About

Authenticity, conviction & partnerships.

Counterpart Ventures is a life cycle venture capital firm, focused on investing in authentic relationships and built on implicit trust with our founders.

We embrace an innovative and flexible funding model which creatively aligns with the needs of our portfolio companies.  We help build companies by providing meaningful access to real customers and strategic partnerships.

We invest in B2B SaaS, mobility and marketplace technologies which target nontrivial problems or fill missing gaps in large markets. We don’t require social proof by blindly following other investors, when we have conviction we are all in.

Today’s VC landscape is increasingly divided by micro and mega funds. Counterpart Ventures is uniquely positioned to price and lead rounds where others cannot or simply will not.

Our Name

Counterpart: one of two, corresponding to another, part of something bigger.

We aspire to be the “first call of founders”, obsessive in working alongside them and maniacal when the chips are down. The two words within our name reflect our code and responsibility:

Counter: meaning contrarian in nature and choosing to create our own style.

Part: knowing that we are joined at the hip with our partners.

Our thoughtful logo is indicative of the event in which two parts come together, joined by a + symbol to emphasize positivity and progression.

Telling Stories

We believe in the importance of telling stories with everything we do.

We enjoy telling stories just as much as we do creating them. The actions we take, which represent us as a whole and not an individual, will determine how we are remembered in years to come. Therefore, as a group all members of the team play an integral role in creating memorable stories.

It is the founders we work with, those who share our values, who begin the stories. We only help them along their way. When we sit down with a founder we introduce Counterpart and what our vision is, then ask to hear the founder’s story. In doing so, we search for what we call the weird factor, what makes you so unique and perhaps why others don’t believe in you. We like founders with a little bit of weird and believe it is the foundation for a great story.

Values

Conviction

Just win baby. We exert passion and demand excellence in everything we do. We deliver with unwavering conviction.

Passion

Show grit and determination. When the front door is closed, go in through the window.

Humility

We aren't always right and believe it is good practice to acknowledge when we're not. We believe in teamwork above all else and don't take ourselves too seriously.

Perseverance

There is no substitute for hard work or elevator to the top. Everyone must walk across the coals at some point in their life.

Transparency

We don’t sit on the fence. We believe that brutal, honest feedback is the best kind of feedback.

Empathy

VC is a human business. Earn respect and build trust with your peers.

Authenticity

The same people you will meet 12 months from now. Authenticity worked for George Costanza so it can work for us too.

About

Team

Trust the process.

We believe in teamwork and that everyone has a role to play. Intellect is nothing without hard work, a little bit of luck and executing on fortunate timing. We model ourselves on those who perservere, challenge the status quo and are not afraid to admit when they are wrong.

Patrick Eggen

Founding General Partner

Previously Patrick was the Managing Director of Qualcomm Ventures North America where he led all U.S. investments ($500M AUM) and scaled the U.S. fund to 80+ investments across all stages and sectors. He also elevated the group to think with the mindset of a financial VC based on pure financial returns, domain expertise and activist investor role (leading rounds and taking board seats). He drove key thought leadership around all current core investment themes ranging from hardware, software, adjacent verticals and frontier tech. Based on last 13 years of direct venture investment experience, personally involved in 100+ transactions and 30+ exits.

Patrick opened and led Qualcomm Ventures’ SF/Bay Area practice. Additionally he founded Qualcomm’s Global Early Stage Fund, focused on Seed and Series A opportunities. This Early Stage Fund was the first of its kind in any Corporate Venture Capital organization. Under his leadership, he scaled the Fund to 70+ investments, which include big wins such as Cruise Automation (acquired by GM), 99 (acquired by Didi) and Zoom (IPO:ZM).

Patrick led the Zoom investment which was the largest absolute return in QCV history. He actively sourced or served as a Board Member/Observer for QCV investments in Clarifai, Cloudflare, Matterport, Noom, OpenSignal, Particle, Plivo, Sense360, Sparta Science, and Swift Nav. Additionally he worked very closely and co-sponsored Ring (acquired by AMZN) and Waze (acquired by GOOG). Prior investments (exits) include Aicent, Avaak (acquired by NTGR), Divide (acquired by GOOG), Clicker (acquired by CBS), Magisto (acquired by IAC), Starmaker, Tempo.AI (acquired by CRM), ThinkNear (acquired by TNAV) and Viewdle (acquired by GOOG).

Prior to joining Qualcomm Ventures, Patrick worked for Citigroup Investment Banking unit in their Chicago, London and Hong Kong offices. He was a member of their Global Telecommunications team, involved in both M&A advisory roles and capital-raising transactions. Patrick has an M.B.A. from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management and a B.A. from Northwestern University.

Joe Saijo

Founding General Partner

Joe’s background is in IT where he started his career as a software engineer in Japan and then worked with Hitachi.

From 2007-2011 Joe was the Manager of Business Development at Hitachi and from 2014-2017 he served as the President and Managing Partner at Recruit Strategic Partners, the CVC vehicle of Recruit Holdings, Japan’s largest HR/media company.

Joe was responsible for the investment and portfolio strategy of Recruit Strategic Partners, managing over 100 portfolio companies worldwide (40 of which were based in the US).

Joe shifted the organization’s geographic focus towards the US market, and successfully invested in 30 startups over a 3.5 year period in San Francisco. Whilst at Recruit Strategic Partners, his most notable investments include 99designs, Fitmob(acquired by ClassPass), Savioke, Alignable, DocuSign, Udacity, ShipBob and Palo Alto Networks(NYSE: PANW).

Joe was responsible for transforming Recruit’s investment arm to a disciplined and agile CVC unit with a fast decision-making process, thesis and financially driven strategy. Joe also helped Recruit’s portfolio companies develop their businesses in Japan through his network.

Joe’s expertise is in B2B SaaS and marketplace technologies.

Mikey Kailis

Operations & Marketing

Mikey grew up in Perth, Western Australia where he attended the University of Notre Dame (BA) & University of Western Australia (MCom). His background is in business management, working with and advising startups most recently in the mining and resources industry. From 2013 to 2015 he managed an Asia Pacific wide competition aimed at identifying and funding promising emerging tech startups by providing access to capital and Silicon Valley investors.  

From 2015 to 2018 he worked with multinational mining, oil and gas and resources companies to address industry-wide challenges as the sector began to innovate. Mikey identified promising startups and entrepreneurs building new technologies and processes to solve the challenges facing this sector. He worked with innovation and digital transformation teams and holds a keen interest in this bringing further automation into mining and industrial industries.

Mikey enjoys advising entrepreneurs and startups solving real-world problems, such as responsible mineral tracking startup Minespider, of which he is an Advisor. He takes an active role in growing early stage companies by getting hands on with founders, brokering introductions to customers and scaling quickly.

Mikey moved from Perth to San Francisco in August 2018 and now helps manage Counterpart’s portfolio companies, general operations, CVC network and marketing. He manages Counterpart’s Counter Club of corporate venture capitalists and organizes the annual Counter conference. He also works closely with the portfolio, helping to open up opportunities in new verticals. His expertise is in business development, sales and marketing and general operations.

Team

Approach

What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

Our contrarian nature is summed up in our belief that venture capital is ripe for new and creative funding models.

We aim to inject the optimal amount of capital, conscious of founder dilution yet arming founders with the right dry powder to scale their business quickly to the next level. We ignore status quo and aim to strike the right balance between investor and founder. Our funding model is built on the principal that we are aligned on Day 1.

We source for exciting investment opportunities via our trusted networks built over decades of experience.

We look for maniacal founders, relentless on scaling their companies.

As a trusted and engaged partner, the most valuable service we offer to our founders is access to strategic customers via our corporate network. Here we are uniquely differentiated from other traditional venture investors.

Funding Model

We assert that in order to be differentiated from other funds and exist for the long run we must provide a unique method of deploying capital to founders.

Our Funding Model intends to take the following shape:

1. VC is evolving. We see opportunity in the market given the dearth of mid-market funds.

2. We play in all 4 quarters. We embrace a stage-agnostic model which can flex across the life cycle of a company, offering a wide range of investing sizes across any and all stages, leading and pricing deals.

3. We do things differently. We do not subscribe to the traditional VC playbook. We aim to inject the optimal capital infusion which is considerate of founder dilution, appropriate capital needs and healthy amount to hit your milestones.

4. We aren’t afraid to make the first move. When we have conviction we are all in. We are not reactionary investors. We are not afraid to price and lead deals and more importantly we step up first.

We typically invest at a $2-6m range with an emphasis on speed, conviction and partnership. We believe it is within this range where we can be effective as a mid-market fund and unique to the founders we work with.

Promise to Founders

We want to make a promise to founders, both those we invest in and those we meet:

  • We will not check our phones during our meetings. Your time is valuable and we will respect that.
  • We will provide direct and explicit feedback. We are not always right and happy to admit when we are wrong.
  • We will get back to you in an expeditious manner. This means “yes” or “no”, we don’t like maybes. Maybes are meh. When we do say “no” we will tell you why and suggest other options for you to pursue.

Furthermore, we promise to work tirelessly with our founders to deliver what we set out to when we initially invest.

Counter Club

The Counter Club is a network of corporate venture capitalists brought together by their common challenges and opportunities to collaborate in a private and confidential forum.

Our GPs bring decades of experience to this field and open up our playbook to both nascent and mature CVC firms. Counterpart Ventures serves as a trusted external advisor to corporate investors.

To corporates we provide knowledge and expertise acquired over decades of experience. To founders we provide access to strategic partnerships and advice from experts in multiple verticals.

The Counter Club collaborates and shares ideas throughout the year. This culminates with our annual Counter conference which is held in San Francisco and is by invitation only.  We limit attendance to this event so that we provide an open and intimate forum for attendees.

Our corporate network includes the below select firms and funds:

301 Inc. | 3M Ventures, | 7-Ventures | ABB Technology Ventures | Adidas | Airbus Ventures | Alliance Ventures | Amazon Alexa Fund | Applied Ventures | BASF Venture Capital | Bayer Growth Ventures | BMW iVentures | BP Ventures | Centrica Ventures | Chevron Technology Ventures | Citi Ventures | Comcast Ventures | Danone Manifesto Ventures | Decibel | Deutsche Bahn Digital Ventures | GV | HearstLab | Hella Ventures | Hyundai CRADLE | In-Q-Tel | Intact Ventures | Intel Capital | iRobot Ventures | JetBlue Ventures | Johnson Controls Ventures | Kimberly Clark | LINE Corp | Lowe’s Ventures | M12 | Macy’s | McKesson Ventures | Mondalez Ventures | Munich Re Ventures | National Grid Partners | Nationwide Ventures | Next47 | Nike | Orange Digital Ventures | PepsiCo Ventures Group | Prologis Ventures | Rich Products Corporate Venture Fund | Salesforce Ventures | Samsung Venture Investment | Samsung Catalyst Fund | SE Ventures | Shell Ventures | Singtel Innov8 Ventures | SK Telecom | Tishman Speyer | Toyota AI Ventures | Tyson Ventures | Verizon Ventures | Visa Ventures | Volvo Cars Tech Fund | Watsco Ventures | Wells Fargo

If you are a CVC investor and interested in joining the Counter Club please reach out: contactus@counterpart.vc

Approach

Talk

Hear from us or get in touch.

The Blog

Coming out of our shell…
29 August 2019

“Reflecting on the Zoom investment:
Getting it Right & Wrong”
by Patrick Eggen
26 April 2019

Read more on our Medium page.

Get in touch

Unlike Kramer and Newman, we won’t be reversing our peephole anytime soon but you can get in touch with us here:

contactus@counterpart.vc

500 3rd Street, Suite 240
San Francisco,
CA, 94017
USA

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