Sept. 29, 2022

UVC: Mark Ghermezian from m]x[v Capital on his operator focus approach in investing, the reasons for starting his newly launched fund, building Braze, leading it from ideation to IPO & signs of a great founder

UVC: Mark Ghermezian from m]x[v Capital on his operator focus approach in investing, the reasons for starting his newly launched fund, building Braze, leading it from ideation to IPO & signs of a great founder

Understanding VC is a deep-dive on how venture capitalists work. In this episode, I speak to Mark Ghermezian, Founder and General Partner at m]x[v Capital. Mark is a serial entrepreneur and successful investor with 20+ years of experience in founding, building, and investing in early-stage SaaS startups. Mark co-founded Braze (BRZE) and led the company as its founding CEO, pioneering a new category from ideation to IPO.
Mark begins the episode by talking about his experience building Braze from scratch, which includes convincing his co-founders to join him, the challenges he faced along the way and the reasons he raised a bridge round to reach product-market fit. Later, he talks about the reasons for starting m]x[v capital fund, the traits of a great founder and a good investor, the do’s and don’ts of early stage investing and also about the ‘operator-focused approach in investing. Finally, towards the end of the episode, he talks about the future of the cloud and the opportunities that lie ahead in the space.


In this episode you will learn:

  • How did Mark convince his co-founders to work on his idea of Appboy (Braze) when they were building a different product at the time?
  • As a founder, what is the hardest thing that Mark had to overcome while building Braze?
  • What was Mark’s experience of raising a bridge round for Braze like? According to Mark, what percentage of startups end up raising a bridge round, and what percentage actually figures this out from the seed round?
  • What does Mark really mean when he says, “never underestimate your competitors but at the same time don’t chase them”?
  • Why did Mark raise the m]x[v capital fund? What are its focus areas in terms of stage, geography and sector?
  • What makes a great investor? What are some do’s and don'ts of early-stage investing? Would a great founder in a not-so-good market succeed?
  • What are the signs of a great founder or a great founding team according to Mark? What can the founding team do to attract great talent?
  • What are some of the benefits of an ‘operator focussed approach’ in investing?
  • What is the future of the cloud and what are some of the areas in the cloud where you find great opportunities to build businesses?

About

Mark Ghermezian is a serial entrepreneur and successful investor with 20+ years of experience in founding, building, and investing in early-stage SaaS startups. Before becoming the Founder and General Partner at m]x[v Capital, Mark co-founded Braze (BRZE) and led the company as its founding CEO, pioneering a new category from ideation to IPO (Braze IPO’d in November 2021). As an angel investor, Mark was an early investor in companies such as Nutanix, Lattice, Thoughtspot, Rubrik, and Riskified, along with 50 other investments, primarily focused on SaaS, experiencing several IPOs, unicorns, and successful exits. At m]x[v Capital, Mark is proud to be a mentor to his founders and entrepreneurs, offering his experience and expertise to help their companies find the same success.

Mark Ghermezian Profile Photo

Mark Ghermezian

Founder and General Partner at m]x[v Capital

Mark Ghermezian is a serial entrepreneur and successful investor with 20+ years of experience in founding, building, and investing in early-stage SaaS startups. Before becoming the Founder and General Partner at m]x[v Capital, Mark co-founded Braze (BRZE) and led the company as its founding CEO, pioneering a new category from ideation to IPO (Braze IPO’d in November 2021). As an angel investor, Mark was an early investor in companies such as Nutanix, Lattice, Thoughtspot, Rubrik, and Riskified, along with 50 other investments, largely focused on SaaS. Experiencing several IPOs, unicorns, and successful exits. At m]x[v Capital, Mark is proud to be a mentor to his founders and entrepreneurs, offering his experience and expertise to help their companies find the same success.