Tom Baruch

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Thomas Baruch
Born (1938-11-26) November 26, 1938 (age 84)
Alma mater Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (B.S., 1960)
Capital University (J.D., 1967)
OccupationVenture Capitalist
Known forCMEA Capital, Formation 8, BFV
SpouseJohanna Baruch

Tom Baruch (born November 26, 1938) is an American businessman and venture capitalist (VC) based out of San Francisco, California. He was a founding partner of the VC funds CMEA Capital, Formation 8 and is now the managing director of his family office: Baruch Future Ventures (BFV).


Early life and education

Baruch was born to a Jewish family on November 26, 1938, and was raised in Yonkers, New York. He obtained Bachelor of Science degree in engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1960, where he was awarded the National Science Foundation fellowship. He then earned a Juris Doctor degree from Capital University in 1967, where he became a member of the Order of the Coif. He is a registered patent attorney and member of the State Bar of Ohio.

Early career

Baruch started his career at the Battelle Development Corporation in the 1960s. At Exxon Corporation, where he worked for 12 years in the 1970s and early '80s, he managed investments and created several early-stage technology companies applying materials science and semiconductor-industry technologies. He also invested in a company called Supertex (SUPX), which had a successful IPO in 1982. When he left in 1982, he was serving as President of the Exxon Materials Division. Baruch then founded and served as CEO of Microwave Technology, Inc., a supplier of gallium arsenide (GaAs) integrated circuits for defense applications and value-added sub-systems. Baruch served as CEO for 6 years. [1] [2]

CMEA Capital

Baruch founded CMEA Capital in 1988 in collaboration with New Enterprise Associates (NEA), to focus on venture capital investments in companies applying materials science to innovations that have the ability to transform or create new industries (the acronym CMEA standing for Chemicals and Materials Enterprise Associates). Tom was responsible for managing a total of $1.2 billion of capital across seven funds from inception until July 2010. [3] [4] [5]

While at CMEA, Tom led investments including major IPO's and significant liquidity events for Aclara Biosciences, which merged with Monogram Biosciences (MRGM); Netro (NTRO); Entropic Communications, Inc. (ENTR); Flextronics (FLEX); Symyx Technologies (SMMX); Silicon Spice, acquired by Broadcom (BRCM); Codexis, Inc (CDXS), and Intermolecular (IMI). [6]

Baruch is now a Partner Emeritus of CMEA and maintains involvement in his portfolio companies. Baruch currently serves as chairman of Codexis, Inc. [7] and is on the board of Intermolecular, Inc (IMI). Tom also served on the board of CNano Technologies , Exela Pharma Sci , Foro Energy, [8] and Wildcat Discovery Technologies .

An area of special interest to Baruch is an innovative process for developing new materials called combinatorial chemistry. [9] It applies a convergence of genomics, Moore’s law hardware and custom software to enable high throughput screening of new materials. Tom has pioneered CMEA’s investments in companies that apply combinatorial synthesis including Codexis, Intermolecular, Symyx Technologies, and Wildcat Discovery.

Formation 8

Baruch was a Founding Partner of new VC fund capitalized at $448 million and based on globalization of innovation to Asia. The strategy included strong corporate collaborations leading to an investment focus at the intersection of IT with inefficient markets in energy, banking, finance, education, real estate, insurance and government. Served as a director in several portfolio companies including: Algal Scientific (food security); FORO Energy (novel high power lasers and fiber optic waveguides for application to oil and gas discovery and production); Grabit (robotics for industrial logistics and supply chain applications to manufacturing); Heliotrope (dynamic architectural windows for energy efficiency); and Taxon (microbial consortia for agriculture and energy industries, which was sold to DuPont in 2015 at a significant step up in 18 months), and also served as a mentor to Formation 8 fund personnel and portfolio company management.

Baruch currently served as Partner Emeritus and strategy advisor to Formation 8.

Baruch Future Ventures (BFV)

Baruch is the founder and managing director of Baruch Future Ventures (BFV). BFV is a venture capital and family office fund that works with innovators and entrepreneurs to address pain points in resource limited and climate sensitive markets in:

  1. clean and efficient energy generation, infrastructure, and storage;
  2. water treatment and conservation;
  3. air quality;
  4. food security and sustainable agriculture and
  5. health care diagnostics and therapeutics.

BFV’s investment strategy is based on the hypothesis that population growth up to a peak of 11 to 12 billion people (vs. 7+ billion currently) will place a tremendous burden on resource availability for a growing earth population having increasing amounts of discretionary spending capability. All nations must have access to energy, food, and water free from threat of shortages and with minimal impact on the environment.


Baruch is an advisor to 8VC, a San Francisco based leading VC fund founded by Joe Lonsdale, [10] ClearSky Power and Technology Fund (a subsidiary of NextEra Energy), and KCK, a family office from England.[ citation needed ]

Public service

Baruch is trustee emeritus of the board of trustees of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and he and his wife Johanna established the Center for Biochemical Solar Energy Research. [11] [12] Baruch also serves as a member of the executive committee of the Council on Competitiveness [13] and a member of the Steering Committee of its ESIS (Energy, Security, Innovation and Sustainability) Initiative and the U.S. Manufacturing Competitiveness Initiative. He served as a founding member of the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE), where he advised the U.S. Department of Commerce and the White House. [14] Baruch also serves on the board of the Sierra Club Climate Recovery Partnership, [15] as a member of the "Brain Trust" of the ARPA-E program within the U.S. Department of Energy. Tom recently served as part of the IPO Task Force advising the U.S. Department of the Treasury in connection with necessity of programs to stimulate start-up activity in the US . Baruch is a member of the board of directors to the Society Kauffman Fellows and a trustee of the 'That May May See' program within the University of California, San Francisco . Baruch is also an advisor to Humanity United, a social investment organization committed to bringing an end to slavery and mass atrocities.

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wally Hunter</span>

Wally Hunter is the current Managing Director of EnerTech Capital. Prior to EnerTech, Wally worked for the Royal Bank of Canada where he managed the bank's private equities for energy and advanced technologies. Wally has been investing in energy and clean energy companies and projects for 20 years. Wally runs EnerTech's Canadian operations from Toronto. His specific areas of interest and responsibility include opportunities in Mobility, alternative fuels and storage, power quality and conversion, water re-use in energy, Wind turbine technologies, power electronics, advanced materials, motor controls, automation and sensors. Wally has an extensive background in the venture capital business which includes a series of successful IPO's, M&A and turnaround transactions throughout his 25-year career in the finance business. In addition, Wally previously produced and hosted the weekly financial television show "Money Week" which featured over 200 guest interviews from Canadian and U.S. money managers over a 14-year period. Wally was also previously involved in politics and sat as a local Councilor in the town of Milton, Ontario and on the board of the Ontario College of Pharmacists .Wally was past Chairman of the Banff Venture Forum Cleantech Stream and Chairman of the 2014 Canadian Venture Capital Association conference in Ottawa in May 2014. He sits on the board of the Canadian Venture Capital Association (CVCA), Venture Capital Association of Alberta (VCAA), Sustainable Development Technology Canada Member Council (SDTC) and the Cleantech Group Advisory Board. Wally currently sits on the boards of EnerTech portfolio companies, IPKeys Power Partners, Western Oilfield Equipment Ltd, Vertex, Sofdesk and Powerside. Wally was previously an observer on the Board of Distech Controls and sat on the board of HPC Energy Services. In 2017 Wally was appointed to the NHL Coaches Association Advisory Board. In 2018, Wally was appointed to the Advisory Board at Cornell University/Tech's Program in Infrastructure Policy (CPIP).


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  8. "Foro Energy wins biggest Arpa-E grant". 27 October 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-19.
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  14. Leuty, Ron (2010-07-27). "VC takes innovation message to Beltway".
  15. "Sierra Club Email". Retrieved Feb 21, 2019.