After a decade at the helm, Rhys L. Williams is stepping down as president of New World Angels. Stephen M. O’Hara of Fort Myers will become the third president in the Florida angel group’s 13-year history.
O’Hara has been a member of NWA since 2012 and has served on its board of directors and investment committee for the past three years. Before joining NWA, from 2003 until 2011, O’Hara was CEO of Angelica Corporation, a New York Stock Exchange listed company until it went private in 2008. Before joining Angelica, from 1998 until its merger with K-2 Corporation in 2003, he served as chairman and CEO of Rawlings Sporting Goods, a NASDAQ listed company. He is currently chairman of the board of Miami-based Kairos, an NWA portfolio company.
“Steve’s impressive for-profit and not-for-profit leadership experiences over a successful 35-year career make him the perfect leader for NWA’s next stage of development,” said Williams, who will become chairman of NWA’s board while he pursues other business interests.
Under Williams, NWA doubled its membership to 60 accredited investors and increased the group’s average deal size to $1 million. In 2015, NWA completed six investments, deploying over $2.8 million in new capital in companies including most recently Raw Shorts of Miami and TAO Connect of St. Petersburg. This follows NWA’s seven investments totaling about $3.5 million in 2014. “We will continue to invest in the most promising, young Florida companies and leaders and keep working closely with our portfolio companies as they grow and develop,” O’Hara said.
With members in nine Florida counties and hubs in South Florida and Tampa Bay, New World Angels is a structured group of private investors investing in early-stage entrepreneurial companies with a significant presence in Florida.