Linda Yates is the Founder and CEO of Mach49 — Driving Growth for Global Businesses. Mach49 partners with the Global 1000 to build their growth engines, creating portfolios of organic ventures and external investments to disrupt markets and create new ones through venture building, venture transformation, venture investing, strategic partnering, and targeted M&A.
Linda and her team founded the company focused 100% on execution and building long-term client capability — not dependency — represented by 2 new businesses launched in 2023: Mach49 Growth Programs, giving heads of talent a whole new playbook for professional development related to innovation and growth, and 2401, Mach49’s new digital platform fulfilling the firm’s promise to democratize access to their methodology, tools, processes, templates, frameworks, and more.
She is a seasoned CEO with over 30 years of experience creating global strategy and driving innovation for large multinationals around the world. As a native of Silicon Valley, Linda has an extensive local and global network — serving as a bridge between Silicon Valley and the boardrooms and C-Suites of international corporations throughout her career.
Whether Disrupting InsideOut™ — launching ventures, building venture factories / new growth divisions, and seizing the Mothership advantage to benefit their growth initiatives — or Disrupting OutsideIn™ — building world-class corporate venture funds, helping Executive Investment Committees operate as top-tier VCs, maximizing the partnership value of external startups, and providing M&A support — Linda and her extremely experienced team help global enterprises leverage their talent, ideas, brands, assets, competencies, capital, and customers to drive meaningful growth for their companies, their team members, their communities, and, yes, even the world. Many of Mach49’s clients are addressing some of the world’s biggest problems, from climate change and sustainability to energy, disease, education, diversity, poverty, racism, water, and more.
Linda spent a decade as a member of the Board of Directors for NYSE-traded Sybase Inc. (now SAP) and has served as a Board Member and Advisor to many entrepreneurs and private companies. She was CEO of Strategos — pioneering the field of corporate innovation with Co-Founder and Chairman, Professor Gary Hamel. Prior to Strategos, Linda spent 6 years with the Mac Group / Gemini, where she was Head of the San Francisco office and Co-Head of the High-Tech Practice on the West Coast and, later, Europe (based in Amsterdam). Her career began with 2 years at Smith Barney in corporate finance and M&A. Linda has extensive global experience, having lived, worked, or traveled to over 70 countries.
Linda is a Henry Crown Fellow with the Aspen Institute. She is an environmental activist and built the greenest home in the US, known as Tah.Mah.Lah. She is also a 21st-century education advocate, having worked on many projects to transform public schools and co-founded Creekside Learning Lab as a 4-year demo site for best practices in 21st-century learning. She holds a BA in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia and an MA in international relations and comparative politics from Stanford University, where she guest lectures.
Her new book, The Unicorn Within: How Companies Can Create Game-Changing Ventures at Startup Speed, was published by Harvard Business Review Press in October 2022, reached #1 on Amazon’s New Releases lists in both Strategic Business Planning and Venture Capital, was named by Forbes as one of the Top 10 Business Books of 2022, and has been featured by Harvard Business Review Press Business Bookshelf, Investor’s Business Daily, Forbes, Bloomberg, Inc. Magazine, CEO Magazine, CMSWire, Masters of Scale, and more.