December 31, 2017 John Tough 0Comment

2017 was a year of change for me. I started out the year as Chief Revenue Officer at Choose Energy, culminating a 4.5 year role with the company that began as the first non-engineer in 2012. With the sale of Choose Energy in Q2 and my responsibility with the company melting away, I experienced a brief, but noticeable emotional lull. I had (re)started my dream job, working in venture capital at the intersection of technology and industry with the Invenergy Future Fund but I was missing the action of day to day operations. Working at Choose Energy with world-class employees and a truly unique entrepreneur was special, and the loss of that continuous engagement affected me. I hope to work with each of them again in some way during my career or personal efforts.

And just when there was a lull in my usual intensity, my new team at the Invenergy Future Fund of Michael, Amy, Juan and Carmeanna got me revved up for the truly unique opportunity we had ahead of us. We are now in the early stages of executing our plan to be a world-class venture firm focused on software companies in the energy & industrial verticals, and the machine is really starting to hum. I am increasingly confident in our unique value add as operators, industry connectors and EQ-aware professionals. The combination will take years to prove out but I like our foundation.

Part of our Fund’s momentum includes two new investments we made in the second half of the year. While the investments have not been formally announced, I can’t wait to share more about each of them. The management teams at both companies are elite, focused on driving industry improvements through products that are already operating in the broader industrial environment. The executives and the problems they are solving motivate me every day to find ways to be helpful to their existing operations and find more companies of equal excellence.

2017 also marked my first full year back in Chicago. Being closer to family is everything I hoped for, and more. The family connectivity, coupled with my amazing wife enables a balanced approach to personal and professional growth.

Overall, 2017 was a blessing both for the end of one personal chapter as well as the beginning and acceleration of another. I’m thankful for those around me and excited to work with my expanding team and network to enable and support continued success.