Shelburne, VT (January 19, 2017) – FreshTracks Capital has launched a new venture fund designed to heat up new business in Vermont. FreshTracks Capital IV – the fourth fund in FreshTracks Capital’s family of Vermont-focused early-stage investment funds – will target investment in up to 15 new companies over the next few years.
To help manage the new fund, T.J. Whalen has joined FreshTracks Capital as General Partner and Managing Director. Whalen brings a strong track record of success with high-growth companies, particularly in consumer products and food & beverage. Formerly, T.J. was the Chief Strategy and Sustainability Officer for Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (Keurig Green Mountain), a global consumer products, coffee and beverage manufacturer. He also served as Vice President of Marketing and Sales, as well as Product and Brand P&L leader for the coffee and beverage business. T.J. led many of the company’s growth initiatives over his 13 years there, and during his tenure the company grew from less than $100 million in sales to over $4.5 billion in annual revenue. T.J. has also held marketing and product development leadership roles at Patagonia, Leo Burnett (where he worked with a number of the nation’s leading brands), and Adventurous Traveler. He serves on several boards, including 1% for the Planet, LaunchVT, Step Ahead Innovations, the Trust for Public Land’s Vermont Advisory Board, and FreshTracks portfolio companies, SunCommon and Budnitz Bicycles.
Whalen said of his joining FreshTracks, “I see so much potential for Vermont businesses to grow and prosper. We really are on the right side of many emerging consumer trends here in Vermont, and I see a bright future for many of the early-stage companies in the region. I look forward to working with the next generation of Vermont’s business leaders to help accelerate growth.”
Cairn Cross, co-founder of FreshTracks Capital, said of the State’s burgeoning entrepreneurship ecosystem, “We are seeing a steady increase in both the quantity and quality of Vermont’s entrepreneurs and new businesses, which is what led us to create this new fund. We’re thrilled to have T.J. join us at this exciting time. When we started the firm, we looked at maybe 30 or so ideas to invest in each year, and only had a few solid ones to choose from. Now we see hundreds of great new opportunities every year, many of which are led by really capable and experienced managers.”