Principal - Aotearoa, Investments


Location Auckland
Salary $175k + Kiwisaver + Carry
Team Investments
  • Closing: 11:59pm, 4th Mar 2023 AEDT

Job Description

Watch our recorded 'ask me anything' session here.

About the role

Blackbird is hiring a Principal to invest in Aotearoa’s most ambitious founders, right at the very beginning.

This is an opportunity to play a leading role in building an iconic institution in New Zealand’s tech ecosystem, and earn a front-row seat to the best business stories of our generation.

Your job will be to invest - alongside Sam, James and Phoebe - our $80 million New Zealand fund. You’ll also work closely with the rest of our 14-strong investment team based in Sydney and Melbourne.

As a founding member of our Aotearoa team, you’ll help us go from unproven upstarts to an iconic institution in New Zealand’s tech ecosystem.

About you:

You’re someone who has a profound empathy for the journey of a founder, a mindset of enlightened hospitality, and a hunger to uncover the next great Kiwi talent, wherever they are and whatever their background.

You have a high ownership mentality, deep comfort with autonomy and ambiguity, confidence in your thought process and gut instincts, willingness to adapt it to new information, a hunger for finding the truth, and a desire to help founders bring their better version of the future into the present. 

You’re passionate about growing, strengthening and diversifying Aotearoa’s tech ecosystem.

What you’ll do:

  • Representing Blackbird to the World — You will become known to founders as someone they can trust, someone who treats founders with the highest level of integrity and care, and someone who people regularly send new, and interesting companies to meet. You will grow deep and broad networks across Aotearoa’s technology sector.

  • Generating Dealflow — You will create your own initiatives to magnetically attract the best founders to you. At Blackbird, this has historically been things like Sunrise (our annual, in-person, love letter to founders), Giants mentoring and our Wild Hearts podcast.

  • Making Investments — You will be responsible for leading investments, including due diligence, running the process to get Investment Committee approval, negotiating the term-sheet and convincing founders to choose us as investors, getting agreement from all parties on the longform legal docs, and finally wiring the money. 

  • Supporting Founders — As a board member, observer, shareholder, or advisor, you will provide exceptional support to the companies you interact with.

  • Supporting the Investment Team — Reporting into Blackbird’s General Partners, you will form an integral part of our 14-person strong investments team across Australia and New Zealand, including mentoring and managing junior investors. 

  • Doubling Down — For our best portfolio companies, you will help identify which we should continue investing in, and support follow-on investments into the companies we back.

  • Making Us Better — You will constantly question, and seek to improve our investment decision making processes, strengthen our culture, and lift up your colleagues in every way you can.

The skills we’re looking for:

Your background is less important than your key skills, which might include:

  • Either having been a founder, or worked closely with them

  • Leading projects you are passionate about, and building community around them

  • Advising and helping founders who go on to be successful

  • Articulating what you think makes products great and companies valuable

  • Having strong opinions on what are the greatest businesses and markets of tomorrow

  • Evaluating the psychological traits that lead founders to create the greatest companies ever built

  • Measuring the culture of an organisation and what environments lead the best people in the world to join and do their best work

  • Making investments into startups — both new and follow-on

  • Managing the investment process — from negotiation, to execution

You do not need to have worked previously at a venture capital firm, but you do need to have a passion for, and experience with, investing into startups. We love it when people have bootstrapped themselves into a skill as much as gaining the skill from working at an established organisation.

This role is full-time, based in our beautiful new office on K Road in Central Auckland, with the flexibility to work from home.

Working at Blackbird

We believe that building a diverse and inclusive team is critical to Blackbird’s success. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, or marital, veteran, or disability status. We use Applied to ensure every applicant gets an equal chance of success.

We offer:

  • Flexible working: Whether it’s working from home or leaving early to pick up the kids from daycare or school.

  • Generous parental leave: We know family comes first, and we are proud to offer 20 weeks of parental leave for all parents, with no minimum tenure. In addition, we offer IVF, adoption and surrogacy leave. We also continue to pay Kiwisaver and vest carried interest for up to 12 months of parental leave, and offer a supportive return-to-work policy to help with the ramp back.

  • Wellbeing: We think in decades not days. To support our Blackbirds over the long haul we offer a range of holistic wellbeing benefits including a monthly healthy living allowance, 24/7 access to wellbeing support, a home office allowance, personal kit-kat days, and more!

  • Learning & Development budget: Our team is hungry to continuously learn and you’ll receive a budget to spend on whatever you’d like to learn - from coding courses to meditation.

  • Unplugged weekends: We work hard without letting work get in the way of life. We’ve implemented no Slack or emails on weekends, so you can switch off.

  • Connection: While being big fans of a fully distributed workforce, we value our vibe and time to connect online and IRL through team and company offsites, monthly social activities, weekly lunches and our many social clubs (#fun-manis, #fun-fantasybookclub, #bb-craft just to name a few!).

  • A share of Blackbird’s success: We think it is important to share successes with the whole team. All Blackbird employees receive carry in funds raised and ownership in management companies formed while they are at the firm.

Blackbird is a Pledge 1% member —  we pledge 1% of our time, equity and profits to help not-for-profit causes in our community. Through Pledge 1%, we established the Blackbird Foundation to supercharge the creative capabilities of young people.

About Blackbird

Blackbird is an Australasian venture capital firm whose mission is to invest in wild hearts, with the wildest ideas, right at the beginning. We back generational ambition with generational ownership by raising funds and investing in the best startup companies all the way through their journey from idea to beyond IPO.

Our portfolio is worth over $7B and includes more than 100 companies across Australia and New Zealand, from Canva and CultureAmp to rising stars like Halter, Partly, Gilmour Space, Eucalyptus, Harrison AI and Dovetail.

We’ve written a lot about what we love at Blackbird, so check out our blog if you want some more information about us. In particular, you should watch our Auckland-based partner Sam Wong pitch Blackbird VC to founders, read about our mission and values, Blackbird’s Operating Principles (BOPs) and what we look for in founders.

Removing bias from the hiring process

Applications closed Sat 4th Mar 2023


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You won't need a CV to apply to this job

Applications closed Sat 4th Mar 2023