Christopher Stone Joins Epic Ventures

Christopher Stone, a former senior executive with Novell, has joined Salt Lake City-based Epic Ventures as a managing director.In other Epic news, 16-year firm vet Todd Stevens will transition from a managing director to a venture partner role.


EPIC Ventures, the Salt Lake City based venture capital firm and Zions Bank affiliate, today announced it has added seasoned technology executive Christopher Stone as a Managing Director of the firm. Along with Kent Madsen and Nick Efstratis, Stone will join the Intermountain region’s premier venture investment firm focused on creating and funding early stage entrepreneurs in the software and technology sector.

Stone is best known for creating the organization and specification for the industry software standard called CORBA; he was an advocate and leader in the open source software movement, as well as Executive Vice President and Vice Chairman/Office of the CEO of Novell. His career also involved early SaaS development and high performance computing.

“Chris has been an active participant on our Advisory Board for nine years. We began discussing the possibility of joining us officially a few years ago and couldn’t be more excited for EPIC, but more importantly, excited for entrepreneurs,” said Mr. Efstratis, Managing Director of EPIC.

Along with Mr. Stone’s technology and operational experience, he created and implemented the Novell Venture Fund in 1998 with Eric Schmidt. His investments and team (based in Provo and Boston) produced outstanding returns, with many of the companies launching public offerings or acquisitions.

“Chris has a 29-year history of creating, running and funding technology companies. With his strong operational background and industry knowledge and with EPIC’s focus on early-stage investments, Chris is the perfect complement to our team,” added Mr. Madsen, Managing Director of EPIC.

He began his career in software development and product management with Data General (EMC). He has been a public and private company CEO three times. Mr. Stone is also credited as a driving force for the adoption of open source technology (Linux), having driven Novell’s strategy to acquire SuSE Linux, Ximian and other open source technology. Through his career, he garnered numerous Linux and technology related awards, including being named a top ten entrepreneur by Red Herring, and one of The Top 50 People in High Tech by Ziff Davis. Mr. Stone is often quoted in major publications such as Business Week, Wall Street Journal and Forbes Magazine.

“This is a great addition to the EPIC team and even better for Utah, the Rocky Mountain region, as well as the fact Chris has significant contacts and influence worldwide. This will help expand EPIC Ventures’ reach from its regional roots to additional opportunities in the East Coast and Silicon Valley,” said Shane Robison, Executive VP and CTO of Hewlett-Packard and Advisory Board Member of EPIC Ventures.

Additionally, after 16 years at EPIC Ventures, Todd Stevens has decided to step down as Managing Director of EPIC and will now be a Venture Partner. Mr. Stevens is planning to pursue other interests and spend more time with his family. Mr. Stevens will remain active with EPIC and will continue to be involved with deal flow, portfolio monitoring and fund-raising in his role as Venture Partner.

About EPIC Ventures

Founded by Zions Bank in Salt Lake City in 1994, EPIC Ventures is a premier venture firm focused on early stage technology investments in internet infrastructure, software and services. EPIC helps to create companies, not just fund them. EPIC’s Fund IV is actively investing in creating the country’s future information economy. For more information, please visit