The Top 10: #6 Spencer Chavez, principal, Salesforce Ventures

Spencer Chavez is a principal at Salesforce Ventures, US-based management software provider Salesforce’s corporate venture capital (CVC) subsidiary, where he oversees sourcing and executing strategic investments in enterprise software providers.

He specialises in startups that develop financial technology, artificial intelligence, machine learning and digital health.

Matt Garratt, managing partner at Salesforce Ventures, said in his nomination of Chavez: “Spencer has an incredible work ethic, an ongoing commitment to the team and has shown a tremendous amount of promise already having completed investments in [online survey management platform] SurveyMonkey, [consumer financial and lending services provider] Blend, Zoom and [sales assistance and analytics software platform] Highspot, among others.”

Zoom Video Communications went public in an initial public offering in April 2019 where mobile chipmaker Qualcomm sold $30.6m of shares while Salesforce Ventures agreed to buy a further $100m of shares through a private placement.

Chavez wrote in a blog post on Medium: “In recent years, digital lending platforms like Blend have emerged as a disruptive force, ultimately providing a user experience that customers and borrowers love, along with transparency into an industry that historically may not have prioritised it – it is now a critical and necessary component of the mortgage workflow that ties the entire experience together.

“As Salesforce continues to help drive digital transformation for our customers in the lending space as the system of record for customer relationships, it is paramount for Financial Services Cloud to have close lending digital lending platform go-to-market partners in order to provide a more integrated end-customer lending experience.”

Most recently, Salesforce Ventures led a $290m series B round for robotic process automation technology producer Automation Anywhere and contributed to product visualisation software platform developer Threekit’s $20m series A round in November 2019.

Before Salesforce Ventures, Chavez was a senior associate at growth equity firm JMI Equity’s investment team, where he concentrated on growth equity deals for enterprise software developers.

While pursuing his degree in finance and economics at Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business, Chavez held a three-month internship at networking equipment supplier Cisco Systems.

Upon graduation, he joined asset management and financial services firms Needham and Company and Citigroup as an investment banking analyst where he helped advise the firms’ technology clients on fundraising and mergers and acquisitions initiatives for three years.

Edison Fu

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