Laura Kilcrease - Managing Director
Laura Kilcrease is founder and managing director of Triton Ventures, LLC, a venture capital fund investing in spinout and early-stage technology companies. With more than 25 years of hands-on experience in commercializing technology, Ms. Kilcrease has a deep understanding of how to cultivate new opportunities to “grow businesses around businesses” as well as how to deconstruct and reconstruct business models to achieve significant results.
Ms. Kilcrease founded Triton Ventures in January of 1999 to provide management and operational leadership to emerging technology-based spinout companies formed to acquire and commercialize technology developed by Fortune 500 companies and other large domestic and foreign corporations, universities, and government or private research institutions. As managing director of the firm, she sources, structures, performs due diligence for, negotiates, and manages venture capital investments focused on information technology, energy-related technologies, advanced materials, and communications. She provides ongoing counsel to portfolio companies regarding management teams, industry and financial marketplace issues, introduction of strategic and investment partners, and positioning the company for public offering, merger, or sale. She has served as director on the boards (including audit and compensation committees) of portfolio companies Applied Science Fiction, Charitygift, Exterprise, Hart Intercivic, and LNNi.
Ms. Kilcrease was one of the key participants in changing the economic landscape of Central Texas into the high tech environment that is widely recognized today. From 1992 to 1997 she served as executive director of The University of Texas IC2 Institute’s Center for Commercialization and Enterprise (C2E), which developed commercialization strategies for universities, government laboratories and research consortia, and R&D departments of major corporations. The largest of these projects, the NASA Ames Technology Commercialization Center in Sunnyvale, California, spun out 32 new businesses that raised over $55 million in venture capital in three years.
While at IC2, Ms. Kilcrease also co-developed and launched the Austin Technology Incubator (ATI), serving as its founding executive director from 1989 to 1996. The ATI was one of the country’s first technology business incubators, designed to identify and build innovative new business models commercializing technology developed in university research, start-up companies spun-out from Fortune 500 companies, and other emerging businesses. Under her leadership, the ATI selected and established over 70 technology-based companies that created nearly 1,500 jobs and secured approximately $170 million in funding.
Ms. Kilcrease also launched The Capital Network, one of the largest “business angel” investor networks in the United States with over $150 million in completed transactions, and co-founded and launched the Austin Technology Council, a premier networking organization that cultivated the growth of the Austin economy.
Prior to her work with C2E, Ms. Kilcrease spent almost 20 years in executive management, operating, merging, acquiring, turning around, or selling high technology companies for both Fortune 100 companies as well as emerging firms.
From 1985 to 1988 she was chief operating officer and chief financial officer of Nova Graphics International Corporation, a venture-backed software company based in Austin. From 1975 to 1984 she was financial and sales manager of Control Data Corporation in London, where she was responsible for financial reporting, forecasting, and planning for six major business units in the European headquarters of this Fortune 1000 company.
An active member of the community, Ms. Kilcrease has given her time and expertise to a number of nonprofit boards, including the Women’s Leadership Advisory Board of Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, the Beyster Institute, World Congress for Information Technology 2006, and the IC² Institute at The University of Texas at Austin, among many others.
She has often been recognized for her outstanding achievements and has received numerous honors and awards, including the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the Austin Business Journal’s Profiles in Power Award, and UT’s McCombs School of Business Women in Business Leadership Conference Trailblazer Award.
Born in London, Ms. Kilcrease has been a permanent resident of the United States since 1984. She received her certification as a Chartered Management Accountant in the U.K. in 1980 and an M.B.A. from The University of Texas at Austin in 1992.