Entrepreneurs, Innovators

Eric Lefkofsky is an entrepreneur and CEO of Tempus. He also co-founded Groupon, Echo Global Logistics, Uptake, and Mediaocean. He also helped found a venture capital firm based in Chicago, Lightbank.

 

He was born and raised in Michigan by his parents, a structural engineer and a teacher. He graduated from high school in 1987 and went to college at the University of Michigan. He graduated in 1991 with honors and continued his education at the law school of the University of Michigan, where re received his Juris Doctor in 1993.

 

After graduating from college in 1993, he and a friend, Brad Keywell, took loans from their family members to buy a Wisconsin apparel company, named Brandon Apparel. In 1999, the duo founded an internet startup company that specialized in promotional products, called Starbelly. They experienced quick success and was sold to Halo Industries in 2000. Lefkofsky even joined the Halo team as its COO (Chief Operating Officer).

 

After the success and bankruptcy of Starbelly, Eric Lefkofsky helped found InnerWorkings in 2001. This company provided print services and in 2006, the company had a very successful initial public offering in the stock market. He sat on the board of directors there until 2012.

 

In 2005, the duo was at it again, creating Echo Global Logistics, a freight logistics company. This new company attracted financing from one of the largest technology investors in the country and went public on the NASDAQ. Echo is now successfully being traded.

 

In 2006, they founded MediaBank, a company that provided buyers with buying and accounting software. In 2007, they acquired Datatech and in 2007, New Enterprise Associates invested in the company. In 2012, a merger approved by the US Department of Justice occurred between Donovan Data Systems and MediaBank, which created Mediaocean. The deal was an estimated $1.5 billion.

 

In 2007, Eric Lefkofsky co-founded and funded ThePoint.com, which changed its name to Groupon.com in 2008. This website was an online collective action website that currently has an estimated value of over $1.35 billion. In 2010, Groupon was reported as one of the fastest growing companies in history.

 

In 2014, he co-founded an analytics company, Uptake, LLC. In 2016, he founded Tempus, a company that allows doctors to deliver personalized cancer care to patients.

 

Aside from his business ventures, Eric Lefkofsky is also very active in the community and in philanthropic works. In 2006, he and his wife founded a charity called the Lefkofsky Foundation, which has provided funding for more than 50 organizations which focus on children.

 

Lefkofsky is also very involved in his community. He sits on the board of directors at The Art Institute of Chicago, the Children’s Memorial Hospital, and The Museum of Science and Industry. He is a trustee of the Steppenwolf Theatre Company and a board member of World Business Chicago.