Team photo on Zoom

Blackbird is hiring Three Investment Associates

Date Published:
August 23, 2021

We're hiring three Associates, who will help to uncover wild heart Australian and Kiwi founders right at the very beginning.

>> This role has now closed <<

About The Role

This is an investor track role within our investment team.

We have been building our investment team at Blackbird over the last year, and are ready to sow the seeds for future generations of investment talent.

Much like our best founders, we believe that the best investors are voracious learners with the courage to venture into the unknown, and an unrelenting drive to make mistakes for their own brand of success. This role is an offer from Blackbird to mentor you on this journey.

We are looking for someone with a passion for uncovering the technologies and founders that will define our future. Someone with unbounded curiosity and a mindset of enlightened hospitality for the founders that they serve, who is excited to become a custodian of the Blackbird Mission, Values and Operating Principles.

You will report to either of our Principals, Michael Tolo and Tom Humphrey, or Partner, Sam Wong.

Here is a brief overview of some examples of work you will do:

  • Generating dealflow - You will become an active contributor within the local startup ecosystem, a face that founders expect to see in the audience at meet-ups, pitch competitions and conferences. You will launch and run community events, chasing down any opportunity to meet a new founder and leaving no stone unturned in pursuit of the next generational Australian or Kiwi startup.
  • Earning the trust of founders - You will earn the trust of founders within our community through the diligence and empathy that you show toward them. You will become known as someone who treats founders with the highest level of integrity and care — a trusted partner that founders are comfortable to share their best and worst news with.
  • Supporting investment decisions - You will work closely with Partners and Principals to help Blackbird make better investment decisions, analysing the operational metrics for new companies that we meet to capture evidence of true greatness at the earliest stages.
  • Wrestling with the unknown - You will embrace your curiosity and explore new areas of focus for investment at Blackbird, presenting your unique vision for the future in high definition and vivid colour. You will test the boundaries of our comfort and knowledge, leading the investment team toward new Rivers of Inquiry. The best example of a River of Inquiry at Blackbird is Sam’s post, Welcome to the Third Agricultural Revolution — this kickstarted a journey that led to our investments in Vow, Fable Food Co and Sunfed Meats.
  • Inside Blackbird's Sydney office.

    What we are looking for

    Your background is less important than the key skills and attributes, which include:

  • Humility: Blackbird is a startup — no task is too small for us and no ambition is too big. We all take out the garbage. You will be scrappy, move quickly and never hesitate to roll up your sleeves.
  • Expressed ambition: Nobody is too "new" or "junior" at Blackbird to live up to their ambition — we care about the quality of thought, not where it comes from. We value diversity of thought, and believe that we are stronger because we each think differently. We will create a safe place for you to sing your own song and challenge the norm — in return, you will express opinions without prompt, and are expected to challenge the thinking of others across all areas of our business.
  • Clarity of thought: You can articulate what you think makes companies valuable. You have strong opinions on what are the greatest businesses, technologies and markets of tomorrow. You have an innate ability to communicate complex topics in a clear, simple, and concise way — either through sharp prose or powerful visuals. Your opinions are persuasive.
  • Hospitality mindset: We believe in the philosophy of "enlightened hospitality" and it lies at the heart of everything that we do at Blackbird. We serve our founders, not the other way around. We are about people, not companies. You will be generous with your time to create delightful experiences for founders, never losing sight of the people behind the numbers.
  • We are looking for someone who is as obsessed as we are about building an iconic investment firm. Someone with a high ownership mentality, a hunger for finding the truth, and a desire to help founders bring their better version of the future into the present.
  • You do not need to have worked at a venture capital firm or startup — and you do not need to have any investing experience at all! We love it when people have bootstrapped themselves into a skill as much as gaining the skill from working at an established organisation.
  • You do need to have a passion for working with the founders of technology startups, and a deep commitment to building the skills and attributes required to be a generational investor at Blackbird.
  • 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.

    Our July 2021 Culture Amp engagement score was 96.

    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 generous parental leave — 16 weeks for primary carer and 6 weeks for a secondary carer, subject to a 12 month minimum tenure. This includes a continuation of super payments while on unpaid parental leave and a supportive return-to-work policy.
    • Learning & Development: 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.
    • Sharing in Blackbird’s success: We think it is important to share successes with the whole team. All Blackbird employees receive carry in our funds and are the equivalent of owners in the management company.

    Blackbird is a Pledge 1% member — we pledge 1% of our time, equity and profits to help not-for-profit causes in our community. The Blackbird Foundation has been set up explicitly to partner with organisations that believe in the potential of young people, and the importance of creativity.

    About Blackbird

    Blackbird is a venture capital fund based in Australia and New Zealand. We invest in every type of technology from software to space, unified by the biggest of ambitions. We invest in wild hearts with the wildest of ideas, right at the beginning. We invest in wild hearts with the wildest of ideas, right at the beginning. As a result, we have a unique working culture, captured in our Mission & Values and our Operating Principles.

    We have more than a billion dollars under management and a portfolio of over 70 companies including some of the most successful Australian and Kiwi startups such as Canva, Zoox, SafetyCulture, Ask Nicely, Halter and Partly.

    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 read about our mission and values, our master plan, and what we look for in founders.

    Learn more about this role in an AMA with Blackbird Principals, Michael Tolo and Tom Humphrey, on 8 September 2021. Register here.

    Good Luck!