University of Texas at Austin
McCombs School of Business McCombs School of Business

John Sibley Butler Named New Director of Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs

Management Professor John Sibley Butler has been named director of the Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs (JBTVL) effective Jan. 1, 2018.

"John brings a wealth of startup understanding and experience to the program," says Rob Adams, its founding director. "I look forward to continue working with companies through JBTVL with John as the leader."

JBTVL was established in 2010 as an engine for graduate entrepreneurship at The University of Texas at Austin and within the Austin entrepreneurial ecosystem. JBTVL works to accelerate startups in taking their innovations to market while also transforming graduate students into entrepreneurs and business leaders. Through its accelerator, TVL has worked with 148 companies, raising an aggregate $420 million in funding from outside investors. Additionally, it holds the TVL Investment Competition each fall and spring, helping launch student-led companies. 

Butler brings both research and real-world experience to JBTVL. He is a management professor and the J. Marion West Chair for Constructive Capitalism. Previously, Butler has served as the director of both the IC2 Institute and the Herb Kelleher Center for Entrepreneurship, Growth, and Renewal.

As a researcher, Butler has conducted numerous studies on minority entrepreneurship. Butler recently co-authored "Social Networks and Regional Advantages in Technology Entrepreneurship," one of the first studies to integrate personal-level and metro-level data to expand upon seminal studies on the technopolis conducted by IC2 founder George Kozmetsky.

Butler is an active investor, board member, and mentor. He was an early investor and board member for Yorktown Technologies LP, the company that sold Austin fluorescent fish company GloFish for $50 million in May.

Adams, meanwhile, will remain in his role as a senior management lecturer at the McCombs School of Business and will continue working at JBTVL, with a focus on mentoring startups and teaching courses in entrepreneurship.

"Rob has been instrumental in establishing JBTVL as a premier center for entrepreneurship in the country and has worked tirelessly to help shape nascent and growing companies founded at UT Austin and within the broader Austin community," says Luis Martins, chair of the Department of Management at McCombs. "I am glad that he will continue to shape and develop new ventures within his courses and through this continuing mentoring of JBTVL companies."