Mr. Penner has been a General Partner at Madrone Capital Partners, an investment management firm, since 2005. From 2002 to 2005, he served as Wal-Mart's Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer - Japan. Prior to working for Wal-Mart, Mr. Penner was a General Partner at Peninsula Capital, an early stage venture capital fund, and a financial analyst for Goldman, Sachs & Co. Mr. Penner is a member of the board of directors of Baidu.com, Inc., 99Bill Corporation, Cuill Inc., and Global Hyatt Corporation.
Penner received his MBA from Stanford University in 1997 before taking a series of Wal-Mart management jobs. In 2005, he started Madrone Capital Partners, a firm backed by money from Wal-Mart Chairman Rob Walton and other family members. Penner then joined Wal-Mart’s board in 2008.
Penner is the son of Clifford and Joyce Penner, two sex therapists in Pasadena, California, who have written numerous books. He joined the billionaire Wal-Mart family by marrying Carrie Walton Penner, the granddaughter of Sam Walton, who died in 1992. The couple both attended Georgetown University as undergraduate students and went on to earn graduate degrees at Stanford. The Penners have four kids and live in the wooded Silicon Valley suburb of Atherton.
Before founding Madrone, he was chief financial officer of Wal-Mart Japan and the senior vice president of finance and strategy for Walmart.com. He also served as a general partner at Peninsula Capital, an early-stage venture firm, and worked as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. early in his career. He first worked for Wal-Mart in 1994 as a manager trainee and an assistant buyer.
Penner and his wife have ties to the charter-school movement. Carrie Penner serves on boards for Alliance for School Choice, the California Charter Schools Association, and of the KIPP Foundation, a national public charter school network. Greg Penner is a director for the Charter School Growth Fund and Teach for America’s national board. The Walton Family Foundation, the family’s charitable arm, has donated more than $300 million to charter schools since 1997.
Penner is a partner in DT Capital Partners, a China-based venture firm that focuses on investments in consumer, media, energy and technology sectors.