Featured Investors
April 2, 2024

Featured Investors | April 2024 - Alexandra Burbey of G Squared and Matt Savage of Renegade Partners

Isaac Snitkoff
EVCA Fellow

Alexandra Burbey, Vice President at G Squared

Alexandra Burbey is a Vice President at G Squared, a growth stage venture fund focused on investing in both primaries and secondaries across four main megatrends: Consumer Internet, SaaS, FinTech, and Mobility 2.0. Alexandra joined G Squared shortly after the closing of the firm’s 5th Fund, a vehicle of $1.4B in late 2020. At G Squared, Alexandra primarily focuses on application software, with an emphasis in Consumer and Vertical Software. Highlights in her portfolio include Bombas, goop, Knowde, Lucid Software, PandaDoc, Sunbit, and Maisonette. Prior to G Squared, Alexandra spent several years in M&A at DBO Partners. Alexandra began her career, and first gained an interest in the venture capital industry, from the other side of the table as the founder and CEO of Acuity for Moms, an HR and EdTech platform designed to help moms re-enter the workforce after taking time off to raise children. In her free time, she enjoys exploring San Francisco’s many restaurants and cafes, heading up to Tahoe to ski, or taking a quick trip to the beach to kayak or surf.

EVCA: Describe a defining moment in your career and how it shaped where you are today.

Alexandra: If I were to pinpoint a defining moment in my career, it would be the transition from being an investor to taking on a temporary interim role as a Chief Strategy Officer for one of our portfolio companies during a defining period in that company’s history. After serving as a Board Observer to the company for about two years years, I was asked by the board to join the company full time for several months to help it through a transition period. As an investor, most of your influence is shaped through guidance and strategic advisory at the board level as either a Director or Observer. It can be especially challenging as a pre-partner investor where your impact on portfolio companies is often more detached and high level. Stepping into an executive role with one of our companies was the breath of fresh air I needed. I was immersed in the day-to-day operations, directly driving strategy and execution and helping the company make a pivotal shift towards profitability and sustainable growth. I also helped steward the company through a fundraise, extending the company’s runway by over a year. It was a transition that allowed me to apply my insights and expertise more holistically and provided me with an even deeper understanding of the operational challenges and opportunities that growth stage companies face, particularly in e-commerce and in today’s market. I’m grateful for the opportunity because it not only made me a better investor with increased operational experience, but also confirmed my passion for working with companies in a more engaged and hands-on capacity.

EVCA: What is an emerging technology trend that will have a significant impact on the world in the next decade?

Alexandra: It's undeniable that AI has, and will continue to, influence virtually every aspect of the way we live and work, but where I see the most significant impending impact for AI productivity gains is in antiquated industries with little to no digitization. At G Squared, we’ve shaped our thesis around this by targeting some of the world’s largest sectors that have seen the most lag in technological progress over the past few decades – examples include Flexport and Transfix in the logistics space, and Knowde in the chemical industry. As the old guard of long-time industry veterans retire from these industries and a new generation of technology-savvy leaders emerges, the pathway to digital transformation is set to expand significantly. Within AI specifically, we believe that industries poised for the most considerable change are those where foundational models can be fine-tuned with proprietary company or industry data. Our goal is to find potential portfolio companies that are meeting the demands of these types of industries as they evolve.

Matt Savage, Investment Associate at Renegade Partners

Matt Savage is an investor at Renegade Partners, an early-stage venture firm focused on Series A & B investments. Prior to Renegade Partners, Matt was a strategy consultant at Bain & Company where he worked primarily with growth equity and private equity firms on commercial due diligence across sectors. He has a degree in Economics and Finance from Washington University in St. Louis. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, he enjoys trying new restaurants, traveling to new cities, runs by the Bay, and a good book.

EVCA: Describe a defining moment in your career and how it shaped where you are today.

Matt: There are many but the one I’d highlight is joining Renegade Partners a little over two years ago. I had previously been working with early-stage investors at Bain and had a hypothesis that I wanted to be closer to the entrepreneur. In meetings with founders on my first day, I felt a rush of energy that I hadn’t experienced in my career until that point. It’s one thing to intellectually understand a business through outside-in diligence but something else altogether to dig into the details with the founder.

Working at a Fund I has also come with firm-building opportunities that I'd never had before in my career. There's a very institutionalized way of working at a firm like Bain that simply doesn't exist when you're building something from the ground up. It's been a highlight of the last two years to work with our team on building and evolving our own ways of working - taking the elements we liked from our previous roles and leaving behind the ones we didn't.

EVCA: What is an emerging technology trend that will have a significant impact on the world in the next decade?

Matt: It’s hard to give an answer to this question that doesn’t account for AI in some capacity. Today, I’m most excited about new opportunities in vertical software enabled by AI.

New business models will take shape that turn previously TAM-constrained markets into exciting opportunities for venture-backed businesses. This, coupled with macroeconomic tailwinds around constrained and/or aging labor pools, means that buyers increasingly need the efficiencies that software can provide. Today, the lowest-hanging fruit lies in industries with document-heavy workflows, like the legal industry. Tomorrow, it will be in more physical world industries, like the supply chain or construction, that have more complex multi-modal workflows. No industry will be exempt from this shift.