The more Advent changes, the more we stay the same.
I’ve been here for over 20 years, focused mainly on technology and services investing, particularly in financial technology. In that time, the firm has grown in every dimension, yet the culture has been remarkably consistent. It’s one of the strongest things about Advent – that collaborative, collegial approach that flows through all aspects of our business, and through the life cycle of each investment.
It’s inspiring and energizing when you see the global team collaborate.
I remember working on a transaction in Brazil in the aftermath of the financial crisis. We were leveraging a lot of experience from our US investments while embracing the relationships and regional knowledge of our team in Brazil. Those opportunities for global co-operation can be really, really exciting. You see the model that our founder, Peter Brooke, envisioned many years ago, and its power is very evident.
One of my roles as a Managing Partner is to create connections.
Whether this happens through the lens of the Investment Committee, or while leading different sector teams, it’s this idea of saying to somebody, “Hey, have you spoken to X or Y? They’re working on an investment in London that overlaps with what you’re looking at – let’s see how it might be similar or different, and learn from it.” Making these connections and creating these touch points is a key aspect of what I should be doing.
We invest in companies, not ideas.
We’re very sector and theme-driven – that’s one of our strengths. But even if you like a theme and think it’s a good place to invest, you have to make sure that the company you’re targeting is right in a micro-sense. It’s all too easy to fall in love with a theme and say, I really want to put money to work in this space. Ultimately, the whole thesis has to check out.