Mario Augusto Maia: Cogent Venture Partners

Setting up a corporate venture capital unit comes with a lot of hurdles. You have to deal with a wide range of stakeholders, and you have to find a place to fit within the wider corporate structure, much of which is not necessarily well-versed in the value that a venturing unit can bring. You also have to navigate different – and at times, competing – motivations across various business units and the C-suite, all the while having to justify your existence and provide results.

Mario Augusto Maia, who now managing partner at advisory firm Cogent Venture Partners, talks about his experience transitioning from financial asset management to heading up a CVC unit in the bio-space and how the challenges therein are commonly found across the industry. We talk about the challenges of managing a legacy portfolio when setting up a unit – especially when you may need to regain the trust of those startups – as well as the need to educate parent companies about the value of CVC, how to navigate an environment where you may have to reposition the unit during restructures, and much more.

Mario brings a unique perspective to how to form a CVC from the ground and leaves you with much food for thought.

“Funky Chunk” Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

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