"Head of Platform" at Venture Capital firms, "Deep Dive" inside the role through a talk with 4 HoP from the US, Europe and Israel.
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The current context in the tech and startup landscape is a market correction, valuations being challenged, and most startups executing a RIF (reduction in force, meaning downsizing teams) and focusing on their runway. However, top talents remain scarce and expensive. Being part of engaged, supportive communities of peers is paramount. VCs need to strike the right balance between their portcos’ versatile needs, VCs’ own resources, and how that aligns with their branding.
This is where Platform comes in.
In the view of experienced Heads of Platform in prominent VC firms in the US, Europe, and Israel, a person assuming the role of Head of Platform at a VC fund should have a mix of skills set of entrepreneurship, execution, and business development. They need to see a holistic picture, connect the dots in places others would not notice, be a connector and a salesman.
The Head of Platform needs to be agile, connected, and purposeful. They should have a mission-oriented, open mindset, and a zest for variety. They should be outgoing, communicative, and able to cope with different types of stakeholders they work with. To strike an alignment at scale between portcos needs, available resources at the VC, and the VC brand, the Head of Platform should start by identifying their unfair advantage that can drive the most value.
For a newly appointed DOP/HOP, the first 90/100 days could include identifying the platform's core strengths and weaknesses, understanding the portfolio companies' needs, and building relationships with key stakeholders.
A few weeks ago, I had the chance to talk to 4 Heads of Platform to get their prime insights.
- Catherine Treyz, Head of Comms & Platform, Cherry Ventures (Germany)
- Ashley Cravens, Head of Operations & Platform, Uncork Capital (SF, US)
- Simon Lohmann, Head of VC Platform & IR, Cavalry (Germany)
- Lior Goldenberg, Head of Platform, Collider (Israel)
Read this fatastic discussion in our premium newsletter called Venture Notes. Good news, head to bit.ly/venturenotes to get 50% OFF forever on your annual plan (€45 per year instead of €90).
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The podcasts Runway Series Originals, AMA VC, Human Factor, No-Code VC / Fit, Venture Talks & Solo-GP Series are produced by UPCOMINGVC® (www.upcoming.vc), created and hosted by Raphael Grieco.