Top 50 Rising Stars 2022 (in alphabetical order by CVC unit): Ainhoa Maiz, senior associate, M12

Ainhoa Maiz is a senior associate at M12, the corporate venturing arm of software provider Microsoft. In her role, Maiz collaborates with partners across the fund to source investment opportunities, orchestrate due diligence and accelerate deal execution.

She has contributed to 29 deals accounting for $155m of deployed capital, playing a leading role in due diligence and execution for 14 deals accounting for around $90m.

Describing her greatest success with the unit, Maiz said: “My proudest accomplishment at M12 stems from my governance work and the countless hours I spent working alongside portfolio company founders to navigate a business uncertainty to a successful outcome.

“I also performed benchmark analysis and advocated for the female founders at the [board of directors] to offer a milestone-based top up that resulted in equity parity with their male counterparts. There is something about being in the trenches together that makes victory that much sweeter.”

Talking about her main professional ambition for the future, Maiz said: “My long-term goal is to be an impact investor who leverages the awesome power of capital to accelerate change and drive double bottom-line impact.

“Investing for social and environmental impact is complex and involves nuanced investment rigor, so only the most effective investors do so sustainably. I look forward to honing this unique skillset and using compassionate capitalism to demonstrate that profits and positive impact can be two sides of the same coin.”

Prior to joining M12, Maiz was an MBA VC associate at venture capital firm YL Ventures and at the George Shultz Innovation Fund affiliated with University of Chicago.