In 1999, Tom Shields put together a small evergreen fund with a handful of friends, and began angel investing in 1-2 companies each year. Now that angel investing is becoming “professional”, he has collected these investments together and called them Eridani Fund I. During this time Tom has had a variety of “day jobs”, including as Managing Director of Woodside Fund, and Co-Founder and CEO of Yieldex, but has still found time to work with some great entrepreneurs and generate excellent returns.
About our name
Eridani Ventures is named after Epsilon Eridani, a star in the southern constellation of Eridanus. Because it is relatively nearby (in cosmic terms) and Sol-like, it is featured in science fiction novels such as Greg Bear’s Eon, Alastair Reynolds Revelation Space, and even Asimov’s Foundation’s Edge among many others. We think science fiction can expand the space of the possible, fan the flames of optimism, and inspire creative and driven people to reach for their full potential. Our name, Eridani Ventures, represents these ideals, and how the entrepreneurs we work with continually reach for the stars.
About Tom Shields
Tom was formerly a Managing Director at early-stage VC firm Woodside Fund, and continues to be an active angel investor with Eridani Ventures.
An ad tech pioneer, Tom coded the world’s first ad server, and co-founded two successful companies. As co-founder and CTO of NetGravity, he helped grow the ad server business to 300 customers and guide the company through a successful IPO and subsequent acquisition by DoubleClick for over $500 million. As co-founder and CEO of Yieldex, he helped sell over a third of the top 100 publishers on superior forecasting and analytics technology before AppNexus’ acquisition of Yieldex for a reported $100 million. Tom holds a patent on dynamic allocation in ad serving, and a Service Award from the IAB for leading the group that created the first impression counting standards.
Tom graduated with honors with a BA in Computer Science from Harvard College.
For fun he plays basketball, sings a cappella, and backpacks in the Sierras with his kids. He lives near San Francisco, with his wife and three children, who keep him young at heart despite his gray hair.