Cindy Padnos is a Founder & Managing Partner Illuminate Ventures, a Bay Area-based early stage micro venture capital firm. Illuminate focuses on finding, funding and accelerating great teams in the B2B cloud computing space with a particular emphasis on SaaS applications, solutions that leverage Big Data and/or mobility for improved business results and consumer technologies that are being applied to the enterprise. Current active investments include BrightEdge (AlwaysOn Top 100), CalmSea, Influitive, Hoopla, and Xactly (Wall Street Journal Top 50). Cindy has deployed over $100 million in venture funding to help dozens of start-ups reach successful outcomes, including recent portfolio companies Red Aril (acq: Hearst Corporation) and WildPockets (acq: Autodesk).
Named one of the Most Influential Women in Technology (Fast Company) and a Power Player in Cloud Computing (AlwaysOn), Cindy’s high tech career includes prior successful stints as a management consultant, VP of Marketing (Scopus, IPO) and founder/CEO (Vivant, acq: EVLV/ORCL).
Cindy is on the Board of Advisors for Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business where she received her MBA/MSIA, a Steering Committee member for the Stanford Program on Regions of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SPRIE) and is an advisor to nonprofit accelerators Astia and Springboard Enterprises. She is also a graduate of the University of Michigan where she recently offered the College of Engineering commencement address and is the author of the widely cited white paper “High Performance Entrepreneurs: Women in High-tech.”
Fund's investment verticals: technology, cloud computing, big data, business applications, security, digital media, wireless communications and mobile.