Startup booster Expa hires Pramana Collective's Brendan Lewis as comms VP

The company was launched in 2013 by Garrett Camp, who also founded StumbleUpon.

NEW YORK: Startup catalyst Expa has hired the Pramana Collective’s Brendan Lewis as VP of communications.

Lewis reports to Roberto Sanabria, Expa's COO. He will help to tell the story of Expa’s operating model, the company’s partners, and its Studio and Labs companies, he said in a blog post on Expa’s website on Wednesday. He is based in the company’s New York office, but will visit its San Francisco headquarters each month.

"It’s already been a busy few months," Lewis wrote in the post. "Since starting, I’ve had the pleasure to help announce our new fund and the creation of Expa Labs and assist in the launches of Current, Ando and, most recently, Haus (among other things)."

Lewis will also help to shape company strategy, assist with product launches, "dabble" in policy discussions, and practice corporate, consumer, and b-to-b communications, Lewis added.

Foursquare cofounder Naveen Selvadurai has served as a partner at Expa since 2014. While Lewis never worked with Selvadurai during his tenure as Foursquare’s director of communications from 2013 to 2015, Lewis said Selvadurai introduced him to Expa.

Lewis was not immediately available for comment.

Expa, launched by StumbleUpon and Uber founder Garrett Camp as a "startup studio" in 2013, attracted $50 million in funding in its first year from tech heavyweights such as Richard Branson and Meg Whitman, according to TechCrunch. Camp has described the organization as a more-hands-on version of a tech incubator, telling The New York Times this spring, "What we’re offering is something for founders who want a bit more guidance than they may find somewhere else."

Most recently, Lewis was a partner at Pramana, where he worked since last June, reporting to cofounders Sean Garrett, Brandee Barker, and Brian O'Shaughnessy.

He joined Pramana after six months as Shazam’s first communications leader.        

Lewis previously worked at location-based deal site LivingSocial as director of corporate communications and director of social media at WCG. He has also worked at Juniper Networks, 463 Communications, VeriSign, and Edelman.

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