Mark Thompson (investor)

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Mark C. Thompson
Residence California and New York City
Alma mater Stanford University
Occupation Author, Keynote Speaker, Executive Coach, Venture Capitalist, Broadway Producer

Mark C. Thompson is an American author, executive coach, keynote speaker, businessman and venture capitalist. He is the co-author of the international bestsellers, Admired - 21 Ways to Double Your Value, Success Built to Last and Now, Build a Great Business! as well as a venture investor, executive coach, and a producer/coach of the executive leadership program, Leader Powertools. Thompson’s list of clients includes executives, entrepreneurs, non-profit leaders, billionaires, presidents of nations all over the world, and the leaders of small and large organizations. Thompson is CEO and co-founder of Virgin Unite Mentors, Sir Richard Branson's network for executive coaching and entrepreneurial innovation. Thompson is also a Broadway producer of the Tony Award-winning play Peter and the Starcatcher and Tony nominated StickFly.[1]


Thompson is an author and public speaker, and has delivered keynote addresses, workshops and executive coaching programs for major corporations worldwide. His three bestselling books Admired - 21 Ways to Double Your Value, Success Built to Last and Now, Build a Great Business! focus on leadership, business growth and organizational excellence. Mark C. Thompson is CEO and cofounder of Virgin Unite Mentors, Sir Richard Branson's network for executive coaching and entrepreneurial innovation.

Thompson worked for a dozen years as an executive for Charles Schwab throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, serving in a variety of senior roles, including Chief of Staff to Charles Schwab, Chief Communications Officer, Chief Customer Experience Officer, and cofounder of The Schwab Foundation. He also served as the Executive Producer of, where he was responsible for one of the world's largest ecommerce transaction websites.

Thompson is a venture investor, management adviser and former board member of private and public companies. He served as Chairman of Rioport, Inc., which was the first internet music service (SaaS connected to devices) to legally offer digital songs from all the major music labels.[2] Rioport was spun out of Diamond Multimedia which popularized the first commercial MP3 player, the "Rio".[3] Thompson was also Chairman of Integration, Inc., a communications semiconductor company; and Chairman of VMAX. He has been speaker at London Business School, Stanford University, U.C. Berkeley, The Economist and Fortune magazine conferences, The New York Stock Exchange summits with The Churchill Club and Financial Executives Institute. He served on the Council of The Heartland Circle Thought Leaders Gatherings. At the World Economic Forum, he served as a Governor for the Securities Industry and a Lecturer/Member at their annual meetings in Davos, Switzerland.

Thompson has been an adviser to Stanford’s Realtime Venture Design Lab (ReVeL), which seeks to improve the potential sustainability of new ventures by helping the founding team discover and articulate a compelling, unified theme based on their identity that inspires the stakeholders and the communities they serve.

He was a member of the board Best Buy Enterprises, Korn Ferry International, Interwoven and Teletech, and was an adviser to Kabira, Captara and many other private startups. He served on the board of the National Investor Relations Institute and In 1996 he accepted an appointment to U.S. SEC Consumer Advisory Council. He also created the Leaders of the New Century series through his production company, Network Public Broadcasting International, and was a contributor and host for CEO and executive interviews for thought leader programs produced by Korn Ferry International and Ernst & Young.

Thompson became a Broadway producer in 2010 - joining the production team for Tony Nominated StickFly which he co-produced with Alicia Keys among others. Following the success of StickFly, Thompson joined the production team - led by Disney Theatrical Productions - of Peter and the Starcatcher which won five Tony Awards in 2012.


Thompson’s interviews with business thought leaders formed the foundation for his first NYT bestselling book, Success Built to Last, which is the sequel to the business classic Built to Last by Jim Collins and Jerry Porras. Thompson's series of interviews for the book were also the basis for several audio and video programs, including, the Charles Schwab CEO Series, Women on Leadership, Seven Sacred Promises with Maya Angelou, and the DVD program, Creating a Life that Matters. He executive produced the audiobook, Hidden Kitchens, in 2005 and the series on National Public Radio in 2004.

Thompson co-authored his second bestseller Now, Build a Great Business with co-author Brian Tracy in 2010. This book focused on 7 key principles to build a successful business in any economic environment including: attracting customers, recruiting and motivating leaders and employees, creating a great business plan, designing an effective marketing plan, and customer experience. In addition, the book explores how to perfect the sales process, and create outstanding customer experiences.[4]

Thompson's third bestseller, co-authored with his wife Bonita Thompson was ADMIRED, 21 Ways to Double Your Value. ADMIRED was atop several bestselling book lists in Fall 2012, including NYT, Barnes & Noble and USA Today and[5] The Thompson's research for ADMIRED explored the traits that people most admire in leaders, businesses and organizations and why. They compared the traits that people most admire in businesses and leaders with the traits that individuals themselves would most like to be appreciated for.

Awards and Accolades[edit]

In 2004, Forbes included Thompson on its list of America’s leading venture investors with the “Midas” touch for his work with many technology and media startups. Thompson’s audiobook series, Hidden Kitchens, for which he served as executive producer, won Audie and Columbia/duPont awards and his Lost & Found Sound series, for which he also executive produced on National Public Radio, won a coveted Peabody award. Thompson was the first recipient of the John F. Kennedy University Lifetime Achievement Award for Entrepreneurship.[6]


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