Promise Holdings LLC.

We live up to our promise, to fulfill our partners’ promise

Investing in Great People, Great Ideas, Great Fun



Promise holdings LLC, is a private holding company formed to invest in and help operate early and late stage businesses, primarily in the dynamic Consumer industry. We bring a high-energy, fun, entrepreneurial spirit to every company, person and situation. We invest and help co-found start-ups, as well as acquire older, 75+ year-old companies. Our only investment criteria are: Great people, Great ideas, and Great fun. Our Promise to everyone we come into contact with - is that we always work with high integrity, high energy, high impact and high trust.


A life-long Chicago area native, Gordon is an investor, entrepreneur and performer. Through various investment entities, Gordon is a co-owner and Board member of several companies including but not limited to Hickory Farms, AKIRA, Maya Romanoff, Gateway Newsstands, IgeneX Inc. and Insight Medical Genetics.  Gordon is also a former board member of the Goodman Theater, and Co-founder/Vice Chair of AAAIM, the Association of Asian American Investment Managers.  Earlier, Gordon was a Principal with Private Equity funds Baird Capital and Reliant Equity. He received his MBA from Harvard Business School where he was a Toigo Fellow and Founder of the Asian American Business Association. He received his BS from the University of Illinois, graduating with Highest Honors and receiving the Bronze Tablet. Gordon is a published author and speaker on diversity in the alternative asset industry, and is also a published poet, produced playwright, spoken word artist and wedding singer.



We believe in working with high-integrity people to create long-term value and have fun along the way. Because we believe in making truly sound, long-term business decisions, we do not have a fixed time horizon for exiting our investments. Our primary criteria are as follows:

Investment:  Flexible: Control Buyout, “Influential” Minority Growth Equity, Venture

EBITDA:    $1 million or more for Buyouts, Pre-revenue for Seed Venture

Industry:  All Consumer, with specific emphasis on Food, Fashion & Beauty, and Leisure

Operators First
Operators First

We’re not former  finance guys  who have “Operating Advisers”. We are former and current Operators. Period.

Contrarian Approach

We like to go where the “herd” isn’t. We’re driven by data, and our own intuition. We don’t believe in following


We invest in great people & great ideas. No time horizon on exit. No set approach to management or structure. No definition of stage (early or late)


Our Companies



Hickory Farms is a leading specialty food retailer. The company is known for food gifts that are sold via web, catalog, mass retail and grocery. During the holiday season, Hickory Farms operates 500+ seasonal kiosks across North America. The company just celebrated the brand’s 65th Anniversary, and is transforming and reinventing the brand with a focus to be the best retailer in the food gifting space.



IGeneX, is a leading high complexity, CLIA-certified clinical reference laboratory providing personalized molecular and immunological testing services for Lyme and associated tick borne diseases to private practice physicians, hospitals, and other clinical reference laboratories worldwide. Based in Palo Alto California, the Company has been committed to providing innovative, state-of-the-art clinical testing for over two decades and places special emphasis on the individual needs of each healthcare provider and each patient. IGeneX provides testing for the entire United States and globally, with the majority of its international business originating from Canada, Australia, and Europe.



Founded in 1915 and based in Bellevue, Nebraska, Marathon Ventures (”MVI”) is a leading manufacturer and marketer of private label baking and snacking nuts, as well as our own brand of snack nuts called Pear’s Snacks.


Maya Romanoff is the largest manufacturer of handcrafted wallcoverings in the United States. For more than 40 years, their artisans have incorporated glass beads, gold leaf, seashells, wood and stitching right in their Chicago studio.


Prolific Ventures​

Prolific Ventures is a partnership between Promise Holdings and Prolific Media to invest in and provide value-added services to various eComm businesses, by providing value-added digital marketing expertise, equity & debt capital raising capabilities, and general strategic and revenue generating capabilities.”.

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We are a worldwide designer and manufacturer of specialty hand tools for the professional and DIY market. Our flagship brand, Imperial® has been a pioneer in the manufacturing of brass valves and fittings, and developed into the worldwide leader of innovative products serving the HVAC/R service and tube working tool industries.


Surge CPG was created to provide the next generation of food and beverage companies with actual, tangible value-add. Our unique team has complimentary skillset with an entrepreunurial bend to make you true value-added capital. As partners, Surge provides

on the shelf distribution into 10- 3,000 stores, to test or to scale, actual outsourced sales and operations management, invested capital as lead investor or part of a syndicate, and equity & debt capital fundraising capabilities. Through a disciplined, comprehensive approach, we add value in every phase of a brands evolution.



With decades of combined experience in the Golf, Sports and Technology industries, the SWING KING team has developed a revolutionary system for bringing more revenue and excitement into your clubhouse. We love golf, creating value for our partners, building world-class technology, and golf.



AKIRA was founded in 2002 to provide the trendiest clothing, shoes and accessories for women. We sell through 30+ retail stores in 8 cities and a vibrant website.



The ESQ garment is the pinnacle of men's tailoring as an art. It represents the countless hours and the tireless men and women whom have achieved the highest level of sartorial excellence. From your initial fitting and pattern making, to the final button sewn and ironing process, the ESQ suit renders itself an unmatched dream garment.



Azalea Wang is a cutting-edge designer and seller of trendy shoes for women from all walks of life.



FoodBarz is the leading high-end commercial foodservice amenity service to multi-tenant suburban office buildings. The company currently has leases for 15+ locations located in large, suburban office buildings in the Chicago area where it is the exclusive food provider.



Insight Medical Genetics is a leading turnkey provider of integrated clinical and laboratory services in the high growth field of genetic medicine. Headquartered in Chicago, Insight Medical Genetics continues to build on its significant referring provider network of approximately 500 physicians and 150 practices in Illinois. The patient centric focus and high touch personalized counseling make Insight an extension of, and critical support function for referring providers.


Galaxy Technologies, located in Winfield, Kansas near the heart of the Air Capital, is a “best value” business partner to companies around the world with complex design and manufacturing needs. We are a major supplier for the design, manufacturing and assembly of production tooling for the aerospace, defense and plastic markets. Major customers include Boeing, Spirit Aerosystems, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, Rubbermaid and Coleman.



Chicago Switchboard, is a leading manufacturer of custom‐engineered electrical power distribution equipment, including switchgear, switchboards and panelboards. The Company has built leading share positions in its target markets and is a preferred supplier to many blue‐chip customers who value Chicago Switchboard’s extensive engineering capabilities, high quality products and outstanding customer service.


Our mission at Soil & Clay is to strengthen your bond with nature and help liven up your space. Soil & Clay is the leading online retailer of house plants and other home decor products.



Gateway Newstands is the leading franchisor of newstands in North America, with over 400 locations throughout Canada and the United States. The company provides convenient products through its kiosks and small footprint retail locations in malls, office building lobbies, train stations, hospitals and universities.



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