Case Studies
Jul 29, 2022

How Connect Ventures adopted a new fund management strategy

About Connect Ventures

Connect Ventures is a thesis-led venture capital firm that invests in European product-led companies, usually at the seed stage. Founded in 2012 in London, Connect Ventures has invested in more than 80 startups, and its AUM is currently over €130 million. Over the last nine years, the firm has helped guide investments in product companies such as Typeform, Citymapper, Soldo, TrueLayer, Curve, Kheiron, and Second Nature.

Client’s Challange

As with many venture capital firms, Connect Ventures used Excel as the primary tool for keeping track of all its fund and portfolio data. “Excel didn’t work for us, as it got more complex and convoluted with each new drawdown, investment or distribution. The multiple worksheets and tabs became overwhelming very quickly, and we had to find a different solution,” says Andrew Baldwin, Senior Finance Associate at Connect Ventures.

Connect Ventures also used Airtable to update its portfolio KPI monitoring practices through form submissions. This process was designed to be as lightweight and painless as possible, in order to maximize engagement and completion rates. However, after one year of using Airtable, this process was no longer scalable as, for example, each new analysis required the creation of a new view with a couple more columns of additional data points. After realizing what kind of limitations Airtable had in the long run, it was time to look for another solution.

With this in mind, reviewing our key requirements and realizing what we needed was a pure portfolio management platform, we decided to go ahead with VESTBERRY.

Andrew Baldwin | Senior Finance Associate at Connect Ventures

Solution powered by Vestberry

Connect Ventures was looking mainly for the following key features in its portfolio management software:

  • Live metrics across all funds and portfolios. Daily and accurate FX updates as well as live TVPI and IRRs movements.
  • LP reporting uses the data within the platform to create customizable and visually appealing reports that could be shared with LPs through a self-service portal.
  • Time machine reporting showing progress over time.
  • KPI collection allows portfolio companies to easily update KPIs with minimal time and effort, as well as allows fund managers to track their progress and trends.
  • Cap table management gives one centralized place for all cap tables in a single format.
  • Round, Exit and Liquidity modelling, so they could use inputted liquidity preferences to run waterfalls and exit models easily.
  • Dedicated dashboards for each fund and each portfolio company.
  • Personalized views by assessment, sector, stage or geography.

The results, thanks to Vestberry

The process of migrating 9 years’ worth of historical investment data onto a brand new platform is never an easy task. Now it’s been completed, the day-to-day maintenance of Connect Ventures’ portfolio & fund management has drastically reduced whilst its functionality and UX have increased.

It also means that when we are asked the question ‘What’s the impact on the gross fund IRR if company X raises at a $1bn valuation?’ we can model it in 30 seconds rather than cracking open another Excel spreadsheet and crunching the numbers again.

Andrew Baldwin | Senior Finance Associate at Connect Ventures

Connect Ventures now has more time to analyze its data and create insights rather than inputting data into poorly scalable databases.

This case study was created based on a blog post by Andrew Baldwin at Connect Ventures

Author

Vestberry

Vestberry is building a fintech analytical platform helping Venture Capital and Private Equity investors manage their capital smarter, allowing them to invest in companies who strive to solve the world’s most pressing challenges, from climate change to mental health. With Vestberry, our clients increase team productivity significantly, streamline internal processes, and can make better investment decisions faster. As a result, Vestberry brings clients a competitive advantage, both in terms of speed & quality of investment decisions and also the potential to attract increasingly data-oriented investors.