Tilia is led by Johannes Burlin and Eric Larson whose combined careers span more than five decades. They have complementary skills that include operations, acquisitions and related integration, legal, business formation/firm management, and private equity investing.
Co-FOUNDER & Co-CEO
Johannes Burlin is the Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Tilia and has 22 years of professional experience as an operating executive in companies related to Tilia's investment area, including most recently serving as Partner and President of Safe Foods International, a group focusing solely on making investments in nutrition and safe food and water.
Prior to joining Safe Foods, Johannes served as President of Silliker North America, from October 2008 until July 2013. Johannes joined Silliker from Advanced Bioscience Laboratories, a Mérieux Alliance Co., where he served as President and CEO from 2003 until 2008 and Chairman from 2003 until 2013.
From 2000 until 2003, Johannes served as Vice President of Business Development for the Mérieux Group located in Lyon, France. From 1995 to 2000, he served as the General Counsel of bioMérieux, Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of bioMérieux, where he was also responsible for licensing and intellectual property. Prior to joining bioMérieux in 1995, he practice corporate law with the law firm of Bryan Cave.
A native of Sweden, Johannes holds a Bachelor of Arts from Hamilton College in Economics and a JD from Georgetown University Law Center.
Co-FOUNDER, Chairman & Co-CEO
Eric Larson is the Chairman, Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Tilia and has 33 years of experience as a private equity business builder and investor. Prior to co-founding Tilia, Eric co-founded Linden Life Science in 2002 and later Linden Capital Partners, a healthcare focused middle-market private equity firm, in 2004 now with $1.4 billion in assets under management. Eric was the senior investment professional in the creation and led the recruitment of key investment and administrative professionals. Most recently - until 2017- Eric was Chairman of Linden and a member of its investment committee.
Prior to co-founding Linden, he was Executive Vice President and Managing General Partner of First Chicago Equity Capital (later, Bank One Equity Capital), which he co-founded in 1991. He was previously a Partner and Investment Principal at First Chicago Venture Capital (now Madison Dearborn Partners).
Eric is also involved with the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (Leadership Council and Nutrition Roundtable), the National Geographic Society (International Council of Advisors), the Illinois Institute of Technology (Trustee), Center for Higher Ambition Leadership (Executive Fellow) and the Commercial Club of Chicago (member).
Eric holds a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard College and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Brian Behm is a Vice President and has 7 years of principal investing, operating and investment banking experience. Prior to joining Tilia in 2017, he was in brand management at 3G Capital and Berkshire Hathaway-owned Kraft-Heinz. Prior to Kraft-Heinz, Brian spent three years as an associate at ShoreView Industries, a Minneapolis-based private equity firm. Brian began his career at Harris Williams and Co. as an analyst in the food and beverage group.
Brian holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance and International Business with High Distinction from the University of Minnesota and an MBA with Honors from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Rob Celin is a Vice President and has 6 years of principal investing, operating and investment banking experience. Prior to joining Tilia in 2017, Rob worked as an Investment Associate at Linden Capital Partners and held an Executive Team management role at one of Linden's portfolio companies, Young Innovations, where he worked on a variety of strategic initiatives with the company's CEO. Rob began his career as an Investment Banking Analyst in the Technology, Media and Telecom group at Barclays Capital.
Rob holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance, summa cum laude, from Boston College and graduated with a Dean's Letter of Commendation. He is currently a joint MBA and MS in Design Innovation Candidate from the Kellogg School of Management and Segal Design Institute at Northwestern University.
J.D. Elder is a Vice President and has 5 years of principal investing, investment banking, and strategy experience. Prior to joining Tilia, J.D. worked as an Investment Associate at Linden Capital Partners, leading diligence on new investment opportunities. More recently, he worked with the The University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, partnering with scientists and researchers to develop commercialization plans for their discoveries. J.D. began his career as an Investment Banking Analyst in the Global Industrials group at Citigroup.
J.D. holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Mathematics, summa cum laude, from Washington University in St. Louis. He is currently an MBA Candidate at The University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Hadley Brooke joined Tilia as an Associate in 2017. Prior to joining Tilia, she was an Investment Banking Analyst in William Blair's Equity and Mergers and Acquisitions groups.
Hadley holds a Bachelor of Arts in History with a minor in business from Northwestern University.
Jenna Krieger joined Tilia as an Office Manager in 2017. She previously worked as an Executive Assistant at Linden Capital Partners and as an Office Assistant and Receptionist at The Grossman Group in Chicago. Jenna holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Iowa.