Author: Institute Insights

The Case for Corporate Venture BD (CVBD) and Portfolio Development Teams

As we face uncertain times with rising interest rates, inflation, and falling startup valuations, CVCs must be equipped both to support portfolio companies and to ensure corporate parents derive measurable strategic benefit from portfolios.

“If you look at the realities of first the pandemic and now the economy, particularly for programs with off balance sheet investment funding – strategic engagement is the survival piece.  My parent could turn off my $ and I’d still have value to deliver” (CVC President)

A downturn can be an ideal time for CVCs to double down on high quality, reasonably priced investments.  And even for those who pause investing, well-defined corporate venture business development (CVBD) or portfolio development teams can provide outsized value for parent, portfolio company, and pipeline and are often a huge source of competitive advantage.  

Institute research shows CVCs often look to formalize and institutionalize CVBD/Portfolio Development teams when portfolios reach critical mass (7-10 companies).  At this point, many find they:

“Have critical CVBD (individual and program) capability gaps …how to have the right portfolio-parent-ecosystem conversations, deal with real issues, accelerate and measure impact” (CVC Portfolio Development Lead)

This is also the point where strategic portfolio management and performance communications become even more critical – demonstrating that the CVC program is a ‘must have vs a nice to have’.

Institute Response -- Landing the Value of Corporate Venturing (LVCV)

What distinguishes the Institute is our conviction that an ‘end-to-end investing’ approach, integrating professional investment and innovation partnering teams, contributes to CV program longevity. This ‘end-to-end investing’ approach ensures both portfolio financial performance and delivery of ultimate strategic impact.

LVCV is a cohort-based deep dive course focused on building and institutionalizing professional CVBD /portfolio development strategies and platforms and includes a mentored end-to-end investing project.  

The LVCV Learning Journey comes in two parts:

  1. Immerse Phase - Establish common CV language, framing models, tools & resources with particular focus on building powerful CVBD/portfolio development platforms.

  2. Mentored ‘challenge’ phase - address a real-world end-to-end investing problem or opportunity guided by CVC best practices sharing, hands-on insights from a leading CVC peer expert.

These learning journeys are enhanced by opportunities to engage with leaders from CVC peer programs including the following experts:

  • Tarik Galijasevic/Reese Schroeder @ Allstate Strategic Ventures
  • Jocelyn Byrne Houle/Bill McNulty @ Capital One Ventures 
  • Nick Washburn/Ran Kurup @ Intel Capital
  • George Hoyem @ In-Q-Tel 
  • Amy Burr @ JetBlue Tech Ventures 
  • Bill Taranto/Dave Stevenson @ Merck GHIF 
  • Yogis Nijhon/Ian Sanders @ Munich Re Ventures
  • Austin Noronha @ Sony Innovation Fund
  • Jim Adler @ Toyota Ventures
  • plus many others

LVCV Participant Perspective: Expert Video Case Study

Hear from Caterpillar’s Craig Lange how he has laid the foundation for improved CVC / startup collaboration and engagement with multiple business units.

Interested in the wider GCV Institute Curriculum?

Take a look at our full course offerings below