Koa Capital Partners is managed by Dustin Sellers and Chris Eldridge. Both tenured entrepreneurs in their own-right, their vision for Koa is to preserve and enhance the small-to-medium business community in Hawai‘i. Through an on-island investment focus, these Kama‘aina can revitalize local companies with growth capital, new talent and savvy business strategy.
Unlike mainland capital, Chris and Dustin look to keep their portfolio companies owned and operated by people dedicated to the communities they serve. By bringing the sophistication of a mainland investment firm together with a strong commitment to Hawai‘i, Koa enhances, enriches and elevates the local business community at large while increasing the value of its investments.
“Their vision for Koa is to preserve and enhance the small-to-medium business community in Hawai‘i. Through an on-island investment focus, these Kama‘aina can revitalize local companies with growth capital, new talent and savvy business strategy.”
- Managing Partner
A passionate entrepreneur and loyal kama‘aina, Dustin Sellers most recently served as owner and president for ProService Hawaii. With more than 20 years of senior level management experience, he was responsible for business development, marketing and client service for the state’s largest employee administration firm. Under his management, ProService grew from a fledgling company of 13M in annual revenue to 120M with close to 20,000 client employees supported.
Prior to purchasing ProService Hawaii, Sellers served as general manager for Ingenio/Keen, Inc. a start-up e-commerce company in San Francisco. While there, he oversaw all aspects of key revenue producing categories for the $90-million company, growing the business 3 fold during his tenure as general manager and overseeing the sale to AT&T Solutions.
Before that, he worked as a senior manager for the boutique growth strategy consulting group Potomac Partners in Los Angeles and manager for the corporate strategy arm of Braxton Associates/Deloitte Consulting in Los Angeles and Chicago.
In addition, Sellers previously worked for the family business, Sellers Advertising, in Honolulu. As director of account service and new business development, he managed client account teams for Outrigger Hotels Hawaii, Victoria Ward, Westin Hotels, Meadow Gold Dairies, Avis Rent-A-Car and Burger King.
Born and raised in Honolulu, Sellers is a graduate of Punahou School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Southern California and a master’s degree in business administration from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Sellers serves as a trustee for The Nature Conservancy of Hawaii and is an active board member of the GIFT Foundation, Ahahui Koa Anuenue (UH Athletics Fundraising), PACE (Pacific Asian Center for Entrepreneurship) and outgoing Chapter Chair of YPO (Young Presidents Organization). He is past chairman of the board of Big Brothers Big Sisters Hawaii and board member of The Boy Scout's Aloha Council.
Sellers resides in Hawai‘i.Close
- Managing Operater
Chris Eldridge has twenty plus years of successful entrepreneurial, start-up and management experience in Hawai‘i having founded and sold four companies including America’s Mattress Hawaii, PortaBox Storage and FileMinders.
Most recently, he was President of America’s Mattress Hawaii which he started in 1996. America’s Mattress became the largest sleep shop chain in Hawai‘i and was recognized as one of “Hawai‘i’s Best Places to Work.” The company was sold to Sleep Train, Inc. in April of 2014.
Eldridge’s extensive business and investment experience with the small business community in Hawaii makes him an invaluable resource for deal sourcing and connectivity with prospective portfolio companies.
In 1996 Eldridge founded Mattress Team, LLC, which later became America’s Mattress Hawaii, out of a small warehouse/showroom in Honolulu where he was the sales person, bookkeeper and delivery driver. Over the next 15 years he expanded the operation statewide creating Hawai‘i’s largest sleep shop chain with over sixty employees and ten locations. Sleep Train, Inc. acquired the company in April of 2014.
In 2001, Eldridge founded PortaBox Storage which offered transportable self storage to residential and business customers. He later expanded into the document record storage and management business and merged with FileMinders to become Hawai‘i’s largest mobile storage and record and data management company. It was Eldridge’s extensive local network and knowledge that is credited with the robust growth FileMinders experience under his leadership. This entity was sold to Access Records in 2005 and is presently owned by Summit Capital who has taken the platform international.
Additionally, Eldridge is a partner in Aina Koa Pono, a cutting edge clean energy initiative to produce transportation fuel in Hawaii from energy crops.
Eldridge has been embedded in the non-profit sector in the islands almost since he returned from the mainland, having an extensive list of boards and advisory roles served over the last 20 years. Presently he serves on the Board of Directors for Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children, as well as on advisory boards for several local private companies. He is also a member of The Nature Conservancy of Hawaii’s Corporate Council for the Environment and a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO). Eldridge attended Punahou School on Oahu and earned a BA in Economics and Business from Boston University.
Eldridge, his wife and two young children reside in Honolulu.Close
The Evolution of Entrepeneurship Through Aquisition
As 2016 draws to a close, the Entrepeneurship Through Aquisition (ETA) community is in a unique situation. "Search funds", the predominant model historically and the focus of this report, has had an amazing run under a mostly consistent model, through a reletively finite set of investors are funding more entrepreneurs more than ever, and this trend is gaining momentum.Read More
Large Hawaii restoration firm moves headquarters
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Join the Movement visits Good Morning Hawaii
Each year, AUW's campaign offers individuals and businesses an easy and impactful way to give back to community causes. Local businesses spoke to KITV's Maleko McDonnell about this year's Join the Movement campaign.Watch the video
Koa Capital purchases Maui Fire & Flood
Koa Capital Partners announces the purchase of Maui Fire & Flood along with sufficient growth capital to fund a rapid statewide expansion in the coming months under the new company name of “Premier Restoration Hawai‘i”.Read more
Koa Capital launches Hawai‘i’s first Entrepreneur in Residence program
Koa Capital Partners has launched Hawai‘i’s first Entrepreneur in Residence program, targeting entrepreneurs looking to buy small businesses and revamp them. During the six month program, Koa will provide the EIR with guidance, stewardship and equity funding.Read more
What Fuels Hawai‘i’s Deal Flow
Hawai‘i and private equity are not often heard in the same sentence. And yet, as Honolulu-based private equity investor Dustin Sellers explains, the state’s huge tourism and real estate industry and the presence of the U.S. military have sustained generations of middle-market businesses, many of which find themselves in need of growth capital.Watch the video
Koa Capital invests in nation’s largest consumer legal funding firm
Hawai‘i-based private equity firm Koa Capital Partners has partnered with Oasis Legal Finance, a provider of legal funding for consumers involved in personal injury litigation, and plans to expand its Hawai‘i operations. Illinois-based Oasis Legal Finance is already available in 43 states including Hawai‘i, and Koa Capital Partners will provide business development support to grow its presence in the market.Read more
New franchise gets the bugs out: Chason Ishii joins Koa Capital Partners to head Green Home Solutions
Koa Capital Partners, a private equity investment firm founded by Chris Eldridge and Dustin Sellers, has purchased the Hawaii franchise rights to Green Home Solutions, a Connecticut-based company offering environmentally friendly pest-control systems. To run the operations, they have hired Chason Ishii as Green Home Solutions Hawaii’s president and head of business development.Read more
Portfolio company Blake Entertainment
How I…Sashayed into the corporate events business
This January I became Blake Entertainment, backed by Koa Capital Partners. Almost overnight, my events manager Amelia Larkin and I went from a two-man-show to an army of 40 people. Over the last three months, we hired four full-time office employees, five part-time employees, bartenders, wait staff and folks from the industry...Read more
New Hire — Spencer Mawhar
Business analyst at Koa Capital Partners, LLC — Spencer will assist Koa Capital Partners in the evaluation of potential investments and in tracking the performance and growth of portfolio companies.Read more
DR Fortress attracts local investors
Sellers, the former president of sales and marketing at ProService Hawaii, and Eldridge, former president of America's Mattress Hawaii and partner in biofuels company Aina Koa Pono, founded Koa Capital Partners last year to invest and provide operational expertise to small- to medium-sized businesses with Hawaii ties." DRFortress was looking for new equity and they wanted to expand, but they wanted to expand strategically," Sellers told PBN.Read more
Koa Capital Partners invests in Hawai‘idatacenter, cloud provider DR Fortress
Hawai‘i private equity investment firm Koa Capital Partners, founded last year by Chris Eldridge and Dustin Sellers, has invested in its first local company, Honolulu-based data center and cloud services provider DRFortress.Read more
Dustin Sellers, Chris Eldridge start Hawai‘i private equity investment firm
Hawaii business executives Chris Eldridge, who founded Hawai‘i's largest mattress supplier and is a partner in a local biofuel project, and Dustin Sellers, who was co-president of one of Hawai‘i's largest HR services provider, are moving from the operational side of business and getting into investments.Read more