Valerie Shen | Partner & COO, G2 Venture Partners

Valerie Shen is Partner and Chief Operating Officer at G2 Venture Partners. She oversees all operational aspects of the firm and fund including fundraising / LP relations, recruiting / HR, fund administration, impact reporting, legal, compliance, and marketing.

Prior to business school, Valerie was an analyst at Kleiner Perkins’ $1B Green Growth Fund, where she helped the team found G2. Before that, Valerie was a management consultant at McKinsey & Company, where she worked across four continents, primarily on energy projects. She has also held positions at the U.S. Senate, X (Google’s “moonshot factory”), Goldman Sachs, Jane Street Capital, and The Wilderness Society.

G2 Partners helps founders envision a more sustainable world by enabling them to unlock the full potential of transformative technology in traditional industries. They strive to be an enduring partner, offering insight and intelligence to help teams navigate complexity and make the right decisions. Their deep sector expertise and years of climate tech experience supports ambitious goals and groundbreaking actions.

In our conversation today, Valerie guides us through understanding what G2 is all about and how their unique team, culture, tools, and processes set them apart.

Show Notes:

[1:24] - Valerie shares her background, why she focuses her work on climate, and how she found herself as COO at G2 Venture Partners.
[4:16] - She describes her role and what a typical day looks like for her at such an impactful fund.
[6:37] - Valerie explains what G2 looks for when investing.
[8:30] - What can make a startup positioned well for G2 to invest in?
[10:29] - The team, culture, tools, and processes are the four aspects of the work done at G2. Valerie describes the team and how unique their approach is.
[13:32] - At G2, the team communicates at many different stages in the process.
[16:09] - Sourcing is an integral part of the diligence process. Valerie walks us through how sourcing plays out in practice.
[18:59] - A lot of relationship-building goes into this process and how the firm collaborates and communicates to build a network.
[20:09] - Valerie shares some key criteria and trends that G2 looks for when evaluating potential investments.
[22:36] - She describes recent investments that showcase what makes a startup stand out.
[25:07] - What challenges are faced during this process?
[26:47] - G2 likes to lead the deal. Valerie explains their communications, particularly during board meetings, with companies.
[28:48] - Trends are suggesting that something important to watch is the policy landscape.

Links and Resources:

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