Accion’s Venture Lab seeks an experienced investment professional, with a proven track record of making and exiting investments, to work across our global portfolio and drive AVL’s investment strategy. This person will work alongside a dynamic, high-performing team – comprised of ten people, including five investment professionals based in key markets around the world – to effectively evaluate, manage, and exit investments. A critical senior role on our team, this person will also work closely with the Managing Director on fundraising and fund management.
We are open to where this person will be based, but he/she must be able to work from Washington DC for the first three months of the role. The ideal candidate will have experience investing at an early stage in emerging markets and evaluating innovative business models, particularly in fintech and financial inclusion. The candidate should have a demonstrated passion for social impact – while maintaining disciplined focus on delivering risk-adjusted market rate returns to investors.
Accion is a global nonprofit committed to creating a financially inclusive world, with a pioneering legacy in microfinance and fintech impact investing. We catalyze financial service providers to deliver high-quality, affordable solutions at scale for the three billion people who are left out of — or poorly served by — the financial sector. For nearly 60 years, Accion has helped tens of millions of people through our work with more than 160 partners in 55 countries. More at http://www.accion.org.
About Accion Venture Lab:
Accion Venture Lab is the world’s leading seed-stage investor in fintech for the underserved, catalyzing innovation in inclusive fintech and improving the way financial services are delivered to underserved consumer and small businesses around the world. We invest capital in and provide support to innovative, scalable fintech startups that improve the reach, quality, and affordability of financial services for the underserved. Venture Lab is a part of Accion, a global nonprofit committed to creating a financially inclusive world, with a pioneering legacy in microfinance and fintech impact investing. Created in 2012 and backed by commercial and impact investors since the launch of its third-party fund in 2019, we have deployed over US$30 million across 54 early-stage startups that operate in 39 countries worldwide.
We have successfully delivered returns above benchmarks while staying true to our mission of financial inclusion. We have done so by employing a rigorous sourcing and diligence process, investing in companies poised to take advantage of the investment themes we believe will be successful in the future, and by adding value in the form of strategic and operational support through our governance and portfolio engagement functions. Most importantly, we have created a model of social impact that many in our industry look to emulate. In 2020 alone, we helped bring financial services to 7.7 million underserved consumers and small businesses. This included protecting and insuring over 5 million individuals, and helping people put $550 million into savings.
Why you should consider working with us:
We are pioneers in our space. As the leading global seed stage investor for inclusive fintech, we have proven an ability to be catalytic and influence the industries we work in: impact investing, fintech, early-stage entrepreneurship. We exist to go places where others don’t, and we are not being afraid to make our perspectives known. We have always played an important role in shaping the nascent spaces we work, and we will continue to do so into the future.
We are curious seekers of new ideas. We are constantly trying to improve our work and gain insight to new innovations, new markets, and new ways of thinking. We focus on team learning and reflection through deep dives and quarterly retreats, and our entrepreneurial environment builds autonomy and ownership, so that we are empowered to make decisions and shape our industry.
We get ambitious things done in a fun and collaborative environment. Venture Lab is a place for creating lasting impact in the world. We recognize the importance of what we do, but we know we will be stronger and more effective together. We are supportive and collaborative, energized by working as a team and working to support the broader ecosystem.
Investments strategy and operations
- Incorporate learnings from our governance work and post investment support to adapt our investment strategy;
- Identify industry trends and themes to inform Venture Lab’s global investments theses;
- Identify and implement changes to investment criteria and drive continuous improvement of deal processes
Global pipeline development and deal execution
- Support a global team in developing a pipeline and portfolio of digitally enabled financial services companies that have the potential to scale and become demonstration models worldwide;
- Provide guidance to regional team through negotiations of new deals and follow-ons, transaction documentation, investment committee communications – ensuring consistency across our global deals;
- Guide team in the evaluation and execution of sales and exits in existing portfolio;
- For certain new geographies, directly build relationships and pipeline, and represent Accion on portfolio company boards
- Provide strategic support to portfolio companies, such as input on strategies to grow and scale operations and clients
Fund management and future fundraising
- Build relationships with and drive fund reporting to our LPs regarding portfolio performance and learnings;
- Play an active role alongside MD in future AVL fundraising efforts.
- 12+ years of full-time work experience, with significant time in VC or impact investing, ideally in emerging markets and in financial services / financial inclusion;
- Demonstrated experience leading and structuring deals and negotiating exits;
- Outstanding relationship management skills and ability to earn respect of colleagues, investors and enterprises;
- Exceptional written, communication and presentation skills in English required, other languages a plus;
- Strong attention to delivery and follow through;
- Ability to work independently while collaborating with a global team;
- Pragmatic problem-solver, forward thinker with independence of thought;
- Cultural sensitivity with ability to interact effectively with colleagues and partners from diverse backgrounds and multi-cultural environments;
- Alignment with and embodiment of our team values
This job may require travel on a regular basis (40%).
Start application process HERE