Kirthiga Reddy be­comes first fe­male ven­ture partner at SoftBank

To join $100-bil­lion Vi­sion Fund team

The Hindu Business Line - - IT & TELECOM - BLOOMBERG

SoftBank hired Face­book ex­ec­u­tive Kirthiga Reddy as a partner at its $100 bil­lion Vi­sion Fund, the first woman to join a group of just a dozen that over­sees the world’s big­gest pool of tech­nol­ogy in­vest­ments.

Reddy has joined SoftBank In­vest­ment Ad­vi­sors, which man­ages the gi­ant fund glob­ally, to fo­cus on fron­tier and en­ter­prise tech­nol­ogy glob­ally, ac­cord­ing to a SoftBank spokes­woman. She will work closely with Se­nior Man­ag­ing Partner Deep Nishar, the spokes­woman added. Reddy had worked at Face­book in In­dia and the US for eight years and serves as chair of the Stan­ford Busi­ness School Man­age­ment Board, ac­cord­ing to her LinkedIn page.

Reddy is join­ing a crew that’s helped SoftBank Group founder Masayoshi Son or­ches­trate an un­prece­dented wave of in­vest­ment in Sil­i­con Val­ley, China and be­yond. The Vi­sion Fund has com­mit­ted more than $65 bil­lion to ac­quire stakes in the likes of Uber Tech­nolo­gies, We­Work and China’s Didi Chux­ing. For per­spec­tive, in 2016, the en­tire US ven­ture cap­i­tal in­dus­try in­vested $75.3 bil­lion, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional Ven­ture Cap­i­tal As­so­ci­a­tion.

In an in­ter­view in Septem­ber, Son was asked about the fact that all the Vi­sion Fund partners were men and he Kirthiga Reddy

said he has “no prej­u­dice of any kind.” Vi­sion Fund head Ra­jeev Misra had been lead­ing an ef­fort to hire more women, in­clud­ing at the man­ag­ing partner level.

Reddy will be­come the fund’s first ven­ture partner and will be in­vest­ing. SoftBank said she may be­come what it calls an in­vest­ing partner, de­pend­ing in part on her de­sire to de­vote 100 per cent of her time to such ac­tiv­ity. SoftBank said that it in­tends to hire more fe­male in­vestors, par­tic­u­larly at the more se­nior lev­els, and it is “ac­tively re­cruit­ing.”

Son plans to raise a new $100 bil­lion fund ev­ery two or three years and will spend around $50 bil­lion a year. To help over­see that money, he said that he wanted to in­crease the num­ber of dealmakers from about 30 to 300 over the next few years.

Man­ag­ing partners fil­ter po­ten­tial in­vest­ment ideas and hold a weekly call to dis­cuss progress. Once the prospects are vet­ted, they go to an in­ter­nal in­vest­ment com­mit­tee that in­cludes Son.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.