The rest of the 50 (in alphabetical order): Teddy Himler, vice-president, SoftBank Group International

Teddy Himler is a US-based vice-president at SoftBank Group International, a subsidiary of Japan-headquartered internet and telecommunications group SoftBank, where he sources, evaluates and executes new investments and acquisition opportunities.

Himler has been in corporate venture capital (CVC) since he joined SoftBank Capital, a now-defunct CVC arm of the group, in 2013. He said: “I was an associate at a SoftBank Capital growth equity fund, then a vice-president at SoftBank China & India, where I led investing for a Southeast Asia-focused SoftBank and [e-commerce group] Alibaba-backed fund from Jakarta, Indonesia.”

From 2016 to 2018, Himler had been a principal at Comcast Ventures, mass media group Comcast’s strategic investment subsidiary, where he invested in growth-stage consumer companies including online wedding registry platform Zola, entertainment network Cheddar, pet care services platform PetCoach and digital locksmith KeyMe.

From his investments at Comcast Ventures, two have achieved exits – Cheddar was sold to broadband communications and video services provider Altice USA for $200m in May 2019, and PetCoach was acquired by pet product retailer Petco for an undisclosed amount in April 2017.

Himler said: “I believe in investing with an edge, whether that be a unique insight or an ability to broker a proprietary commercial partnership. Corporate venture investors have an edge in sourcing, diligence and execution relative to traditional VCs.

“The practice of CVC requires all the rigour of traditional venture capital paired with the strategy and tactics of an operating business. I saw early at SoftBank Capital how the insights from the operating businesses can develop win-win-win partnership of entrepreneur-investor-corporation.”

Regarding his earlier vice-president role at SoftBank from 2013 to 2016, Himler said: “In the lead-up to the Alibaba IPO (initial public offering) [in September 2014], I helped structure on a new fund dedicated to Southeast Asia.

“Developing the fund, the brand, the thesis for investing was a rigorous but deeply rewarding exercise. This dedicated fund vehicle capitalised on the growing internet opportunity in Southeast Asia and led to many of the great investments that are currently held by the Vision Fund, such as [e-commerce platform] Tokopedia and [on-demand ride platform] Grab.”

Before his CVC career, Himler worked at investment bank Goldman Sachs in its technology, media, telecom group in San Francisco. He is a Harvard University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in government and economics.

Edison Fu

Edison Fu is a reporter and Asia liaison at Global Corporate Venturing.