Ex-CIA CTO Gus Hunt joins venture capital firm as advisor

February 27
1:38 PM 2014

Gus Hunt, the former Chief Technology Officer of the CIA has joined Artis Ventures as an advisor, VentureBeat reported.

Hunt will be giving advice to startups in his new role at the San Francisco-based investment firm as they seek out profitable deals from the federal government. He told VentureBeat in an interview, "I'm taking my understanding of the intelligence space and scouting out the opportunities."

Aside from advising young companies, he will also back startups, especially those who are keen on developing technology that will allow intelligence agencies to manage large amounts of data. He has set his sights especially on cloud computing, big data, analytics and possibly even wearable devices, the report said.

An approval from Hunt does not automatically mean a CIA approval, however, since he is not going to be involved with the agency's daily activities as he is in a cooling period with the agency, the report said.

He will, however, be supporting new technology that seeks to give government agencies value. He told VentureBeat, "My advice to most companies that approach me is to be successful commercially first before pursuing the federal intelligence market. These startups should have a steady revenue stream before they attempt the long and difficult pursuit of federal dollars."

Since leaving the CIA, Hunt has been quite busy. In November last year, he became an operating partner to LLR Partners, a private equity firm, tasked with reviewing later-stage investment opportunities in the areas of security, government services and defense, the report said.

While fulfilling the commitments he made to both private equity and venture capital, Hunt still plans to meet with startups. He said, "I want to learn and get engaged in other aspects of technology and business." He intends to share the insights he has learned to the CIA after his cooling period with the agency, the report said.

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