Cerus Capital, LLC (“Cerus”) is the family office-backed investment management sponsor of Ballast Point Capital, LLC (“BPC”), the private investment firm and single family investment office of Theochem Laboratories Inc Chairman and CEO John Theofilos and his family based in Tampa, Florida. 

Cerus Capital's logo as a opaque stamp.


Cerus is backed by a well capitalized family office, Ballast Point Capital, LLC (“BPC”), and family is at the core of our ethos.  A dedicated fiduciary focused on growth and value creation, we believe in staying nimble, maneuvering quickly, and always maintaining flexibility in the face of change and opportunity.  We are here for the long term and are exclusively interested in those with aligned interests to foster meaningful relationships that last.

We are active in a broad range of investment strategies with flexibility to invest in a wide variety of asset classes, including public and private equities, M&A, fixed income, commodities, derivatives, futures, alternatives and real estate.  Our permanent capital allows us to pursue an objective of long duration compounded capital growth and outsized returns.  With extensive experience across multiple investment strategies, including alternatives, private credit, private equity and real estate, Cerus is led by a cohesive, efficient and diversified team with an entrepreneurial mentality inside an institutional framework.  The Principals are supported by a highly experienced, veteran investment management team within the areas of accounting, finance, investment management, legal, operations, regulatory compliance and risk management.


As a family office-backed sponsor, we are mutually aligned as a true fiduciary that is committed to full transparency and acts on our investors, co-investors, partners, and stakeholders’ best interests at all times, with no conflicts of interest

Family Office

The sponsor is the well capitalized, family office-backed investment management arm of Ballast Point Capital, LLC ("BPC")


Broad range of strategies and structured investments across a wide variety of asset classes with significant emphasis on risk management and downside protection

Deal Sourcing

Extensive, well-developed network of relationships provide for significant direct off market compelling investment opportunities and strategies

Financial & Risk Management Control

Institutional-quality governance, reporting, financial and quality-control systems

Investment Experience

The Principals have over 100 years of collective investment experience across a broad range of investment strategies and asset classes, along with a core investment philosophy focused on capital preservation, significant wealth generation and long term value creation by staying disciplined and focused


We are specialists in creating value and use a disciplined approach and dynamic deal sourcing to identify attractive investments designed to deliver outsized returns while maximizing capital preservation and long term value creation. Our consistent and repeatable investing process, coupled with our unique sourcing capabilities, allow us to move to where we see strong risk-adjusted returns and compelling, uncorrelated and mispriced investment opportunities across all geographies, asset classes and sectors. We conduct rigorous fundamental analysis, with significant emphasis on risk management and downside protection.

Disciplined Approach

Our holistic and opportunistic approach allows us to utilize our breadth of expertise, knowledge and insights across each investment strategy and to invest throughout all cycles. We believe that by staying nimble affords us the flexibility to quickly shift our focus and capital in order to take advantage of the best market opportunities and act in the best interests of our investors, co-investors, partners, and stakeholders at all times, with no conflicts of interest.

Dynamic Deal Sourcing

Our holistic and opportunistic approach allows us to utilize our breadth of expertise, knowledge and insights across each investment strategy and to invest throughout all cycles. We believe that by staying nimble affords us the flexibility to quickly shift our focus and capital in order to take advantage of the best market opportunities and act in the best interests of our investors, co-investors, partners, and stakeholders at all times, with no conflicts of interest.


As entrepreneurial and collaborative investors, we are highly motivated to achieve the same end goal: identifying the most favorable risk-adjusted returns in any market cycle.


Our cohesive, driven culture allows us to consistently foster mutually beneficial relationships with our investors, partners, advisors and employees.


Our team is defined by its work ethic, dedication, discipline and commitment to excellence on behalf of our clients, investors, co-investors, partners, and stakeholders.


We offer our clients a broad range of strategies and structured investments across a wide variety of asset classes:


Alternative Yield Strategies

Defensive Equity Strategies

Hedge Funds

Public Markets Structured Access

Private Credit

Asset-based Lending

Structured Credit

Direct Investments



Special Situation

Fund Investments

Private Equity

Direct Control Investments

Direct Minority Investments


Equity and Debt

Fund Investments

Real Estate

Direct Investments


Fund Investments


John Theofilos

Founder & Managing Principal

John is the Founder & Managing Principal at Cerus Capital, LLC (“Cerus”) and serves as a member of the investment committee.  He has over 45 years of experience in Operational Management, Manufacturing, Real Estate Investments, Equities and Mergers & Acquisitions.

John began his career at 16 years of age working in a chemical manufacturing plant started by his father, Theochem Laboratories Inc.  At the age of 30, he assumed the office of President, and soon thereafter, was named Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. 

At the age of 18, John invested in his first commercial real estate investment property.  He has successfully completed hundreds of real estate investments over the course of his career and has worked in land acquisition, development and leasing of commercial real estate throughout the southeastern United States, while simultaneously acting as CEO of his manufacturing facilities. 

John grew up in Tampa, Florida and graduated from The University of South Florida with a BS in Statistics.  He formed Cerus Capital, LLC on his core beliefs in value, ethics, hard work and results.  John and his wife Elisabeth commit both time and resources to many local and national philanthropic and religious organizations.

Michael Maniscalco, CPA


Michael Maniscalco is a founding Principal at Cerus Capital, LLC (“Cerus”) and serves as a member of the investment committee.  He helps lead the overall growth and strategic direction of the platform, as well as helps oversee all investmentmanagement, finance and operations, including asset allocation, investment strategy, portfolio optimization, risk management and value creation.

Mr Maniscalco is a veteran financial and investment executive with a strong, successful track record of performance and value creation throughout his 24-year career.  With extensive experience in finance, investment management, operations and tax advisory and executing on transactions across a wide variety of asset classes and industry sectors within middle market private equity, he is an expert at identifying strategic growth opportunities, assessing risk, improving profitabilityand optimizing returns, along with a proven ability to execute and create significant value. 

Most recently, Michael Maniscalco was the Vice President of Finance & Accounting at Kenyon Energy/Bay4 Energy Services, a full service asset management, investment and solar power company based in Safety Harbor, Florida, providing energy and solar assets to private and public companies and entities throughout the US.  Prior to Bay4, he was the Chief Financial Officer at Carbon Composites, a manufacturer, distributor and engineering service provider of carbon fiber components based in Boston, Massachusetts where he grew total revenues close to $40 million at its peak, as well as a senior level Finance and Accounting Consultant to an established, high growth private Family Office based in Palm Beach, Florida with well over $1 billion in assets under management.  Prior to joining Carbon, Mr Maniscalco was a senior level Finance and Tax Manager at SHE America, a publicly traded US subsidiary of Shin-Etsu Chemical Company based in Japan, a $10 billion dollar manufacturer of semiconductor silicon wafers and PVC chemicals.  He began his career as a Senior Corporate Accountant with Deloitte, immediately followed by joining Fairway America, a middle market real estate private equity investment management firm based in Portland,Oregon, as a corporate level Controller.

Mr Maniscalco holds a Bachelor ofScience in Accounting and Political Science from Boston University, as well as a Juris Doctorate, Certificate in Taxationfrom the Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark, where he was a Dean’s Scholar.  In addition, he is a Certified Public Accountant and competed at the highest levels of collegiate swimming, having received a full athletic scholarship as a member and Co-Captainof the Varsity Men’s Swim Team at Boston University.  Mr Maniscalco currently resides with his family in Tampa, Florida.

Stephanie Theofilos, Esq.

Principal, General Counsel & CCO

Speros Theofilos


Speros Theofilos is a Principal at Cerus Capital, LLC (“Cerus”).  Speros joined Cerus as an investment analyst where his responsibilities included sourcing, analyzing, and conducting due diligence on strategic acquisition and investment opportunities, as well as reporting on market trends and economic conditions.  Currently, he actively contributes to investment analysis, management, and operational aspects, encompassing asset allocation, investment strategy and value creation.  Leveraging his previous experience in the financial banking sector, he also actively engages in all financing and banking relations.  Moreover, Speros plays a pivotal role in individual asset management within the real estate division, overseeing property maintenance and various development projects.

Prior to joining Cerus, Speros began his professional journey in the banking sector as a credit underwriter within the commercial and industrial division at Valley National Bank.  His primary focus included working on working capital lines of credit, capital financing for capital expenditures, and owner-occupied real estate.  Additionally, Speros was extensively involved in acquisition and merger financing, specializing in the restaurant/hospitality space, healthcare, assisted living sector, and various acquisitions within the service industry.  Throughout his banking career, Speros personally underwrote over $500 million in new facilities.

Speros earned his B.S.B.A in Economics, with minors in Mathematics and Finance, from the University of Miami.  Presently residing in Tampa, FL, he enjoys engaging in weekly softball games and actively participates in philanthropic endeavors within the local Greek Orthodox Community.

Kyle McAvoy, CPA

Director, Finance & Accounting

Kyle McAvoy is the Director, Finance & Accounting at Cerus Capital, LLC (“Cerus”).  Kyle is responsible for overseeing the financial operations, strategies, and reporting for the platform, as well as supporting all financial and investment management activities, including accounting and finance functions, operating company reporting, and originating and underwriting of prospective investment opportunities.

Kyle is an accomplished finance and accounting professional with a strong background in the affordable housing investment industry.  His commitment to excellence and expertise in financial reporting has propelled him through various positions, culminating in his recent appointment as the Director of Finance and Accounting at the platform. His extensive knowledge of finance and accounting principles, combined with his proven leadership skills, makes him a valuable asset to the firm.

Kyle began his career at Raymond James Affordable Housing Investments, where he joined as a Staff Accountant. His exceptional skills and dedication soon earned him recognition, leading to a promotion to the role of Senior Accountant.  During this time, he displayed a keen eye for detail and a deep understanding of financial operations, ensuring accuracy and compliance in all aspects of his work.

As a testament to his capabilities and leadership, Kyle was further promoted to the position of Manager of Financial Reporting at Raymond James Affordable Housing Investments where he was responsible for overseeing investor reporting for over 30 funds with $3 billion in assets.  Raymond James Affordable Housing Investments is renowned as the largest syndicator of affordable housing by volume in the United States.

Kyle holds a Bachelor's degree in Finance and Accounting from the University of South Florida, where he excelled academically and earned a place on the Dean's List.  In addition, he is a Certified Public Accountant. His educational background has provided him with a solid foundation in financial management, allowing him to navigate complex financial landscapes.

Vijay Kumar

Senior Portfolio Manager

Vijay Kumar is the Senior Portfolio Manager at Cerus Capital, LLC (“Cerus”) and is responsible for originating, underwriting and conducting due diligence for prospective investment opportunities and strategies, as well as managing existing investments throughout the portfolio. 

Prior to joining the firm in 2020, Vijay was a Financial Analyst at Refresco North America, the world's largest independent bottler of beverages for leading retailers and A-list brands with production in Europe, North America and Mexico.  Prior to Refresco, he was an Analyst at Fortuna Wealth Management Limited, a leading investment advisory and wealth management firm based in India.

Vijay holds a BachelorofScience, cum laude, in Finance from Jain University, as well as a Master of Business Administration and Master of Science, Finance, magna cum laude, from the University of Tampa.  In addition, he received a Master of Science, magna cum laude, in Information Technology Management from Campbellsville University.