Senior Leadership

The JFP Holdings Senior Leadership Team is supported by a highly qualified and motivated group of Chinese and Western support personnel. Our junior staff consists of individuals with presentation, language and financial skills who view JFP Holdings as an attractive long-term career opportunity if they plan to remain in China, and an important step in their careers if they do not.

JFP Holdings also has an active intern program that provides our company with a steady flow of talented undergraduate and graduate students from the best schools in China and the rest of the world.

Jim OneilJames (“Jim”) O’Neill
Managing Partner and Chief Operating Officer

Mr. O’Neill has been involved in international investment banking and private equity activities for over 25 years. He has been actively involved in China-focused investment activities since 1995, including 10 years serving on the Board of Directors and Investment Committee of ASIMCO.

Prior to joining JFP Holdings, he was the Founder and Managing Partner of Jin Niu Investment Management Co., Ltd., a Beijing-based advisory firm which develops and executes long-term value-creation strategies for both Chinese and U.S. companies. He has also provided fundraising and investment management assistance to several RMB-denominated private equity funds in China.

He previously worked for Trust Company of the West, where he helped build and manage a $2.2 billion private equity investment program focused on emerging markets with investments across Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Prior to TCW, he worked for Dean Witter Reynolds and PaineWebber Incorporated where he executed U.S. and international financing and M&A transactions totaling over $4.5 billion for clients primarily in the manufacturing and transportation sectors.

Mr. O’Neill earned an MBA degree from Harvard Business School and a BBA in Finance with Honors from the University of Notre Dame. He is based in Beijing.

Henry HuangHenry Huang
Managing Director

Henry brings over a decade of experience in government relationships and joint venture negotiations to JFP Holdings. Prior to joining the Company, Henry was one of the key individuals in the Chairman’s Office at ASIMCO for 12 years. In 1999, Henry joined ASIMCO as Corporate Communications Manager and went on to become Director of Public and Government Affairs. In recognition of his outstanding contributions to the company and his increasing responsibilities, he was promoted to Vice President in December 2007 and was responsible for the company’s government affairs at the central, provincial and local levels; public affairs; corporate communications and partner relationships; as well as the coordination and management of strategic business assignments.

In 1990, Henry began his working career as a Sales Manager for the Beijing Kunlun Hotel and then as Public Relations Manager at the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center. In 1997, Henry moved to the United States, where he worked in sales and logistic function for Pinnacles Enterprises in New Jersey.

Henry received a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Beijing University of International Relations and a postgraduate education in Journalism from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Bob IwataBob Iwata
Managing Director

Bob has fifty years of experience in the Japanese auto industry and brings strong business relationships in Japan, USA and Europe to JFP Holdings. Upon graduating from Waseda University in 1965, Bob went to Nippon Piston Ring Co., Ltd. (NPR), where he worked for 41 years. He began his career as a production control officer at NPR’s facility in Japan, and then served at NPR of America Inc, where he engaged in developing the OE and aftermarket sectors and was successful in increasing sales to the components aftermarket and engine-rebuild market in the USA.

After 14 years at NPR of America, Bob returned to NPR’s head office in Japan and was promoted to Managing Director and Member of the Board. Bob was responsible for the Engineering, International Sales, International Business Promotion, and Corporate Planning divisions and was credited with greatly expanding NPR’s international businesses. In 2006, Bob joined ASIMCO Technologies, where he served as the Vice President and Chief Representative of Japan.

Gary LePonGary LePon
Managing Director

Gary has more than four decades of experience in global business, specializing in Asia and the automotive Industry. Gary came to JFP Holdings from Avery Dennison Corporation, where he was recruited to set up various businesses in Japan — the only country globally that Avery Dennison did not have a leading market position. After his five-year stay in Tokyo, Avery Dennison Japan is now the company’s fastest growing entity across all business units, with revenues projected to top $100 million in the next planning horizon.

Gary began his career at a private automotive tool and equipment company, which was later acquired by Chicago Pneumatic Tool, where he established subsidiaries in Japan and Australia. He went on to establish his own consulting company, LePon Group, that managed a China Automotive Investment Seminar with a 300-person delegation, led by then-First Vice Premier, Li Lanqing. Over 130 global automotive-related companies attended the seminar, and multiple joint ventures were developed from contacts made at the event.

LePon Group also assisted a number of US and European companies in establishing businesses in China. SKF, one of LePon Group’s clients and a world leader in automotive bearings and seals, persuaded Gary to move to Japan as President for the SKF Seals Group in Asia Pacific. After working at SKF, Gary served as senior vice president at ASIMCO Technologies, where he built upon and expanded relationships with global companies and secured specific technologies for ASIMCO in China.

Gary received a dual degree in Asian Studies and Economics and earned a master’s degree from Thunderbird Graduate University in 1975, where he wrote his thesis during a scholarship in Japan at Boeki Kenshu Center.

John LiangJohn Liang
Managing Director

John Liang has over 15 years experience in the domestic and global automotive industries, having been a sales and marketing executive in several major automotive companies, such as China Auto Electronic Group, Tenneco, ASIMCO Technologies and NORINCO (China Northern Industries Corporation).

John holds a bachelor’s degree in Automotive Engineering and a master’s degree in Management from Tianjin University. He spent five years at NORINCO preparing analyses, market studies and strategic planning of the group’s automotive and motorcycle business. In 1998, he joined ASIMCO Technologies as a Marketing Manager, helping the CEO to develop the market strategy for China, and then as the Commercial Director for ASIMCO Braking Systems in Guangzhou, one of the ASIMCO operating companies. There, John created an OE and aftermarket sales and marketing program that helped triple sales revenue at the company. In 2006, John joined Tenneco (China) as Sales and Marketing Manager of Ride Control product line, where he established sales programs that increased sales revenue and solidified client relationships, as well as participated in global product development programs. Before joining JFP Holdings, John was Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Program Management at China Auto Electronic Group, one of China’s largest manufacturers of automotive electronic components.

John brings valuable industry knowledge and sales and marketing experience to JFP Holdings.

Sara CusimanoSara Cusimano
Vice President, North America

Sara spent the last four years in Investment Management at Goldman Sachs, where she worked on a team that managed over $5 billion across approximately seventy family relationships. Her responsibilities as a Private Wealth Advisor included financial counseling, strategic asset allocation, portfolio construction and rebalancing, meeting preparation and regular client communications. In addition, Sara worked extensively with the Special Investments Desk, marketing innovative ideas and opportunities and coordinating investments in Hedge Funds, Real Estate and Private Equity.

Prior to her experience at Goldman Sachs, Sara worked in communications as Tom Brokaw’s Coordinator at NBC News. In her role at NBC, Sara was responsible for coordinating the efforts of Mr. Brokaw’s television, documentary and book producers; managing Mr. Brokaw’s staff; liaising with his lawyer, publicists and agent; scheduling trips; and otherwise overseeing his calendar.

Sara has lived and worked in China and has traveled extensively throughout the country. Sara graduated from Yale College and studied Mandarin Chinese.

Based in the United States, Sara is head of account management and the North America liaison.

Carleen GiacaloneCarleen Giacalone
Vice President, Communications

One of the original members of the ASIMCO team, Carleen was Director of Corporate Communications of ASIMCO for 14 years. In this role, Carleen developed ASIMCO’s relationships with both the foreign and Chinese media; developed ASIMCO’s corporate identity and brand, implementing common visual and architectural guidelines throughout the 17 joint venture and wholly owned companies; managed all aspects of the company’s branding strategy, including development of all marketing materials and corporate website profile; and coordinated all internal and external company events, including participation in Chinese and international trade shows, board and investor meetings, and quarterly General Managers’ Meetings.

Prior to joining ASIMCO in 1994, Carleen served for 13 years as Assistant Corporate Secretary of Paine Webber Incorporated. In her capacity at Paine Webber, Carleen was responsible for shareholder relations and all corporate matters involving the board of directors and subsidiary companies. Carleen graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Fordham University, New York.

Carleen is based in Beijing and is responsible for corporate administration, communications and media relations.

Libby PerkowskiLibby Perkowski
Vice President

Prior to joining JFP Holdings, Libby worked at Forstmann Little & Co., the large New York based private equity firm, where she helped organize the company’s renowned Aspen Conference and assisted the Chairman in various capacities. In 2004 Libby worked as a Policy and Business Program Intern at the Asia Society in New York where she researched and drafted papers regarding current business trends in Asia and presented topics for future panel discussions and conferences.

A Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Georgetown University, Libby has had a broad international exposure, both professionally and personally. She is proficient in both the Chinese and Italian languages, having lived and studied in China and having spent a semester at Georgetown’s campus in Fiesole, Italy. From October 2007 to December 2008, Libby traveled independently to 17 countries on 5 continents.

Libby participates in various projects in an analytical capacity, as well as coordinating and interfacing with U.S. clients.