All Opportunities

Director External Venturing NA - NOVA Team - Job Opening ID: 563975

The External Venturing Team is a worldwide strategic activity, overseen by a Board of the senior executives of Saint-Gobain, executed by a team based in United States, Europe and Asia. Its mission is to contribute to Innovation by identifying start-ups of interest for the Saint-Gobain activities and to catalyse and support the relations between such start-ups and the corresponding SG entity to try to reach mutually profitable deals/partnerships. Therefore, its mission concerns all of Saint-Gobain’s businesses. Partnerships range from joint development programs, manufacturing or distribution agreements, licensing of technologies, joint ventures, direct minority equity investments, or full acquisitions. Each start-up should be considered as a specific project and the push and strategy to initiate a partnership made on a case by case analysis.

 

Director External Venturing, NA will lead a team of 3-4 people which include Venture Managers, Analysts, and support staff focusing on the NA ecosystem. The position will also support development of venture strategies at the Saint-Gobain group level to identify areas of strategic focus and define investment/development strategies within these areas. The position is located in Northboro, Massachusetts. The ideal candidate has strong business acumen, ability to quickly understand technological trends, and has interest and experience in Business Development and Innovation. The position will require ~40% travel to visit startups and stay engaged with the ecosystems in NA as well as at global locations.


CORE RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Serve as a catalyst for external innovation in Saint-Gobain by bringing in the outside world in.
  • Identify start-up and screen start-up companies located across the globe in alignment with Saint-Gobain business strategies. Work with businesses to evaluate and engage start-up companies.
  • Interact with Business heads to enhance and improve the efficiency of the NOVA team in helping Saint-Gobain connect with, and take benefit from, the start-up ecosystem.
  • Work with external partners to successfully conduct startup competitions and acceleration programs in areas of strategic interest.
  • Communicate regularly on developments with startups and diffuse learnings through the group. This will include the Global Director, NOVA and the Saint-Gobain NOVA Board.
  • Negotiate deals, including investments, with startups and work with business executives and legal to define win-win agreements.
  • Build and grow Saint-Gobain’s network in the external innovation ecosystem, and represent Saint-Gobain at industry, investor and partner conferences.
  • Propose and manage investments in venture capital funds and incubators focused on start-ups in areas aligned with Saint-Gobain’s strategic interests while maximizing the value.
  • Engage with the portfolio of startups where the group has investments to support their development, enable synergies with Saint-Gobain businesses, and help maximize value. This activity can include representation through board/observer seats.
  • Connect external initiatives and programs to the broader Saint-Gobain ecosystem, bringing projects, partnerships and technology, which facilitate long-term sustainable growth, to the attention of senior leaders.
  • Maintain a lean and responsive structure that stays close to internal business strategies as well as external developments in the startup ecosystem.
  • Proactive communication to internal and external constituencies including the use of multi and social media platforms (press releases, newsletters, articles, video clips, micro-sites, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).
  • Support the Global Director, NOVA in development of Strategic Target Areas, Venturing strategies for global and regional businesses, and outreach to startups in key ecosystems.

COMPETENCIES REQUIRED:

  • Customer-focus – Demonstrated passion towards customer-centricity, both internal and external. The ability to identify solutions to articulated and unarticulated needs and ensure clients’ needs are prioritized and met.
  • Results focused – Proven results-focus through leading projects and ventures from inception to completion. Ability to tactfully manage through roadblocks and competing priorities. Proven record of accomplishment in a complex, global organization.
  • Initiative, risk taking and innovation – Self-starter with a proven willingness to take and learn from risks, while also demonstrating the ability to find nuanced and innovative solutions to complex challenges.
  • Vision and strategy - Demonstrated leadership in cross-functional settings and ability to influence others without authority.
  • Listening and communication - Written and oral communication skills across a broad range of levels and functions, including formal presentations of results.
  • Teamwork and network - Respectful communication and ability to collaborate in a global team environment required.

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Candidate should have 7 years post BS/MS/PhD or MBA experience with at least 5-7 years’ experience working in a corporate or start-up environment that involved leading cross-functional teams, presenting to senior leadership, and engaging external parties.
  • Ideal candidate will have direct experience working with startup companies and R&D teams on new business opportunities, product experiences, and design innovation concepts.
  • Ideal candidate will bring a Global perspective to the role with a strong understanding of the Construction, Mobility, Energy and Sustainability landscape
  • Minimum of 2-3 years’ experience in a position with rigorous business, strategy, and/or financial training (relevant experience includes strategy consulting, venture capital, corporate or strategic business development).
  • Proven experience in negotiating acquisitions and complex B2B deals is desired.
  • Ability to conduct due diligence and lead deal teams is required.
  • Proven track record of leading successful, geographically diverse teams.