RhinoCo’s executive team, Nathan created the model’s business plan and is personally developing a new boot camp concept that will serve as a cornerstone of the all-in-one facilities.

    Nathan has become an in-demand speaker at industry conferences, encouraging fitness entrepreneurs to follow their hearts and make passionate choices in growing their brands.

  • Crystal Umpierre
    Crystal Umpierre Legal Counsel

    Crystal Umpierre was born and raised in Miami. She graduated from Florida International University with a Juris Doctor degree in law and is admitted to the Florida bar. She also graduated summa cum laude from Florida International University with a bachelor’s degree in business management. Crystal has clerked at several firms developing solid legal research, drafting, and writing skills. Also, her experience at FIU Law’s Business Clinic has given her irreplaceable experience working with clients and knowledge on how to handle issues from start to finish.

    Crystal discovered CrossFit in 2011 and was immediately consumed by its intensity and competitive nature. She earned her CrossFit level 1 coach certification in 2012 and is also a licensed Florida real estate agent. A lifelong perfectionist, Crystal is eager to bring additional energy and experience to an already stacked RhinoCo team.

  • Adam Bloom
    Adam Bloom Financial Controller

    Adam is the financial controller at RhinoCo. After growing up in Massapequa, New York, Adam went on to attend the University of Tampa and graduated with a degree in accounting. After graduating, Adam spent almost 5 years working as a public accountant. He gained valuable experience working on various types of clients ranging from retail to real estate. He then spent some time working as a corporate accountant in the biotechnology industry.

    Adam moved to New York City a few years after graduating college, and discovered CrossFit shortly after. He joined Reebok CrossFit 5th Avenue in early 2013 and was instantly hooked. Benefiting from the competitive environment at 5th Ave, Adam was able to qualify for the North East Regionals as a member of the Ninja team. Inspired by his passion for CrossFit and fitness in general, Adam decided to join the RhinoCo team in December of 2014. He believes in the mission and vision of RhinoCo, and feels the company can greatly impact the fitness industry for years to come.

  • Leslie Kramer
    Leslie Kramer VP of Digital Technology & Operations

    Leslie is the Vice President of Digital Technology & Operation at RhinoCo Inc. Leslie joined the team in 2018 and brings with her a wealth of knowledge from a variety of digital and software development roles over 12 years, including content production, product development, technical project management and program management.  Leslie’s digital experience spans many industries, including journalism, media, publishing, pharmaceutical, bio-tech and health & fitness. She has managed content and technical development on brands such as CNN, SHAPE, FitPregnancy, Natural Health, Men’s Fitness, Celgene, Daiichi Sankyo, Otezla, IDHIFA, Zicam, Balmex and many more.

    Leslie’s excited to lead the technology for RhinoCo and their flagship brand, NEO U.  She managed the launch of neoufitness.com, as well as the iOS and Android apps and is proud to lead the development of NEO U Live, our live streaming and on demand fitness platform slated to launch in late 2018. She believes NEO U Live is the future of fitness and she’s thrilled to be a part of it.

  • Diana Mitrea
    Diana Mitrea VP, Brand Marketing and Consumer Insights

    After graduating from Cornell with a Masters in Biological Engineering, Diana started her career in consumer insights at Procter & Gamble. However, marketing was an area that really drew her in. She shifted her career into marketing and advertising by joining the Pepsi marketing team here in New York at PepsiCO. She worked on everything from brand innovations to TV advertising.

    Fitness has always been a true passion for Diana; teaching group fitness and personal training clients. She is fully immersed into the NYC fitness scene, taking boutique classes and networking with studio owners and eventually building her own personal fitness brand online. When the opportunity came up to join the marketing team at Peloton, she grabbed it – excited to merge her career with her passion. She worked on building out brand strategy and brand positioning for the new company.

    Diana joined RhinoCO in 2017, coming on as the VP of Marketing and Consumer Insights. She all facets of marketing for RhinoCo gyms and products, in particular – NEO U (the high-tech live-streaming facility located in the heart of NYC). Diana also leads the instructor and fitness concept recruitment.

Our Advisers

  • Joe Bilman
    Joe Bilman Adviser

    Joe Bilman is Chief Digital Officer of Harland Clarke Holdings Corp, a wholly owned subsidiary of MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings Inc, and oversees the growth strategy for $3.3B in assets including Harland Clarke, Valassis and Scantron. His role is to help identify strategic growth opportunities for HCHC’s portfolio companies including M&A, product innovation and business optimization.

    Recently, he was Chief Digital Officer and Global Head of Business Development at American Media Inc., where he had P&L responsibility for AMI’s digital business and oversight of all business development activities. Prior to AMI, Bilman was acting Head of Product for Softcard (formerly Isis Mobile Commerce), a pioneering joint venture between Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile in the mobile payments space.

  • David Flannery
    David Flannery Adviser

    David Flannery is a Senior Managing Director of the Blackstone Group and Co-Head of the Capital Solutions strategy for GSO Capital Partners. The strategy focuses on rescue lending and other public and private special situations.

    Before joining GSO Capital, David was a Portfolio Manager with Anchorage Capital Group, focused on illiquid credit investing. Prior to joining Anchorage, David worked at Bank of America Merrill Lynch (“BAML”) where he held several global group head roles. David was the Chief Risk Officer of Global Banking & Markets. He was responsible for all aspects of risk management for the global institutional businesses, including sales and trading, investment banking, corporate and commercial lending, and commercial real estate. Previously, he served as the Global Head of Leveraged Finance & Capital Markets for BAML.

  • Jason Ackerman
    Jason Ackerman Adviser

    After more than a decade in the banking world, specializing in supermarket and specialty retail categories, Jason Ackerman wrote the business plan for FreshDirect, an online grocer, in 1999. His goal was simple: to remove the friction from the process of getting the highest-quality, freshest foods from the source to the consumer.

    Jason’s vision pioneered an approach to grocery shopping that revolutionized the traditional food supply chain, replacing it with one that’s hyper-fresh, focused on relationships with producers, and technologically innovative. FreshDirect sources food directly from hundreds of farms, works with in-house chefs and bakers to create thousands of fresh-made meals and products every day, and tastes and rates the produce, seafood, and meat to ensure it’s delivering the freshest food available to its customers in the Northeast.

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