Head of Ventures
NB: Location is across Australia
Applications close: 14 January 2024
Beanstalk exists to unleash the potential for agriculture to be a leading force for good. We believe our food system needs reinvention to feed a growing global population on a healthy planet, and we are working hand-in-hand with innovators, agribusinesses, and public sector leaders to make it happen. If this excites you, we would love for you to apply!
We are a specialised team of strategy, venture building and innovation experts dedicated to the agriculture and food sector in the Indo-Pacific. Our role is to catalyse the adoption of new technologies and build capabilities that help to unlock our ability to produce nutritious food in a responsible, ethical and sustainable manner.
Beanstalk achieves this through two arms of its organisation: Beanstalk Advisory, its Indo-Pacific consulting business that partners with agribusiness, governments, and donors to tackle their most pressing challenges in the agriculture value chain; and Beanstalk Ventures, its venture building arm focused on venture creation and building, investing and scaling impact-focused solutions shaping our future food system.
About the Beanstalk Drought Venture Studio:
Australia is one of the driest continents on earth, yet we have a vibrant agricultural sector that constantly adapts to climate change challenges - necessity has made us amazing innovators. This resourcefulness makes Australia the natural home for our Drought Venture Studio.
This world first partnership between the Commonwealth - through its Future Drought Fund - and Beanstalk AgTech will identify problems from the ground up and develop and fund solutions through practical commercialisation. Beanstalk will work with the eight Drought Innovation Hubs across Australia and industry to enable the creation of new startups and technological innovation in response to drought.
The program’s mission is to support nearly 100 commercial solutions, and to back 8 high growth ventures over the next 2 years, positioning Australia as a global leader on drought and climate solutions to agricultural resilience.
About the role:
We are hiring a Head of Ventures to join the Beanstalk Ventures team on a fixed term contract to lead the strategy and delivery of commercialisation support to innovators across the Drought Venture Studio.
This role will oversee the management of a Lead Venture Architect and 8 Venture Builders and their responsibilities to support all the participants taking part in the Drought Venture Studio. For this project, your role will report directly to the Studio Director.
You will be responsible for enabling the best chance of commercial success of the innovations that come through the Drought Venture Studio. You will guide the Venture Builders and Architect on their commercialisation activities, create links with broader programs and organisations, and be the go-to expert on the commercial strategy and development of entrepreneurial capability and scalable drought tech solutions.
Specifically, you will be required to:
- Ensure the programmatic design of the Drought Venture Studio optimises the participant journey, and maximises the opportunity for the highest quality venture creation
- Coach and lead a cross-functional, remote team of 8 Venture Builders and Lead Venture Architect
- Engage technical and subject matter experts to ensure they are prepared and available to support and mentor innovator participants
- Assess the ventures participating in the Drought Venture Studio and create appropriate support mechanisms to maximise their success
- Help to refine the approach that will be used in the accelerator program and training modules based on venture need and market changes
- Engage directly with Corporates, Investors and Industry Bodies to represent the participants and Drought Venture Studio; help to strike the right balance between corporate needs and the ventures’ requirements
- Pioneer and lead program innovation sprints to foster creativity and results, with the support of your team
- Work with the Studio Director to foster and nurture strategic partnerships with key national stakeholders, including government agencies, research institutions, and national organisations to enhance the program’s reach and impact
- Serve alongside the Studio Director as an advocate for the innovation ecosystem, representing the program in relevant forums, conferences, and industry events; actively contribute to discussions on drought resilience, AgTech, and innovation
- Work with the Studio Lead to implement a robust impact assessment framework, encompassing key internal and external program metrics
- Work with Studio Lead to develop a comprehensive risk management plan, identifying potential challenges and implementing appropriate contingency measures
- Work with the Studio Director to engage with policymakers to advocate for supportive policies that foster innovation in agriculture and drought resilience
Still with us here? You are probably one of us. Research out there suggests that women and underrepresented people are less likely to apply for a role despite being perfectly qualified. We would love for you to introduce yourself – as a business with global ambitions and working deeply amongst remote communities, diversity in people, experiences and perspectives brings us closer to our mission of building a regional food system that serves the communities we work across. We're looking for people of all genders, races, ethnicities, orientations, abilities, and disabilities to join us.
Beanstalk highly encourages Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people to apply, and are seeking applicants who have demonstrated knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander culture and social ways of life.
- 10+ years in commercialisation, strategy development, business planning, product management, entrepreneurship and innovation processes and methodologies
- Leadership experience operating and/or investing in startups and new ventures
- Managing and supporting distributed teams
- Facilitation, workshop management, public speaking skills a must
- C-Suite stakeholder management a must
- Future thinking and demonstrated abilities to stay ahead of the curve
- Experience with lean startup methodology, human-centred design, design thinking or similar
- Based in Australia
- Adhoc travel across the program workshops, showcases and events
Beanstalk is an innovation agency dedicated to unleashing the potential for agriculture to be the leading force for good. We exist to support industry leaders, start-up innovators, investors, and government bodies across the Indo-Pacific to advance sustainable, ethical, and responsible food systems. Our core competency is in helping our clients to navigate and adopt leading practices and technologies, with purpose and clarity. Our advantage lies at the intersection of our deep domain expertise, our open innovation mindset, and our regional network. Our team consists of agriculture, innovation, strategy, and operation experts based out of Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, and Singapore.