Saturday, March 30, 2024

g-f(2)2157 Navigating Corporate Venture Capital: Strategies for Success


genioux Fact post by Fernando Machuca and ChatGPT


Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) holds immense potential as an innovation mechanism for large companies, yet many struggle to harness its power effectively. In the article "Steer Clear of Corporate Venture Capital Pitfalls" from the MIT Sloan Management Review, Ilya A. Strebulaev and Amanda Wang delve into the challenges faced by CVC units and provide invaluable insights on how to navigate these complexities to ensure success.

genioux GK Nugget:

"Many Corporate Venture Capital units falter due to a lack of understanding about their design, monitoring, and evaluation processes, hindering their ability to achieve strategic objectives effectively." — Fernando Machuca and ChatGPT

genioux Foundational Fact:

Despite the increasing importance of Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) units in fostering innovation and growth, a significant number of them fail to meet their objectives, with a third of active CVCs being mothballed or shut down in recent years.

The 10 most relevant genioux Facts:

  1. CVC units often struggle due to a disconnect between the venture mindset required for successful investments and the risk-averse culture prevalent in many corporations.
  2. Decision-making inconsistencies within CVC units can undermine strategic objectives, particularly when conflicting priorities exist between business units and the overarching corporate strategy.
  3. The organizational structure of CVC units varies widely, impacting their effectiveness and alignment with corporate goals.
  4. Strategic clarity is paramount for CVC success, with companies needing to define whether their mandate is primarily strategic or financial.
  5. The relationship between the parent company and its CVC investments shapes investment priorities and decision-making processes.
  6. Short-term evaluation metrics often clash with the long-term nature of venture capital investments, posing challenges for CVC units focused on innovation and disruption.
  7. Investment approval processes within CVC units are often hindered by bureaucratic inefficiencies and lack of alignment between CVC teams and internal decision-makers.
  8. The composition and voting structure of internal investment committees (ICs) significantly impact the effectiveness of CVC investment decisions.
  9. Talent acquisition and retention are critical for CVC success, yet many struggle to attract and retain top professionals due to compensation structures and organizational constraints.
  10. The geographical proximity of CVC units to parent companies can influence their ability to innovate and integrate external insights into corporate strategy effectively.


In a rapidly evolving business landscape, mastering the intricacies of Corporate Venture Capital is essential for companies seeking to drive innovation and remain competitive. By heeding the lessons from "Steer Clear of Corporate Venture Capital Pitfalls," organizations can navigate the complexities of CVC to unlock its full potential as a strategic innovation tool.


The g-f GK Article

Ilya A. Strebulaev and Amanda Wang, Steer Clear of Corporate Venture Capital PitfallsMIT Sloan Management ReviewMAGAZINE SPRING 2024 ISSUE, March 12, 2024.


Ilya A. Strebulaev (@ilyastrebulaev) is the David S. Lobel Professor of Private Equity and a professor of finance at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. He is the founder and director of the Stanford Venture Capital Initiative and a coauthor of The Venture Mindset: How to Make Smarter Bets and Achieve Extraordinary Growth, to be published by Penguin Random House in May 2024. Amanda Wang is a second-year law student at Columbia Law School.

Classical Summary:

"Steer Clear of Corporate Venture Capital Pitfalls," authored by Ilya A. Strebulaev and Amanda Wang, delves into the intricacies of corporate venture capital (CVC) and the common pitfalls faced by companies venturing into this realm. The article emphasizes the growing importance of innovation in the corporate landscape and the role CVC plays alongside internal R&D and innovation M&As. Despite the significant investments made in CVCs globally, many struggle to achieve their objectives, often faltering due to misalignment with corporate strategy and ineffective organizational structures. Through in-depth interviews and data analysis, the authors highlight key factors contributing to CVC success or failure, including the need for a venture mindset, clear strategic objectives, and effective decision-making processes. The article provides practical insights and recommendations for corporate leaders to navigate the complex landscape of CVC and maximize its potential as a tool for innovation and growth.

Ilya A. Strebulaev

Ilya A. Strebulaev is the David S. Lobel Professor of Private Equity and a Professor of Finance at the Stanford Graduate School of Business¹². He has been a faculty member at Stanford since 2004¹². He is also a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research¹².

Strebulaev is an expert in corporate finance, venture capital, innovation financing, and financial decision-making¹². His recent work has examined the valuation of VC-backed companies, decision making by startup investors, returns to VC investors, and the impact of venture capital investments¹². His research has been widely published in leading academic journals and has been awarded a number of prestigious academic awards¹².

At Stanford, Professor Strebulaev teaches at the MBA, MSx, PhD, and executive education programs¹². He developed a course on Angel and Venture Capital and Decision Making that he has been teaching for the past several years¹². He has been awarded the MBA Distinguished Teaching Award and the Sloan Teaching Excellence Award at Stanford¹².

He is the founder and director of the Stanford GSB Venture Capital Initiative¹². He graduated from the London Business School with a doctorate in Finance¹². He also holds degrees from Lomonosov Moscow State University (BSc Economics) and the New Economic School, Moscow (MA Economics)¹².

Source: Conversation with Bing, 4/1/2024

(1) Ilya A. Strebulaev | Stanford Graduate School of Business.

(2) About — Ilya Strebulaev.

(3) Ilya A. Strebulaev - The David S. Lobel Professor of Private Equity ....

(4) Ilya Strebulaev's Profile | Stanford Profiles.

Amanda Wang 

Amanda Wang is a second-year law student at Columbia Law School¹. She has a rich background in legal and academic fields. Prior to her law studies, she was a Pre-Doctoral Research Fellow and a Research Assistant at the Venture Capital Initiative at Stanford University Graduate School of Business¹. She also served as a Judicial Intern at the U.S. District Court, District of Columbia¹.

At Columbia Law School, she is involved in several activities and societies. She is a Civil Procedure Teaching Assistant, a Research Assistant for the Asian American Portrait Project 2.0, a Journal of Law and the Arts 2L Staffer, and the Professional Development Chair for the CLS California Society¹. She is also a 2022-2023 Davis Polk Leadership Initiative Fellow¹².

Amanda Wang is interested in tech, corporate law, and the intersection of law and the video game industry¹. She is set to become an associate at Fenwick & West¹. Her diverse experiences and interests make her a promising future leader in the legal field.

Source: Conversation with Bing, 4/1/2024

(1) Amanda Wang - Columbia Law School - New York, New York ... - LinkedIn.

(2) Leading by Example: The 2022–2023 Davis Polk ... - Columbia Law School.

(3) Alice Wang | Columbia Law School.

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