Cindy Padnos

Founder & Managing Partner, Illuminate Ventures

About Cindy Padnos

Cindy Padnos is the founder and managing partner of Illuminate Ventures, a seed and early stage venture capital firm that invests exclusively in enterprise/B2B software companies. With three funds under management, Illuminate continues to invest in and support talented entrepreneurs that are re-inventing how work gets done. Her successful exits have included Xactly Corp (IPO then acquired by Vista Equity), Coupang (NYSE: CPNG) and strategic acquisitions by public companies such as Autodesk, Cloudera, Hearst Corp, and New Relic. She currently holds board roles with portfolio companies Allocadia, BrightEdge, Bid Ops, CafeX, and nFlux. Cindy is an innovator and an advocate for all things entrepreneurial. She has been working with enterprise technology startups for more than 25 years - as a founder/CEO of a VC-backed company, a startup operating executive, and as a VC investor since 2005. Cindy has been selected by Fast Company, the New York Times and the San Francisco Business Times for recognition among their "most influential women" cohorts on several occasions. She is also the author of three research-based, widely-cited white papers addressing gender diversity in the tech sector. ( Cindy gained her AB, magna cum laude, from the University of Michigan and an MBA/MSIA from the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University where she is a member of the Business Board of Advisors.

Job Role

GP - Deal-maker

Organization Type

GP/Asset Manager

Asset Class

Venture Capital


Below $200m

Events attending

Women's Private Equity Summit (California)

Influencer Of