Accel Partners

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Company: Accel Partners, Palo Alto, CA USA
Company Description: Accel Partners has been committed to helping exceptional entrepreneurs build lasting, category-defining technology companies since 1983. Utilizing a focused, "prepared mind" approach to investing, we partner with businesses that show potential for significant long-term success in specific sectors.
Nomination Category: Individual Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Female Executive of the Year – Business Services –11 to 2,500 Employees

Nomination Title: Theresia Gouw Ranzetta, Partner

Describe for the judges the activities and accomplishments of the nominated executive since the beginning of July last year (up to 525 words):

Theresia Gous Ranzetta is a General Partner with Accel Partners, a global venture and growth equity firm funding companies from inception through the growth stage. Gouw Ranzetta is among a handful of highly accomplished and high-profile women in tech who are encouraging more women to break through the silicon ceiling.

One of only two women on Forbes' Midas List of the top 100 venture capitalists, Gouw Ranzetta is one of Accel’s stars bringing in more than a billion dollars in revenue through her savvy investments. She was instrumental in her firm's early funding of Facebook — the most lucrative tech investment ever.

Theresia focuses primarily on internet and software investments with specific interest in social commerce, vertical media, security, and consumer internet/mobile apps. She believes in the power of female entrepreneurs creating their own opportunities to make it to the C-Suite rather than spending years climbing the ladder without a guarantee.

Her portfolio includes: BirchBox, Glam, Hotel Tonight, PeopleSupport, LearnVest, a personal finance site for women , TRUSTe, Mod Cloth and publicly traded Imperva and Trulia. She says tech trends like mobile, social and the consumer web are creating top-tier opportunities for women.

She told Willow Bay of the Huffington post, "What I'm seeing at the early stage -- probably now, well, especially for the commerce-oriented businesses: At least a third of the founding teams have a female founder or CEO, or both. And that's a real change from five or 10 years ago," Gouw Ranzetta insists that this is a positive trend." For the first time," she notes, "I actually see male co-founders and male co-founding teams who are explicitly looking to bring women into the executive team or the founding team."

In an interview with Marie Claire in 2013, Theresia commented on the increasing role of women in the VC industry. At each step along the way, the numbers of women are getting better. Business school is something like 40 percent female now. So, as we start to improve the numbers upstream, then we'll have more women entrepreneurs who will then become investors and possibly venture capitalists”
Theresia Gouw Ranzetta also sees the great promise of the millennial generation in their commitment to entrepreneurship.

To increase diversity in technology Gouw Ranzetta believes:

• We need to enable entrepreneurs who want to start companies and create jobs in the U.S.A

• Businesses need to scale technology to make their teams more productive and work environments more flexible

• We need to champion entrepreneurial values--big thinking, big risk-taking and even failure as a doorway to eventual achievement. This is critical for the next generation of entrepreneurs, our kids.

Parents, mentors and educators should encourage young girls and boys to study STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and teach the values of entrepreneurship early on.

As a successful venture capitalist and investor, regardless of her gender, Theresia Gouw Ranzetta is an important ally for young and female entrepreneurs in technology industries. Her beliefs have helped launch some of the most successful female led firms and helped balance the playing field for women in the Silicon Valley .

Provide a brief biography of the nominated executive (up to 125 words):

Ms. Theresia Gouw Ranzetta serves as the Managing Partner at Accel Management Co, Inc. and has been a Partner since 2000. Ms. Ranzetta serves as Special Advisor of Accel-KKR LLC. Ms. Ranzetta joined Accel in 1999 and focuses primarily on internet and software investments with specific interest in social commerce and consumer internet, mobile applications, vertical search, media, online media, advertising, and security. She was responsible for several of Accel's investments which have had successful acquisition or IPO exits. Ms. Ranzetta holds a Master of Business Administration from Stanford University and a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from Brown University, magna cum laude.