At CV, “Platform” means partnering with the companies in our portfolio to help them skill up and scale up more quickly and more efficiently.
In 2014, we started building our Platform function not because it was the current trend in venture, or as a marketing ploy, but because operating is embedded in our DNA.
For us, Platform isn’t a static formula: it’s a relationship-driven, bespoke, ongoing engagement that everyone at every portfolio company has access to. While needs can vary across companies, these four areas are where we spend the most time:
Talent: Build Your Team
We build and maintain relationships with the best current and potential startup employees of all levels and help plug them into our portfolio companies. We focus on quality over quantity: we’ve directly helped portfolio companies hire dozens of candidates and have made vetted introductions to hundreds. Comp data, board candidates, management trainings: we’ve probably seen it before, and have got it covered.
Community: Skill Up
We believe in the strength of community, in the power of peer-to-peer learning, and the importance of access to experts. Outside of CEOs and founders, we’ve built communities across our portfolio company teams, including people ops, sales, marketing, product, tech, and operations. We regularly bring these groups together to network and learn from each other, and produce cross-functional opportunities for portfolio companies to tap into, including manager and diversity and inclusion trainings.
Customers: Identify + Connect
We think big companies can be tough to navigate, too. We’ve spent years building relationships with corporates to help portfolio companies connect to the right champions through targeted introductions. No innovation theater here – we proactively build on these relationships to understand how potential customers and acquirers are shifting the way they partner with startups.
Communications: Tell Your Story
Storytelling is an art, but there can be some science behind it. We work with portfolio companies on marketing and public relations to massage messaging, and know how to work with press to make those stories public.