Battleships vs Skateboards: Toyota Ventures' Systems Investing Approach

Battleships vs Skateboards: Toyota Ventures' Systems Investing Approach

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Battleships vs Skateboards: Toyota Ventures' Systems Investing Approach
00:00 / 01:04

In this episode, S2G’s Sanjeev Krishnan sits down with Jim Adler, Founding Managing Director at Toyota Ventures to discuss their first investment as a fund in autonomous farming company Burro, as well as Toyota’s systems investing approach and why he’s not convinced by dystopian projections of a hostile robot takeover.


Jim Adler

Founding Managing Director

Toyota Ventures

Jim Adler is the founding managing director of Toyota Ventures, and an executive advisor at Toyota Research Institute (TRI). He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Toyota Financial Savings Bank and the Investment Committee of JetBlue Technology Ventures, and he is a former member of the Department of Homeland Security Data Privacy and Integrity Advisory Committee.

Jim joined Toyota Ventures from TRI, where he served as vice president of data and business development. Prior to that, Jim was vice president of products and marketing at Metanautix, a big data analytics startup funded by Sequoia Capital and Workday that was acquired by Microsoft.

Previously, Jim was the vice president of data systems and chief privacy officer at Intelius, which was acquired by H.I.G. Capital. In addition, he founded VoteHere, a pioneer in cryptographic secure and secret online voting for public elections that was funded by Cisco and HP, among others. Jim started his career as a rocket engineer for Lockheed Martin.

He received his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with high honors from the University of Florida, and a master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from the University of California, San Diego.