Blair Garrou has spent the majority of his professional career advising, operating, and investing in software companies, with a focus on enabling technologies for retailers and brands. He is co-founder and Managing Director of Mercury Fund, one of the largest early-stage venture capital firms headquartered in Texas. Blair is also an Adjunct Professor at the Jones Graduate School of Business at Rice University where he teaches a course on venture capital. Prior to co-founding Mercury, Blair was CEO of Intermat, a leader in product information management software (acquired by IHS). During this time, he was also named to the Houston Business Journal’s inaugural “40 under 40.” Prior to Intermat, Blair was a Principal of Genesis Park, a Houston-based venture capital and private equity firm, where he focused on software investments. Prior to Genesis Park, Blair helped launch and was the Director of Operations for the Houston Technology Center (HTC), the largest technology incubator in the state of Texas, and led the formation of the Houston Angel Network (HAN), one of the largest and most active angel investment organizations in the U.S. Previously, Blair was an investment banker with Nesbitt Burns (BMO Capital Markets), a credit analyst with Compass Bank (BBVA Compass), and an auditor with Deloitte & Touche (Deloitte). He received a B.S. in Management with special attainments in Commerce from Washington & Lee University. Through his work in the Houston entrepreneurial community, Blair is also a co-founder of the coworking accelerator Station Houston (now a part of the Ion and Capital Factory), and SURGE Accelerator, a mentor-driven seed accelerator focused on entrepreneurs seeking to solve the world’s energy problems using software. Outside of Mercury, Blair serves in board and/or advisory roles for The Artemis Fund, DivInc, Houston Exponential, HTX Impact Fund, UTHealth, and Washington & Lee’s Connolly Center for Entrepreneurship.