CleanTechies Podcast
#126 The Value-add of Specialist VCs, Engaging with Corporate Partners, Advice to Founders & Aspiring VCs, Defending Your Moat, & More with Grant Allen (SE Ventures)

#126 The Value-add of Specialist VCs, Engaging with Corporate Partners, Advice to Founders & Aspiring VCs, Defending Your Moat, & More with Grant Allen (SE Ventures)

Among other things.

Why you should listen:

  • Discover the role of Specialist VCs in climate change solutions with SE Ventures

  • Learn about SE Ventures and its innovative climate and industrial tech investments

  • Gain insights on collaboration with large companies and startup wisdom

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Show Notes:

In this episode Silas Mahner (@silasmahner) & Somil Aggarwal (@somil_agg) speak with Grant Allen, General Partner at SE Ventures. They are a uniquely positioned Specialist VC with a single LP, Schneider Electric. They function like a typical VC, with autonomy from Schneider Electric as a whole, but can also leverage Schneider's vast global network to add value beyond capital and help their portfolio companies to succeed.

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  • 1:32: Intro & Career

  • 5:16: Relationship w/ SE

  • 9:09: How SE Ventures Started

  • 11:43: SE Thesis: Double Bottom Line

  • 19:46: Why the Check Size

  • 23:36: Milestones to Get a Check

  • 26:39: How To Manage Collaboration

  • 33:35: Areas He's Bullish On

  • 37:34: Building Incentive-Free Biz Models

  • 42:03: Advice to Founders

  • 44:31: How to Scale

  • 47:51: How to Vet Big Incumbents

  • 51:44: Advice to VC Aspirants

  • 56:11: How to Develop a Thesis

  • 59:15: If He Started a Biz Today He Would…


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CoHost.AI Write Up:

Ever wondered how venture capital firms are combating climate change? Here's your chance to find out. Grant from SE Ventures guides us through a voyage into the thriving world of specialist venture capital funds and their crucial role in climate change solutions. His journey from traditional financial models to specialist VC models is certainly a tale worth hearing. Founders and aspiring business leaders, take note!

We delve deeper into how SC Ventures and Schneider Electric, its parent company, have a unique synergy that accelerates the adoption of crucial technology for climate change solutions. Learn about SE Ventures, a venture fund supported by Schneider Electric, and the crucial 'air gap' that ensures alignment with founders and speedy action. The 'double bottom line' approach and value delivery framework of SE Ventures are nothing short of revolutionary. 

In the final fold of our conversation, Grant shares his investment experiences in mobility companies, thoughts on government’s role in residential electrification, and the importance of self-sustaining business models. We also navigate the potential advantages of collaborating with large companies, provided you manage the relationship effectively. And for those young investors and startups out there, Grant's words of wisdom are a must-hear: humility, rapid learning, and understanding the complexity of the climate change space are key. So pull up a chair and let's get started!

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CleanTechies Podcast
CleanTechies is a Podcast and Newsletter where Somil & Silas interview the leading ClimateTech Founders and Investors to share their advice and journeys with other Founders and Investors to help others succeed.