Leland Pillsbury is a venture capitalist with a special focus on the hospitality industry. He is the Founder, Co-Chairman and CEO of Thayer Lodging Group, a privately held hotel real estate investment firm which ranks among the top 5% of top performers among all private real estate firms. He is also the cofounder and chairman of TIG Global, an internet marketing company serving over 1,500 hotels around the world, cofounder and chairman of EMC Venues, the largest resort and conference center marketing representation firm in the country, cofounder and chairman of Thayer Insurance Group, providing specialized insurance coverages to hotel and hospitality firms, cofounder of HUBS1, providing the only Global Distribution System and central reservations systems to the domestic Chinese hotel and airline industries, and cofounder of HQuant, a financial and analytical firm serving the hospitality industry and publisher of the HQuant Lodging Real Estate Index. He is a principal and director in several other companies both inside and outside the hospitality industry.
Pillsbury launched Grande Heritage Hotels in 1989 and sold the company in 1991, after serving 20 years at Marriott International, where he was Marriott's youngest Executive Vice President and corporate officer. Mr. Pillsbury served as the head of Strategic Planning for the lodging business, participated in the acquisition of a time sharing business, led the venture team that developed and launched Fairfield Inns, acquired the Residence Inns Company, and introduced several brand extensions. During this period, Marriott experienced a four fold increase in sales, a five fold increase in profits, and an eight fold increase in its market capitalization. At the time of his departure, he was responsible for $1 billion in annual capital development projects and over 18,000 employees. After his departure, he participated in the acquisition of the Ritz Carlton Hotel Company by Marriott International. In 1991 he founded Thayer Lodging Group.
Leland Pillsbury received his BS degree from Cornell's School of Hotel Administration and an Executive MBA from Northwestern University's J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management.