This episode is part of our new Capital Series hosted by MCJ partner, Jason Jacobs. This series will explore a diverse range of capital sources and the individuals who drive them. From family offices and institutional LPs to private equity, government funding, and more, we'll take a deep dive into the world of capital and its critical role in driving innovation and progress.
Today’s guest is Sarah Hinkfuss, a partner at Bain Capital Ventures.
Bain Capital Ventures (BCV) is a multi-stage VC firm investing across four core domains, fintech, application software, infrastructure, and commerce tech.
Leveraging the unique resources of BCV, they deploy targeted support at every stage of company building. For over 20 years, BCV has helped launch and commercialize more than 400 companies, and they also recently announced $1.9 billion in new funds.
This is an insightful conversation as BCV has not historically been a climate-focused investor, but they're increasingly paying attention to and getting active in this area, and Sarah's leading the charge.
In this episode, we cover:
[3:23] An overview of Bain Capital Ventures and Sarah's focus at the firm
[5:35] BCV's exploration of climate tech and the firm's motivations
[12:04] How the allocation of resources is influenced by time horizons
[15:22] BCV's areas of focus through a climate lens
[17:04] Sarah's climate journey from environmental justice and public service to early-stage startups and investing
[23:07] Her experience leading the effort and formalizing BCV's climate approach
[28:07] An example of the evolution of BCV's funds
[31:37] The relevant types of expertise needed to make confident investments
[35:45] BCV's insights into the role software plays in solving the climate problem
[38:18] The firm's 6 areas of focus
[44:48] Founder market fit and the importance of deep market strategy and commercial experience
[50:00] How climate-focused investors should approach a company's more profitable opportunities in other markets
[53:31] BCV's climate investments to date and other related efforts across its portfolio
[57:12] The role of a changing climate in a company's evolution and BCV's approach
[1:05:05] The value of authentic experiences and deep expertise
[1:08:44] Founders BCV wants to hear from
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Episode recorded on April 19, 2023.