James is a Silicon Valley-based technology entrepreneur, executive, and independent Board member with extensive startup, growth stage, and public company experience. He has dedicated his career to building and leading high-performance teams, driving product innovation, efficiently scaling business operations, and delivering revenue growth, profitability, and value to employees, customers, and shareholders. As EVP of Global Venture Building, James works with clients to navigate the early stages of business building, bring innovative, potentially transformative products to market, and develop teams and capabilities to drive internal venturing efforts.
He started his career in corporate law, working on corporate securities, finance, and M&A for emerging technology companies. After transitioning into entrepreneurial roles, he became deeply embedded in the Silicon Valley startup ecosystem, working with B2B technology companies on early e-commerce products. In 1999, James founded Search123 — one of the world’s first pay-per-click search engines — which was later acquired by Conversant. He went on to serve as CEO of Efficient Frontier — a leading search engine marketing platform later acquired by Adobe, Dapper — an early advertising optimization platform acquired by Yahoo!, Simply Hired — a leading job search engine acquired by Recruit Co., and Munchery — the first end-to-end food e-commerce, production, and delivery platform. James’ operating experience also includes other executive roles at Conversant and Yahoo!, where he integrated and expanded acquired businesses.
In his 30-year career, James has also served as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Matrix Partners — a Palo Alto-based, early stage venture capital firm — and held independent directorships at venture-backed companies including iSocket (acquired by the Rubicon Project), Kanjoya (acquired by Ultimate Software), and EyeView.
In addition to his work with Mach49, James sits on the Board of EQ Works — the leading Canadian geospatial business intelligence platform — and on the Ventures and Sustainability Funding Committee for High Resolves — a mission-driven nonprofit focused on the design and delivery of citizenship education programs. He also acts as an advisor to startup founders and CEOs for Lifecycle Group and other organizations, runs a leadership workshop for founders and CEOs of early stage venture-backed startups, and is an active angel investor.
A member of the State Bar of California since 1993, James earned an LLB from the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, in addition to a BA in English literature from Trinity College at the University of Toronto. He currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, 4 daughters, and many animals.