Tod Francis

“Tod was a critical component of the successful creation and launch of the Blue Nile brand. As a former brand marketer, Tod knew the steps necessary to create quality branding and creative, and he knew what a great end-product looked like. He was a thought partner for the entire management team on multiple marketing decisions, including naming, identity, positioning, customer acquisition and launch. Tod pushed us, but in a good way, and held us to a very high standard.” —Carter Cast, Former CMO, Blue Nile

Tod Francis

"Great brands live and die by building exceptional customer experiences at every touch point. I love working alongside passionate entrepreneurs who have unique insights into their target audience. At Shasta we embrace the founders’ vision. Our job is to help them scale their business so they can focus on winning the hearts and minds of their customers."

Tod has partnered with entrepreneurs to help them build national consumer brands for more than 25 years. In 2004 Tod co-founded Shasta Ventures with the belief that the companies most likely to disrupt large industries and become big brands will be those led by founders who are intensely focused on the end user. He aims to team up with creative, independent thinkers who are passionate about leveraging new technologies to deliver superior consumer experiences. 



Among his investments at Shasta are Mint.com, a free, personal finance website acquired by Intuit; Path, a private social network, and Turn, a digital marketing platform. His other companies include Caring.com, Liquidspace, Luminate, Smule, TaskRabbit, Threadflip and Zefr.

 Prior to Shasta, Tod was a general partner at Trinity Ventures, where he supported and made early stage investments in multiple consumer companies that went on to become industry leaders, such as Blue Nile, the largest online retailer of diamonds and engagement rings; Jamba Juice smoothies and PF Chang's China Bistro restaurants. His other investments include BabyCenter, FatBrain, LoopNet, NextCard and Wedding Channel.

Before becoming an investor and advisor, Tod spent a decade in marketing and management roles at Ram Group Marketing Management and Johnson & Johnson. Tod earned an MBA from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern and a BA in economics from Northwestern University.

Tod is an avid skier, cyclist and kiteboarder. In his free time he enjoys skiing the slopes of Kirkwood, riding the Santa Cruz mountains and kiteboarding in the San Francisco bay.